Peter van Nieuwenhuizen
Born (1938-10-26) October 26, 1938
Utrecht, the Netherlands
Fields Physics
Institutions Stony Brook University
Alma mater University of Utrecht
Doctoral advisor Martinus Veltman
Known for Supergravity
Notable awards Dirac Prize (1993)
Dannie Heineman Prize (2006)

Peter van Nieuwenhuizen (Dutch: ; born October 26, 1938) is a Dutch physicist. He is now a distinguished Professor at Stony Brook University in the United States. Van Nieuwenhuizen is best known for his discovery of supergravity with Sergio Ferrara and Daniel Z. Freedman.


Peter van Nieuwenhuizen studied physics and mathematics at the University of Utrecht, where he obtained his Ph.D. under the supervision of later Nobel laureate Martinus Veltman. After his studies in Utrecht he went to CERN (Geneva), the University of Paris in Orsay, and Brandeis University (Waltham), each for two years. In 1975 he joined the Institute for Theoretical Physics, now named C. N. Yang Institute for Theoretical Physics, of the State University of New York at Stony Brook, where he succeeded Nobel laureate C. N. Yang as its director from 1999 till 2002.

He is married to Marie de Crombrugghe, and they have three children, Adrienne, Olivia, and Patrick.

Awards and honors

For constructing supergravity, the first supersymmetric extension of Einstein's theory of general relativity, and for their central role in its subsequent development Peter van Nieuwenhuizen, Sergio Ferrara and Daniel Z. Freedman received 1993 the Dirac medal from the International Centre for Theoretical Physics in Trieste (Italy) and 2006 the Dannie Heineman Prize for Mathematical Physics of the American Physical Society.

He is a fellow of the American Physical Society, and a corresponding member of the Royal Dutch Academy of Sciences, and of the Austrian Academy of Sciences. He was made a Knight in the Order of the Dutch Lion in 2004, and Honorary professor of the Technical University of Vienna (Austria) in 2005.

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