Robert C. Hermann (April 28, 1931 – February 10, 2020)
Surrounded by friends, family and his books, Bob died February 10th at age 88 from pneumonia. Bob is a widely recognized mathematician and mathematical physicist. He got his PhD from Princeton University, taught at Rutgers University, and then focused on his research. In the 1960s he worked on elementary particle physics and quantum field theory. His work revealed the interconnections between vector bundles on Riemannian manifolds and guage theory in physics, before these interconnections became ‘common knowledge’ among physicists. In the 1970s, Bob worked on the application of differential geometric methods in system theory, where he was one of the pioneers of the analysis of nonlinear system controllability in terms of Lie algebras.
Bob published numerous books on differential geometry and Lie group theories and their applications to differential equations, integrable systems, control theory and physics.
Bob will always be remembered as a gentle giant, a lover of nature, and an avid reader. He is survived by his former wife, Lana Hermann, by their son Chris, and by their daughter Gabrielle, her husband Holger Reinhardt and their three children, Alex, Katya and Jonas.
Burial will be private. A memorial service and celebration of Bob’s life will be held this Spring when the flowers bloom.