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Karl Mikhailovich Peterson

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25 May 1828

Riga, Russia (now Latvia)

19 April 1881

Moscow, Russia

Karl Peterson worked in Moscow as a teacher of mathematics. His main work is in differential geometry and he obtained an honorary doctorate for work on partial differential equations .

Largely because he was not at a university his results were not well known but they did influence Egorov in Moscow and Peterson gained an international reputation only when Darboux and Bianchi used his results. A class of surfaces is named after him.

In his work is described as follows:

Peterson's most important paper was On the ratios and relationships between curved surfaces (1866), devoted to deformation of surfaces, which laid the foundation for a series of papers on the problem of bending on a principal basis, i.e., preserving the conjugacy of a certain net on the surface, the first example of which for deformation of surfaces of revolution on a surface of revolution was found by Minding ... (1838). Peterson's paper "On curves on surfaces" (1867) and the book "Über Curven und Flächen" (1868) were devoted to differential geometry. Some of the results of these papers of Peterson were later duplicated by G Darboux and other foreign geometers, but after E Cosserat 's translations of Peterson's main works from 1866-1867 were published in Toulouse in 1905, his work achieved general recognition.

Source:School of Mathematics and Statistics University of St Andrews, Scotland