Goldreich is one of the most prominent theoretical astrophysicists
of our time. His work has
provided fundamental theoretical insights for
understanding the rotation of planets,
the dynamics of Saturn's rings, pulsars, astrophysical masers,
the spiral arms of galaxies,
oscillations of the sun and white dwarfs,
and astrophysical turbulence.
Many of his greatest contributions have been to
our understanding of how planets form, migrate, and evolve. His
studies are of great importance to investigations of the
newly discovered planetary systems around other stars.
He completed his Ph.D. at Cornell University (Physics) in 1963,
and after completing two years of postdoctoral research at
Cambridge University, joined the Faculty of UCLA in 1964, and then
on to Caltech. He remained in that institution
He is currently a professor in the School
of Natural Sciences at the Institute for Advanced Study in
Peter Goldreich's many honors include his early election to the
prestigious National Academy of Sciences
(1972), the Henry Norris Russell Lectureship of the American Astronomical
Society for preemninence in astronomical research (1979),
the Gold Medal of the Royal Astronomical Society (1993),
and the National Medal of Science (1995).