Robert H. Kraichnan

KRAICHNAN--Robert H., died on February 26, 2008 at 5pm in Santa Fe, NM. He was 80 years old. Dr. Kraichnan was considered the father of modern fluid turbulence theory. He made basic contributions that dealt with the nonlinearity of turbulence and the construction of selfconsistent approximations. At the time of his death, Dr. Kraichnan was working on fundamental issues in quantum mechanics. Dr. Kraichnan received a Ph.D degree in theoretical physics from MIT in 1949. He was Albert Einstein's personal assistant 1949-1950. Later, he worked as a research scientist at Columbia and New York Universities. From 1962 until his death, Dr. Kraichnan was self-employed. He received prime grants from several Government agencies and served as consultant to a number of organizations. He was Homewood Professor in the Mechanical Engineering Dept of John Hopkins University from 2003 until his death. Dr. Kraichnan is survived by his wife, artist and photographer Judy Moore-Kraichnan, and by his former wife Carol Gebhardt, their son John Kraichnan, and granddaughter Sasha Kraichnan. Dr. Kraichnan was a member of the National Academy of Sciences. He received the Dirac Medal of the International Center for Theoretical Physics, the Lars Onsager Prize of the American Physical Society, the Adion Medal of l'Observatoire de Nice, and other awards.

Published in The New York Times on Feb. 29, 2008