Hendrik Anthony "Hans"
Kramers (Rotterdam, February 2, 1894 – Oegstgeest, April 24, 1952) was a Dutch physicist.
He was the son of Hendrik
Kramers, a physician
, and Jeanne Susanne
Breukelman. On October 25 1920
he was married to Anna Petersen. They had three
daughters and one son.
In 1912 Hans finished secondary
(in Dutch: HBS) in Rotterdam, and studied mathematics
at the University of Leiden
where he obtained a master's degree in 1916.Kramers wanted to
obtain foreign experience during his doctoral research, but his
first choice of supervisor, Max Born in
Göttingen, was not reachable because of the first world
war. Because Denmark was neutral
in this war, as was The Netherlands, he travelled (by ship,
overland was impossible) to Copenhagen, where he visited unannounced the then still
relatively unknown Niels Bohr.
took him on as a PhD student and Kramers prepared his dissertation
under Bohr's direction.Although Kramers did most of his doctoral
research (on intensities of atomic transitions) in Copenhagen, he
obtained his formal Ph.D. in Leiden, on May 8
working for almost ten years in Bohr's group and becoming an
associate professor at the University of Copenhagen, Kramers left Denmark in 1926 and returned to his
He became a full professor in theoretical
physics at the Utrecht
, where he supervised Tjalling Koopmans
. In 1934 he left Utrecht
and succeeded Paul Ehrenfest
Leiden. From 1931 until his death he held also a
cross appointment at the Delft University of Technology.
was one of the founders of the Mathematisch Centrum in Amsterdam.
He won the Lorentz Medal
in 1947 and Hughes Medal
- Max Dresden, H.A. Kramers - Between Tradition and
Revolution, Springer (1987) ISBN 0387962824