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Arne Bjerhammar (September 15, 1917 – February 6, 2011) was a Swedish geodesist. He was professor at Royal Institute of Technology (KTH) in Stockholm. He was born in Båstad, Scania in the south of Sweden.[1][2]

Arne Evert Bjerhammar
Born(1917-09-15)September 15, 1917
DiedFebruary 6, 2011(2011-02-06) (aged 93)
Alma materRoyal Institute of Technology
AwardsGauss medal (1969), The Great Prize of KTH (1982), IAG's Levallois medal (1987), Rossby Prize of the Swedish Geophysical Society (1988), Nordstjärneorden
Scientific career
FieldsGeodesy, Mathematics

He developed a method used to determine the geoid in gravimetric data, as well as a system for electro-optical measuring of distances. He also did research about the Fennoscandian post-glacial rebound.


His research covered many fields of geodesy. As a result of his doctor’s dissertation “A contribution to the methods of optical distance measuring, specially with regard to the problems of automatic plotting“ and for his refinement of the modulation system of the Swedish EDM instrument Geodimeter he became one in the record of Swedish inventors. However, many geodesists (and mathematicians) know him for the first time for his new matrix algebra with generalized inverses, published in 1955 (in Swedish) and 1957 (in English). Seven years later, fascinated by M.S. Molodensky’s new approach to solve the basic problems of physical geodesy, he presented his original idea of analytical downward continuation of the gravity anomaly to an internal sphere (“the Bjerhammar sphere”). Among other areas of interest are his original proposals of recovering the Earth’s gravity field by using the energy integral for satellites (1967) and by the theory of general relativity using atomic clocks (1975 and 1985) as well as his studies on the correlation between the gravity field and the Fennoscandian land uplift phenomenon (post-glacial rebound) in the 1970s. He is the author of about 200 scientific articles, including two textbooks, many of the articles published as internal KTH reports. He chaired the International Association of Geodesy study group on Statistical Methods in Geodesy (1963–1967).

His sabbatical leaves can be summarized as the stays as a Visiting Scientist at The Research Institute for Geodetic Sciences in Alexandria, USA, in 1967 and 1968, at Stuttgart University (as an A-v-Humbold scholar) in 1982, National Geodetic Survey in Washington, D.C., in 1984 and at Ohio State University in 1985 and 1986.


His research was followed by national and international recognition, confirmed by several prizes and rewards such as the German Gauss medal (1969), The Great Prize of KTH (1982), IAG’s Levallois medal (1987) and the Rossby Prize of the Swedish Geophysical Society (1988). He has also been awarded Nordstjärneorden by his Majesty the King of Sweden. In 1988 he became an honorary doctor of the Technical University of Graz.


  • A contribution to the methods of optical distance measuring, specially with regard to the problems of automatic plotting -1949
  • Electro-optical distance measuring. - 1960
  • Elementär geodesi. - 1964
  • Felteori. - 1958
  • A general formula for an unbiased estimate of the standard deviation of a triangulation network. -1961
  • A general method for an explicit determination of the shape of the earth from gravimetric data. -1959
  • A generalized matrix algebra. - 1958
  • Geodesi - 1967
  • Kompendium i instrumentlära. - 1961
  • A method of combined centring and levelling for surveying instruments equipped with optimal plumb indicators. - 1948
  • A new theory of geodetic gravity. -1964
  • On an explicit solution of the gravimetric boundary value problem for an ellipsoidal surface of reference : final technical report -1962
  • On gravity. - 1968
  • On the geodetic boundary value problem for a fixed boundary surface / by Arne Bjerhammar and Leif Svensson - 1983
  • On the principal geometrical problems of geodesy. - 1961
  • A stochastic approach to the mixed boundary value problem in physical geodesy. - 1983
  • Theory of errors and generalized matrix inverses. - 1973
  • Triangular matrices for adjustment of triangular networks. - 1956
  • Communications from the Royal Institute of Technology, division: Geodesy, Stockholm 70 to the twelfth General assembly of the International union of geodesy and geophysics in Helsinki, July 1960 / by A. Bjerhammar & G. Almkvist - 1960
  • Planering : [en antologi] / Arne Bjerhammar - 1970


  1. ^ Sjöberg, Lars E. (2011). "Obituary" (PDF). Royal Institute of Technology. Archived from the original (PDF) on 4 September 2011. Retrieved 8 November 2011.
  2. ^ "Arne Bjerhammar" (in Swedish). Nationalencyklopedin. Retrieved 8 November 2011.