He earned the degree of Doctor of Science (Dr. rer. nat.) from the Martin-Luther-Universität Halle-Wittenberg in 1958. As of 2010, he is professor emeritus at the Institute of Mathematics of the Technische Universität Ilmenau.
His encyclopedic book in spectral graph theory, Spectra of Graphs. Theory and Applications (with Dragos Cvetković and Michael Doob) has several editions and was translated in several languages.
Two theorems in graph theory bear his name. One of them relates the coefficients of the characteristic polynomial of a graph to certain structural features of the graph. Another one is a simple relation between the characteristic polynomials of a graph and its line graph.
- Horst Sachs at the Mathematics Genealogy Project.
- Faculty profile at Ilmenau, retrieved 2010-08-07.
- VEB Deutscher Verlag der Wissenschaften, Berlin, 1980. Academic Press, 1980. 2nd ed., VEB Deutscher Verlag der Wissenschaften, 1982. 3rd revised and enlarged ed., Johann Ambrosius Barth, Heidelberg, 1995, ISBN 978-3-335-00407-3. Russian translation Spektry grafov. teoriia i primenenie, Naukova dumka, Kiev, 1984.
- Review by Lowell W. Beineke (1981), SIAM Review 23 (4): 546–548, doi:10.1137/1023115.
- Review by Gordon J. Savage and S. Toida (1981), Journal of the Franklin Institute 311 (6): 403, doi:10.1016/0016-0032(81)90029-6.
- Review by Bojan Mohar (1995), Zbl 0824.05046.
- Review by Wessel (1996), Journal of Applied Mathematics and Mechanics 76 (10): 144, doi:10.1002/zamm.19960760305.
- Review by P. Rowlinson (1996), Proceedings of the Edinburgh Mathematical Society (Series 2) 39: 188–189, doi:10.1017/S0013091500022902.
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