Gerald B. Cleaver

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Gerald Bryan Cleaver
Residence United States
Nationality United States
Fields Physics
Institutions Baylor University
Texas A&M University
Alma mater Caltech
Valparaiso University
Doctoral advisor John Schwarz
Doctoral students

John Perkins (Ph.D., 2005),

Ben Dundee (M.S., 2006), Richard Obousy (Ph.D., 2008), Matthew Robinson (Ph.D., 2009), Kristen Pechan (M.S., 2010), Timothy Renner (Ph.D., 2011), Jared Greenwald (Ph.D., 2013), Douglas Moore (Ph.D., 2014), Yanbin Deng (Ph.D., 2015)
Known for Research in string theory, string phenomenology, early universe cosmology, elementary particle physics, and advanced propulsion systems development


Gerald B. Cleaver is a theoretical elementary particle physicist on the faculty of the Department of Physics at Baylor University in Waco, Texas. At Baylor University, Cleaver heads the Early Universe Cosmology and Strings (EUCOS)[1] Division head of the Center for Astrophysics, Space Physics and Engineering Research (CASPER).[2]


Gerald B. Cleaver[3] is Professor and Graduate Program Director of the Department of Physics at Baylor University. Cleaver has graduated nine Ph.D. and M.S. students through his Early Universe Cosmology and Strings program since going the Baylor faculty in 2001. Cleaver earned his Ph.D. at Caltech in 1993. John H. Schwarz was his thesis adviser. (John H. Schwarz's dissertation advisor was Geoffrey Chew, whose dissertation advisor was Enrico Fermi.) Prior to joining the faculty at Baylor University, Cleaver was a postdoctoral research at The Ohio State University, the University of Pennsylvania, and Texas A&M University and then visiting assistant professor at Texas A&M.

Cleaver has written over 85 peer-reviewed physics journal articles and conference proceedings. He is co-author of an elementary particle physics textbook, author of five book chapters, referee for eight physics journals, and member of the international advisory board of the Journal of the British Interplanetary Society.


While a postdoc at Texas A&M, Cleaver, with Dimitri Nanopoulos and Alon Faraggi, constructed the first string-derived model containing only the particles of the Minimal Supersymmetric Standard Model (MSSM) in the observable sector.[4]

Cleaver's EUCOS team conducts systematic computer-based studies of phenomenology of parameter spaces of the string landscape of possible universes. They constructed the first string derived Near-MSSM[5] possessing the potential to resolve the factor-of-20 difference between the MSSM unification scale of 2.5×1016 GeV and the weakly coupled heterotic string scale of 5×1017 via a robust method referred to as "optical unification".[6]

Additionally, with Baylor's Gravity, Cosmology, and Astrophysics (GCAP)[7] Research group led by Anzhong Wang, and Department of Mathematics faculty Klaus Kirsten[8] and Qin (Tim) Sheng,[9] Cleaver is exploring means of evaluating quantum gravity effects on the cosmic microwave background to new levels of precision.

As a member of Icarus Interstellar[10]—founded by Cleaver's Ph.D. graduate Richard Obousy—Cleaver is researching deep future space propulsion and energy generation systems. In particular, he is studying spacecraft propulsion systems based on in situ matter/anti-matter (MAM) production via quantum field theory effects from parallel electric and magnetic fields. The concept is based on non-perturbative chiral symmetry breaking effects discussed by John Preskill at Caltech in the 1980s. MAM production rate as a function of parallel electric and magnetic field strengths was calculated by Sang Kim and Don Page in Physical Review D75 (2007) 045013.[11]


Cleaver has written over 85 peer-reviewed physics journal articles and conference proceedings. He is co-author of an elementary particle physics textbook Symmetry and the Standard Model, with M. Robinson (First author), K. Bland, J. Dittmann, and M. Serna, (Springer, New York, 2011). Cleaver authored In Search of the (Minimal Supersymmetric) Standard Model String, Chapter 2 of String Theory Research Progress, F. Balogh, ed., (Nova Science Publishers, New York, 2008).

Ph.D. Student Dissertations[edit]

Yanbin Deng, Ph.D. Dissertation: Reflections on General Relativity from Perspectives of Black Hole Physics and Horava-Lifshitz Gravity

Douglas Moore, Ph.D. Dissertation: The Weakly Coupled Free Fermionic Heterotic String Gauge Landscape

Jared Greenwald, Ph.D. Dissertation: Automated Systematic Generation and Exploration of Flat Direction Phenomenology in Free Fermionic Heterotic String Theory

Timothy Renner, Ph.D. Dissertation: Initial Systematic Investigations of the Weakly Coupled Free Fermionic Heterotic String Landscape Statistics

Kristen Pechan, M.S. Thesis: Investigation of Low Higgs Models in Weakly Coupled Free Fermionic Heterotic String Theory

Matthew Robinson, PH.D. Dissertation: Towards a Systematic Investigation of Weakly Coupled Free Fermionic Heterotic String Gauge Group Statistics

Richard Obousy, PH.D. Dissertation: Investigations into Compactified Dimensions: Casimir Energies and Phenomenological Aspects

Ben Dundee, M.S. Thesis: Grand Unified Theories in Higher Dimensions

John Perkins, PH.D. Dissertation: Aspects of String Phenomenology at the Self-Dual Radius


Cleaver is a Fellow of the American Scientific Affiliation, and an active or past member of Mensa International, International Society for Philosophical Enquiry, Triple Nine Society, and Prometheus Society. He is also a member of Sigma Xi Scientific Research Society, Sigma Pi Sigma Physics Honor Society, Sigma Rho Phi Science and Theology Honor Society, Mortar Board, and Alpha Lambda Delta.

Activities and Interests[edit]

Cleaver was a member of the College Board/ETS Standards Committee for the AP Physics II Exam, has been on the Texas State Review Panel for Supplementary High School Science Material, and was a member of NASA's Blue Ribbon Panel for Review of Advanced Propulsion Projects.

Cleaver is a referee for Physical Review Letters, European Physical Journal, Modern Physics Letters A, General Relativity and Gravitation, Acta Astronautica, Physics Essays, Scientific Journals International,[12] International Scholarly Research Notices Mathematical Physics,[13] Scientific Research and Essays,[14] International Journal of Computer Mathematics,[15] International Journal of Engineering Science,[16] and Theology and Science. He is on the international advisory board of the Journal of the British Interplanetary Society.

Cleaver’s interests include flying radio controlled model airplanes, SCUBA (NAUI open water certified), small boat sailing, snow skiing, and Tae Kwon Do (ATA blue belt). He directs Baylor University's Boy Scout Merit Badge College held annually in the fall.


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