He received his Ph.D. in 1927 at Leiden University in the Netherlands and then went to Yale University. From 1941 until 1966 he was editor of the Astronomical Journal.
He specialized in celestial mechanics and wrote the textbook Methods of Celestial Mechanics.
* Gold Medal of the Royal Astronomical Society (1955)
* Bruce Medal (1966)
Named after him
* Asteroid 1746 Brouwer
* Brouwer crater on the Moon (jointly with mathematician Luitzen Egbertus Jan Brouwer)
* Dirk Brouwer Award of the Division on Dynamical Astronomy of the American Astronomical Society
* Dirk Brouwer Award of the American Astronautical Society
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