Peter received his Diploma in Geophysics 1977 from the Freie Universität Berlin (FUB). Then he worked in the exploration company PRAKLA-SEISMOS. He returned to the FUB and was engaged in a number of projects exploring the continental lithosphere by controlled source seismology. 1983 he finished his Ph.D. at the FUB (thesis about the Apennin mountain chain and the geothermal anomaly in Tuscany, Italy) and since that time his research was focussed to the South American Andes, using wide and steep angle seismics as well as seismological methods. Since 1985 he also acted as the research manager for two large interdisciplinary geoscientific programs based at the FUB: Research Group "Mobility of active continental margins" (until 1990) and Collaborative Research Center (SFB 267) "Deformation Processes in the Andes" (until 2005).