Petersen, 22, arrives from Mackay Cutters in Australia, having left the UK back in 2012, and becomes the Bulls’ third new recruit for 2015.
He had come through the Hull KR academy, and made four appearances for the club, scoring one try.
Coach James Lowes said: “Dave is a very talented, young individual – with a big future in the game.
“He was highly regarded before he left Hull KR and has only got better during his time Down Under.
“We look forward to welcoming Dave aboard later this year, ahead of a massive league campaign for the club.”
He said: “The opportunity to come home and play for a club like Bradford was one I simply could not afford to turn down.
“I have really progressed as a player during my time with the Cutters and have lived a great lifestyle in Australia, but feel ready to return to the UK and kick on.
“This is a big chance for me and I want to make an impact. Bradford is a great club, with firm foundations now in place, and I hope to help them get back to where they belong.”