Theoretical and Experimental Physics, Institute of

Theoretical and Experimental Physics, Institute of


(full name, Institute of Theoretical and Experimental Physics of the State Committee on the Use of Atomic Energy of the USSR), a center for scientific research in nuclear physics.

Founded in 1945 in Moscow, the institute was called the Third Laboratory until 1949 and the Heat Engineering Laboratory of the Academy of Sciences of the USSR until 1957. It was organized by Academician A. I. Alikhanov, who also served as its first director. Researchers working at the institute in 1976 included the corresponding members of the Academy of Sciences of the USSR V. V. Vladimirskii and L. B. Okun’.

Research at the institute involves the physics of elementary particles and atomic nuclei, applied nuclear physics, computational mathematics, and physical chemistry. Fundamental studies have been carried out on the properties of the beta decay of neutrons and atomic nuclei. The institute has shown that interaction cross sections of strongly interacting particles exhibit asymptotic behavior at very high energies (seePOMERANCHUK THEOREM) and has discovered atomic forces that do not conserve parity.

The USSR’s first heavy-water research reactor was put into operation at the institute in 1949. Construction of a 7-gigaelectron-volt (7-GeV) proton synchrotron was completed in 1961, and the machine’s energy was increased to 10 GeV in 1973. This accelerator was the model for the 76-GeV proton accelerator of the Institute of High-energy Physics at Protvino.


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