Lebedev Physical Institute (LPI)
Nuclear Physics
and Astrophysics
Division (NPAD)




Academic Council


Experiments and projects

Most important scientific results in NPAD

NPAD History





Researches on high-energy physics, nuclear physics, and elementary particle physics are traditional in LPI. The first researches on high-energy physics have been associated with the study of cosmic rays. It began in the mid-1930s, when on the initiative of I.M. Frank and then D.V. Skobel'tsyn the first mountain expeditions were organized in the prewar years to study cosmic rays at Elbrus, and then at Pamir. In 1946, LPI has built a special mountain station for the Pamir expedition. In 1946, simultaneously with the Pamir station, LPI has organized the stratospheric station in Dolgoprudnyi (Moscow region) to develop studies of cosmic rays (at present, Vernov Dolgoprudnyi research station). To study the origin and interactions of high-energy cosmic rays the Tian-Shan mountain research station was created in 1958-1961. In 1960-1962, the facility at the LPI Crimea research stationfirst in the worldsearched for sources of cosmic rays using the method of detection of Cherenkov radiation created in the atmosphere by cosmic-ray particles.

In the postwar years, LPI also expanded rocket and space researches: the Earth's outer radiation belt was discovered, primary cosmic rays were studied on satellites.

Researches on high-energy physics at particle accelerators have been possible after the discovery in 1944 by V.I. Veksler of the principle of phase stability that allowed one to develop new types of modern accelerators, including the largest in Europe synchrotron C-25 for the energy of 250 MeV (1949) and the 10-GeV proton accelerator in Dubna (1957).

Researches on physics of atomic nuclei in LPI were started in the I.M. Frank laboratory organized in the postwar years. P.A. Cherenkov, one of the authors of the Vavilov-Cherenkov effect, headed the LPI laboratory specially built in Troitsk (Moscow region), where the 1-GeV electron synchrotron "Pakhra" was built. Constants of electric and magnetic proton polarizabilities were first determined at this accelerator.

At present, NPAD performs researches in the field of elementary particle physics, including at the Large Hadron Collider (CERN), nuclear physics, cosmic-ray physics, high- and ultrahigh-energy gamma-ray astronomy, neutrino physics, near-solar space astrophysics, accelerator physics and their use for applied purposes.