Research focus areas:

  • Materials Science (including nanoscience)
  • Solid State Physics
  • Laser Physics
  • Plasma Physics
  • Theoretical Physics
  • Biophysics
  • Environmental Physics

IPUT is the biggest multidisciplinary research centre in the field of physics, materials science and nanotechnology in Estonia. It is also among leading centre in the Baltic region with 150 researchers and teachers with PhD degree, 80 PhD students and over 400 undergraduate students in Physics, Materials Science and Computer Engineering.
Research methods extend from quantum level computational studies to experimental basic research. 14 research labs of IPUT possess modern equipment for material preparation and characterisation. Besides the in-house facilities at the institute, the researchers exploit large international facilities – synchrotron radiation sources at DESY, BESSY (Germany) and Max-Lab (Sweden), Laserlab Europe facilities at Saclay (France), Lund (Sweden) and Vilnius (Lithuania), The Joint European Torus (JET) at Culham Centre for Fusion Energy (UK), etc.

In 2013 the IPUT joined the Crystal Clear Collaboration (CCC) at CERN. The CCC researches on novel scintillation materials for high energy physics and other applications. The majority of PhD students at IPUT are enrolled into the Graduate School “Functional materials and processes”, where all major Estonian Universities and research institutes contribute. IPUT is a partner of the Marie Curie ITN „Luminet“ network 2012-2015 researching on various luminescent materials.

In 1946 the Institute of Physics, Mathematics and Mechanics was established. 1975 marked the completion of the present-day main building of the Institute. To merge research and teaching under changed boundary conditions, the Institute was incorporated into the University of Tartu (UT) in 1997. Since 2008 the Institute is a part of the Faculty of Science and Technology. In 2014 the new building for IPUT in UT Maarjamõisa Science Campus will open, with excellent modern lab conditions for experimental physics and materials science.

Centres of Excellence:

  • The researchers of the Institute lead and participate in several national centres of excellence funded by ERDF and Estonian State:
  • Mesosystems – Theory and Applications lead by Prof. V. Hiznjakov. Mesosystems lie in between the macroworld and atomic dimensions and have prospects for numerous novel applications.
  • High-Technology Materials for Sustainable Development lead by Prof. E. Lust. New highly efficient anti-corrosion coatings, dielectrics, graphene based materials, complex oxides for sensors, etc.
  • Centre for Nonlinear Studies, UT activities lead by Prof. P. Saari. This centre is a virtual network of research groups engaged in interdisciplinary studies of complex nonlinear processes.
  • In 2000-2004 IPUT was appointed as a Centre of Excellence (CoE, Regional Centre of Excellence - ESTOMATERIALS) by the European Commission.

International cooperation
Nobel Prize winners A.M. Prokhorov, N.G. Basov, R.L. Mössbauer, K. Siegbahn and H. Kroto are some of the prominent visitors to the institute. IPUT has a long-term cooperation (funded by European and national programs) with research centres and universities in Europe and other countries. The number of foreign visits per year is approximately 100.

During last decade IPUT has received 3 European research grants from the EU 6th and 3 from 7th Framework Programme: CORRAL – Corrosion protection with perfect atomic layers; RODIN – Suspended Graphene Nanostructures; NANOTWINNING - strategic collaboration via twinning of institutions of European Research Area.

IPUT is involved in: ”Nanoparticle Manipulation with Atomic Force Microscopy Techniques”-2008, “Entangled spin pairs in graphene”- 2010 funded by the Eurocores programme and from 2009 “Super-intense laser-matter interactions-SILMI” financed from the PECS research networking programme of European Science Foundation. Since 2012 two innovation related projects “Science Link” and “Technet

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