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Institute of Physics of Materials (IPM)

The aim of the Institute of Physics of Materials of the Czech Academy of Sciences, v.v.i. (IPM CAS, v.v.i.) is to elucidate the relation between the behaviour and properties of materials and their structural and microstructural characteristics.  Particular emphasis is placed upon research into advanced metallic materials and composites with a metal base in relation to their microstructure and production technique. On this basis it is possible to optimise both the microstructure and material properties and to design advanced materials.

The Institute was established in 1955 as a part of the newly founded Czechoslovak Academy of Sciences. Since that time it has been continuously developed to the present day. The Institute has more than 160 (135 FTE) employees at present. Almost a half of the staff are scientists (i.e. with a Ph.D. or equivalent degree). A number of Ph.D. students who perform their study at IPM is important. The Institute is divided into three scientific departments and a service department. The scientific departments consist of ten research groups.

The Department of Mechanical Properties consists of five research groups. It focuses on the research of the physical nature of processes taking place in materials during creep, fatigue, their interaction and brittle fracture in relation to the process of their preparation and the microstructure and its changes during the action of external forces. A wide range of advanced metallic and non-metallic materials and materials created by their combinations is studied, including newly developed materials.

The Department of Thermodynamics and Electrical and Magnetic Properties focuses on thermodynamic, diffusion, electrical and magnetic properties and their relationship to structure. Theoretical and experimental research takes place in a wide range of dimensions, from atomic bonds to macroscopic behavior on materials with amorphous, nanocrystalline and polycrystalline structures.

The department of Experimental Studies and Modelling of Structure focuses on theoretical multi-scale modelling of material properties and behaviour under different kind of loading, experimental validation of these properties, and characterisation of the structure of materials using the latest electron and optical microscopy techniques. New nanomaterials or high-quality surfaces for microscopic observations are also being prepared within the department.

IPM cooperates with a number of universities and organizations engaged in research and development in the Czech Republic and especially abroad. We cooperate with industrial partners on projects of applied research and on the basis of economic agreements.