ISSP - The institute for Solid State Physics

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History
History

The Institute for Solid State Physics (ISSP) of the University of Tokyo was established on April 1 in 1957 as a joint research laboratory based upon the recommendation of the Science Council of Japan and the concurrence between the Ministry of Education, Science and Culture and the Science and Technology Agency in order to carry on basic research in condensed matter physics. Within the first 15 to 20 years, ISSP had achieved its original mission, that is to serve as the central laboratory of materials science in Japan equipped with state-of-art facilities that were open for all domestic researches in order to bring the research in Japan up to par with the international level.

The next goal was set to develop advanced experimental techniques that were difficult to achieve in most university laboratories. The reorganization of ISSP into the "second generation" took place in 1980. Division of Physics in Extreme Conditions included groups in the areas of ultra-high magnetic field, laser physics, surface science, ultra-low temperature and very high pressure. It aimed to create extreme conditions and to explore new phenomena. Neutron Scattering Laboratory was constructed in Tokai in collaboration with the Japan Atomic Energy Agency. Its capability was significantly improved during 1990 - 1992 due to renovation of the research reactor. Synchrotron Radiation Laboratory operated the SOR-RING in the Tanashi Campus of the University of Tokyo and maintained beam lines in the Photon Factory at the High Energy Accelerator Research Organization (KEK) in Tsukuba. Besides activities using such big facilities, the Condensed Matter Division and the Theory Division maintained small groups motivated by individual interests and ideas. Among these groups was formed Materials Development Division in 1989 aiming at exploring new materials and their novel properties.

16 years after the reorganization, another major reorganization of ISSP into the "third generation" took place in 1996, in order to pursue new frontiers beyond the traditional disciplines and become an international center of materials science. One example is to explore new phenomena in combined environments of various extreme conditions, since individual technologies for high magnetic field, low temperature and high pressure had reached certain maturity during the "second generation". Another example is the study of artificially designed materials such as thin films, materials fabricated on surfaces and mesoscopic systems with nanoscale structure. Focused efforts are also planned on synthesis and characterization of new materials with the aid of computational physics, which allows us to design and predict properties of new materials. In order to reflect these developments, former research divisions were reorganized into five research divisions (New Materials Science, Condensed Matter Theory, Frontier Areas, Physics in Extreme Conditions, and Advanced Spectroscopy) and three research facilities (Synchrotron Radiation, Neutron Scattering, and Materials Design and Characterization Laboratories). In addition, a visiting staff division as well as two foreign visiting professor positions were created.

ISSP was relocated to the new campus in Kashiwa of the University of Tokyo in March 2000 after the 43 years of activities at the Roppongi campus in downtown Tokyo. Here ISSP is aiming at creating new areas of science in collaboration with other institutions in Kashiwa. In 2003, Neutron Scattering Laboratory was reorganized to Neutron Science Laboratory. The University of Tokyo was transformed into a national university corporation in 2004 and thus ISSP is expected to play new roles as a joint research Laboratory in the university corporation. In the same year, Division of Frontier Areas Research changed its name to Division of Nanoscale Science. In 2006, the ISSP established International MegaGauss Science Laboratory and started serving as an international center of physics in high magnetic fields. In 2011, Center of Computational Materials Science was established in the ISSP, for promoting materials science with advanced supercomputers. Regarding Synchrotron Radiation Laboratory, after the closing of the SOR-RING in 1997, Harima branch of Synchrotron Radiation Laboratory was established at SPring-8 in 2009. Furthermore, Division of Advanced Spectroscopy and Synchrotron Radiation Laboratory were reorganized in 2012 into the newly established Laser and Synchrotron Research Center. In 2016, Divisions of New Materials Science and Physics in Extreme Conditions were reorganized into Division of Condensed Matter Science, and Functional Materials Group and Quantum Materials Group were launched in order to widen the scope of condensed matter science, as a new step forward in the interdisciplinary research field.

 

Chronology
1957 Establishment of ISSP as a joint research laboratory
Opening of Radio and Microwave Spectroscopy, Theory II, and Crystallography I divisions
1958   Opening of Ferroelectrics and Quantum Electronics, and Optical Properties divisions
Opening of Low Temperature and Magnetism I divisions
1959   Opening of Semiconductor, Molecular Physics, Lattice Imperfections, Plasticity, and Nuclear Radiation divisions
1960   Opening of Crystallography II, Theory I, Solid State Nucleus, Surface Properties, and Molecular Science divisions
Inauguration of ISSP
1961   Opening of Magnetism II, Solid Materials, High Pressure, and Theory III divisions. Total 20 divisions
1965   Solid Materials division was renamed as Inorganic Materials division
1969   Opening of Neutron Diffraction division
1972   Opening of Solid State division (visiting staff), resulting in 22 divisions in total
1975   Foundation of Synchrotron Radiation Laboratory
1979   Ultra-Low-Temperature Laboratory building completed
1980   Reorganization of ISSP from 22 small divisions to five large divisions, Physics in Extreme Conditions (including ultra-high magnetic field, laser physics, surface science, ultra-low temperatures and very high pressure laboratory), Synchrotron Radiation, Neutron Diffraction, Condensed Matter and Theory divisions and one Visiting Staff division
1982   Ultra-High Magnetic Field Laboratory and Laser Laboratory building completed
1989   Opening of Materials Development Division
The 1st ISSP International Symposium on "The Physics and Chemistry of Organic Superconductors"
1993   Foundation of Neutron Scattering Laboratory
1995   Evaluation of scientific achievements of ISSP by an international external committee
1996   Reorganization into five divisions; New Materials Science, Condensed Matter Theory, Frontier Areas
Research, Physics in Extreme Conditions and Advanced Spectroscopy divisions, and three facilities; Synchrotron Radiation, Neutron Scattering and Materials Design and Characterization Laboratories
<Construction of the new ISSP buildings in Kashiwa campus started>
1997   Evaluation of activities of the U.S.-Japan cooperative program on neutron scattering by the international review committee
1999   Relocation to Kashiwa campus started
2000 Relocation completed
2001   Opening of foreign visiting professorship
2003 Reorganization to Neutron Science Laboratory from Neutron Scattering Laboratory
Evaluation of scientific activities of the Material Design and Characterization Laboratory by the external committee
2004 The University of Tokyo was transformed into a national university corporation
Division of Frontier Areas Research was renamed as Division of Nanoscale Science
2005 Evaluation of scientific achievements of ISSP by an international external committee
2006 Foundation of International MegaGauss Science Laboratory
2007 Celebration of 50th anniversary
2010 Authorization as a joint usage/research center
2011 Foundation of Center of Computational Materials Science
2012 Foundation of Laser and Synchrotron Research Center, as a reorganization of Division of Advanced Spectroscopy and Synchrotron Radiation Laboratory
2014 Evaluation of activities of the U.S.-Japan cooperative program on neutron scattering by the international review committee
2015 Evaluation of scientific achievements of ISSP by an international external committee
2016 Reorganization to Division of Condensed Matter Science from Divisions of New Materials
Science and Physics in Extreme Conditions, and foundation of Functional Materials Group and
Quantum Materials Group