Research in Physical sciences covers a wide range in frontier areas of basic and applied domains. Further, it contributes to the indigenous development of advanced technologies relevant to the Department of Atomic Energy (DAE). The interdisciplinary research includes investigation of matter under different physicochemical environments, including temperature, magnetic field and pressure. Reactors, ion & electron accelerators and lasers are being employed as tools to investigate crucial phenomena in materials over wide length and time scales. Major facilities, operated by BARC for research in Physical sciences, include the Pelletron-Superconducting linear accelerator at TIFR, the National Facility for Neutron Beam Research (NFNBR) at Dhruva, a number of state-of-the-art beam lines at INDUS synchrotrons, RRCAT-Indore, the TeV Atmospheric Cherenkov Telescope with Imaging Camera (TACTIC) at Mt. Abu, the Folded Tandem Ion Accelerator (FOTIA) and PURNIMA fast neutron facilities at BARC, the 3 MV Tandetron accelerator at the National Centre for Compositional Characterization of Materials (NCCCM) at Hyderabad, the 10 MeV electron accelerator at the Electron Beam Centre at Navi Mumbai.
BARC also has sustained programs of indigenous development of detectors, sensors, mass spectrometers, imaging techniques and multilayer-mirrors. Recent achievements include: commissioning of the Major Atmospheric Cerenkov Experiment Telescope (MACE) at Ladakh, a time-of-flight neutron spectrometer at Dhruva, the beam-lines at INDUS (Small-and wide angle X-ray Scattering (SWAXS), Protein crystallography, Infrared spectroscopy, Extended X-ray Absorption Fine Structure (EXAFS), Photo electron spectroscopy (PES/ PEEM), Energy & angle-dispersive XRD, and imaging), commissioning of beam-lines and associated detector facilities at BARC-TIFR Pelletron facility, the Low Energy High Intensity Proton Accelerator (LEHIPA) at BARC, the digital holography microscope for biological cell imaging at Vizag.
Ongoing basic and applied research encompasses a broad spectrum covering condensed matter physics, nuclear physics, astrophysical sciences and atomic & molecular spectroscopy. Important research areas include advanced magnetism, soft and nano structured materials, energy materials, thin film & multi-layers, accelerator/reactor based fusion-fission studies, nuclear-astrophysics, nuclear data management, reactor based neutrino physics, very high-energy astrophysics and astro-particle physics. Some of the important ongoing developmental activities are: Indian Scintillat or Matrix for Reactor Anti-Neutrinos (ISMRAN), neutron guides, polarizers and supermirrors, Nb-based superconducting RF cavities, high purity Germanium detectors, 2-D neutron detectors, cryogen-free superconducting magnets, electromagnetic separator for radio-isotopes, nuclear batteries and radioisotope thermal generators (RTG) power source and liquid Hydrogen cold neutron source. Other activities include research & developmental towards Indian Neutrino observatory (INO) and quantum computing.
Core Research & Development Areas