FZU 70 | Several Views on the Beginnings of Solid State Physics at Cukrovarnická


Presenters: Eduard Hulicius, Jan Kočka, Vladimír Nekvasil, Antonín Šimůnek and Michal Dušek

The 70th anniversary of the Institute of Physics (FZU) is an opportunity to look back in history and better understand what we have grown from and where we are going. Individual divisions of the Institute of Physics have strikingly different histories based on decisions and activities that often date back long before the creation of the current Institute of Physics. This history still shapes the genius loci of each division, and it is helpful to know and respect it.

The Division of Solid State Physics in Cukrovarnická Street descended from the research centre of Skoda Works, established in 1932-1934 around Prof. Dolejšek. Dolejšek's students working in this centre, especially Adéla Kochanovská, Jindřich Bačkovský and Miroslav Rozsíval, were at the birth of the Central Institute of Physics (Ústřední ústav fyzikální), which acquired buildings in Cukrovarnická Street in 1951 and was one of the seven Central Research Institutes incorporated into the newly founded Czechoslovak Academy of Sciences on November 17, 1952. Immediately after the establishment of the Czechoslovak Academy of Sciences, the institute was renamed the Institute of Technical Physics and later, in 1962, the Institute of Solid State Physics, which existed as an independent institute of the Academy until January 1, 1979, when it was merged with the Institute of Physics at Slovanka. It is worth remembering that the institute in Cukrovarnická Street, which was built at a great expense by the Central Association of Sugar Industry (Ústřední spolek průmyslu cukrovarnického), was inaugurated on September 22, 1923, i.e. 100 years ago.

The conditions under which scientific research took place in the 1950s and 1960s can hardly be imagined by the younger generations. Yet it was then that the foundations, from which today's successful fields of physics have grown, were laid. The four independent historical parts of this lecture aim to show what the beginnings of solid-state physics were like in Cukrovarnická, what obstacles the scientists of that time had to overcome, what fields they managed to establish themselves despite the difficult conditions and what of their legacy persists up to the present day.


The lecture is a part of the cycle celebrating the 70 years of FZU and it is intended especially for FZU employees and the professional community. The lecture will be followed by excursions to the laboratories from 14:00 at Cukrovarnická - participants make use of individual transport to Cukrovarnická.

Please book your place for the lecture or excursion well in advance in the reservation system.