The Institute of Metal Physics was founded in 1932 under the active participation of Academician A. F. Ioffe, the Member of Russian Academy of Sciences. Since that times the Institute has been one of the major centers of fundamental physical studies in the Urals. Such prominent scientists as M. N. Mikheev, V. I. Arkharov, S. V. Vonsovsky, I. K. Kikoin, V. D. Sadovsky, S. P. Shubin, M. V. Yakutovich, R. I. Yanus, Ya. S. Shur and others have made a great contribution to its formation.
The scientific schools on magnetism, physical metallurgy, and nondestructive testing of materials, having the international authority, were founded at the Institute.
The polar and s-d models of metals proposed by S. P. Shubin and S. V. Vonsovsky are known worldwide. On the basis of these models and in the course of their development numerous scientific investigations, concerning the fundamental theory of magnetism, electrical and other properties of transition and rare-earth metals, their alloys and compounds, have been carried out at the Institute.
The ideas of the two-stage mechanism of phase recrystallisation and structural heredity in steels, that made an essential contribution to the theory of heat treatment of metals, were proposed and developed in the works of V. D. Sadovsky and representatives of his school.
The physical foundations of ferromagnetic materials, magnetic nondestructive testing and magnetic structural analysis methods were created by R. I. Yanus, M. N. Mikheev and their disciples.
The achievements of the Institute are recognized in the country and abroad. 20 works were awarded by the state prizes of the USSR, RSFSR, RF, Ukraine, and premiums of the USSR Council of Ministers, Government of the Russian Federation, Lenin's Komsomol, and Demidov's prizes, 42 scientists of the Institute being the laureates of those prizes. Six research projects completed by 11 scientists working at the Institute have been awarded gold medals and prizes in honor of outstanding scientists.
During more than 65 years of the Institute's existence 125 monographs and several thousands of the scientific articles have been published by its scientists (about 300 articles annually), 540 patents have been obtained. 120 scientists have been mentored at the Institute to become Doctors of Sciences and 645 researchers ? to become Candidates of Sciences.
There are 33 scientific laboratories at the Institute with 920 employees. Among the 405 scientific researchers of the Institute there are one Member and seven Corresponding Members of the Russian Academy of Sciences, 82 Doctors, and 244 Candidates of Sciences.
The Institute closely cooperates with the Urals State and Urals State Technical Universities, it has three branches of their chairs and 12 joint educational-scientific laboratories. There are three Specialized Councils for the awarding of scientific degrees and the Urals Center on Certification of the Specialists in Nondestructive Testing at the Institute.
The Institute is well equipped with modern research and technological instruments enabling to manufacture and study bulk materials (both in poly- and single crystalline forms) and epitaxial films, amorphous and nanocrystalline materials, to certify their composition, structure and properties, magnetic, electric, mechanical, etc. The investigations are carried out in the widest range of temperatures and pressures, in magnetic fields, ultrahigh vacuum, and under the influence of laser, electron, ion and neutron irradiation.
The analytical techniques utilizing NMR, ESR, Mossbauer and FMR resonance methods, as well as practically all kinds of spectroscopy, i.e. X-ray, electron, optical, neutron, and SIMS, are at the disposal of the researchers. Methods of materials composition control by means of Rutherford scattering and nuclear reactions are also well developed.