The research institute – Institute of Physics of Advanced Materials (IPAM) – was established as a division of Ufa State Aviation Technical University on 4 April 1995, on the basis of a fundamental research laboratory and a research department of the Special Technology Design Bureau Tantal.
The institute’s founder is Prof. Ruslan Z. Valiev. The prerequisites for establishing the institute were pioneering works on producing ultrafine-grained and nanocrystalline structures in metals and alloys, using severe plastic deformation processing, which were performed in Ufa in the early 1990’s by Prof. Valiev and his co-workers. The fundamental basis for these works was the theory of evolution of dislocation structures and fragmentation under large plastic strains.
The first studies were related to the nanostructuring of pure metals and several model alloys. Only in the beginning of the past decade researchers in laboratories and research centers of Russia and the whole world began to give more and more attention to commercial alloys. In recent years, the research area of nano SPD materials has been one of the most actively developing areas in modern materials science, and the transition from purely laboratory research to pilot-design and pilot-technology developments has been under way. This is also connected with the creation and development of new SPD techniques.
In 1999, at the initiative of IPAM’s researchers, the first international NanoSPD conference on nanomaterials produced by severe plastic deformation was held near Moscow, Russia. The conference had a major international impact, as it demonstrated for the first time that SPD processing enabled producing nanostructured materials.
Since then, international NanoSPD conferences have been organized on a regular basis, once every three years – the last one was held in Australia in 2017.
Since 2007, IPAM has been organizing in Ufa, on a regular basis (once every two years), the international symposium entitled «Bulk Nanostructured Materials: from Fundamentals to Applications (BNM)». This symposium is held separately from the NanoSPD conferences, as the BNM symposium is not only focused in research, but also on innovations.
On the basis of the achieved scientific success, the scientific school of the Physics and Technology of Structural Nanostructured Metals and Alloys was established in 2003. The school’s founders were Radik R. Mavlyutov (corresponding member of RAS), Oskar A. Kaibyshev (academician of the Academy of Sciences of the Republic of Bashkortostan) and Ruslan Z. Valiev (corresponding member of the Academy of Sciences of the Republic of Bashkortostan, currently the leader of the scientific school). In 2006 and 2008, this scientific school won the competition among the leading scientific schools of the Russian Federation, held by the President’s Council for Grants.
There has been a rapidly growing interest in bulk nanostructured materials produced by SPD, both in Russia and abroad. This interest, as well as the need to develop nanotechnology quickly and efficiently, conditioned the need for the professional training of a new generation of researchers and engineers, capable to work in this new, rather complex and multidisciplinary area of science and technology. In this connection, in 2004 in USATU on the basis of the Department of Machines and Metal Forming, a new Department of Nanotechnology was established, and the training of specialists in the new field of nanomaterials was started. In 2017 the Department of Nanotechnology was adjoined to the Department of Materials Science and Metal Physics, and the training of specialists in the field of nanoengineering was started. Since 2017 to the present day, the Department of Materials Science and Metal Physics has been headed by Prof. Dr. Ruslan Z. Valiev.