Brief History of the International Zvenigorod Conference on
Plasma Physics and Controlled Fusion - ICPAF. 1973-2017
The first conference on plasma physics and controlled fusion was held in the autumn of 1973 at Lebedev
Physical Institute, USSR Academy of Sciences. The conference was organized by the Scientific Council on
Physics of High-Temperature Plasma of USSR Academy of Sciences. The Scientific Council was founded by
Academician L.A. Artsimovich and in 1973 it was headed by Professor M.S. Rabinovich.
The first conference was held in the Great hall of Lebedev Physical Institute. About a hundred
scientists from Russia, Ukraine and other USSR republics participated in the conference. The main issues
that were discussed at the first conference dealt with the breakthrough in plasma confinement studies
made in the tokamak facility at Kurchatov Institute. In those experiments, the electron temperature of
about 7 millions degrees was achieved, which was a record at the time. At the same time, other methods
and facilities for creating hot plasma were being developed in the USSR: stellarators, open traps and
Since 1974 these conferences have been held annually in the town of Zvenigorod, Moscow region, at the
rest house of the Academy of Sciences. The rest house is a very convenient place to hold conferences
because there is a large conference hall for plenary sessions as well as several smaller halls for
workshops and poster sessions.
Nowadays the conference has expanded to include a large number of topics. The conference schedule
includes sessions on the magnetic confinement of high-temperature plasma, the inertial fusion, the
processes in low-temperature plasma, the physical principles of plasma and beam technologies and the
main issues of the international ITER project. The number of participants is about one thousand and
the number of research centers represented at the conference is about ninety. These research centers
include the Institutes of Russian Academy of Sciences, the research centers of Russian Universities,
Institutes of the State Corporation ROSATOM and other scientific organizations of Russian Federation.
Leading foreign scientists from Europe, the USA and Japan took part even in the first conferences on
plasma physics and controlled fusion. They were invited by the conference organizers to give talks on
the important issues of plasma physics. Nowadays the conference has truly become international. Several
dozens of foreign scientists representing about thirty leading research centers of the USA, Europe and
Japan take part in the conference annually.
The conference talks are selected by the Programming committee comprised of leading Russian and foreign
Leading scientists from around the world working in the field of plasma physics have become members
of the International Advisory Board of the International Zvenigorod Conference on Plasma Physics and
Controlled Fusion (ICPAF). The International Advisory Board is aimed to ensure and confirm the
international status of the Zvenigorod Conference on Plasma Physics and Controlled Fusion. It is also
the only annual international conference on plasma physics and controlled fusion carried out on the
territory of Russia.