Nalbandyan Institute of Chemical Physics of the National Academy of Sciences of the Republic of Armenia
Chemical physics has been developing in Armenia as an independent scientific direction since
1960, when the Laboratory of Chemical Physics of the Academy of Sciences of the Armenian SSR
was founded in Yerevan on the initiative prof. A.B. Nalbandyan and with full support of the Nobel
Prize winner academician N.N. Semenov. In 1975 the Laboratory was reorganized into the Institute
of Chemical Physics of the Academy of Sciences of the Armenian SSR (IChPh of AS Arm.SSR). In
1993 the Institute was named after academician A.B. Nalbandyan, the founder and permanent
director from 1960 to 1987.
From the first days of foundation, the Institute has been conducting intensive and effective research
on the theory of chemical transformation, kinetics, and the mechanism of chain, free-radical
reactions, including combustion and ignition processes in the gas and condensed phases. The practical
direction of these investigations covers the problems of processing hydrocarbons and natural
mineral raw materials into valuable products, combustion processes with the participation of solid
components: self-propagating high-temperature synthesis (SHS) or combustion synthesis (CS)
aimed at the production of refractory inorganic compounds, discovered by prof. A.G. Merzhanov.
Scientific developments of the leading scientists of the institute and their effective application were
adequately appreciated by the government of Armenia. In 1977 A.B. Nalbandyan and A.A.
Mantashyan became laureate of the State Prize of Armenia for a series of studies “Elementary
processes in slow gas-phase reactions”, and in 1980 the same prize was awarded to A.B.
Nalbandyan, A.G. Merzhanov and a number of leading scientists of the Institute for the
Manufacturing application of advanced SHS technology for the production of molybdenum
disilicide at a plant for the production of high-temperature heaters in Kirovakan (Armenia). Thanks
to the development of own original methods and approaches the IChPh of AS Arm.SSR has
occupied and now occupies a worthy place among well-known research centers. Using the kinetic
method of radical freezing in combination with EPR spectroscopy developed at the Institute (A.B.
Nalbandyan, A.A. Mantashyan et al.), for the first time chain carriers, peroxyl radicals, were
directly detected in degenerate branched chain gas-phase oxidation reactions. The results obtained
enabled to confirm the basic principles of the theory of degenerate-branched chain reactions at the
free-radical level, to observe new phenomena associated with the oxidation mechanism of paraffinic
and olefinic hydrocarbons. In heterogeneous catalytic reactions for the first time free radicals were
detected in the gas phase and their participation in these processes has been evaluated. The chain
nature of cold flames has been established and methods have been developed for the selective
obtaining of olefins and their oxygen derivatives. It is shown that free radicals formed during the
decomposition of peroxides (oxidation products of organic substances) on the surface of chemical
reactors pass into the volume, causing branching of the reaction chains of gas-phase oxidation of
organic compounds. By this process, low-temperature ignition of gaseous reaction mixtures was
To study the elementary reactions of free radicals in the liquid phase, as well as to reveal the
antioxidant properties of various compounds, a new kinetic method using EPR has been developed
and applied. Тo increase the yield and selectivity of the resulting target products in the oxidation
processes, a new type of biomimetic catalyst based on metal complex compounds of nitrogen-
containing coals has been synthesized (L.A. Tavadyan).
In the area of modeling and kinetic analysis of complex (multistep) chemical reactions, on the basis
of the Hamiltonian formalism, a new numerical value method and an appropriate software package
have been developed that allow estimating the contribution of elementary reactions and
components, identifying the critical states of reaction systems, and predicting ways to effectively
control them (L.A. Tavadyan). These studies have been summarized in monographs published in
2005 (Л.А. Тавадян, Г.А. Мартоян. “Анализ кинетически моделей химических реакционных
систем. Ценностный подход”, Ереван, Гитутюн, 248 c.) and in 2014 (L.A. Tavadyan, G.A.
Martoyan. “Analysis of Kinetic Models of Chemical Reaction Systems”. Value Approach, New
York, Nova Publishers Inc., 2014, 223 p.).
New effective catalysts for various practically important chemical reactions have been obtained
based on nanosized powders of a number of transition metals and their compounds. Methods for the
synthesis and activation of these catalysts by the action of ultrasound, microwave radiation and
other physicochemical factors have been proposed.
Since 1972 in the Institute studies are carrying out in the field of self-propagating high-temperature
synthesis (SHS) of refractory inorganic compounds and composite materials, which are of practical
importance. In 1980 by decision of the Armenian government, a special design bureau for refractory
materials (SDB RM) was established at the Institute, in which SHS production (from tens of
kilograms to several tons) of more than 15 types of chemicals and composite materials was
organized. These materials were produced mainly by order of large research and production
organizations and enterprises of the military-industrial complex of the former USSR.
The synthesis of transition metal hydrides during the combustion of the initial metal powders in
the hydrogen atmosphere was carried out for the first time at the IChPh of AS Arm.SSR. A wide range
of binary and complex hydrides has been obtained, which have practical value (S.K. Dolukhanyan).
Refractory carbides nitrides, silicides, borides, and composite materials on their basis have been
synthesized, and mechanisms for the formation of these compounds were proposed. A new approach
has been proposed for stimulating SHS processes using various polymeric, organic compounds as
combustion promoters (S.L. Kharatyan, H.H. Nersisyan).
To study the kinetics of fast solid-phase chemical transformations under isothermal and non-
isothermal conditions at high temperatures, unique electrothermographic devices of a new
generation with the wide functional capability of electronic control and with appropriate software in the
Windows environment has been developed and constructed: (i) high-speed scanning
electrothermograph (HS-SET-3) with the possibility of controlled heating of a thin metallic wire at
a rate of up to 10 6 K/s and (ii) the high-speed temperature scanner (HSTS-2) with a controlled
heating rate of powder mixtures up to 10 4 K/min (A.G. Zargaryan, S.L. Kharatyan).
The IChPh of NAS RA closely cooperates with a number of leading universities of Armenia:
Yerevan State University (YSU), National Polytechnic University of Armenia (NPUA), Russian-
Armenian (Slavonic) University, State Pedagogical University of Armenia (SPUA), as well as with
many research organizations and companies. Leading scientists of the Institute are lecturing at the
universities listed, and many students from these universities are involved in the research work of
the Institute. Thanks to such cooperation the Institute gets the opportunity to solve one of the
current challenges: replenishment of the scientific team with young specialists.
The Institute constantly trains highly qualified scientists, many of whom work in various research,
educational and commercial organizations both in Armenia and abroad
The Institute permanently turns out highly qualified scientists, many of whom are working in
research, educational and commercial organizations both in Armenia and abroad. Over the past 60
years twelve scientists of the institute became doctors of science, including three academicians and
one corresponding member of the NAS RA, and more than eighty became candidates of science. At
present, scientific research of the Institute in various fields of chemical physics, combustion,
catalysis, materials science, biochemistry, etc. are carried out in six laboratories and eight research
groups that involve 81 researchers. Over twenty former employees of the IChPh of NAS RA
currently work in scientific centers and companies in the USA, Russia, Italy, France, the Republic
of Korea, Canada, and Finland. In cooperation with colleagues from various scientific organizations and
countries the scientists of the IChPh of NAS RA published 17 monographs, more 1600 scientific
articles, one invention (L.A. Tavadyan with colleagues is the author of the discovery of USSR No. 338,
1987), received 9 patents (Armenia - 6, Russia - 1, France - 1, Eurasian - 1), 77 copyright
certificates (Armenia - 7, USSR - 70), more than 25 international grants were implemented (ISTC -
3, INTAS - 2, COPERNICUS - 1, CRDF - 1, CNRS - 1, NFSAT-CRDF - 3, ANSEF - 4, PMI - 2,
etc.). More than 20 international conferences and workshops have been organized.
In 2011-2018 with the financial support of the Science Committee of RA the Institute has
developed technologies and organized pilot production of new innovative products: highly effective
and environmentally friendly disinfectant " Bioxil-2" based on active oxygen and the rust converter
The ICP NAS RA maintains close cooperation with many scientific centers and organizations in
Russia, USA, Germany, France, Spain, China, Belarus, Estonia, Republic of Korea, United Arab
Emirates and other countries.