Celebrating 60 years of culture and innovation at LNL
The ceremony for the 60th anniversary of the National Laboratories of Legnaro (LNL) of the Italian National Institute of Nuclear Physics (INFN) was held on October 15th, as part of the celebrations of the 70th anniversary of INFN. Founded in 1961 as a Nuclear Research Center by Antonio Rostagni and Claudio Villi from the University of Padua, in 1968 LNL became the second national laboratory of INFN, joining this leading international institution in fundamental physics research.
The celebration day started with the welcome from the LNL Director Fabiana Gramegna and from Flavio Seno, Director of the Department of Physics and Astronomy of the University of Padua, followed by the greetings of the local authorities, who underlined the importance of such a research center for the development of the territory. Then, the interventions of Daniela Mapelli, Rector of the University of Padua (UniPd), and of the President of INFN Antonio Zoccoli highlighted the importance of LNL within these institutions, which are also celebrating in 2021 important steps of their history: 800 years for the University of Padua and, as mentioned above, 70 years for the INFN. Renato Angelo Ricci, first LNL Director, dean of the INFN and Professor Emeritus of the University of Padua, gave a talk about the historical framework. Finally, present and future activities of LNL were presented by José Javier Valiente-Dóbon, INFN researcher and representative of the LNL nuclear physics group. A guided tour to some LNL infrastructures (accelerators and experimental halls) was also organized.
Group photo in front of the SPES cyclotron with, in particular: the SIF President Angela Bracco (third from the left), the INFN President Antonio Zoccoli (fifth from the left), the LNL Director Fabiana Gramegna (fifth from the right) and the Rector of the University of Padua Daniela Mapelli (third the from right).
The Legnaro INFN National Laboratories are a large-scale facility and one of the major research infrastructures in the Veneto region. Their work is performed in close synergy with other national and international research institutions, primarily the University of Padua. Their aim is dual: a better understanding of nuclear matter and of nuclear astrophysics processes, through studies of the nuclear structure and dynamics, and several interdisciplinary physics activities, among which the development of technologies, especially addressed to the design and construction of particle accelerators, that find nowadays employment in industrial applications. Thanks to important results achieved in the scientific and technological field, the Legnaro Laboratories were protagonist in the history of INFN and, therefore, in the progress of physics. The Legnaro Laboratories take also care of the training and growth of young students, from high-school stages to doctoral and post-doctoral programs, together with the dissemination of scientific culture at large.
The commitment of LNL will continue in the years to come, as center of excellence and a reference point for both the scientific community and the society. The new SPES (Selective Production of Exotic Species) project is the last example, which is related not only to the frontier research in fundamental nuclear physics, but it is also very important for the development of useful applications in the medical field, such as the production of radiopharmaceuticals for diagnosis and therapy.
Fabiana Gramegna – Research Director at the Legnaro National Laboratories of INFN, her research activity is mainly in the field of experimental nuclear physics, ranging from the study of reaction mechanisms in heavy-ion collisions, within which she coordinated the development and construction of the GARFIELD apparatus, to that of the nuclear structure. She collaborates to international experiments focused on the reaction dynamics at low and intermediate energies. She has been the INFN Scientific Coordinator of international agreements for nuclear physics. She is currently Director of the Legnaro National Laboratories.