The Institute of Physics is a wide profile institution of physical sciences, the mission of which is to ensure the worldwide level of natural sciences in Lithuania, to develop scientific culture as well as stimulate business, technical and technological progress in economy of the country. The Institute carries out fundamental scientific and applied research in such scientific fields as molecular physics and biophysics, chemical physics, modern laser spectroscopy and nonlinear optics, nuclear physics as well as nuclear and radiation protection, environment radioactivity, environment physics and chemistry, astrophysics.
The Institute of Physics carries out scientific expertise in the environment pollution, nuclear power engineering as well as safety of nuclear objects and radioactive waste management technologies. The Institute of Physics is a member of the technical support organization of the Lithuanian Nuclear Power Safety Inspectorate (VATESI) assisting in preparing normative requirements on the transient and accidental process analysis for the Ignalina NPP decommissioning (PHARE projects).
The Institute of Physics started its activity in 1977. Its predecessor, the Institute of Physics and Mathematics, was founded within the Academy of Sciences in 1956. The Ignalina radioecology monitoring station of the Institute of Physics was established in Vosyliškės, 3.5 km southeast from the Ignalina NPP in 1978. The purpose of this station was to determine regularities of migration of the Ignalina NPP radionuclide emission in the ground level air and to evaluate doses caused by ionizing radiation in the environment.
The Environment Research Station of the Institute of Physics established in Preila in 1980 performs investigations of air pollution, aerosol and climate changes. The station takes part in the international projects: EMEP (co-operative program for monitoring and evaluation of the long-range transmissions of air pollutants in Europe), ACCENT (Atmosphere Composition Changes: European Network), EUSAAR (European Stations for Atmospheric Aerosol Research).