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[Mix] Alexandr Afanasev (1938-2010)

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  • From: Nagy Denes Lajos <nagy AT>
  • To: MIX <mix AT>
  • Subject: [Mix] Alexandr Afanasev (1938-2010)
  • Date: Fri, 1 Oct 2010 23:39:05 +0200 (CEST)
  • List-archive: <>
  • List-id: Discussion journal of the Mossbauer Community <>

In Memoriam Alexandr Afanasev

It is with deepest sadness to announce the passing of

Professor Alexandr Mikhailovich Afanasev

Russian Academy of Sciences, Institute of Physics and Technology, Moscow

who died on 10 August 2010.

Alexandr (Sasha) Afanasev was born in Mnevniki near Moscow, Russia, on 8 June 1938. He graduated in 1960 from the Moscow National Research Nuclear University "MEPhI". From 1960 to 1963 he was a PhD student ("aspirant") at the Kurchatov Institute of Atomic Energy in Moscow and, until 1989, he remained a member of the same institute. In 1989 he became Head of the Laboratory "Physics of Surfaces and Microelectronic Structure" of the Institute of Physics and Technology of the Russian Academy of Sciences in Moscow.

Sasha obtained his PhD ("candidate of sciences") degree with his thesis "Theory of hyperfine structure of Mossbauer lines" in 1965 followed by a DSc ("doctor of sciences") degree with the thesis "Theory of dynamic interaction of radiation with matter". In 1976, he was awarded the State Prize of the Soviet Union. In 1984 he was elected as a corresponding member of the Academy of Sciences of his country.

Sasha was a distinguished member of the international Mössbauer community. His early works were devoted to the theory of spin-lattice relaxation, special cases of hyperfine interaction and, two decades before its realization at synchrotrons, to the coherent nuclear resonant scattering of X-rays. Later he became involved in Mossbauer studies on high-Tc superconductors, in elaborating mathematical methods for improving the resolution of Mossbauer spectroscopy and in further Mossbauer relaxation studies including those of cage diffusion, of rotational diffusion, of ferromagnetic nanoparticles under radio-frequency magnetic field excitation and many others. He was a frequent visitor and invited speaker of international Mossbauer conferences and an active part of international cooperation with groups in Germany, Hungary and other countries.

However, Sasha was much more than an exceptional theoretician in Mossbauer spectroscopy. He was one of the most excellent solid-state theoreticians in Russia and beyond its borders having numerous important contributions in X-ray diffraction, X-ray optics, X-ray standing wave techniques and he also developed methods for X-ray surface analysis with nanometer resolution. He published more than 200 scientific papers including a monograph and four review articles.

Since 2002, Sasha has been fighting with serious health problems. He passed away on 10 August 2010 during these terrible three weeks with fires and smoke around and in Moscow.

We shall miss him. Our thoughts are with his family.

D.L. Nagy
Chair, IBAME

  • [Mix] Alexandr Afanasev (1938-2010), Nagy Denes Lajos, 10/01/2010

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