Albert Nikiforovich Tavkhelidze 1930–2010

On 27 February, academician Albert Nikiforovich Tavkhelidze passed away in his 80th year.

Albert Nikiforovich Tavkhelidze was an outstanding physicist and scientific organizer and a laureate of the Lenin prize and State prize. One of the most active founders of the colour-quark theory, he was the initiator of a number of scientific trends at the Joint Institute for Nuclear Research (JINR) in Dubna. He was the Georgian Plenipotentiary to JINR, a member of the JINR Scientific Council, and one of the establishers and a scientific supervisor of the Russian Academy of Sciences' Institute for Nuclear Research, Troitsk. He was also president of the Georgian Academy of Sciences (1986–2006) and a member of the presidium of the Academy of Sciences of the USSR for many years.

The predictions made by Tavkhelidze and his colleagues in the dynamic theory of colour quarks lie at the basis of modern understanding of the origins of nuclear matter origin and they are verified nowadays at the accelerators of large research centres including CERN, Brookhaven, Fermilab and JINR. The new Nuclotron-based Ion Collider fAcility (NICA) under construction at JINR will continue research in this field. The facility is being developed in Dubna where Tavkhelidze began his scientific career as a brilliant member of the scientific school founded by the great physicist–theorist and mathematician Nikolai Bogoliubov.

Tavkhelidze had an utter devotion to science. He was notable for his rare sense of purpose and working capacity, as well as for his ability to unite people to implement ambitious goals. He was demanding both of himself and of his colleagues, but at the same time he was a kind and sympathetic person. His passing is an irretrievable loss to science, and brings great sorrow to his numerous pupils and followers.

We express our deep and sincere condolences to the family members and others close to Albert Nikiforovich Tavkhelidze. The bright image of a remarkable scientist and person will stay forever in the memories of those who knew him.

JINR directorate.