Accelerator Physicist Irina Petrushina Named Blavatnik Regional Awards Finalist

SBU physicist who conducts research at Brookhaven Lab recognized for two outstanding accelerator physics advancements

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Irina Petrushina

UPTON, NY –  Irina Petrushina, a research assistant professor at Stony Brook University who conducts research in accelerator physics at the U.S. Department of Energy’s Brookhaven National Laboratory, has been named a 2021 Blavatnik Regional Awards for Young Scientists finalist in recognition of her contributions to the field of modern accelerator physics.

Petrushina is one of six finalists who will receive a $10,000 prize in the annual competition, the Blavatnik Family Foundation in partnership New York Academy of Sciences announced.

“I am truly honored to be named a Blavatnik Regional Award finalist, and I am especially proud to represent the accelerator physics community,” said Petrushina, who focuses on the development of more efficient and compact accelerators in her research. “I hope to inspire future scientists and engineers to explore the exciting world of accelerator physics.”

Petrushina conducts research with the Coherent Electron Cooling group, part of Brookhaven Lab’s Collider-Accelerator Department, and is a user at the Accelerator Test Facility (ATF). She is a research professor for the Center for Accelerator Science & Education (CASE), a joint center between Brookhaven and Stony Brook University focused on training accelerator scientists and engineers.

Credit: The New York Academy of Sciences

The annual Blavatnik Regional Awards for Young Scientists spotlight postdoctoral researchers from academic research institutions across New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut in three scientific categories: Life Sciences, Physical Science & Engineering, and Chemistry. This year’s finalists and three $30,000 prize winners will be honored at the 2022 New York Academy of Sciences Annual Gala.

Petrushina is celebrated for her work on a new photo-gun design that dramatically improved the performance of superconducting radiofrequency accelerators used to produce electron beams with world-record brightness, which has prompted the accelerator community to re-imagine this evolving technology.

She is also recognized for experimental breakthroughs on laser wake field accelerators (LWFAs), a new accelerator technology that uses powerful lasers and plasmas to accelerate charged particles. She designed and built an ultra-high-resolution diagnostics tool capable of imaging the important properties of plasmas in LWFAs.

Petrushina earned a master’s degree in science from the National Research Nuclear University MEPhI in Moscow in 2013 and a Ph.D. in physics from Stony Brook University in 2019. She is a 2020 recipient of the RHIC & AGS Users’ Thesis Award, an award given annually to a Ph.D. student conducting research at or in support of the Relativistic Heavy Ion Collider (RHIC) or Alternating Gradient Synchrotron (AGS) at Brookhaven Lab. RHIC and ATF are DOE Office of Science User Facilities.

Brookhaven National Laboratory is supported by the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Science. The Office of Science is the single largest supporter of basic research in the physical sciences in the United States and is working to address some of the most pressing challenges of our time. For more information, visit

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