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Dubna, town (1989 pop. 66,000), Moscow region, central European Russia, near the confluence of the Volga and Dubna rivers. Founded in 1956, it is the seat of the Joint Institute for Nuclear Research. The institute was established at an international conference in Moscow in 1956; its members included most Communist nations.
Dubna (Дубна́) is a town in Moscow Oblast, Russia. Being under immediate jurisdiction of Moscow Oblast, it is situated on the territory of Taldomsky District. It has a status of naukograd, housing an international nuclear physics research centre (JINR), one of the largest scientific foundations in the country. It is home to MKB Raduga, a defence aerospace company specializing in design and production of missile systems. The settlement was built in the middle of the 20th century, town status was granted in 1956. Population: 60,951 (2002 Census); 65,805 (1989 Census).


The town is 120 m above sea level, situated approximately 125 km north of Moscow, on the Volga River, just downstream the Ivankovo Reservoir. The reservoir is formed by a hydroelectric dam across the Volga situated within the town limits. The town is located on both banks of the Volga, and the dam serves as the only bridge. The western boundary of the town is defined by the Moscow Canal joining the Volga, while the eastern boundary is defined by Dubna River joining the Volga.

Dubna is the northernmost town of Moscow Oblast.

The public transport connections to Moscow include express trains, suburban trains and bus shuttles which depart from the Savyolovsky Rail Terminal.

History: a town of science

The decision to build a proton accelerator for nuclear research was taken by the Soviet government in 1946. An impracticable place where the current town is situated was chosen due to remoteness from Moscow and the presence of the Ivankovo power plant nearby. The scientific leader was Igor Kurchatov. The general supervisor of the project including construction of a settlement, a road and a railway connecting it to Moscow (largerly involving penal labour of Gulag inmates) was the NKVD chief Lavrentiy Beria. After three years of intensive work, the accelerator was commissioned on December 13, 1949.

The town of Dubna was officially inaugurated in 1956, together with the Joint Institute for Nuclear Research (JINR), which has developed into a large international research laboratory involved mainly in particle physics, heavy ion physics, synthesis of transuranium elements, and radiobiology. In 1960 a town of Ivankovo situated on the opposite (left) bank of the Volga was merged into Dubna.

Outstanding physicists of the 20th century including Nikolay Bogolyubov, Georgy Flyorov, Vladimir Veksler, Bruno Pontecorvo used to work at the institute. A number of elementary particles and heavy nuclei (including the 118th element) were discovered and investigated there. In recognition of this, the name of the chemical element 105, Dubnium, is derived from the town's name. In 1964 Dubna hosted the prestigious International Conference on High Energy Physics.


Before the collapse of the Soviet Union, JINR and MKB Raduga were the main employers in the town. Since then their role has decreased significantly. Several small industrial enterprises have emerged, however the town still experiences some employment difficulties. Proximity to Moscow allows many to commute and work there. Plans by AFK Sistema and other investors including government structures have been announced to build a Russian analogue silicon valley in Dubna. As of beginning of 2007, nothing has commenced.

Notable personalities

In addition to a number of world-known scientists, the following people can be noted:

  • Natalia Rumyantseva, 3 times figure water skiing world champion and absolute water skiing world champion of 1993, was born in Dubna and is an honorary citizen of the town. She was absolute water skiing champion of Europe in 1982, 1984, 1987, 1989, 1992. Nataliya Rumyantseva cup is held annually since 1997 in Dubna.
  • A notable Russian Avant-garde painter Vyatcheslav Shmagin resides in the town.


  • The world's largest statue of Vladimir Lenin is located in Dubna at the confluence of the Volga and the Moscow Canal. The statue, which was built in the 1930s, is 15 m high. The accompanying statue of Joseph Stalin of the same size was demolished in 1963 during the period of destalinization.
  • Several scenes of the Russian hit television series "Brigada" were filmed around Dubna, especially on the coast on Ivankovo Reservoir just next to the dam across Volga river.
  • Important documentation which figured in the YUKOS battle is said to apparently have disappeared after a YUKOS company car fell into Dubna River, while on its way to a YUKOS owned yacht club based on the Volga River.

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