Antonino Zichichi


Date of Birth 15 October 1929
Place Trapani (Italy)
Nomination 12 June 2000
Field Physics
Title Professor

Most important awards, prizes and academies
Many honours and awards have been conferred upon Antonino Zichichi for his outstanding discoveries and inventions and for his contributions to the promotion of Science and Scientific Culture in Italy and abroad. He is the recipient of over 60 prizes and honorary awards among which: Doctor Honoris Causa in the Universities of Beijing, Buenos Aires, Malta, Bucharest, Arizona. Academies: Academy of Sciences of the Ukrainian Republic; Academy of Sciences of Georgia; Bologna Academy of Sciences; Pontifical Academy of Sciences. Honours: Order of Merit of the Republic of Poland; Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany; Order of Merit of the Italian Republic; Gold Medal for Science and Culture of the President of the Italian Republic. For his discovery of Nuclear Antimatter the Italian Physical Society awarded him, in 2001, the Enrico Fermi Prize, established to celebrate the centennial anniversary of the birth of the great Italian physicist. He founded and directs the Ettore Majorana Centre for Scientific Culture, the first example of the University for the Third Millennium, making Erice famous worldwide. He is past President of the INFN (Italian National Institute for Nuclear Physics), of the EPS (European Physical Society) and of the NATO Science Committee for Disarmament Technology (nuclear, chemical, bacteriological and conventional). Today he is President of the Enrico Fermi Centre, Rome.

Summary of scientific research 
Antonino Zichichi is the author of studies and research into the structure of the elementary building blocks and of the fundamental forces of Nature. He has published over 500 scientific papers, some of which have opened new avenues in Subnuclear Physics at High Energies, and has to his credit: the discovery of Nuclear Antimatter [1]; the conjecture of the existence of a Third Lepton [2] and the invention of new technologies [3-4] which led to the discovery of the Third Family in the structure of the fundamental particles [5]; the first direct measurements of the mixing angles in pseudoscalar [6] and vector mesons [7] [8]; the discovery of the 'time-like' electromagnetic structure of the proton [9]; the discovery - in the forces which act between quarks and gluons - of the Effective Energy [10]; the proof that, despite its complex structure, it is impossible to break the proton [11], the ultimate heavy building-block of the Universe; the phenomenological discovery of the EGM effect which lowers by three orders of magnitude the supersymmetry breaking threshold energy [12]. At the present time he is engaged in a series of new experiments [13]; at CERN (Geneva), he directs the LAA project [14] and the TOF project of the ALICE experiment for LHC; at DESY (Hamburg), he takes part in the HERA ZEUS experiment; at Gran Sasso, he directs the LVD experiment.

Main publications
[1] Massam, T., Muller, Th., Righini, B., Schneegans, M. and Zichichi, A., Experimental Observation of Antideuteron Production, Nuovo Cimento, 39, p. 10 (1965); [2] Zichichi, A. et al., A Proposal to Search for Leptonic Quarks and Heavy Leptons Produced by ADONE,INFN/AE-67/3, 20 March 1967; Zichichi, A. et al., Limits on the Electromagnetic Production of Heavy Leptons, Lettere al Nuovo Cimento, 4, p. 1156 (1970); Zichichi, A. et al., Limits on the Mass of Heavy Leptons, Nuovo Cimento, 17A, p. 383 (1973); [3] Massam, T., Muller, Th. and Zichichi, A., A Telescope to Identify Electrons in the Presence of Pion Background,CERN Report 63-25, 27 June 1963 and Nuovo Cimento, 39, p. 464 (1965); Zichichi, A. et al., Un Grand Détecteur E.M. à Haute Réjection des Pions, Revue de Physique Appliquée, 4, p. 108 (1969); Zichichi, A. et al., A Large Electromagnetic Shower Detector with High Rejection Power Against Pions, Nuclear Instruments and Methods, 101, p. 433 (1972); [4] Zichichi, al., Range Measurements for Muons in the GeV Region, CERN Report 64-31, 24 June 1964 and Nuovo Cimento, 35, p. 759 (1965); [5] Wu, C.S., Lee, T.D., Cabibbo, N., Weisskopf, V.F., Ting, S.C.C., Villi, C., Conversi, M., Petermann, A., Wiik, B.H. and Wolf, G., The Origin of the Third Family (C.S. Wu, ed.), a joint publication by University and Academy of Sciences of Bologna, INFN, SIF (1997), World Scientific (1998); [6] Zichichi, al., Evidence for a New Decay Mode of the X0-Meson: X0 -> 2γ, Nuovo Cimento, 58A, p. 289 (1968); [7] Zichichi, A. et al., Observation of the Rare Decay Mode of the φ-Meson: φ->e+e-, Nuovo Cimento, 56A, p. 1173 (1968); Zichichi, A. et al., The Decay Mode ω->e+e- and a Direct Determination of the ω-φ Mixing Angle, Nuovo Cimento, 57A, p. 404 (1968); Zichichi, A. et al., Evidence for the New Decay Mode φ->ηγ, Proceedings of the International Conference on Meson Resonances and Related Electromagnetic Phenomena, Bologna, Italy, 14-16 April 1971 (Editrice Compositori, Bologna, 1972), p. 265; [8] Zichichi, A., An Apparatus of the NBC Type and the Physics Results Obtained, Annals of Physics, 66, p. 405 (1971); [9] Conversi, M., Massam, T., Muller, Th. and Zichichi, A., Search for the Time-Like Structure of the Proton, Phys. Lett., 5, p. 195 (1963); Conversi, M., Massam, T., Muller, Th. and Zichichi, A., The Leptonic Annihilation Modes of the Proton-Antiproton System at 6.8 (GeV/c)2 Timelike Four-Momentum Transfer, Nuovo Cimento, 40, p. 690 (1965); [10] Zichichi, A. et al., Evidence of the Same Multiparticle Production Mechanism in p-p Collisions as in e+e- Annihilation, Physics Letters, 92B, p. 67 (1980); [11] Massam, T. and Zichichi, A., Quark Search at the ISR, CERN (preprint), Geneva, Switzerland, June 1968; Zichichi, A. et al., Search for Fractionally Charged Particles Produced in Proton-Proton Collisions at the Highest ISR Energy, Nuovo Cimento, 40A, p. 41 (1997); Zichichi, al., Search for Quarks in Proton-Proton Interactions at √s = 52.5 GeV, Nuovo Cimento, 45A, p. 171 (1978); Zichichi, A. et al., A Search for Quarks in the CERN SPS Neutrino Beam, Nuovo Cimento, 45A, p. 281 (1978); [12] Anselmo, F., Cifarelli, L., Peterman, A. and Zichichi, A., The Simultaneous Evolution of Masses and Couplings: Consequence on Supersymmetry Spectra and Thresholds, Nuovo Cimento, 105 A, p. 1179, (1992); [13] John Bell and the Ten Challenges of Subnuclear Physics, Presented at the symposium Quantum [Un]Speakables, Erwin Schrödinger Institute, Vienna, 10 November 2000; [14] Zichichi, al., The Main Achievements of the LAA Project, Report No. 7, CERN/LAA/91-1, 1 March 1991. BooksL'Infinito, Rizzoli-Bur (1988 1st ed., 1994 7th ed.), Pratiche Editrice, 6 ed. (1998-2001), and NET (2005); Scienza ed Emergenze Planetarie, Rizzoli (1993 1st ed., 1994 3rd ed.), Supersaggi Rizzoli (1996 1st ed., 1999 7th ed., 2005 23rd ed.); Creativity in Science (1st ed. 1996, World Scientific, 1999; translated into Russian and published by YPCC, Moscow 2001); Subnuclear Physics - The first fifty years, O. Barnabei, P. Pupillo and F. Roversi Monaco eds, a joint publication by the University and the Academy of Sciences of Bologna, Italy (1998); 20th Century Physics Series, Vol. 24, World Scientific (2000-2001); Perché io credo in Colui che ha fatto il mondo, il Saggiatore, 23 editions (1999-2005); L'irresistibile fascino del Tempo, il Saggiatore, 5 editions (2000), and NET, 3 editions (2004-2005); Galilei, divin uomo, il Saggiatore (2001-2005); Il vero e il falso, il Saggiatore, 4 editions (2003-2005); Galilei. Dall'Ipse Dixit al processo di oggi100 risposte, il Saggiatore (2004); Tra Fede e Scienza. Da Giovanni Paolo II a Benedetto XVI, il Saggiatore (2005).

Professional Address

Università degli Studi di Bologna
Dipartimento di Fisica
Via Irnerio, 46
I-40127 Bologna (Italy)

World Federation of Scientists
32, chemin de Mornex
CH-1003 Lausanne (Switzerland)

"Ettore Majorana" Foundation and Centre for Scientific Culture
Via Guarnotta, 26
I-91016 Erice (Italy)


  • Subnuclear Physics

    International Symposium 30 October - 2 November 2011 – The purpose of the Symposium is to discuss the origin, the status and the future of the new frontier of Physics, the Subnuclear World,... Read more


Complexity at the Fundamental Level of our Knowledge (PDF) 2012

The Reasons for This Symposium on Past, Present and Future of Subnuclear Physics (PDF) 2011

My Personal Experience on the Scientific Legacy of the 20th Century (PDF) 2010

Rigorous Logic in the Theory of Evolution (PDF) 2008

Complexity and Predictions at the Fundamental Level of Scientific Knowledge (PDF) 2006

Totally Unexpected Discoveries: A Personal Experience (PDF) 2004

Scientific Culture and the Ten Statements of John Paul II (PDF) 2002

Statement on the Cultural Values of Science (PDF) 2002

Self-presentation (PDF) 1999