Academic Programs Catalog

Other Departments and Offices for Research and Services

Facility for Rare Isotope Beams Laboratory

Thomas Glasmacher, Director

Located on south campus, the Facility for Rare Isotope Beams (FRIB) Laboratory is the world’s leading laboratory for education and research in rare isotope science, and a leading laboratory in accelerator science and in applications of rare isotopes to meet societal needs. The laboratory built on the expertise and the achievements of the operating National Superconducting Cyclotron Laboratory (NSCL) as it established FRIB, which extends the frontier of nuclear science through unprecedented discovery potential. The FRIB Laboratory is a major administrative unit within Michigan State University. The laboratory staff of approximately 800 includes faculty, postdoctoral fellows, technicians, engineers, and graduate and undergraduate students.

The FRIB Laboratory contributes to the education of a quarter of the next generation of nuclear scientists in the United States. The U.S. News and World Report ranks MSU’s nuclear physics Ph.D. graduate program #1 in the nation. Typically, about 110 graduate students from MSU and other universities use the laboratory’s facilities for their graduate work in experimental or theoretical nuclear physics, nuclear chemistry, or accelerator physics. The doctoral degree programs are administered through academic departments, primarily Physics and Astronomy, Chemistry, and Engineering departments. Admission and program of study are subject to the regulations of the appropriate department. The FRIB Laboratory plays an important role in undergraduate education, providing experience for undergraduate students in a highly stimulating environment where students are exposed to forefront nuclear science research and technologies ranging from applied superconductivity to accelerators designed for cancer therapy. The laboratory employs about 160 undergraduate students.

FRIB was completed in 2022 and is a user facility designated by the U.S. Department of Energy Office of Science (DOE-SC). MSU designed and established FRIB for DOE-SC, and now operates it.

FRIB ensures the nation’s continued competitiveness in nuclear science by using next-generation technology needed for next-generation rare isotope experiments. FRIB enables scientific research with fast, stopped, and reaccelerated rare isotope beams produced by in- beam fragmentation, supporting a community of approximately 1,400 scientists from around the world.
For more information visit or call 1-517-355-9672.