The Department has a strong reputation for research. In the 2008 Research Assessment Exercise (RAE) 45% of the Department's research was classified as "internationally excellent" and 10% as "world leading".
Research in the department is conducted in four centres:
- Research in the Department's new Astrophysics research centre includes work on star clusters, galaxies, supermassive black holes, and the hunt for dark matter.
- Research in the Centre for Nuclear and Radiation Physics ranges from pure nuclear physics to research that is more applied in nature, for example into developing techniques for medical imaging. It includes experimental and theoretical nuclear physics groups, radiation detectors, medical physics and the environmental radioactivity group.
- The University's Advanced Technology Institute conducts research into electronic and photonic devices such as advanced lasers, and related materials. The Department of Physics contributes to the Photonics and Theory and Advanced Computation groups of this interdisciplinary institute. Most of the institute's members are either physicists or electronic engineers.
- The Department's Soft Matter Group undertakes both pure and applied soft matter physics. Group members also have interests in nanotechnology, and biological physics. Soft matter ranges from truly "soft" matter such as jelly to paints, polymers and parts of living cells.
The Department's Soft Matter group studies crystallisation, as illustrated by this computer snapshot of a crystallite, which has been modelled in interactive 3D.
For further information about our research activities please contact the relevant centre leader listed below:
Centre for Nuclear and Radiation Physics (CNRP): Professor Phil Walker
Advanced Technology Institute (ATI):
Professor Stephen Sweeney (Photonics, and Theory and Advanced Computation)
Soft Matter (SM): Dr Richard Sear.
Astrophysics: Prof Mark Gieles
Interested in studying for a PhD?
Please see our PhD study page.