Our faculty and students are constantly working on a wide variety of topics across all major physics disciplines. We're exploring the boundaries of what's known at the largest and smallest scales in the universe and stretching the limits of what's possible in the manipulation of matter and energy.

Research in our department tackles the topics that are defining today's expanding scientific horizons. Whether experimental or theoretical, abstract or concrete, we recognize unsolved problems as opportunities for scientific breakthroughs.


Research Programs and Centers

Innovation and discovery often develop at the juncture or overlap between disciplinary fields. The University of Arizona has a long history of interdisciplinary work in the sciences. A desert dust empiricism has led to a search for links between diverse scientific fields through the development, or shared use, of new techniques, as well as through the leveraging of both intellectual and financial resources. Interdisciplinary programs pursue research in their new fields and create the research workers for the future.

Theoretical Astrophysics Program

The University of Arizona has consolidated its long-standing strength in astronomy and planetary sciences through the Theoretical Astrophysics Program (TAP), an interdisciplinary program in theoretical astrophysics that involves the Physics, Astronomy, Planetary Sciences and Applied Mathematics departments as well as NOAO. TAP administers a Monday colloquium series, graduate student research and recruitment prizes, a postdoctoral fellowship, and a visitor program.
(photo by: STScI for NASA)

Chemical Physics Program

The Chemical Physics Program at The University of Arizona provides an interdisciplinary track for cutting-edge research at the forefront of the interface of Physics and Chemistry. Research in this program is highly collaborative and interdisciplinary in nature and geared towards preparing students for a career in research in fields ranging from biomedical technology to sustainable energy.

Accelerator Mass Spectrometry Lab

The NSF-Arizona Accelerator Mass Spectrometry (AMS) Laboratory has operated as an NSF research and service Facility since 1981. It is jointly operated by the Physics and Geosciences Departments at the University of Arizona, serving as an interdisciplinary hub for a broad range of research and educational activities. During the last five years, 76 students have utilized this facility for their research, leading to 32 Doctoral and 13 Master's degrees completed from various universities.

Biosphere 2

Biosphere 2, under the management of The University of Arizona, is one of the world's most unique facilities dedicated to the research and understanding of global scientific issues. The Biosphere 2 facility will serve as a laboratory for controlled scientific studies, an arena for scientific discovery and discussion, and a far-reaching provider of public education. Its mission is to serve as a center for research, outreach, teaching and life-long learning about Earth.


Life and Planet Astrobiology Center

The Life and Planets Astrobiology Center (LAPLACE) is an interdisciplinary unit for research and educational activities in astrobiology both for the University of Arizona and for other science organizations in Southern Arizona. Astrobiology is the study of the origin and relationship of life to its cosmic roots. The origin of life is a puzzle wrapped in our current lack of understanding of the origin and early development of the earth, which is itself wrapped in the puzzle of the origin of our planetary system.