How sensitive can a quantum detector be?

Quantum physics is moving out of the laboratory and into everyday life. Despite headline results about quantum computers solving problems impossible for classical computers, technical challenges are standing in the way of ...

Putting the universe under the telescope

We humans are a curious, questing lot, and the 2020s will see us continue to observe the universe around us, trying to understand more about fundamental particles, forces, objects and relationships from both ground and space-based ...

Precise measurements find a crack in universal physics

The concept of universal physics is intriguing, as it enables researchers to relate physical phenomena in a variety of systems, irrespective of their varying characteristics and complexities. Ultracold atomic systems are ...

Mission X 2020 Walk to the Moon Challenge is open

Mission X: Train Like an Astronaut is an international educational challenge, focusing on health, science, fitness and nutrition, which encourages pupils to train like an astronaut.

Final images from Cassini spacecraft

Researchers are busy analysing some of the final data sent back from the Cassini spacecraft which has been in orbit around Saturn for more than 13 years until the end of its mission in September 2017.

The interiors of stars

The interiors of stars are largely mysterious regions because they are so difficult to observe directly. Our lack of understanding about the physical processes there, like rotation and the mixing of hot gas, introduces considerable ...

Laser physics: At the pulse of a light wave

Physicists in the Laboratory for Attosecond Physics at Ludwig-Maximilians-Universitaet (LMU) in Munich and at the Max Planck Institute for Quantum Optics (MPQ) have developed a novel type of detector that enables the oscillation ...

Wave physics as an analog recurrent neural network

Analog machine learning hardware offers a promising alternative to digital counterparts as a more energy efficient and faster platform. Wave physics based on acoustics and optics is a natural candidate to build analog processors ...

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Physics

Physics (Greek: physis – φύσις meaning "nature") is a natural science; it is the study of matter and its motion through spacetime and all that derives from these, such as energy and force. More broadly, it is the general analysis of nature, conducted in order to understand how the world and universe behave.

Physics is one of the oldest academic disciplines, perhaps the oldest through its inclusion of astronomy. Over the last two millennia, physics had been considered synonymous with philosophy, chemistry, and certain branches of mathematics and biology, but during the Scientific Revolution in the 16th century, it emerged to become a unique modern science in its own right. However, in some subject areas such as in mathematical physics and quantum chemistry, the boundaries of physics remain difficult to distinguish.

Physics is both significant and influential, in part because advances in its understanding have often translated into new technologies, but also because new ideas in physics often resonate with the other sciences, mathematics and philosophy.

For example, advances in the understanding of electromagnetism led directly to the development of new products which have dramatically transformed modern-day society (e.g., television, computers, and domestic appliances); advances in thermodynamics led to the development of motorized transport; and advances in mechanics inspired the development of calculus.

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