Research at Lancaster


We are one of the top in the UK for research. REF2014 ranked us 2nd in the UK for the number of research outputs judged to be of internationally leading (4 star) quality, with 28% of our publications in this top bracket.

Research in the Physics Department is structured into four divisions: Astrophysics, Particle and Accelerator Physics, Experimental Condensed Matter, and Theory.

Each division has a world-class team of research-active staff at the forefront of research in their respective fields. We place great importance on bringing this world-leading research into our undergraduate teaching, and into our schools and public engagement programme.

Our renowned researchers include particle physicists working at CERN, Fermilab and JPARC in Japan, quantum technologists working on quantum bits, liquid helium and graphene, biomedical physicists describing nonlinear phenomena in the human body, mathematical physicists studying the classical and quantum behaviour of matter and light, space and planetary physicists investigating the solar system's space-plasma environment using spacecraft such as NASA's Cassini-Huygens mission to Saturn and Titan, and cosmologists chasing the origins of dark matter and mechanisms of inflation.


Observational Astrophysics

Our research tackles some of the most important open questions in Astrophysics looking at the formation and evolution of galaxies, and the properties of the Universe itself.

Theoretical Particle Cosmology

Our research in theoretical cosmology uses new theories of particle physics and gravitation to understand the evolution of the Universe from the earliest time to the present day.

Space and Planetary Physics

We explore the fundamental physics at work in the solar system's space-plasma environment. We investigate the mechanisms that control space weather - the natural phenomena which can affect the world's high-tech infrastructure.

Particle and Accelerator Physics

Experimental Particle Physics

Studying the forces and interactions that shaped our universe and searching for new particles like the Higgs boson, using the highest energy particle colliders and long-baseline neutrino beams.

Accelerator Physics

We create the technologies and mathematical models that will lead to future generations of particle accelerators.

Experimental Condensed Matter

Low Temperature Physics

We perform experiments and develop cooling technology to study fundamental processes and material properties at temperatures approaching absolute zero.

Quantum Nanotechnology

We work on a whole range of devices, from the fundamental physics of nanofabricated structures to practical applications with industrial partners.

Non Linear and Biomedical Physics

Understanding the nonlinear, time-varying, behaviour of biological systems has the potential to impact many areas of medicine.


Condensed Matter Theory

We study and model the theoretical properties of condensed matter systems, such as graphene, cold atomic gases, and molecular electronics.

Mathematical Physics

We develop and use new mathematical techniques for studying the classical and quantum behaviour of matter and light.

Theory of Molecular Scale Transport

We develop new theories of electron, phonon and spin transport through molecules and low-dimensional materials. We collaborate with a wide range of international laboratories to test our predictions.