Physics at UC Merced

Physics at UC Merced leverages our unique academic atmosphere that fosters interdisciplinary research, connecting the physical sciences to life sciences, material sciences, and engineering. We focus on four main areas of research – atomic, molecular & optical physics, biological & soft matter physics, nanoscience & condensed matter physics, and solar & energy physics — that synergize with each other, allowing for collaborations that approach problems from distinct perspectives. Our graduate and undergraduate students pursue their degrees while working on a broad range of cutting-edge research topics in one of the most diverse departments in the country.

Research Highlights

Triangles of Quantum Dots Create Controllable Current Circulation
Chih-Chun Chien, Michael Scheibner, and collaborators have discovered a simple setup...

Even in classical diffusive motion, topologically protected edge modes can be found
Kinjal Dasbiswas and collaborators find some surprising connections with topological band theory...

Frustration and Compromise in Flocking Cells Produce New Migration Patterns
A novel finding about migrating cells detailed in a new paper by Ajay Gopinathan and his colleagues...

Study: Quantum Vibrations Could Help Detect Nuclear Threats
National security and a beautifully resonant violin have found a surprising link

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Welcome to Physics at UC Merced

Access to World Class Resources
As the 10th campus of the University of California, UC Merced draws on the outstanding resources of the UC system, a world renowned center for research and education. The research groups in this graduate group have access to major facilities, such as state of the art laser systems, an electron microscopy facility, a nanofabrication facility and nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy on campus. Other large facilities, such as synchrotron light sources, located at Stanford University and UC Berkeley labs, are within two hours of driving distances. Students also have access to the extensive library holdings and journal subscriptions of the UC system.

Celebrating diversity

The second-largest program within the School of Natural Sciences, our graduate group celebrates diversity. Five of the 17 faculty members are women and 43 percent of our students are either underrepresented minorities or women, which makes our group among the most diverse in the country.

Research-focused undergraduate education

Undergraduate students at UC Merced have a rare opportunity to take part in scientific research with world-renowned research groups in cutting-edge fields such as atomic, molecular & optical (AMO) physics, biological & soft matter physics, condensed matter & nanoscale physics, and solar & energy sciences. During the senior year all students work closely with a faculty advisor to design and carry out a research project, with many starting their research work in earlier years.

Faculty

Our active, diverse group of faculty is enthusiastic, driven and invested in student success. Our team is large enough to offer rigorous and comprehensive training but small enough that students receive a lot of personal attention.

Interdisciplinary Research

UC Merced's academic structure and physical proximity make collaborative opportunities with other research groups the rule rather than the exception.

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Apply Now

If you're ready for a physics program that combines exciting research topics with close faculty interaction, why wait? Apply today.

 

Contact Us

Physics Department Chair
Ajay Gopinathan, Professor
 
Physics Graduate Group Chair
Sayantani Ghosh, Professor
 
Physics Undergraduate Lead
Carrie Menke, Associate Teaching Professor
 
Physics Address
University of California, Merced
5200 North Lake Road
Merced, CA 95343
 
Shipping Address
University of California, Merced
ATTN: (Name of recipient)
School of Natural Sciences
Facilities Services Building A
5200 N. Lake Road
Merced, CA 95343
 
University of California, Merced
 
The first new American research
university in the 21st century, with a
mission of research, teaching and service.
 
University of California, Merced
5200 North Lake Road
Merced, CA 95343
T: (209) 228-4400
 
University of California

 

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