• Research News

    A New Way to Measure Energy in Microscopic Machines

    What drives cells to live and engines to move? It all comes down to a quantity that scientists call “free energy,” essentially the energy that can be extracted from any system to perform useful work. Without this available energy, a living organism would eventually Read More
  • Research News

    Life at the Edge of the World

    What's it like living and working in Antarctica? Upon returning from a five-week trip to the Amundsen-Scott South Pole Station, UMD graduate student Liz Friedman sat down with Chris and Emily to chat about her experience. In this episode, Friedman shares some of her Read More
  • Research News

    New Research Reveals How Energy Dissipates Outside Earth’s Magnetic Field

    Earth’s magnetic field provides an invisible but crucial barrier that protects Earth from the solar wind—a stream of charged particles launched from the sun’s outer layers. The protective properties of the magnetic field can fail due to a process known as magnetic reconnection, which Read More
  • Research News

    Machine Learning’s ‘Amazing’ Ability to Predict Chaos

    The findings come from Professors Michelle Girvan and Edward Ott along with two other UMD collaborators. "They employed a machine-learning algorithm called reservoir computing to “learn” the dynamics of an archetypal chaotic system called the Kuramoto-Sivashinsky equation. The evolving solution to this equation behaves Read More
  • Research News

    Atoms May Hum a Tune from Grand Cosmic Symphony

    Researchers playing with a cloud of ultracold atoms uncovered behavior that bears a striking resemblance to the universe in microcosm. Their work, which forges new connections between atomic physics and the sudden expansion of the early universe, will be published in Physical Review X Read More
  • Research News

    A Different Spin on Superconductivity: Unusual Particle Interactions Open up new Possibilities in Exotic Materials

    When you plug in an appliance or flip on a light switch, electricity seems to flow instantly through wires in the wall. But in fact, the electricity is carried by tiny particles called electrons that slowly drift through the wires. On their journey, electrons Read More
  • Research News

    Latest Nanowire Experiment Boosts Confidence in Majorana Sighting

    In the latest experiment of its kind, researchers have captured the most compelling evidence to date that unusual particles lurk inside a special kind of superconductor. The result, which confirms theoretical predictions first made nearly a decade ago at the Joint Quantum Institute (JQI) Read More
  • Research News

    Physics at the Edge of the World

      Deep within the ice covering the South Pole, thousands of sensitive cameras strain their digital eyes in search of a faint blue glow—light that betrays the presence of high-energy neutrinos. For this episode, Chris sat down with UMD graduate student Liz Friedman and Read More
  • Research News

    New Hole-Punched Crystal Clears a Path for Quantum Light

    Optical highways for light are at the heart of modern communications. But when it comes to guiding individual blips of light called photons, reliable transit is far less common. Now, a collaboration of researchers from the Joint Quantum Institute (JQI), led by JQI Fellows Read More
  • 1 A New Way to Measure Energy in Microscopic Machines
  • 2 Life at the Edge of the World
  • 3 New Research Reveals How Energy Dissipates Outside Earth’s Magnetic Field
  • 4 Machine Learning’s ‘Amazing’ Ability to Predict Chaos
  • 5 Atoms May Hum a Tune from Grand Cosmic Symphony
  • 6 A Different Spin on Superconductivity: Unusual Particle Interactions Open up new Possibilities in Exotic Materials
  • 7 Latest Nanowire Experiment Boosts Confidence in Majorana Sighting
  • 8 Physics at the Edge of the World
  • 9 New Hole-Punched Crystal Clears a Path for Quantum Light
  • Outreach
  • Student Spotlight

Flyer MissionOptics FullSpectrum UMDPhysics web

                                      Jacob Bringewatt

Congratulations to Jacob Bringewatt for receiving a Department of Energy Computational Science Graduate Fellowship (DOE CSGF).  Established in 1991, the fellowship was devised “to train and produce the next generation of leaders in computational science.”  The 2018-2019 incoming class includes twenty-six awardees from all over the country.

Bringewatt was a researcher with the  Joint Center for

Read More

Department News

  • Jun 12, 2018 Physics Graduate Student Zachary Eldredge Awarded ARCS Scholarship The Achievement Rewards for College Scientists (ARCS) Foundation awarded two students from the University of Maryland’s College of Computer, Mathematical, and Natural Sciences with $15,000 scholarships for the 2018-2019 school year. This year’s scholars are physics graduate student Zachary Eldredge and chemistry graduate student Matthew Thum. Read More
  • May 11, 2018 Erik Blaufuss Wins Provost’s Excellence Award Research Scientist Erik Blaufuss has received the 2018 Provost’s Excellence Award for Professional Track Faculty in research.   Blaufuss has served as scientific analysis coordinator of IceCube, an NSF-sponsored scientific instrument in Antarctica in which 5,160 photoreceptors are embedded in a cubic kilometer of crystal-clear Read More
  • May 10, 2018 Christopher Bambic Awarded University Medal Christopher Bambic, who will graduate this month with bachelor of science degrees in physics and astronomy, will also be awarded the University Medal, which recognizes the most outstanding graduate of the year. The University Medal is awarded to the undergraduate who best personifies academic distinction, Read More
  • May 8, 2018 Eliot Fenton Recognized as a Maryland ‘Undergraduate Researcher of the Year’ Eliot Fenton, UMD physics major, was among those recognized as a 2018 Maryland ‘Undergraduate Researcher of the Year.’ This award is eligible for exemplary seniors who have been nominated by their faculty advisors.  Fenton earned this award for his wide-ranging experimental physics research accomplishments. From Read More
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Upcoming Events


Wed, Jun 20, 2018 11:00 am - 12:15 pm

Maryland Day 2012 Pictures

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Volunteer Schedule

Below is the Physics MD Day volunteer schedule. Red slots still need to be filled; if you're available please e-mail Kate Sickles
(This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) your preferred event and shift. 

Event 9-10am (setup)  10-11am 11-12am 12-1pm 1-2pm 2-3pm 3-4pm

Physics is Phun: Catch the

Gravitational Wave-      

Radar Velocity

Think Quantum:  Lab Tours

  JQI - 
Physics Pottery Demonstration

    Lorraine DeSalvo,  Lorraine DeSalvo,  Lorraine DeSalvo    
Smoke Cannons

  Dan Lathrop

LN2 Ice cream

Cosmic Ray Tour

        Eun-Suk Seo,     

          Jimmy Williams  

Maryland Day 2014 Pictures

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Maryland Day Events

Join us for the 20th annual Maryland Day to explore our world of fearless ideas on Saturday, April 28, 2018, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Maryland Day is an exciting opportunity for prospective students and area residents to learn more about the University of Maryland. We hope you’ll join the Department of Physics on Science & Tech Way for the events listed below!

10:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. 
Physics Front Lawn

Smoke Ring Cannon
Make giant smoke rings! Two cannons make for amazing motion when rings collide!

11:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.
Physical Sciences Complex 

Think Quantum: Lab Tours
Discover the secrets of the universe as described by quantum mechanics, the physics revolution of the last 100 years. Learn about quantum computers of the future. See ultracold atoms, laser beams, liquid helium cooled superconductors and more. Tours leave from the main lobby.

10:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. 
Physics Front Lawn

Think Quantum:  Magnetic Levitation

See levitating superconductors, cooled by liquid nitrogen, zoom around a magnetic track.

10:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.

1:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.
Physics Front Lawn

Radar Velocity 
Test your throwing ability at the Radar Velocity Detector Station.


11:00 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. and 1:30 p.m. - 3:00 p.m. 

1410-1412 John S. Toll Physics Building

Physics is Phun:  Catch the Gravitational Wave
Join us  before each show for hands-on demos.

md day 2018 vid

11:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m.
Physics Lobby

Physics of Pottery
Get behind the wheel with the Physics Pottery club! Learn about the Physics behind pottery while molding ceramic bowls and figurines.

11:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m.
Physics Front Lawn

Liquid Nitrogen Ice-Cream
Bet you haven't had ice cream like this! This homemade specialty tastes great and is safe for all ages. Try it, while supplies last.

1:00 p.m. - 2:00 p.m.
Physics Front Lawn

Cosmic Ray Lab Tour
Come on a virtual journey as we tour our cosmic ray lab. Together students, physicists and engineers work in the lab to build state-of-the-art particle detectors to fly on gigantic balloons in Antarctica.

12:00 p.m. - 1:00 p.m.
Room 1201, Physics Toll Bldg.

Alford Ward Assistant Professor James Williams

Exploration of Synthetic Universes in Quantum Materials
New exotic materials offer physicists the ability to emulate things that may (or may not) exist in our universe. In this talk I will summarize recent experimental work at UMD to investigate these synthetic universes and to exploit their properties for future quantum technologies.

More Articles ...

  1. 2015 MD Day Image Gallery