27 September 2012

Congratulations to Dr Sam Stranks, who was recently presented with the Institute of Physics’ Roy Thesis Prize. The prize is awarded annually to the best nominated thesis in condensed matter and materials physics.

26 September 2012

Dr Starinets has been awarded an ERC Starting grant for research on non-equilibrium gauge-string duality.

20 September 2012

Congratulations to Emeritus Professor Mike Glazer on winning the Jan Czochralski Award of the European Materials Research Society. The medal was presented on 19 September 2012 at the E-MRS Fall Meeting in Warsaw, with laudation for the prize delivered by Professor Ekhard Salje FRS from Cambridge University. The award recognizes lifetime achievements in Materials Science - in Mike's case particularly his highly cited works on perovskites.

19 September 2012

Why String Theory? website aims to provide the general public with an introduction to the mysteries of string theory.

You’ll learn where string theory came from, why people research it and what they hope to find out. No prior knowledge of higher physics or mathematics is assumed, but nevertheless there is sufficient depth of material for you to be able to gain a true insight into current developments.

18 September 2012

Condensed Matter Physics is delighted to announce that Mr Chaw Keong Yong, third year postgraduate student, has been awarded the Nicholas Kurti Prize 2012 for the best presentation and distinguished work by a third year postgraduate student.

31 August 2012

The John Adams Institute for Accelerator Science is expanding, with a new research base at Imperial College London joining two existing centres at Royal Holloway, University of London and the University of Oxford.

28 August 2012

The Department of Physics has been granted an Athena Swan Bronze Award.

For further details, please see the full Story at

The beliefs underpinning the Athena Swan Charter are:

15 August 2012

An eccentric class of materials known as topological insulators (TIs) has caught the interest and imagination of physicists, materials scientists, and technologists alike, as it permits loss-free electricity conduction at room temperature. TIs are insulating in the inside, but conduct electricity on their surfaces. The current that it carries has some special properties that arise from the quantum nature of the material. The motion and spin are locked together: the path of the surface electrons determine their spin and in turn is determined by it.

6 August 2012

An international collaboration led by Oxford physicists reported today in Physical Review Letters experimental measurements of how ions influence each other’s behaviour in a hot-dense aluminium plasma, leading to an effect called ionization potential depression (link to article). These results shed new light on a half-century-old debate regarding one of the most challenging properties to measure in such extreme systems.

31 July 2012

Summer 2012

Our latest Department newsletter is now available to download in PDF format here. Have a look at the wide range of work that we do in front-line research, teaching, public outreach and school education. We would welcome contributions to future newsletters from undergraduate or postgraduate alumni and previous members of the physics department.