We perform experimental and theoretical research on condensed matter, atomic and biologically related physics. We have strong links to other activities on campus including the departments of Chemistry, Applied mathematics and Applied Physics, Electrical Engineering and Mechanical Engineering departments. We participate in the Materials Research Science and Engineering Center and have close connections to the Simons Foundation’s Flatiron Institute.
One of the prominent research directions of the department of physics at Columbia University is the study of physical systems where interactions between large numbers of elementary particles results in new quantum mechanical phenomena. The research areas of Condensed Matter Physics and Atomic Physics are both focused on these questions, as well as on quantum optics and high precision measurements in fundamental physics. The Condensed Matter Physics group studies such phenomena in a variety of solid systems in one, two and three dimensions using theoretical (Aleiner, Altshuler and Millis) and experimental (Basov, Dean, Pasupathy, Pinczuk, Sahin, Uemura) techniques. The Atomic Physics group (Will, Zelevinsky) studies such questions in the context of interacting dilute gases of atoms and molecules cooled to ultralow temperatures.