Research highlights

Knowledge databases

From the core of the Earth to the space, from the Big Bang to the future

The Department's focus areas of research correspond well to the emphases of 3rd millennium physics and physical sciences.

Many of the Department's professorships are jointly funded together with the private sector and government research units, which highlights the social relevance of our research and teaching.

The Department has concentrated its research to four focus areas.

In Materials Physics the bulk of the research is in the use of ion beams and synchrotron radiation for basic as well as applied research, using both the instrumentation in own laboratories and the large international infrastructures, such as the ESRF. The research projects in nanoscience are multidisciplinary. Research related to energy production is made in international cooperations, such as JET and ITER. Medical physics is also an active field of research.

Atmospheric Sciences have their main emphasis in the research of the state of the environment and its development. The global climate change challenges the research and teaching. The cornerstone of the experimental research are the SMEAR research stations.

The research in Elementary particle physics is intimately involved in international cooperation, above all with CERN.

The research in geosciences emphasizes the Earth's water mantle and crust geophysics as well as geodesy. In astronomy, cosmology and space physics the research relies heavily on international cooperation with e.g. ESA, NASA, EUMETSAT, NOT and ESO. The Department has joined the Planck satellite effort in the research of cosmology.

Computational research has its part in experimental and theoretical research in all focus areas.

The scientists cooperate with Finnish and foreign universities, sector research institutes and the private sector.

The emphasis of the research effort is put to timely and relevant problems. Results are published in the most respected international publications. The researchers have wide international contacts and they are frequently invited to give talks and seminars in foreign universities and research institutes. The Department has many foreign staff members and visitors. The research results have a visible and long lasting effect in the scientific community.

According to the scientific evaluation performed at the University of Helsinki, the Department of Physics belongs to the top 10 per cent among its peers in Europe.

The research at the Department involves not only the scientists but also the graduate and undergraduate students, the private sector, the society at large and other interest groups.