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Physical Sciences


"Physics: The study of those aspects of energy and matter in terms of elementary principles and laws. (From McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific and Technical Terms, 6th ed)" -- Definition from the NCBI MeSH Database.


Occupational Outlook Handbook

Physicists and Astronomers

Physics Organizations

American Institute of Physics
American Physical Society

European Physical Society (EPS)
Institute of Physics (IoP)
International Association of Mathematical Physics (IAMP)
International Centre for Theoretical Physics (ICTP)


  • The Scope of Physics –  An overview of the branches/fields of classical and modern physics. 
  • Hyperphysics – Online tutorials cover a wide range of physics topics, including modern physics and astronomy. Material is organized through extensive concept maps.
  • MIT Net Advance of Physics  –  From MIT, the "history of physics organized by fields of physics with famous experiments."
  • NIST Atomic Spectra Database – This database provides access and search capability for NIST critically evaluated data on atomic energy levels, wavelengths, and transition probabilities that are reasonably up-to-date. The spectroscopic data may be selected and displayed according to wavelengths or energy levels.
  • Particle Physics Education Sites – from the SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory
  • PHET Simulations – Physics Education Technology has simulations in physics, math, and other sciences

Physics and Data

The physics community has a long history of sharing research. Physicists began sharing their research pre-publication in the Los Alamos Pre-print Archive, when it was created in 1991 by Paul Ginsparg. When Ginsparg left Los Alamos for Cornell, the Pre-print Archive became arXiv, and moved to Cornell with him. An interview with Ginsparg about the creation of arXiv is available in this 2002 article in Science Editor.

Physics produces big data
Big Data and the Future of Physics (Recorded during the World Science Festival 2017)


Big data: Challenges and perspectives
Duellmann D.
Proceedings of the International School Of Physics "Enrico Fermi":Grid and Cloud Computing:Concepts and Practical Applications. 2016;192:153-183. doi:10.3254/978-1-61499-643-9-153

Optimization of data life cycles
Jung C, Gasthuber M, Giesler A, Hardt M, Meyer J, Rigoll F,... & Streit A.
Journal of Physics: Conference Series. 2014;513(3):032047.

LHC Data at your fingertips
Rao A.
Symmetry Magazine. 2016 April 22.  Retrieved from

Big Data Tools as Applied to ATLAS Event Data
Vukotic I, Gardner R, & Bryant L.
ATLAS Collaboration No. ATL- SOFT-PROC-2017-001. 2017 Jan. Available at

Physics Metadata and Repositories

Metadata varies by discipline and is often repository-specific. Following are some data repositories for physics data. For associated metadata, consult the user help for the repository. is a directory of data repositories. It currently contains listings for 225 physics data repositories.

DOE Data Explorer: “Explore science, technology, and engineering data from the US Department of Energy.”

HEPData: “The Durham High Energy Physics Database (HEPData) has been built up over the past four decades as a unique open-access repository for scattering data from experimental particle physics.”

Zenodo: An open access repository created in collaboration with CERN, it contains physics and other science data.