Upcoming Dates
  • Nov 26: Thanksgiving
  • Dec 12: Fall Semester ends
  • Jan 18: Martin Luther King Day
  • Jan 18: Spring Semester begins
  • Mar 14–Mar 20: Spring Break
  • May 15: Spring Semester ends
  • May 31: Memorial Day
  • Jun 7: Summer Semester begins

2020 Convocation

Javascript apps

COVID-19 Graduation Alternative

Instead of getting together in person for our Department Convocation, we made a video to mark the occasion. Read more.

Chair: Richard Rand

An undergraduate education in physics provides a solid foundation for a lifetime of learning in a variety of disciplines, including science, engineering, math, finance, education, law, and medicine. Find out more.

Alumni testimonials: Read success stories from alumni of our department and their reflections on the quality of our programs.

Graduate - Physics
Graduate - Optical Science and Engineering
News from the Chair

New advancement in nanophotonics has the potential to improve light-based biosensors

Scientists led by Assistant Professor of Physics Alejandro Manjavacas from the Theoretical Nanophotonics Group and Antonio Fernández-Domínguez from the Autonomous University of Madrid (UAM) in Spain have published a new study they say could contribute to faster and more effective testing for viruses like SARS-CoV-2. Their work, titled Super- and Subradient Lattice Resonances in Bipartite Nanoparticle Arrays, was published in the journal ACS Nano.

This exciting work involved a combination of semi-analytical calculations and rigorous numerical simulations, carried out through the synergistic collaboration of lead author UAM graduate student Alvaro Cuartero-González, who visited UNM between September 2019 and February 2020, as well as UNM Physics grad students Stephen Sanders and Lauren Zundel.

See the UNM Newsroom article for more details and quotes.

News from the Chair

CQuIC part of new $115 million Quantum Systems Accelerator to pioneer quantum technologies for discovery science

The Department of Energy (DOE) has awarded $115 million over five years to the Quantum Systems Accelerator (QSA), a new research center led by Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and Sandia National Laboratories, one of five new centers created under the National Quantum Initiative Act.

QSA will forge the technological solutions needed to harness quantum information science for discoveries that benefit the world. This new Center brings together dozens of scientists who are pioneers of many of today's quantum capabilities from 15 institutions. The University of New Mexico's Center for Quantum Information and Control will play a prominent role in the QSA.

See the UNM Newsroom article.

Featured Event

American Physical Society 2020 Four Corners Virtual Annual Meeting
Friday and Saturday, October 23-24, 2020

APS Meeting October 23-24, 2020

The 2020 Annual Meeting of the Four Corners section of the American Physical Society (APS) will be held October 23-24, 2020. This will be a virtual meeting, hosted by Bravura Technologies.

News from the Chair

Please welcome our new faculty and staff for Fall 2020

Tonmoy Chakraborty (tchakraborty@unm.edu) is our new faculty member in biophotonics. He will be teaching PHYS 1310 remotely this semester. Find him in his lab at 2413, his office, room 2244, or his website, chakra.unm.edu.

Diana Dragomir joined the Department of Physics and Astronomy as a Research Assistant Professor in August, 2019, and will start as an Assistant Professor this fall. See her website.

Jessica Dowell starts as a Lecturer (Mickey Odom's old position) this fall. She has already been working very hard this spring and summer to create online versions of most of our intro labs.

Youngwoo Yi (yyi@unm.edu) is our new Advanced Lab Coordinator (Mike Hasselbeck's old position). He has been performing similar duties at CU Boulder and brings with him a wealth of experience. Youngwoo earned his PhD at the Colorado School of Mines and has carried out research on the optical properties of surfaces. He will be in PAÍS 1406.

News from the Chair

Miyake Research Group improves quantum computing algorithms

Artistic rendition Quantum Particles

UNM's Miyake Research Group has been taking part in an initiative called the Software-Tailored Architecture for Quantum co-design, or STAQ, project aimed at developing and improving quantum systems. Funded by a $15 million grant from the National Science Foundation, STAQ seeks to make quantum computing a more practical tool for future research.

The STAQ initiative involves a diverse group of scientists from UNM, University of California Berkeley, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Duke University, University of Maryland College Park, Tufts University, and University of Chicago.

As one piece of the STAQ research being conducted at UNM, Graduate Research Assistant Andrew Zhao and his colleagues are using CARC systems to refine algorithms that can be used to perform chemical calculations on quantum computers.

Read more details in the UNM Newsroom article.


Upcoming Events


Fri 9/25, 3:30PM in Zoom, Dr. Kaixuan Ni (UCSD), Searching for New Physics with the XENON1T/nT Experiment at Gran Sasso Underground Laboratory

Other Events:

Thu 9/24, 2:00PM in Zoom, Samantha Wallace (UNM), Understanding Solar Wind Formation by Identifying the Origins of In Situ Observations

Thu 9/24, 2:00PM in Zoom, Samantha Wallace (UNM), Understanding Solar Wind Formation by Identifying the Origins of In Situ Observations


Physics & Astronomy and Interdisciplinary Science building

The Physics &
		    	   	                   Astronomy and Interdisciplinary Science building

The Physics and Astronomy department is at 210 Yale Blvd NE as of November 2019


Research Experience for Undergrads

REU 2018 program participants
      	                   sitting on the edge at the top of Sandia Mountain

Make Your Summer Count!

Get real research experience with a fun group of your peers. Find out how.


Interactive Astronomy Apps

Javascript apps

9 Educational Apps

Written by Kevin Dilts for the Astro 101 Lab, these free interactive javascript apps illustrate common astronomy concepts. Enjoy!

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