Skip to main content
Department of Physics

Physics Research

Graduate studies in physics at URI began in 1949, when the department was first authorized to grant master's degrees. The doctoral program was started in 1964. The department has active research programs in a broad range of areas. Each research program is headed by a faculty member. Some programs have overlapping components because of intra-departmental collaborations. The research areas are listed on this page. For additional information, follow the links to webpages maintained by the researcher.

Research Interests of Physics Faculty

Multidisciplinary Research Programs at URI

Collaboration at National & International Research Facilities

Theoretical Research Groups

Leonard M. Kahn
Ph.D. 1976 Brown
Theoretical condensed matter physics
  • Surface physics
  • Superconductivity
  • Hydrogen in metals
Charles Kaufman
Ph.D. 1963 Penn State
Theoretical physics
  • Weak interactions
  • Chaos
  • Quantum electrodynamics
  • Turbulent media
Alexander E. Meyerovich
Ph.D. 1977 Kapitza Inst. Moscow
D.Sc. 1985 Kapitza Inst. Moscow
Theoretical low temperature physics
  • Spin-polarized quantum systems
  • Quantum crystals
  • Quantum gases
  • Fermi and Bose liquids
  • Macroscopic quantum phenomena
  • Superfluidity
  • Helium and hydrogen systems
  • Quantum diffusion
Theoretical condensed matter physics
  • Quantum transport
  • Transport and interference effects in nanosystems
  • Ultrathin multilayer films
  • Systems with random boundaries
  • Disordered quasi-2D systems
  • Non-local hydrodynamics
  • Surface physics
Gerhard Müller
Ph.D. 1980 Basel, Switzerland
Theoretical condensed matter physics
  • Low-dimensional magnetism
  • Spin dynamics
  • Bethe ansatz
  • Recursion method
Nonlinear dynamics and chaos
  • Hamiltonian chaos
  • Integrability and nonintegrability in quantum mechanics
Peter Nightingale
Ph.D. 1978, University of Amsterdam
Condensed matter theory
  • Phase transitions and critical phenomena
  • Critical dynamics
  • Surface physics
  • Van der Waals clusters
Computational Physics
  • Classical Monte Carlo methods
  • Quantum Monte Carlo methods
  • Large-scale parallel computations
  • Finite-size scaling
  • Optimization
  • Many-body interactions and invariants
Michael Tammaro
Ph.D. 1997 Iowa State
Theoretical condensed matter physics
  • Modeling of far-from-equilibrium systems
  • Hierarchic rate equations
  • Monte Carlo techniques
  • Reaction-diffusion equations
  • Master equations
Specific focus is on thin film properties:
  • Diffusion and electromigration
  • Non-equilibrium phase transitions
  • Transport in disordered media
  • Chemical wave propagation
  • Chemical reactions on surfaces

Experimental Research Groups

Oleg A. Andreev
Ph. D., Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology, 1990
Biological physics
David R. Heskett
Ph.D. 1985 U. Penn
Experimental condensed matter physics
  • Experimental surface physics
  • Thin films
  • Electron spectroscopies
Surendra S. Malik
Ph.D. 1960 Agra, India
Experimental neutron physics
  • Slow neutron cross sections
  • Neutron optics
Jan A. Northby
Ph.D. 1966 Minnesota
Experimental low-temperature physics
  • Atomic cluster beams
  • Quantum liquids
Anthony C. Nunes
Ph.D. 1969 MIT
Experimental condensed matter physics
Neutron Physics
  • Neutron scattering
  • X-ray scattering
  • Magnetism in nanoparticles and surfaces
Yana Reshetnyak
Ph.D. 2000 Russian Acad. of Sci.
Biological physics
Albert Steyerl
D.Sc. 1966 MIT
Ph.D. 1971 Munich, Germany
Experimental neutron physics
  • Ultra-cold neutrons
  • Neutron optics


Elizabeth Bozyan
Ph.D. 1985 U. Texas
  • Optical counterparts of low-frequency radio sources
  • Radio source and optical source offsets