Message from the Chair


Masao Ogata

  Physics is the foundation of all the natural sciences and the most advanced and dynamically changing discipline in the natural sciences.
  History shows that classical mechanics was established in the 17th century, followed by thermodynamics, statistical mechanics, electromagnetism, and fluid mechanics in the 18th and 19th centuries. In the early 20th century, the theory of relativity and quantum mechanics were established. These are the gold standard of physics, where our predecessors uncovered natural phenomena' nature and compiled them into universal concepts and laws. The industrial revolution cannot be discussed without the development of physics.
  In the 20th century, nuclear physics and particle physics were developed to investigate the nature of matter. The constituent elements of matter, atoms, nuclei, and subatomic particles, were revealed in turn. Condensed matter physics was born to study the properties of atoms that appear when they get condensed, such as magnetism and electrical conductivity. These have led to a variety of industrial technologies that support modern society. These include semiconductors, magnetic devices, laser technology and optical communications, solar power generation, batteries, medical MRI, and nuclear power use.
  Various experimental and observational instruments developed at the end of the 20th century and into this century have led to new developments in physics. For example, the scanning probe microscope showed the inhomogeneous structure of material surfaces, and the Hubble Space Telescope showed the dark matter. Kamiokande and Super-Kamiokande raised the curtain on neutrino astronomy. The gravitational waves said to be Einstein's last homework, have also been detected. State-of-the-art measurements and theoretical analysis have shown that dimensionality and topology can decisively change the properties of matter. Non-equilibrium physics, biophysics, quantum information, and the use of AI are also making great strides. Physics will continue to enrich our view of nature and will be a driving force in opening up future society.
  There are about 40 faculty members in the Department of Physics in the Faculty of Science. In the graduate school, we have approximately 130 faulty members in the course of physics, including those from the Institute for Solid State Physics, the Institute for Cosmic Ray Research, and the Kavli Institute for the Physics and Mathematics of the Universe. We are sure that you will find a field of research in which you are interested. We welcome those who are curious and inquisitive about nature and its mechanisms, those who want to open up new horizons in the natural sciences with clear eyes and flexible thinking, and those who want to use physics to help solve society's problems. If you go into the physics department, and if you understand physics, you may see the world differently.