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  • Cavendish Laboratory - Department of Physics

The Department of Physics at the Cavendish Laboratory carries out a range of research into biological, extreme, materials and quantum physics themes, as well as undergraduate and postgraduate teaching. This diversity of approach allows for cross-fertilisation of ideas and synergies for the analysis of physics problems.

At the forefront of discoveries in physics

The core of the Laboratory’s research programme is experimental physics supported by excellence in theory. Our colleagues have a strong collaborative ethic, working with researchers from other disciplines and with industrial partners. This expansive approach has underpinned the success of 30 Nobel Prize winners whose names are associated with some of the world’s most fundamental discoveries: the electron, the neutron, the structure of DNA, and pulsars.

This film looks at the impact of the innovations and ideas that have come out of Cambridge's Cavendish Laboratory over the past 140 years. It also introduces one of the most important and ambitious projects ever embarked upon by the University: the Ray Dolby Centre. The Dolby family have donated £85 million to Cambridge to help reimagine the possibilities of physics now and in the future with the development of a new Cavendish Laboratory.

Ray Dolby Centre - Cavendish Laboratory - Cambridge University

Addressing big questions

The Cavendish embraces physics as a dynamic discipline, uncovering the nature of our physical universe from the smallest to the largest scales. From probing the wonders of quantum-scale physics within each atom to deciphering the extraordinary evolution of the structure of the Universe, the Cavendish’s experts are working on the most advanced and ambitious research projects ever undertaken by the human race. The core research groupings within the Department of Physics are:

  • Supporting studentships
  • Endowing professorships
  • Redeveloping the Cavendish Laboratory's facilities

Next steps

To discuss your philanthropic goals or explore opportunities for collaborative investment, please contact me.

Josh Bowerman

Director of Development — Schools Programme

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Opportunities in 'Physics'

Outreach event at the Science Festival
The Cavendish Laboratory team are very conscious of their role in communicating the importance and excitement of contemporary physics and its cognate disciplines to young people and the general public.
Physics student
Supporting postgraduate students to study physics at the Cavendish Laboratory. The Laboratory offers postgraduates from all over the world the opportunity to study with world-class researchers across the complete spectrum of physics, from studies of the very early universe, to the physics of superglue and chocolate.
The new Cavendish Laboratory will house some of the most advanced, controlled experimental environments in the world.

This opportunity is part of

Cavendish Laboratory: physics of medicine
With its outstanding track record in research and teaching, the School of the Physical Sciences is home to some of the world's most important work in astronomy, chemistry, earth sciences, geography, materials science, physics, and pure and applied mathematics.

Related stories

Philanthropic giving is at the heart of the success of the Collegiate University, enabling us to make discoveries that change the world and to ensure that our students receive an unrivalled education. Cambridge owes its world-leading excellence in research and teaching to the generosity of its supporters. Our history is synonymous with a history of far-sighted benefaction, and the same is as true today as it has ever been.

Gift announcement
The family will now support a new fund for teaching and research.