Welcome to Physics & Astronomy

The Physics & Astronomy Department, situated at the heart of North America’s Quantum Valley, Canada’s technology hub, is located an hour south-west of Toronto. Waterloo is like no other place in the world to study physics. Come to Waterloo to study quantum information, holographic landscapes, and supermassive black holes. Create exotic materials, study laser optics, and build bio-sensors. The Physics & Astronomy department is your link to the Institute of Quantum Computing and the Perimeter Institute for Theoretical Physics.  

Join our community. Study with some the best physicists in the world. 

Be inspired. Inspire us.  

Come to Waterloo!

Brian McNamara, Chair

The Physics & Astronomy department encourages an inclusive, tolerant, respectful, and diverse, intellectual environment

  1. May 11, 2018Canada Research Chair positions renewed for two Waterloo Physics & Astronomy facultyDr. Roger Melko (left) and Dr. Kevin Resch (right)

    Two Physics & Astronomy researchers have been reappointed as Canadian Research Chairs (CRC). Kevin Resch and Roger Melko were recognized for their continued achievement with research funding from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) over the next five years.

  2. May 1, 2018$900K in seed funding supports new quantum projects

    Exploring how biological processes use quantum effects and developing new nanowire arrays to detect light at the single photon level are two of 10 projects being funded by more than $900,000 from the Quantum Quest Seed Fund.

    The funding program, which will launch its third cycle in this spring, promotes the development of new ideas and applications for quantum devices.

  3. Apr. 23, 2018Dr. Bizheva awarded 2018 Seed Fund grantDr. Kostadinka Bizheva

    This year, the Centre for Bioengineering and Biotechnology launched its first ever Seed Fund program in hopes of driving scientific innovation, growth, and opportunity through the support of collaborative research across UW faculties.

    Dr. Kostadinka Bizheva was awarded one of eight Seed Fund grants, and is collaborating with Dr. Marianna Foldvari on another successful research proposal. 

Read all news
  1. May 28, 2018Quantum criticality: experimental challenges and opportunitiesDr. Radu Coldea

    Colloquium Series

    Radu Coldea

    Department of Physics, Oxford University

    Dr. Coldea's research group explores experimentally quantum properties of novel electronic and magnetic materials using neutron scattering and thermodynamic probes. The aim is to understand how electrons organize themselves in complex materials to lead to new properties.

  2. May 31, 2018Flag fault-tolerant error correction for cyclic CS5 codes

    MSc. Thesis Presentation

    Candidate: Theerapat Tansuwannont

  3. June 4, 2018Gauge models of topological phases and applications to quantum gravity

    PhD. Thesis Presentation

    Candidate: Clement Delcamp

All upcoming events

QS World University Rankings by subject 2017 TOP 150

Meet our people

Zoya Leonenko

Zoya Leonenko


Dr. Leonenko leads a nanoscale biophysics research group which uses advanced scanning probe microscopy methods to study biophysics of lipids and lipid-protein interactions, interactions of nanoparticles with lipid membrane and monolayers, and to develop novel application of lipid films in biomedical nanotechnology and biosensing.