Welcome to Physics & Astronomy

Now well into the Fall 2020 term, I am pleased that most of our new and upper-year students chose to attend Waterloo rather than to defer. This is an encouraging development for many reasons. Most importantly, living in a dynamic and rapidly-changing social landscape, the world cannot afford a delay in graduating Waterloo talent. The world needs you ready to solve hard problems sooner not later. Our return to campus is primarily virtual.

Our research laboratories and upper-year teaching labs are operating while observing physical distancing and other health guidelines. We have retooled and reimagined our classes using a variety of media to train the next generation of physicists, scientists, and entrepeneurs. We were able to redirect financial assets to hire coop students and teaching assistants to move course material on-line and to perform advanced research in our labs and virtual blackboards.

Don’t be misled by the disorientingly-tranquil campus atmosphere - UW is humming along. While moving toward a C19-free future, we are watching its Fall resurgence closely.
We are ready to maneuver on a dime to protect the health of our students, faculty, and staff.

Brian McNamara
University Research Chair
Chair, Physics & Astronomy

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

  1. Jan. 22, 2021Quantum computing paper by Professor Matteo Mariantoni included in Physical Review A Milestones List
    Matteo Mariantoni

    A research paper published in 2012 by Matteo Mariantoni, a professor in the department of Physics and Astronomy, appeared on the Physical Review A 50th Anniversary Milestones list.

  2. Jan. 21, 2021NSERC Donna Strickland Prize for Societal Impact of Natural Sciences and Engineering Research

    The NSERC Donna Strickland Prize for Societal Impact of Natural Sciences and Engineering Research is awarded annually to an individual or team whose outstanding research, conducted in Canada in the natural sciences and engineering (NSE), has led to exceptional benefits for Canadian society, environment and/or economy. All researchers in the NSE, regardless of their career stage, can be nominated for this award for their research conducted in Canada.

  3. Jan. 19, 2021Donna Strickland amongst most powerful people in Canada
    Donna Strickland

    Congratulations to Professor Donna Strickland, who was listed as the 39th most powerful person in Canada, according to Maclean's Magazine's 2021 list.

    In a list amongst politicians, activists, business leaders, epidemiologists and public health experts, Donna Strickland stands out as a researcher driven by curiosity. 

Read all news