Prof. Richard Warburton (9/2012-8/2013)
Since the late 17th century, physics is an active area of research and teaching at the University of Basel, which was founded in 1460 (www.unigeschichte.unibas.ch). Among the most illustrious to hold a chair in physics in Basel was 18th century Physicist and Mathematician Daniel Bernoulli, famous for his theory of hydrodynamics and the Bernoulli principle, of critical use in aerodynamics. Short history of our physics department.
Today, our focus of research is Nano physics as well as Astro/Nuclear/Particle physics. With our numerous active research groups we have been able to attract the following major centers to our Department:
- National Competence Center of Research (NCCR) in Quantum Science and Technology (Basel co-Leading House, ETH Zurich Leading House)
- Swiss Nanoscience Institute (SNI), National Competence Center of Research (NCCR) in Nanoscale Science
- Basel QC2 Center for Quantum Computation and Quantum Coherence.
We understand the term Nano (and Nano physics) as a very broad collection of diverse research that all merges in one way or another at the nanometer scale, uniting not only various research efforts within physics but also activities in chemistry, biology and medical research.
Research at our Department includes internationally renowned condensed matter theory & quantum computation groups, highly acclaimed Astro / Nuclear & Particle Physics Theory and Experiments, world leading scanning probe research groups (STM, AFM, MFM, FAMARS, Cantilever Sensors) as well as groups performing cutting edge experiments in molecular electronics, nanomechanics, quantum atom optics, nano-photonics, quantum transport and more....
Though we are a rather small institute (with currently 12 departmental chairs plus 3 associated professorships), we enjoy an excellent reputation on an international level and are very well cited in the scientific community, with an average of about 26 citations per paper on place 2 (sorted by citations per paper) among all physics departments with more than 1,000 publications, as ranked by Essential Science Indicators (ESI), Web of Science (pdf). See also the table with selected entries below (January 2013). Note that our ranking improved from place 7 in January 2011 to rank 5 in 2012 and to rank 2 in 2013! (previous ranking, pdf)
In the latest QS World University Rankings 2011/12, the University of Basel is listed on rank 25 worldwide in the subjects of physics and astronomy. Remarkably, our Department is the world's leading institute in the category citations!