Physics embraces the study of the most basic natural laws and is about explaining how and why things work on scales ranging from the sub-nuclear, through the everyday, and on to the entire cosmos.

Physicists explore and identify basic principles governing the structure and behaviour of matter, the generation and transfer of energy, and the interaction of matter and energy.

Some physicists use these principles in theoretical or experimental studies on topics such as the nature of time and the origin of the Universe; others apply their physics knowledge to practical areas, developing advanced materials, electronic and optical devices, and equipment for a wide range of fields such as medicine, mining, astronomy and geophysics.

Physics is also at the heart of new interdisciplinary areas such as information technology, nanotechnology, quantum technology and biophotonics. In newly developing areas in the biosciences, an understanding of basic physical principles is one of the keys to advancing knowledge.