Extramural Basic Research Physics

U.S. Army Research Office
P.O. Box 12211
Research Triangle Park, N.C. 27709-2211

Commercial: (919) 549-4361
DSN: 832-4361
Fax: (919) 549-4384

The objective of the Physics Division is to develop and exploit the physics knowledge base for new Army needs and capabilities. The future promises dramatic changes in military capability as a result of physics research. Possibilities include enormous improvements in materials, sensors, and devices, as well as the creation of novel functional materials through application of quantum level design and understanding; exploitation of single atom, single ion, and single photon processes for sensing, communication, and quantum information processing; design and external control of strong correlations in electronic materials for sensing and advanced electronics capabilities; advances in optics (such as slow light and negative index meta-materials) enabling better automatic target recognition, stealth, and simply imaging better (e.g., sub-wavelength); the ability, resulting from submillimeter and far-infrared physics, to operate on the visually obscured battlefield; Soldier and equipment protection via nonlinear optics; and quantum computing for the solutions of difficult logistics and other problems.

Division Chief

Dr. Marc Ulrich
(919) 549-4319

The Physics Division supports the following research areas:

Condensed Matter Physics

Dr. Marc Ulrich
(919) 549-4319

Condensed Matter Physics (CMP) is a foundational science enabling fundamental Army technologies in areas such as information processing, communications, sensors, optical components, electronics, optoelectronics, night vision, seekers, countermeasures, and many others. Technologies such as these would not exist today, at least not as we know them, without visionary research in the field of CMP. The ARO CMP work package strives to continue this level of impact by looking beyond the current understanding of natural and designed condensed matter, to lay a foundation for revolutionary technology development for next generation and future generations of warfighters. Areas of future impact include novel computational components and architectures, novel electronic and optoelectronic devices and ones with higher efficiencies and significantly lower weight, and secure communications and sensing technologies.

Atomic and Molecular Physics

Dr.Paul Baker
(919) 549-4202

Research in the atomic and Molecular Physics Program will create fundamentally new capabilities for the Army, as well as providing the scientific underpinnings to enhance existing technologies. Topics of interest include quantum degenerate atomic gasses, both Bose and Fermi, their excitations and properties, including mixed species, mixed state, and molecular; matter-wave optics and matter-wave lasers; nonlinear atomic and molecular processes; quantum control; novel forms and effects of coherence; and emerging areas. Cooling schemes for molecules are of importance for extending the range of systems that may be exploited. Applications range from ultrasensitive detectors including improved inertial sensors and navigation aids, to sensor protection and to novel sources. In addition, areas of application include novel materials processing, e.g., by obtaining increasingly complex molecules, clusters, or patterned structures, perhaps from something like matter-wave holography, or through quantum control.

Optics and Fields

Dr.Richard Hammond
(919) 549-4313

The Army of the 21st century will rely more on sensing, imaging processing, and autonomous target tracking and recognition than ever before. The objective of this work package is to investigate fundamental physical phenomena that will lead to revolutionary advances in these areas. The Optical Physics and Fields Program emphasizes the manipulation of light in ways not previously possible and the physics of light in extreme conditions such as ultrashort pulses and ultrahigh field intensities. These efforts underpin advances in applications such as imaging, lightweight optical elements, and remote sensing.

Quantum Information Science

Dr. T.R. Govindan
(919) 549-4236

Quantum mechanics provides the opportunity to perform highly nonclassical operations that can result in exponential speed-ups in computation, ultrasecure transmittal of information, or enhanced sensing or metrology beyond classical limitations. This program seeks to understand, control, and exploit exotic quantum phenomena for revolutionary advances in sensing, metrology computation and secure communication.

Additional Information


Last Update / Reviewed: December 30, 2014