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Interdisciplinary Research Projects

Distorted image of someone working in a cleanroom

Many research challenges today require interdisciplinary teams with strong foundations in discipline-based research. The combination of expertise from numerous disciplines leads to novel approaches to resolving specific scientific problems. Many of the intellectual breakthroughs of modern times were obtained by crossing disciplinary boundaries and many of society's major problems, such as environmental issues and healthcare, require integrated approaches from different disciplines.

Cardiff School of Physics and Astronomy strongly supports interdisciplinary research. Scientists from across the School are making use of their core skills to address problems in a number of subject areas, including the humanities, social sciences, biological sciences and music.

The School also provides teaching in three very successful and popular cross-discipline degree schemes; Physics with Music and Physics with Medical Physics as 3-year BSc schemes and an MSc in Biophotonics.

Our diverse range of interdisciplinary research activity includes.


Profs Wolfgang Langbein and Paola Borri work at the interface between physics and the life-sciences. They apply Raman and Coherent Raman microscopy and nanoscopy to the study of biomolecules and research the use of label-free optical biosensors using microcavities.

Submillimetre hyper-spectral sensing of the Earth’s atmosphere

Astrophysicists in the School’s Astronomy Instrumentation Group, including Dr Peter Hargrave, are working with scientists at the Met Office to apply their technology to meteorological observations.

Characterization of Assembly Mechanisms and Light Transfer in the Cornea

Dr Carole Tucker and collaborators in the School of Optometry have applied physics techniques to elucidate the arrangement and chemistry of the collagen fibrils of the cornea.

Geophysics applications of spatial analysis

Working with the Cardiff School of Earth Sciences, Dr Annabel Cartwright has used techniques developed for the analysis of clustering of newly formed stars to measure the distribution of gas eruption sites on the sea bed off California and in the Nile Delta.