Physics, the science that studies matter and energy in its varied forms, has a very long history. Counting descriptive astronomy as a subfield of Physics, it goes back into prehistoric times, when observation of the heavens was driven by navigational needs as well as by religious motivation. It had reached a high standard by the time of the classic cultures in the Mediterranean, around 400 B.C. Physics proper at that time was indistinguishable from philosophy. The birth of Physics as a modern natural science is traditionally equated with the work of Galileo Galilei (1564 - 1642), who is credited with putting Physics on an experimental basis, and with insisting that the comparison with the actual behavior of nature must be the ultimate check for all concepts and theories within Physics. Among the most significant later developments were Newton's classical mechanics in the 17th century, Maxwell's theory of electromagnetism in the 19th century, and Einstein's theories of special and general relativity, as well as quantum theory, in the 20th century. There are no signs of this development abating. New discoveries continue to enhance and change our understanding of the universe we live in on a daily basis.
The role that Physics has played, and continues to play, in shaping our current society can hardly be overstated. All of the technological achievements that we rely on daily, from power generation, over transportation, to communication, are based on our understanding of the physical laws of nature that has been achieved within the last 400 years. In order to maintain and improve mankind's standard of living it is imperative that we continue to study Nature and gain a better understanding of her laws.
The School of Physical Sciences is in persuit of excellence in research and in teaching. As we embark into twenty first century, a very bright and challenging future lies ahead of us. On one hand there are several important problems of the past century remaining unresolved and on the other as one explores into new territory more challenging issues come up. Physics of the macro world and micro world are being vigorously explored. There are spectacular progresses both in experimental and theoretical frontiers. The School of Physics is engaged in very active research in the frontier areas. The faculty is composed of enthusiatic, talented youth blended with experienced senior members. It is recognised that NISER will nurture potentially outstanding scientists of the future. NISER offers the best integrated M.Sc. Physics programme in the country with a broad background in science. The School of Physics will start Ph.D. programme in near future and would inspire the students to adventure into physics 'sans frontier'.