SFU's Department of Physics presently numbers 31 full time faculty members, 10 postdoctoral fellows and research associates, and approximately 65 graduate students.
The department was founded in 1965 with a nucleus of faculty members primarily specializing in condensed matter physics with emphasis on magnetic, superconducting, and semiconducting materials. This area of physics continues to be the research field of a majority of department members but significant research programs have emerged in the areas of biophysics and soft matter, cosmology, high energy physics (theory and experiment), nonlinear phenomena and pattern formation, and atomic, molecular and optical physics. The department enjoys an enviable international scientific reputation and is certainly one of the strongest research departments in Canada. Many SFU Physics faculty members have been honoured for their research accomplishment through national and international awards.