Various physics equations and diagrams Overview of Physics

Elements of Physics

Various physics equations and diagrams


Physics is the natural science that studies matter, energy, and their interactions. It is one of the most fundamental scientific disciplines and serves as the foundation for other fields like Chemistry, Engineering, and even Biology.

Classical Physics

Classical physics encompasses theories and laws that were developed before the advent of quantum mechanics. This includes Newtonian mechanics, thermodynamics, and electromagnetism. Classical physics is still used to describe many everyday phenomena effectively.

Newton's Laws

Newton's Three Laws illustrated

Modern Physics

Modern physics refers to theories that emerged in the 20th century and beyond, such as quantum mechanics, relativity, and quantum field theory. These theories are essential for explaining phenomena at the atomic and subatomic scales, as well as at cosmological scales.

Theoretical Physics and Experimental Physics

Physics is generally divided into two main approaches: theoretical and experimental. Theoretical physics aims to develop mathematical models to understand physical phenomena, while experimental physics focuses on empirical observations and experiments to test these models.

Applied Physics

Applied physics is a branch that uses the principles of physics for practical applications. This field is closely related to Engineering and often serves as a bridge between pure physics and engineering practices.

Role of Mathematics in Physics

Mathematics is the language of physics. Complex equations, such as the Schrödinger equation in quantum mechanics or Einstein's field equations in general relativity, are essential for theoretical developments.

Important Concepts and Laws

Some of the crucial concepts in physics include force, energy, mass, and charge. Laws such as Newton's laws of motion, the laws of thermodynamics, and Maxwell's equations are fundamental in understanding natural phenomena.

Fundamental Laws in Physics

Diagrams illustrating important laws and equations in physics

Interdisciplinary Fields

Physics intersects with various other disciplines, creating new fields like biophysics, geophysics, and astrophysics. For example, Astronomy and Cosmology is deeply connected with physics, especially when studying celestial phenomena.

Limitations and Frontiers

Although physics has come a long way in explaining the universe, there are still many unanswered questions. Topics like dark matter, quantum gravity, and the nature of time remain on the frontiers of current research.


Physics is a vast and diverse field that provides the building blocks for understanding the natural world. Its theories and principles are the foundation of many other scientific disciplines. To dig deeper into these areas, you can refer to the Overview of Science or the main Encyclopedia Overview.