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Research Guide - Physics

Electronic Research Databases

Print Research Indexes

Finding Journals

Style Guide

Library of Congress Classification System

Web Sites of Interest


Electronic Research Databases

Access Science (Link to Database – On-campus/Off-campus) – A collection of science reference materials—online and fully searchable. Offers easy accessibility research information — access to articles, fully illustrated, from the latest edition of the McGraw-Hill Encyclopedia of Science & Technology, Research Updates from the McGraw-Hill Yearbooks, thousands of illustrations, and the latest Science News headlines, biographies, and more.

Annual Reviews (Link to Database – On-campus/Off-campus) - Comprehensive, timely collections of critical reviews written by leading scientists. Annual Reviews volumes are published each year for 30 focused disciplines within the Biomedical, Physical, and Social Sciences.


Print Indexes

AI3 .I42 - Applied science & technology index - H.W. Wilson Company – Location: Vol. 1958 through 1984 – Index Area

Z7401 .G32  - General science index - H.W. Wilson Company - Location: Vol. 1 through 18 – Index Area


Finding Journals

Guide to Periodicals & Periodical Articles

Use the Library’s Journals A to Z List (link to search screen) to search and find full text within the library’s collection.

DOAJ - Directory of Open Access Journals –Physics and Astronomy. "Free full text, quality controlled ... scholarly journals."


Visit the ARC-Academic Resource Center for more information on documentation and plagiarism.

Visit Knight Cite, a project of Heckman Library @ Calvin College - this is a citation creation tool.

Visit bibme an online bibliography maker for help with APA, Chicago, or MLA citation styles.

PE1408 .H11 W95 - A writer's reference/Diana Hacker - Location: Circulation Desk


Library of Congress Classification System – LC Subject

QC1-999 Physics

QC1-75 General

QC81-114 Weights and measures

QC120-168.85 Descriptive and experimental mechanics

QC170-197 Atomic physics. Constitution and properties of matter including molecular physics, relativity, quantum theory, and solid state physics

QC221-246 Acoustics. Sound

QC251-338.5 Heat

QC310.15-319 Thermodynamics

QC350-467 Optics. Light

QC450-467 Spectroscopy

QC474-496.9 Radiation physics (General)

QC501-766 Electricity and magnetism

QC501-(721) Electricity

QC669-675.8 Electromagnetic theory

QC676-678.6 Radio waves (Theory)

QC701-715.4 Electric discharge

QC717.6-718.8 Plasma physics. Ionized gases

QC750-766 Magnetism

QC770-798 Nuclear and particle physics. Atomic energy. Radioactivity

QC793-793.5 Elementary particle physics

QC794.95-798 Radioactivity and radioactive substances

QC801-809 Geophysics. Cosmic physics

QC811-849 Geomagnetism

QC851-999 Meteorology. Climatology Including the earth's atmosphere

QC974.5-976 Meteorological optics

QC980-999 Climatology and weather

QC994.95-999 Weather forecasting


Web Sites of Interest

The NASA Astrophysics Data System - "The Digital Library for Physics, Astrophysics, and Instrumentation. The ADS is a NASA-funded project which maintains three bibliographic databases containing more than 4.6 million records: Astronomy and Astrophysics, Physics, and ArXiv e-prints."

Nobel Laureates in Physics 1901-1999 - Biographical information and description of discovery … maintained by the Stanford Linear Accelerator Center (SLAC). 

European Lab for Particle Physics (CERN) – "CERN is the European Organization for Nuclear Research, the world's largest particle physics centre. Here physicists come to explore what matter is made of and what forces hold it together."

Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory (FERMILAB) – "Scientists at Fermilab carry out research in high-energy physics to answer the questions: What is the universe made of? How does it work? Where did it come from?" 

Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory (APL) – "APL, a research and development division of the Johns Hopkins University, supports the Department of Defense, NASA and other Government agencies through innovative applied research, technical development, and problem solving."

Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) - P-24 Plasma Physics Group

NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) -  "Many technical professionals will find JPL's public web pages on its missions and programs useful for general information."

National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) Physics Laboratory – "The Physics Laboratory is one of the major operating units of the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). Its mission is to support United States industry by providing measurement services and research for electronic, optical, and radiation technologies. The Laboratory pursues directed research in the physical sciences; develops new physical standards, measurement methods, and data; conducts an aggressive dissemination program; and collaborates with industry to commercialize inventions and discoveries."

Centre for Quantum Computation - "The Centre for Quantum Computation part of the Universities of Oxford and Cambridge, conducts theoretical and experimental research into all aspects of quantum information processing, and into the implications of the quantum theory of computation for physics itself." 

American Physical Society - The PROLA search engine (which indexes all APS journal material published from 1893 to present) is now freely available to all users.  Access to the full text of articles and other online journal features still requires a paid subscription."

American Physical Society - A Century of Physics Timeline

Atomic Spectral Line Broadening Bibliographic Database – "NIST bibliographic database on atomic spectral line broadening. This database contains approximately 800 recent references, all collected after our last published bibliography (NIST Special Publication 366, Suppl. 4, 1993). These papers contain numerical data, general information, comments, and review articles and are part of the collection of the Data Center on Atomic Line Shapes and Shifts at NIST."

Physics 2000 – "Physics 2000, an interactive journey through modern physics! Have fun learning visually and conceptually about 20th Century science and high-tech devices."

Q-value calculator – "NuBase  is a compilation of ground and isomeric state properties for all known nuclides. The Q-value calculator can be used to display mass data from Audi-Wapstra's mass and to calculate Q-values for nuclear reactions and decay."

Stopping-Power and Range Tables for Electrons, Protons, and Helium Ions– "The databases ESTAR, PSTAR, and ASTAR calculate stopping-power and range tables for electrons, protons, or helium ions, according to methods described in ICRU Reports 37 and 49. Stopping-power and range tables can be calculated for electrons in any user-specified material and for protons and helium ions in 74 materials."

XCOM: Photon Cross Sections Database – "A web database is provided which can be used to calculate photon cross sections for scattering, photoelectric absorption and pair production, as well as total attenuation coefficients, for any element, compound or mixture (Z < 100), at energies from 1 keV to 100 GeV."

NIST Chemistry WebBook – "This site provides thermochemical, thermophysical, and ion energetics data compiled by NIST under the Standard Reference Data Program."

Fundamental Physical Constants- NIST Reference on Constants, Units, and Uncertainty, one of the technical activities of the Fundamental Constants Data Center of the NIST Physics Laboratory. This site addresses three topics: fundamental physical constants, the International System of Units (SI), which is the modern metric system, and expressing the uncertainty of measurement results."

Free Full Text Physics Journals (PhysNet) – "This site lists Physics-related Journals, which are freely available (= free fulltext) on the net."

Physics and Astronomy Classification Scheme (PACS) – "PACS is the Physics and Astronomy Classification Scheme. PACS numbers, developed by the American Institute of Physics, have been used in Physical Review since 1975 to identify fields and sub-fields of physics."

Stanford Linear Accelerator Center – Free Physics Journals.

The National Academies - "Committees of experts in all areas of scientific and technological endeavor. These experts serve pro bono to address critical national issues and give advice to the federal government and the public."

National Academis Press: Physics - Some books are available for free download. See link for "Physical Sciences".

Science.gov - "Gateway to authoritative selected science information provided by U.S. Government agencies including research and development results."

NASA/IPAC Extragalactic Database - "Built around a master list of extragalactic objects for which cross-identifications of names have been established, accurate positions and redshifts entered to the extent possible, and some basic data collected. Bibliographic references relevant to individual objects have been compiled, and abstracts of extragalactic interest are kept on line. Detailed and referenced photometry, position, and redshift data, have been taken from large compilations and from the literature. NED also includes images from 2MASS, from the literature, and from the Digitized Sky Survey. NED's data and references are being continually updated, with revised versions being put on-line every 2-3 months."

College Physics for students of biology and chemistry - Online textbook for physics divided into types such as electricity and mechanics.

comPADRE - Creates, hosts, and maintains collections of educational and community resources focused on the needs of specific audiences in Physics and Astronomy Education.


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