Condensed Matter Theory

Condensed matter physics is notable for its diversity and breadth. Even the more traditional sub-area of solid state physics covers a bewildering array of physical phenomena, spanning the fields of magnetism, superconductivity, metals, semiconductors, insulators and more. But condensed matter physics also encompasses the science of “complex systems”, such as robustness of interconnected biological, ecological, and technological networks, earthquake source dynamics, crack propagation, polymers, liquid crystals, colloids, and most recently biological materials. Condensed matter theory at UCSB spans a broad swath of these diverse topics. With the presence of the Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics (KITP), condensed matter theory at UCSB has enjoyed a stellar world-wide reputation.

 Affiliated Faculty

KITP Permanent Member
I am interested in developing theory to uncover and explain exotic quantum phenomena in the real world.
Visiting Distinguished Professor of Physics and Deputy Director, KITP
I am interested in all aspects of symmetry, symmetry-breaking, geometry and topology across fields ranging from quantum field theory to soft and living matter, with a particular focus on topological defects. My recent work is on the statistical mechanics of thermalized 2D-metamaterials, such as graphene, the more general behavior of elastic and fluid membranes and the physics of active nematics.
My present research interests lie at the border between many-body theory and quantum information theory, especially the non-equilibrium quantum dynamics of open and monitored quantum systems.
Director, Biomolecular Science and Engineering Program
My research group is interested in the emergent behavior of active and living matter.
Director of Microsoft Station Q
Assistant Professor

Sagar Vijay graduated from Princeton University with a bachelor's degree in physics in 2013, and received his Ph.D.

We study the intriguing physics that can emerge in quantum condensed matter systems, including topological effect, gauge field, ‘t Hooft anomaly, higher-form symmetries, duality, etc.