The department of Physics was started in 1969 with a vision to spread science and to provide higher education to the people particularly in southern part of Odisha. Dr. S. N. Behera was the founder of this department. The department offers a two-year Master’s degree course in physics. Since its inception the department has grown appreciably with the leadership of Prof. P.K. Mishra not only in terms of students and faculty strength but also in terms of the introduction of new courses and broadening research activities. The Post- Graduate curricula have recently undergone major orientation congruent with the development and trends in the subject to help the students to seek a career in different thrust areas of the subject like condensed matter physics, material science, nuclear spectroscopy, nuclear astrophysics, particle physics, cosmology etc.
The department made outstanding contributions to research and published around 400 papers in reputed international and national journals in above subjects. The hallmark of the department is sincere teaching and outstanding research. The department has availed funds from different all-India agencies for research. Several candidates got their Ph. Ds from the department. The department received assistance under FIST programme of DST, Govt. of India. Promising Faculties of the Department Prof. N. C. Mohapatra, Prof. G. S. Tripathi, and Prof. R. Sahu received the “Samanta Chandra Sekhar Award” by Odisha Bigyan Academy for the years 1996, 2005 and 2010 respectively.
The department offers M. Phil course with specializations in Solid state, Nuclear and Particle physics. It regularly conducts seminars. It has organized six National Seminars in 1996, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2009 and 2014. It hosted the annual Condensed Matter Days symposium in 2005. It organized the OPS meetings twice in 1978 and 1998. It had also organized a Winter School in Disordered systems in Collaboration with TIFR, Mumbai in 1977 and a Summer School in collaboration with the Institute Of Physics, Bhubaneswar in 1999. Both the schools hosted outstanding physicists of the country. It was an associate member of the Theoretical Physics Seminar Circuit (TPSC).
Many of its students went abroad for higher studies and some of them are absorbed in various Institutions there. Some of our students are also faculty in leading national level institutes and laboratories. It is a vibrant place for study and research and it is hoped that it would maintain the same tempo in coming years.