Imaging & Medical Physics

What is Medical Physics?

Medical Physics is:

  • Defined as the application of physics to the needs of medicine
  • Launched by 2 Nobel prizes in physics; subsequently 2 Nobel prizes in Medicine or Physiology
  • Responsible for the technical foundations of radiology, radiation oncology, and nuclear medicine
  • Built on foundation of physics, but with distinct body of knowledge and scholarship
  • Distinct from biophysics
  • Incorporates both theoretical and experimental methods, but inherently an applied discipline

For more information, we recommend the American Association of Physicists in Medicine (AAPM) Public Education Website, which addresses issues like: what is a medical physicist, the role s/he plays in radiation therapy and diagnostic medical imaging, history of medical physics, etc.

Imaging & Medical Physics Faculty

  • James T. Dobbins

    Professor in Radiology
    Research Interest:
    Advanced imaging applications to improve diagnostic accuracy in clinical imaging, scientific assessment of image quality, developing lower cost imaging for the developing world
  • Bastiaan Driehuys

    Professor of Radiology
    Research Interest:
    Developing and applying hyperpolarized gases to enable fundamentally new applications in MRI
  • G. Allan Johnson

    Charles E. Putman University Professor of Radiology
    Research Interest:
    Engineering physics required to extend the resolution of MR imaging and in a broad range of applications in the basic sciences
  • Ehsan Samei

    Professor of Radiology
    Research Interest:
    Design and utilization of advanced imaging techniques aimed to achieve optimum interpretive, quantitative, and molecular performance
  • Warren S. Warren

    James B. Duke Professor of Chemistry
    Research Interest:
    Novel pulsed techniques, using controlled radiation fields to alter dynamics; ultrafast laser spectroscopy or nuclear magnetic resonance