UCL Library Services


Physics & Astronomy

Physics reading room

Online resources

Indexes, abstracts and e-books

The following are relevant to physics. We also have a complete A-Z list of databases available at UCL.

  • Inspec is produced by the IET and covers the literature of physics back to 1969.
  • Web of Science (Science Citation Index) indexes over 6000 science journals from 1981 onwards.
  • SCOPUS is a multi-disciplinary database containing references to journal articles, conference proceedings, trade publications, book series and web resources.
  • Encyclopedia of Astronomy and Astrophysics is a comprehensive reference work with over 2,750 full text articles.

Other Internet resources

General resources

  • ADS Digital Library : the Astrophysics Data System from NASA links to online astronomy and astrophysics books.
  • Kaye and Laby : tables of physical and chemical constants.
  • The laws list : laws, rules, principles, effects, paradoxes, limits, constants and other related topics in physics and astronomy.
  • Physical Reference Data : from the US National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST).
  • Physicsworld resources contains links to reference sources from the Institute of Physics (IOP).

Preprint collections

Databases and catalogues of astronomical objects

Journal collections

The library holds both print and electronic journals (periodicals). Journals cannot be borrowed but may be photocopied, subject to copyright. Printed Physics journals are kept in the PHYSICAL SCIENCES Pers section on the third floor of the Science Library. Older journals and those which are also available electronically are held in the library store. These can be requested via the Store Request Form and will be available the next day.

Use Explore to search for journals.

For further information see Finding journals.

Book collections

The PHYSICS collection is on the 3rd floor of the Science Library in the PHYSICS book collection.

PHYSICS A - introductions to physics
PHYSICS C - general mathematical physics
PHYSICS E - astronomy, astrophysics and space science
PHYSICS J - properties of matter
PHYSICS Q - high energy physics
PHYSICS R - quantum physics
PHYSICS S - medical physics 

Use Explore to find the exact class mark (shelf location) of a book.

Some of the other sections of the Library you might find useful:

General Resources

Find out more about using other libraries, and links to other library catalogues.

The Institution of Structural Engineers Library is also open to all members of the UCL Engineering Faculty. The Library is located at 11 Upper Belgrave Street, London SW1X 8BH.

The London office of the Institution of Chemical Engineers (IChemE) is at 1 Portland Place, London, W1B 1PN. Email the IChemE for details of student membership.

The Energy Institute library is free for members of the Energy Institute. The Energy Institute holds a comprehensive collection of published material on all aspects of the oil and other energy industries. The library is at 61 New Cavendish Street, London, W1G 7AR

The British Library is a useful resource and all UCL staff and students can apply directly for reference access. You will need to bring identification showing proof of address (e.g. utility bill), proof of signature (e.g. driving licence) and proof of student or research status (UCL ID card) in order to obtain a reader's pass.

There is also more information about using other libraries, and links to other library catalogues. 

Regular training sessions on electronic library resources are held in the Library. For details see Information Skills Training. Individual training sessions on specific databases and other electronic resources can be arranged on request.

WISE for Built Environment, Engineering, Maths and Physical Sciences: an online guide to finding and using information effectively. Go to UCL Moodle, and log in with your UCL userid and password. Click on WISE and select Built Environment, Engineering, Maths and Physical Sciences to start the course.

  • Research Support: Services for researchers includes access to resources, undertaking research, disseminating, evaluating & preserving research.
  • Information on Open Access
  • UCL Discovery showcases UCL's research publications, giving access to journal articles, book chapters, conference proceedings, digital web resources, theses and much more, from all UCL disciplines.