2020 Impact factor 1.425
Atomic, Molecular, Optical and Plasma Physics

EPJ Plus Highlight - Reassessing radon as a reliable groundwater tracer

Measuring radon exhalation after isolation.

A widely used technique for tracing natural radioactive atoms within flowing groundwater may not be as accurate as previously thought.

All radioactive materials which naturally occur in water will produce at least one isotope of radon as a decay product. As radioactive atoms are transported through groundwater aquifers in the form of gaseous radon, they are eventually transferred to the atmosphere. Measurements of the rate of this transfer can, in theory, be used to trace the infiltration of water into the surrounding soil. Yet in a new study detailed in EPJ Plus, researchers in Egypt and Saudi Arabia, led by Elsayed Elmaghraby at the Egyptian Atomic Energy Authority, show that this technique could have a significant flaw.


EPJ Plus has two new Editors-in-Chief: Beatrice Fraboni and Gastón García López

The publishers of The European Physical Journal Plus (EPJ Plus) are pleased to announce that on January 1, 2022 Beatrice Fraboni and Gastón García López took over the Editor-in-Chief role from Paolo Biscari and now share responsibility for papers submitted across the scope of the journal.

We would like to congratulate Prof Fraboni and Dr García López on their appointments as EiCs, and also take the opportunity to thank Prof Biscari for his long and highly dedicated service to EPJ Plus.


EPJ Plus Focus Point on Small and Medium Particle Accelerator Facilities in Europe

Small and Medium Particle Accelerator Facilities (SMPAF) play a very important role in the landscape of European research. They can accelerate a variety of atomic nuclei, at energies in the MeV range, and have a cross-disciplinary application field. In most cases, they are open to external users, so a proper knowledge by the community of the possibilities provided by these facilities is of great importance.

Unlike other user-focused accelerators facilities such as synchrotrons, SMPAF have different characteristics. Given the relevance and the variability of the instrumentation and the available techniques (including medical science, neutrons, irradiation with swift heavy ions, detectors tests, low-energy nuclear physics, etc.), it has been found very timely to publish a series of focused articles, describing the current situation of some key centres of this kind. This Focus Point on Small and Medium Particle Accelerator Facilities in Europe presents a selection of ten representative and significant European SMPAF. Each article contains a brief description of the facility, including its often unique instrumentation or techniques, and a few recent research highlights.

All articles are available here and are freely accessible until 9 February 2022. For further information read the Editorial

EPJ Plus Focus Point on Innovative quantum materials

Quantum Materials are materials where the manifestation of the quantum mechanical nature of matter constituents, which comes into evidence at the macroscopic scale, is used to obtain new functionalities. The study of quantum materials is relevant both on the fundamental and on the applied side. Indeed, this class of materials provides a common thread between physics, materials science and engineering. The focus is on emergent excitations, such as Dirac and Majorana fermions. In particular it analyzes their sensitivity to external perturbations, such as electric and magnetic fields, and boundary conditions that can be controlled by surface/edge terminations, defect states and nanostructuring.

This focus point issue of European Physical Journal Plus (EPJ Plus) provides a broad description of innovative quantum materials discussing a variety of different phenomena:


EPJ Plus Focus Point on Advances in the physics and thermohydraulics of nuclear reactors

This focus point issue of European Physical Journal Plus (EPJ Plus) on Advances in the Physics and Thermohydraulics of Nuclear Reactors originated from a research project - project ”OCAPIE” supported by a grant from Compagnia di San Paolo, Turin - focusing on the possibilities offered by High Performance Computing to give new boosts in the solution of a problem that, even if well known since more than 70 years, still presents huge difficulties both from a conceptual and an application point of view.

As a result of such cooperative effort both from industries and academics, results are presented ranging from the more theoretic speculations to the more practical sides.

All articles are available here and are freely accessible until 5 December 2021. For further information read the Editorial

EPJ Plus Focus Point on Modified Gravity Theories and Cosmology

This focus point issue of European Physical Journal Plus (EPJ Plus) aims to reflect the diversity of modified gravity theories and of their applications to the cosmological problem. The scope of the covered topics is enough broad, ranging from teleparallel gravity and gravitino problem in extended gravity up to traversable wormholes in f(R) gravity, from a model of lattice universe, up to addressing the Hubble tension within modified gravity. There are also papers dealing with modified gravity tests, namely, with Lense–Thirring precession, with observational constraints, including the black hole shadow, with the Solar system constraints to Brans–Dicke and Palatini f(R) theories, as well as with suggestions for high-precision gravitational redshift measurements as probes for gravity theories.

This collection also indicates that the modified gravity and cosmology are widely developing areas being in permanent contact with ongoing observational surveys and experimental programs.

All articles are available here and are freely accessible until 28th November 2021. For further information read the Editorial

EPJ Plus Highlight - Beer mats make bad frisbees and why it matters

Modelling of flat discs like beer mats shows why they make bad frisbees.

Whilst modelling the forces acting upon a thrown beer mat, physicists discover why flat discs have such poor flight potential.

The question ‘Why do beer mats make bad frisbees?’ may initially seem like something of an odd inquiry to spark research. Yet, by considering the physical properties of such a common everyday item, physicists can create models that also describe the behaviours of a wide range of objects. In a new paper published in EPJ Plus, Johann Ostmeyer, the University of Bonn, Germany, and his co-authors look at the dynamics that give beer mats poor fight potential.


EPJ Plus Focus Point on Light Pressure across All Scales

This focus point issue of European Physical Journal Plus (EPJ Plus) finds its inspiration in the huge number of applications of light pressure across all scales of Nature, from space to nanoscience and atomic physics. Together this issue features 11 papers, including both experimental and theoretical works, which span a wide range of activities. These also include 3 review papers on the theory and practice of optical tweezers, its application in single molecule experiments and in the study of critical Casimir forces.


EPJ Plus Focus Point on Classical and Quantum Information Geometry

What is information? What can we do with information? How are we supposed to understand information? How does information influence the development of modern Science?

Some, if not all and a thousand more, of these questions come to the mind of almost every modern researcher whose research area is somehow interconnected with Information Theory. However, the answers to these questions are far from being completely unravelled, and some recent theoretical developments seem to suggest that our understanding of the geometrical aspects of Information Theory will play an increasingly important role in the quest for answers.


EPJ Plus Highlight - Understanding the mechanism that gives light a ‘little extra push’

An experimental set-up suggested by new research tests the phenomenon of radiation pressure by setting up what is almost analogous to a ‘quantum rugby scrum’

The use of light to move matter has a wide range of technological applications and could one day even power spaceflight. New research suggests a method to better understand this subtle phenomenon.

We are all familiar with the sight of a white pool ball striking a red and smoothly transferring its momentum. What is less familiar is that light can also transfer momentum and is even able to give objects a tiny push. A new paper published in EPJ Plus suggests a way to examine the mechanism behind light’s subtle momentum transfer — the Poynting vector. The paper is the work of Manuel Marqués of IFIMAC-The Condensed Matter Physics Center, and the Nicolás Cabrera Institute (INC), Universidad Autónoma de Madrid, Spain, and Shulamit Edelstein and Pedro Serena from the Spanish National Research Council (CSIC).


A. Beige, S. Ptasinska and A.V. Solov'yov
Thank you for the rapid response at every stage of paper submission!

Alexander Trifanov

ISSN (Print Edition): 1434-6060
ISSN (Electronic Edition): 1434-6079

© EDP Sciences, Società Italiana di Fisica and Springer-Verlag