What is the most common type of physics physicists specialize in? And what's the most practical
Solid state physics (with its various sub-fields)
What do you mean by "practical"?
Sorry I meant career wise
I think the most common research area right now is definitely High Energy/Particle Physics. It just seems to be a vastly growing trend and I feel like everyone I talk to wants to go into Particle Physics.
Practically, like for a career, the best area would be AMO or solid-state. They generally lead to more real world applications.
I like time resolved spectroscopy using ultrashort laser pulses
Not even close. Condensed matter is by far the largest subfield.
Sure, a lot of people want to go into HEP. But nor everyone does.
Most common is what Vanadium said - condensed matter/solid state. Why? It's mostly likely due to the correlation that it is has the most practical uses to the general public and is highest in demand (computers/electronics/etc.)
No, it is not condensed matter physics. It is high energy physics. It all depends on what do you mean by condensed matter physics or high energy physics.
This is highly incorrect.
If you go by, say the memberships in the various APS divisions, the Condensed Matter division clearly has a larger number and percentage when compared to the Particle and Fields division (which where here all high energy physicists are in).
One can also note that the Materials division are also often aligned with the Condensed matter division, i.e. you have people who consider themselves at condensed matter physicists who are in the Materials division. So the number of condensed matter physicists is even larger than what is in the official tally.
Anyone who has been to the APS March Meeting (where the CM division is one of the participating units) can see that it is WAAAAY larger than the APS April Meeting (where the Particle and Fields division is one of the participating division).
All of this points to the fact that the largest number of physicists are in condensed matter.
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