What topics can I ask about here?
Physics Stack Exchange is for active researchers, academics and students of physics and astronomy. We welcome questions of all levels, but please stick to the following topics:
- Explanations of observed physical or astronomical phenomena
Example: Why does one experience a short pull in the wrong direction when a vehicle stops?
- Experimental designs and results
Example: What is needed to claim the discovery of the Higgs boson ?
- Experimental technology used in physics or astronomy
Example: How to stabilize an unstable telescope?
- Accepted and/or actively researched theories
Example: Why do we think there are only three generations of fundamental particles?
- Mathematics and physics
Example: What is the relation between renormalization in physics and divergent series in mathematics?
- Computational physics (but see below)
Example: Numerical simulation of sound propagation in air
You can expect a range of answers from very basic to highly technical, depending on how you phrase your question.
Some kinds of questions should not be asked here:
- "Do my homework"-type physics questions
"A 4kg ball is traveling at 8m/s in the x direction, how do I find..."
Physics - Stack Exchange is not a homework help site. If you have a question about a homework problem, or any problem of an educational nature, narrow it down to the specific concept that is giving you trouble and ask about that. You can find more information about acceptable homework questions on our meta site.
- Pitches for your own personal theories or work
We deal with mainstream physics here. Anything that couldn't be published in a reputable journal is not appropriate on this site.
- Questions about fictional physics
"Could a warp drive get you out of a black hole?"
Questions about physics of fictional worlds which are not sufficiently grounded in real physics are off topic here, but they may be on topic at Science Fiction & Fantasy.
- Implementation details of computational tasks
While computational physics is on topic, we are not a programming site. If your question is about implementing computational code - in particular, if it's about writing, compiling, debugging or optimizing code, or about a specific language or library - then it is off topic. It may be suitable for Computational Science or Stack Overflow, however.
For more help, see "What types of questions should I avoid asking?"
If your question is not specifically on-topic for Physics Stack Exchange, it may be on topic for another Stack Exchange site. If no site currently exists that will accept your question, you may commit to or propose a new site at Area51, the place where new Stack Exchange communities are democratically created.