About Physics Forums

Values and Mission

Our goal is to provide a community for people (whether students, professional scientists, or hobbyists) to learn and discuss science as it is currently generally understood and practiced by the professional scientific community. As our name suggests, our main focus is on physics, but we also have forums for most other academic areas including engineering, chemistry, biology, social sciences, etc. Physics and math homework help is available for students.

PF values quality
• Topics based on science published in real scientific journals or textbooks
• Proper English grammar and correct spelling

PF values civility
• Positive and compassionate attitudes
• Patience and diplomacy while debating

PF values productivity
• Disciplined to remain on-topic
• Honest recognition of own weaknesses
• Solo and cooperative problem-solving


Owner Greg Bernhardt started Physics Forums as a high school extra credit project for a physics class in 2001. Since then with the help of dozens of staff and hundreds of advisors, it has developed to become the #1 community for high-quality science and math discussion. Find information on our Insights Blog.

Boardroom Stats:

Founder/Owner: Greg Bernhardt (Twitter, LinkedIn, ImportSEM)
Founded: 2001
Location: Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Revenue: Adsense, Gold Memberships
Software: Customized Xenforo

Community Stats:

  • 200,000 members
  • 6.5M posts
  • 20 Staff Members
  • 265 Science and Education Advisors
  • 142 Homework Helpers
  • 700 Blog Insights Articles
  • 68 Insights Authors

Follow Us On:

Facebook | Twitter | LinkedIn | Wiki

Common Support Pages:

About Us | Terms and Rules | Privacy Policy | Help Pages

Support Email:



PF averages 100,000+ visitors, 50+ new members, and 500+ posts per day.
80% search engines, 10% referral sites, 10% direct traffic
80% of our visitors are from North America. 10% Europe, 5% Asia and 5% other.
65% use Chrome. 20% use Firefox. 10% IE, 5% Opera/Safari
90% on high-speed internet, 10% dialup
85% on Windows, 10% Mac, 5% Linux
55% on Desktop and 45% on Mobile


What is Physics Forums?

Physicsforums.com is an online platform dedicated to physics enthusiasts and learners. It serves as a community where individuals can discuss, ask questions, and share knowledge related to physics and related topics.

Is Physics Forums free to use?

Yes, Physicsforums.com is completely free to use. You can register an account and participate in discussions without any cost.

How can I join Physics Forums?

To join Physicsforums.com, simply visit the website and click on the “Register” or “Sign Up” button. You’ll need to provide some basic information and create a username and password to get started.

Can I ask questions on Physics Forums?

Yes, you can ask questions related to physics or related fields. There are specific sub-forums for different topics within physics where you can post your questions.

Are there experts or professionals on the forum?

Yes, Physicsforums.com has a diverse user base, including experts, educators, and enthusiasts in the field of physics. You can benefit from their knowledge and expertise by engaging in discussions and asking questions.

How do I search for existing discussions or topics?

You can use the search bar located on the forum’s homepage to search for specific topics or keywords. This will help you find relevant discussions that have already taken place.

Can I contribute to ongoing discussions?

Absolutely! You can participate in existing discussions by posting replies or comments. Just make sure your contribution is relevant to the topic and follows the forum’s guidelines.

Are there rules and guidelines for posting on Physics Forums?

Yes, Physicsforums.com has rules and guidelines in place to maintain a respectful and informative community. Be sure to review these guidelines before posting to ensure your contributions align with the forum’s standards.

How do I report inappropriate content or behavior?

If you come across any inappropriate content or behavior on the forum, you can use the “Report” feature to notify the forum moderators. They will review the report and take appropriate action if necessary.

Can I share my own research or projects on Physics Forums?

Yes, you can share your research or projects related to physics, as long as they adhere to the forum’s guidelines. Sharing your work can lead to valuable feedback and discussions within the community.

Is Physics Forums only for professionals or academics?

No, Physicsforums.com is open to everyone, regardless of their level of expertise. Whether you’re a student, educator, enthusiast, or professional, you’re welcome to join and participate in discussions.

How can I contact the administrators or moderators?

You can usually find a “Contact Us” or “Moderator” link on the forum where you can reach out to the administrators or moderators if you have specific questions or concerns not addressed in the FAQ or guidelines.

Is Physics Forums associated with any educational institution or organization?

Physicsforums.com is an independent online community and is not directly affiliated with any specific educational institution or organization. It is a platform created for physics enthusiasts, students, educators, and professionals to share knowledge.

History of Physics Forums

The Beginning (Spring 2001)

It comes to many people’s surprise to find I am actually not very good at math and physics. PF started in the spring of 2001. I was taking Physics II in high school my senior year. The semester was ending and I found myself getting a “D” in the class. I badly needed at least a “C” to minimize the impact on my overall GPA.

Through the year I gained mass interest in the Internet, web designing, and community building. My interest in physics was also sparked by popular physics books by Michio Kaku, Brian Greene, Stephen Hawking, and Paul Davies.

So I thought of proposing the idea of creating a useful physics community on the web as an extra credit project to my physics teacher. The teacher bought it and away I went. In the end, it took me just a month to get enough done and promote it for the thing to look halfway decent. I found a “C” on my report card end of the semester :)

Early Years (2001-2003)

PF started out on the ASP-driven software of Snitz. I believe we also started on the web host “DreamHost”. Unfortunately, two years later in 2003, we grew too big and too fast. We ended up having to ditch the software and the host. This resulted in starting completely from scratch. The database had about 200,000 posts in it. It still hurts to lose all that data to this day. But it has proven to be a turning point marker for PF’s history. We moved to a dedicated server and professional software to last us for many years. During this time I also admit to hiring some non-qualified staff members. Once we got Integral, Tom Mattson, and Chroot, things started to change.

The Middle Ages (2003-2005)

Before the “beginning from scratch”, PF was becoming quite popular, but our forum management and organization were severely lacking. Over the next couple of years, PF would prove itself a giant in the science web community. Early 2004 we even hosted Michio Kaku’s official forums.

In these years PF would:
1. Develop an organized forum structure
2. Start creating a strict but fair policy
3. Hire competent staff with similar visions
4. Start member award days
5. Install LaTeX for equations
6. Start the Homework Helper and Science Advisor programs

The “Golden” Years (2005-Present)

Physics Forums is now finally working like a well-oiled high-performance machine. The standard has been set. We’re pretty much coasting now that we have a complete system in place that has proven to be successful. Crackpots and spam are almost non-existent. Along with what seemed like a new design a year ago, we found one that works and will stick with it for a long time now.

A few highlights of these past couple of years include:
1. Partnership with Scientific American
2. Partnership with Ph.D. Comics
3. PF Library

Reform (2006-2014)

Over the next 8 years, Physics Forums would solidify themselves as the dominant resource and destination for science discussion. In 2010 PF won the physics.org Best FAQ Site Popular Vote award. PF would continue to refine its policies to encourage a healthy and productive environment. Features like chat were added to provide a respite from forum life. Partnerships with educator.com and phys.org would be established. PF would go through three style changes. Each is a little more modern, clean, and readable. In 2007 dear member selfAdjoint passed away.

In 2010 Physics Forums won the “People’s Choice” award for best online physics community by physics.org. Results here.

Modernization (2014-2016)

The decision to move from vBulletin to Xenforo was made. A new style and new features gave us the jump into the modern web. Physics Forums Insights was opened. PF Insights is a science and math variety blog written by experts in our community. More on this era in a bit. Our dear members marcus and arildno passed away in 2016.

Refinement (2016-2018)

Much of this time was spent refining our mission, policies, and style. Many changes were made from suggestions and concerns from several member surveys. PF pushes for higher and higher quality each year while remaining friendly and welcoming. A curated video section was added and links to now over 1000 math and science videos. Big things are planned for winter 2018…

Refinement (2019+)

PF5 was released in March 2019 and brought a polished style and a host of new community features like expanded reactions, push notifications, and an enhanced editor. The PF mobile app was also ended. More dear members have passed away, such as turbo and jimhardy.

MHB Merger (2022)

math help board logo

August of 2022 saw the merger of Mathhelpboards.com founded and managed by Jameson. Threads and members were merged into Physics Forums with the prefix MHB and members are given a special badge. MHB was a wonderful math community with a dedicated member base. They had innovative features like Desmos and TikZ integration.

List of mentors

Let’s use this section to list Mentors. Oldest to Newest. (Bold means they are still on staff)

1. Monique (Niqqie,theOwl)
2. JordanW
3. Silverquest
4. Phobos
5. Grady
6. dav2008
7. MacCoder
8. joaoninhio
9. Beatle42
10. SCOTT2004
11. Sting1983 (Sting)
12. Stephen
13. Integral
14. Zero
15. Kerrie (skorpiano)
16. BryanGmyrek
15. Tom Mattson (Tom)
16. Janus
17. ahrkron
18. damgo (alis)
19. selfAdjoint
20. chroot
21. Hurkyl
22. Russ Watters
23. Engima
24. Another God
25. HallsofIvy
26. Ivan Seeking
27. dduardo
28. Doc Al
29. Iansmith
30. hypnagogue
31. Evo
32. Gokul43201
33. ZapperZ
34. loseyourname
35. Moonbear
36. SpaceTiger
37. Berkeman
38. jtbell
39. vanesch
40. Pervect
41. Math is Hard
42. Astronuc
43. cristo
44. George Jones
45. Hootenanny
46. Kurdt
47. Redbelly98
48. Vanadium_50
49. D H
50. Borek
51. bcrowell
52. Mark44
53. Ryan_m_b
54. micromass
55. vela
56. lisab
57. cepheid
58. Dale
59. Fredrik
60. SammyS
61. mfb
62. Office_Shredder
63. gneill
64. SteamKing
65. Drakkith
66. Chestermiller
67. Nugatory
68. PeterDonis
69. Orodruin
70. NascentOxygen
71. jedishrfu
72. DrClaude
73. Stevedaryl
74. jim mcnamara
75. bhobba
76. anorlunda


“This is probably my favorite website on the web. To be able to engage world class physicists and interact with interested people on an international scale is invaluable. I believe this is the best use of the internet, to disseminate knowledge in a cooperative, voluntary way. The administrators are some of the best people I have interacted with online and they do an excellent job running the site. Highly recommended. All contributions are appreciated and help to create a rich environment of learning.”
“The most helpful forum site. The guys, the editors, administrators and all those people who handle the site + the members of the forum is very helpful when I bring one of my doubts on a subject or lesson to them. They help me a lot. Awesome I’d like to say the most awesome STEM community is the Physics forums community. I love browsing in the site, looking for tutorials and tips. I love everything about it. If not for the guys in it, I would have lost a hell of a lot of marks for the previous tests I took. I learn many things from this site. Long live PF community.”
“I just wanted to say a big thanks to the members of Physics Forums for their help and support especially while I was doing my physics degree and for help with some of the other strange (and dumb) questions I’ve asked whilst on my PhD!”
“One of the best scientific forums ever! It helped me a lot, and still, through my education and with my research.”
“Well the other day I just realized what valuable and integral part of my life and daily activities the forum has become and it made no sense for me not to support you and the others for what you contribute and for all of the things you do to keep the forum running smoothly.”

Visual History

Physics Forums Homepage in 2001 Physics Forums Homepage in 2003

Physics Forums Homepage in 2005 Physics Forums Homepage in 2007

Physics Forums Homepage in 2009 Physics Forums Homepage in 2012

Physics Forums Homepage in 2018 Physics Forums Homepage in 2019