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Derek Leinweber


I am a professor of physics engaged in research at the interface of nuclear and particle physics. Of particular interest is the fundamental relativistic quantum field theory of Quantum Chromodynamics (QCD) which describes the interactions of quarks and gluons as they compose the proton, neutron and a great zoo of other particles.

While the fundamental interactions are well understood, elucidating the complex phenomena emerging from this quantum field theory is fascinating and often surprising. My explorations of QCD-vacuum structure featured in Professor Wilczek's 2004 Physics Nobel Prize Lecture.

Our approach to discovering the properties of this key component of the Standard Model of the Universe favours fundamental first-principles numerical simulations of QCD on supercomputers. This field of study is commonly referred to as Lattice QCD. Our discoveries are reflected in over 300 articles having more than 6,700 citations.

I am currently teaching into five courses including the Thermodynamics section of Physics 1A, Computational Physics III and the Particle Physics section of Honours Relativistic Quantum Mechanics and Particle Physics in the first semester. Special Relativity and Quantum Physics in Physics 1B and the second-year Electromagnetism II course on vector calculus rounds out my teaching responsibilities.

Within these pages, you can find more information on my current research interests, links to publications and the courses I am teaching. You may wish to check out the features section for Visualizations of Quantum Chromodynamics, research related media releases and popular science articles written for the Advertiser Newspaper's column, Can you believe it?.

If you are keen to learn more about our QCD Lava Lamp and the physics behind it, check out the the following YouTube video from Veritasium.  

In the following video you can discover why "Your Mass is NOT from Higgs Boson." Thanks to Derek Muller for bringing these ideas to fruition.

Interested in discovering more about Theoretical Physics at the University of Adelaide? Try the following video, "CSSM and CoEPP: The Standard Model and Beyond."

Professor of Physics

Department of Physics
School of Physical Sciences
University of Adelaide


The University of Adelaide, South


Associate Director


The Special Research Centre for the Subatomic Structure of Matter