Physics Machine Shop

Physics Machine Shop

The UCSB Physics Machine Shop is a well-equipped precision machine shop, fabrication facility and Graduate Student Shop that provides services to the UCSB Physics Department, campus community, and research related endeavors worldwide. The highly skilled and experienced staff of the machine shop produces technical devices that require close tolerances precision along with whatever support equipment is required to keep research moving forward.


The Physics Machine Shop often fabricates special equipment used in research related to surface tensions of fluids, Ultra High Vacuum (UHV), High Temperature, High Pressure, Cryogenics, laser research, etc.

The Machine Shop commonly works with exotic materials, such as: gold, silver, platinum, iridium, Tantalum, Kovar, titanium, magnesium, molybdenum, stainless steel, Inconel, nickel alloys, tool steel, tungsten, ceramics, composite materials, and plastics.

Should a process or procedure be required in the manufacture of any device that is outside the ability of our shop, we have proven vendors that we have worked with for years to provide services such as: special heat treating processes, powder coating, plating, machining very large parts, rolling cylinders, etc.

Companies and organizations that have used the services of the Machine Shop include:

Facility and Equipment

The Physics Machine Shop's well-designed facility houses the research machine shop and student machine shop. With a wide range of manual machinery, including manual mills, manual lathes, shear, and press brake. We also offer the latest in CNC technology. With the largest of our four, 4-axis CNC mills having a xyz travel of 50” x 26” x 25” we can accommodate most researchers needs. Our large CNC lathe can swing 20” to accommodate large diameter parts.

Welding/metal joining abilities include spot welders, TIG, plasma cutting, oxyacetylene for brazing, hard and soft soldering.


The finest attribute of the machine shop is the staff of five highly experienced individuals with wide ranging experience in manufacturing, design, and research requirements. Projects that are a challenge and provide an opportunity to learn new processes are always the preference of this crew.