The average salary for a Physicist is $93,711.
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What Do Physicists Do?
Humanity's understanding of the mechanical workings of reality is, relative to our history, in its infancy. Only in the last two centuries have scientists been able to directly observe and manipulate matter and energy at microscopic levels, and new discoveries and applications have skyrocketed in that time-frame, all while our technology continually enhances our ability to understand these things. Physicists are scientists who study the properties of matter and energy and perform experiments, of…Read more
- Design, conduct and evaluate the results of experiments, methodologies, and quality control tests.
- Provide technical support and calculations to non-scientists, students, and other groups.
- Maintain and use equipment and lab space.
- Communicate results in writing and in presentations to researchers, students, funders, the public, and other audiences.
Job Satisfaction for Physicist
Popular Employer Salaries for Physicist
The top respondents for the job title Physicist are from the companies Data Device Corporation, Riverside Research Institute and U.S. Air Force (USAF). Reported salaries are highest at Data Device Corporation where the average pay is $165,000. Other companies that offer high salaries for this role include U.S. Air Force (USAF), earning around $115,000. Riverside Research Institute pays the lowest at around $62,120. National Institute of Standards and Technology also pays on the lower end of the scale, paying $100,360.
What Are Popular Skills for Physicists?
Skills in Research Analysis and Simulation are correlated to pay that is above average. Skills that pay less than market rate include Matlab, Material Science and Data Analysis.
What is the Pay by Experience Level for Physicists?
An entry-level Physicist with less than 1 year experience can expect to earn an average total compensation (includes tips, bonus, and overtime pay) of $60,563 based on 47 salaries. An early career Physicist with 1-4 years of experience earns an average total compensation of $78,686 based on 150 salaries. A mid-career Physicist with 5-9 years of experience earns an average total compensation of $91,300 based on 86 salaries. An experienced Physicist with 10-19 years of experience earns an average total compensation of $112,285 based on 93 salaries. In their late career (20 years and higher), employees earn an average total compensation of $133,046.
Pay Difference by Location
Employees with Physicist in their job title in San Francisco, California earn an average of 14.3% more than the national average. These job titles also find higher than average salaries in Washington, District of Columbia (12.9% more) and New York, New York (3.8% more). The lowest salaries can be found in Huntsville, Alabama (21.1% less), Los Angeles, California (16.4% less) and Boston, Massachusetts (14.6% less).
Years of Experience
This data is based on 467 survey responses.