APS News

APS Outreach at Comic-Con International 2018

The world’s only physics-focused STEM comic book series goes to the largest annual comic book convention.

July 19, 2018 | Leah Poffenberger

On July 19, Comic-Con International 2018 kicks off in San Diego, welcoming comic book fans from around the world. Over the four-day conference, a team headed by Rebecca Thompson, Head of Public Outreach for APS, will distribute nearly one and a half tons of educational comics to conference attendees.

Issues of Spectra, the physics-inspired superhero comics authored by Thompson, will be available at the APS booth for dedicated fans and new Spectra readers alike.

“Spectra holds her own,” said Thompson. “There are plenty of fans of Iron Man, Rick and Morty, and Black Panther, but Spectra has her following too. We have people coming to our booth year after year to make sure they have the complete collection. And we have back issues on hand for the folks who will discover Spectra for the first time and want to get caught up.”

The Spectra comics each follow a storyline designed to complement experiments in the APS Physics Quest educational kits distributed to middle school classrooms across the country. The kits provide students with hands-on opportunities to learn physics, but Thompson has found that many fans are fine with the comics on their own. “All the associated experiments are online, including lists of materials. Or, like a lot of kids and adults, you can enjoy Spectra’s adventures whether or not you do the experiments. Be careful though, you still might learn some physics.”

Issues of Spectra — including a brand new 10th issue — and Physics Quest educational kits are available on the Physics Central website.

Spectra10 comic book

News Update Archive

View Archive


APS News

Read Current Issue


Recent News Update
2019 Nobel Prize in Chemistry
Two APS members share this year’s Nobel Prize in Chemistry
2019 Nobel Prize in Physics
This year, three researchers are recognized for their contributions to understanding the cosmos.
Physical Review Research Co-Lead Editor Nicola Spaldin Wins Swiss Science Prize
APS Fellow Receives Award for Multiferroics Research
APS History of Physics Essay Contest
Deadline for submissions is October 1, 2019
Ann Nelson 1958-2019
Theoretical physicist and APS Fellow dies at 61.
Physical Review Research Publishes its First Papers
The newest journal in the APS Physical Review family publishes its first articles.