PhLAM's research themes are mainly focused on the light-matter interaction, ranging from cold atom physics to photonics, via molecular physics and the non-linear dynamics of optical or biological systems.

The research activities of PhLAM cover a broad spectrum from fundamental to applied. The themes of the 5 teams are quite distinct, but coherent around the central theme of optics and light-matter interaction, with aspects ranging from spectroscopy and theoretical physico-chemistry to photonics and cold atoms and non-linear processes. PhLAM has a strong scientific culture in each of its different teams, some unique in their areas of research. The various teams of the laboratory have each been able to find original positions in the thematic area where they are specialized.

Some areas of application of specific themes have evolved and developed over the years. In particular, a significant part of the research is conducted at the interfaces with other fields, such as chemistry, atmospheric sciences, astrophysics, materials sciences, mathematics, electronics, biology and the health.

The laboratory presents a good diversity of its research topics while keeping a thematic unit around the optics and light-matter interaction.