The Fusion Energy Sciences Program (FESP) conducts research funded by the DOE SC Office of Fusion Energy Sciences (FES). The primary research areas include: (1) MFE experimental research conducted through collaborations on the General Atomics DIII-D tokamak experiment and on PPPL's NSTX-U spherical tokamak experiment; (2) Fusion & Plasma Theory and Modeling in support of the DIII-D and NSTX-U collaborations, as well as international MFE facilities primarily found in Asia and Europe; (3) Fusion Materials and Technology research in support of fusion nuclear science; and (4) High-Energy-Density Laboratory Plasma (HEDLP) research that explores fundament plasma science questions in densities and temperatures relevant to HED Science. In addition to the research funded by SC FES, FESP is the PLS Physics division discipline home for Applied Plasma and EM Simulation group.
FESP Leader: Harry McLean
FESP Administrator: Stephanie Vanderkamp +1 925-423-3383
Associate Program Leader: Barry Kirkendall
The Energetic Material Plasmas Group conducts forward and inverse simulations to a diverse set of plasma/EM problems. Research topics include particle accelerator theory and simulations; studies of nuclear and non-nuclear EMP propagation and effects, using existing tools and analysis, and development of an advanced code capability; predictive studies of interactions between electromagnetics and plasmas; plasma and gas dynamic simulations; fully kinetic dense z-pinch simulations; ion beam interactions with matter; and predictive capabilities for radio-frequencies, terahertz, and optical source emissions.
Associate Program Leader (Acting): Alex Friedman
The Theory and Modeling Group undertakes plasma theory and computations in support of current and future fusion experiments (both magnetic and inertial fusion), and basic and applied plasma science contributing to other programs for various sponsors. The calculations undertaken by the Theory and Modeling Group include analytical theory and various kinds of simulations (kinetic and fluid plasma models), and the simulation tools are supported by advanced algorithm development and the application of high performance computing.
Associate Program Leader (Acting): Tom Rognlien
Research and development conducted by the Materials and Technology group focuses on the science and technology needed for future fusion energy systems. Areas of expertise that support the growing U.S. fusion nuclear sciences program include: development of low-activation, high performance materials for the fusion chamber and divertor; modeling the response of these materials to radiation damage; plasma-wall interaction experiments and modeling; fusion chamber and breeding blanket design; nuclear, thermal and mechanical analyses; fusion safety modeling and analyses; fusion fuel cycle systems (e.g., tritium breeding materials, tritium extraction and processing technologies); power plant conceptual design; systems engineering; integrated system cost/performance modeling. Research activities support both near-term (e.g., Fusion Nuclear Sciences Facility) and longer-term (Demo and power plant) steps on the path to fusion energy.
Associate Program Leader: Harry McLean
The Discovery Plasma Science Group carries out fundamental discovery science research for high-energy-density laboratory plasmas (HEDLP) that includes the study of ionized matter at extremely high densities and temperatures. Research topics include radiation-dominated dynamics and material properties; magnetized HED plasmas; laser-plasma interactions; relativistic HED plasmas; and warm dense matter. An important aspect of the research is the engagement of academic partners through collaborations on experiments at world-leading Office of Science and NNSA facilities. Examples of collaborations associated with the Office of Science HEDLP facilities include the NDCX-II facility at LBNL and the LCLS MEC facility at SLAC.
Associate Program Leaders: Steve Allen and Vlad Soukhanovskii
The MFE Experimental Research Group develops novel diagnostic measurements and executes state-of-the-art MFE experiments focused on both the core and boundary of high performance MFE plasmas through LLNL collaborations with the DIII-D National Fusion Facility at General Atomics (LLNL contact Steve Allen) and NSTX-U at PPPL (LLNL contact Vlad Soukhanovskii). Research activities include the comparison of experiment results with analytical theory and computational models of plasma behavior. The group also supports development of advanced diagnostics that are relevant to ITER.