First shot on BLUE!
BLUE is the new 800-kV, 200-kA linear transformer driver (LTD) facility being constructed in the Plasma, Pulsed Power, and Microwave Laboratory at the University of Michigan. The construction of BLUE is being led by Prof. Ryan McBride and PhD student Brendan Sporer. The four LTD cavities for BLUE were donated from the 21-cavity Ursa Minor facility at Sandia National Laboratories in Albuquerque, NM – hence the name “BLUE” (Bestowed LTD from the Ursa-minor Experiment). BLUE will be used to drive high-power microwave sources as well as fast z-pinch plasmas for experiments in nuclear fusion and x-ray generation.
Nonthermal plasma wand could help decontaminate hospitals, public transit
Professors John Foster and Mirko Gamba are developing a portable device using the advanced oxydation process to rapidly disinfect various surfaces.
The PlasmaPy Project
The mission of the PlasmaPy Project is to grow an open source software ecosystem for plasma research and education, and one that is customized to the needs of the community as well as developed by members of the community itself. Among the many goals of this project, it aims to decrease repetition and wasted effort in programming; improve scientific reproduciblity, code readability and maintainability; and provide a platform for openly developing and sharing code throughout the plasma research community. Some of these goals have been reflected in the recent CPP Strategic Plan report, being called out specifically by name in the section on DPS Collaborative programmatic recommendations. This project recently received an NSF grant through the Cyberinfrastructure for Sustained Scientific Innovation program (CSSI) to rapidly expand functionality as well as to develop training, instructional, and educational material through online resources and in-person workshops.
New cohort of MIPSE Fellows
Eight students from U-M and MSU were named MIPSE Fellows for the 2020-21 academic year. The new fellows will receive a $4,500 grant that can be used for an enhancement to their research. They will also have the opportunity to be partners with MIPSE on many exciting projects.
U-M teams work to disinfect masks for medical personnel
U-M engineers are developing efficient, effective, and scalable ways to disinfect N95 masks, which are typically discarded after one use. Professors Herek Clack and Mirko Gamba are part of the team working on testing the masks after treatment.
U-M Leads $62M ‘Largest Radio Telescope in Space’ Mission
Prof. Justin Kasper leads a new $62.6 million NASA mission, which aims to provide better information on how the sun’s radiation affects the space environment that our spacecraft and astronauts travel through. The Sun Radio Interferometer Space Experiment, or SunRISE, consists of miniature satellites that form a “virtual telescope” in space to detect and study the radio waves that precede major solar events. SunRISE, expected to launch in 2023, will offer a never-before-seen glimpse at what goes on in the solar corona.
John Nees wins Research Scientist Award
John Nees, Associate Research Scientist, has received the Kenneth M. Reese Outstanding Research Scientist Award from the College of Engineering. This award honors research scientists who have “demonstrated sustained excellence in research and related scholarly activities.” Nees is honored for his excellence in research and scholarship, as well as his distinguished career as a key member of the Center for Ultrafast Optical Science.
Mark Moldwin receives the Trudy Huebner Service Excellence Award
Prof. Mark Moldwin will receive the 2019-2020 Trudy Huebner Service Excellence Award. This award is given to faculty who have “…demonstrated significant service contribution at the College and/or University levels.”
Paul Drake receives the H. Scott Fogler Award for Professional Leadership and Service
Prof. R. Paul Drake will receive the 2019-2020 H. Scott Fogler Award for Professional Leadership and Service. This award is given to faculty who demonstrate “…significant national or international impact on the field of engineering through leadership or service external to the College of Engineering.”
Yao Kovach receives the DOE SCGSR award
Yao Kovach (NERS) won a U. S. Department of Energy Office of Science Graduate Student Research Program award for her proposal titled “Understanding nanoparticle emission from 1 atm DC glow discharge with liquid anode.” In Winter 2020, Yao will work at the Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) to complete her thesis research.
Most powerful laser in the U.S. to be built at U-M
The United States is upgrading its laser capabilities with ZEUS, a new 3-petawatt system to be built at the University of Michigan.
Carolyn Kuranz elected APS Fellow
Prof. Carolyn Kuranz has been elected a 2019 Fellow of the American Physical Society “For spearheading academic use of the National Ignition Facility for seminal experiments in plasma laboratory astrophysics, specifically the effects of locally generated intense radiation on an interface and on astrophysically relevant interfacial instabilities.”
John Foster named an APS-DPP Distinguished Lecturer, 2019-2020
The Division of Plasma Physics of the American Physical Society has selected Prof. Foster as a Distinguished Lecturer for 2019-2020. This Program, funded by the U.S. Department of Energy, is intended to share with the larger scientific community the exciting recent advances in plasma physics. The title of Prof. Foster's talk is “Lightning in a canteen: The promise of plasma-treated refreshment for survival.”
Matt Gomez wins Presidential Early Career Award
Dr. Matthew Gomez of Sandia National Lab, a MIPSE alum and a recent seminar speaker, received a PECASE award “for exceptional leadership and contributions to innovative research in high-energy density physics and leadership of the magnetically amplified inertial fusion effort; and for his formidable commitment and exemplary role modeling to develop a community of scientists and engineers.”
Ryan McBride wins DOE Office of Science Early Career Award
Prof. Ryan McBride received the DOE Office of Science Early Career Award for his project titled "The Physics of Micro-Pinches."
MIPSE co-sponsors the First Community Workshop for HEDP
MIPSE was pleased to co-sponsor the First Community Workshop for High Energy Density Physics. This workshop, co-chaired by Prof. Carolyn Kuranz, is part of the Community Planning Process (CPP) conducted by the American Physical Society Division of Plasma Physics.
Carolyn Kuranz joins NERS faculty
Prof. Carolyn Kuranz accepted the position of an Associate Professor (with tenure) at the Department of Nuclear Engineering and Radiological Sciences.
August Evrard receives Provost’s Teaching Innovation Prize
Prof. August Evrard was honored with the 11th annual Provost’s Teaching Innovation Prize for his project, Problem Roulette: A Stress-free Practice Zone for Student Learning.
Justin Kasper addresses Senate committee on solar threat to power grid
Prof. Justin Kasper testified before the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs and discussed how best to protect the power grid from space weather.
Brandon Russell receives Rackham International Student Fellowship
Brandon Russell (ECE) was awarded the Rackham International Student Fellowship for his research on magnetic fields in high-energy plasmas, which could help advance the development of clean energy and our understanding of energetic astrophysical phenomena.
Alec Gallimore inducted into the National Academy of Engineering
Prof. Alec Gallimore, Robert J. Vlasic Dean of Engineering, has been inducted into the National Academy of Engineering for advanced spacecraft electric propulsion, especially Hall thruster technology.
Plasma 2020 call for white papers
The US National Academies has recently started the Decadal Assessment of Plasma Science - Plasma 2020. The Plasma 2020 committee invites the US and international plasma science and technology communities to submit white papers addressing past accomplishments, future science challenges, opportunities to provide societal benefit, needed interdisciplinary collaborations and means to enhance careers in the fields of plasma science and technology. Please submit white papers by March 8, 2019.
First Women in MIPSE luncheon
Women in MIPSE luncheons were recently inaugurated to bring U-M women students and post-doctoral fellows in plasmas fields together, providing a community to share experiences, insights, and resources to support each other. The first lunch, held November 14, 2018, was organized by Janis Lai (NERS). The honorary guest, Dr. Svetlana Starikovskaia of Laboratory of Plasma Physics, CNRS, France, shared her research and teaching experiences with six Women in MIPSE members.
The HERCULES laser receives $1 million
U-M will receive $1 million through the LaserNetUS initiative for providing time on the HERCULES laser, the reigning world champion for laser intensity at 20 sextillion (2x1022) watts per centimeter squared.
Amanda Lietz wins Towner Prize
Amanda Lietz (NERS) is a winner of Richard and Eleanor Towner Prize for Outstanding Ph.D. Research
Congratulations to MAISE team on the first successful propulsion demonstration!
The Michigan Advanced In-Space propulsion Engineering (MAISE) team conducted their first electric propulsion demostration as part of the Technology Takeover on Ingalls Mall.
Alec Thomas elected Fellow of APS
Prof. Alec Thomas has been elected Fellow of the American Physical Society "for contributions to the experimental and theoretical understanding of short pulse high intensity laser plasma interactions and in particular for the development of laser wakefield accelerators and the generation of x-rays from these beams."
From EU Research and Innovation Commission: Frontier research on plasma technologies for societal benefit
Plasma is the ‘hidden champion’ of industrial innovation – Prof. Christian Oehr
Volker Sick receives president's international education award
Prof. Volker Sick was presented with the 2018 President’s Award for Distinguished Service in International Education. The purpose of this award is to recognize and celebrate the extraordinary efforts of faculty and staff who keep U-M on the leading edge of international education for the students.
MIPSE welcomes a new cohort of Fellows
Seven graduate students have been named MIPSE Fellows 2018-2019: Austin Brenner and Zachariah Brown (Aerospace Engineering, U-M); Kenneth Chung (Civil Engineering, U-M); Forrest Glines (Astronomy/Computer Science and Engineering, MSU); Amina Hussein (Applied Physics, U-M); Agnit Mukhopadhyay and Yeimy Rivera (Climate and Space Sciences and Engineering, U-M).
Stephanie Miller receives DOE NNSA Laboratory Residency Graduate Fellowship
Stephanie Miller (NERS) has been selected to receive the Laboratory Residency Graduate Fellowship from the Department of Energy National Nuclear Security Administration. For her LRGF research, Stephanie will spend two 12-week residencies at Sandia National Labs, working with the pulsed-power sciences and inertial confinement fusion (ICF) groups. She will be working to transfer the technology and diagnostic techniques that she is developing here at U-M to the 30-MA Z facility at Sandia.
Yao Kovach wins Eye on Research photo contest
Yao E. Kovach (NERS) is a winner of Eye on Research, a graduate student photo contest aimed at capturing the excitement, range, color and creativity of research. In her plasma picture, the self-organization pattern shows a perfectly symmetrical spoke structure with center convergence on the anode surface of sodium chloride solution at 80mA. Above the plasma spokes, a golden yellow colored prominent halo that surrounds the white colored main plasma column along with 8 millimeter gap in the air. Below the plasma spokes, the image shows a salt water reflection of the halo with helium plasma emitted from the 500 micrometer center of a hollow shaped cathode. From the spectroscopic analysis, we determined the golden yellow colored of the halo is due to the sodium glow from the vapor of the liquid. These blue colored plasma spokes have a size of around 25 micrometer and 85 micrometer in width and length respectively.
Louise Willingale receives NSF CAREER award
Prof. Louise Willingale received an NSF CAREER award for her research project “Relativistic Electron Driven Magnetic Reconnection." Read more about Louise's research in the EECS News.
Ryan McBride receives the Office of Naval Research Young Investigator Award
The Office of Naval Research (ONR) has announced awards of $16 million through its 2018 Young Investigator Program (YIP). The awards were made to young scientists whose research holds strong promise across a wide range of naval-relevant science and technology areas. Prof. Ryan McBride's winning project title is "High-Power Microwave Generation by Compact Linear Transformer Driver Technology."