[PAST EVENT] Physics Colloquium

April 3, 2015
4pm - 5pm
Small Hall, Room 110
300 Ukrop Way
Williamsburg, VA 23185Map this location
Plasma, the so-called fourth state of matter, is pervasive throughout the universe, with many diverse scientific manifestations. The U.S. Department of Energy supports plasma science research ranging from low-temperature plasmas, high energy density plasmas, and warm dense matter, to solar, space, and astrophysical plasmas. A large research effort is also devoted to studying how high-temperature plasmas can be confined by magnetic fields in the laboratory--ultimately for the production of fusion energy. The ITER experimental facility, to be operated as an international project by a consortium of international member countries representing more than 50% of the world's population, will push research into the frontier regime of burning plasmas, which are self-heated and self-sustaining. This talk will describe the unique physics characteristics of burning plasmas, illustrate some of the outstanding research opportunities in this field, and review how the U.S. and world fusion science programs have laid the foundation for taking the present step to ITER.

- Ph.D. in plasma physics, UCLA (1979)
- Visiting Member, Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton, NJ (1979-1980)
- Research scientist, Institute for Fusion Studies, The University of Texas at Austin (1980-2011); Director (2003-2011)
- Director, U.S. Burning Plasma Organization, U.S. Department of Energy (2007-2011)
- U.S. Chief Scientist for the ITER Project (2007-2011)
For more details, see {{http://peaches.ph.utexas.edu/ifs/personalpages/vandam.html}}

Host: Prof. Saskia Mordijck