Plasma physicist earns excellence award

July 18, 2017- 
Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) physicist Andrew MacKinnon has been awarded the John Dawson Award for Excellence in Plasma Physics Research by the American Physical Society’s Division of Plasma Physics. The annual award recognizes a specific outstanding achievement in plasma physics research. MacKinnon was cited by the APS "for pioneering use of proton radiography to reveal new...

Lab scientist takes stage at World Economic Forum's annual 'meeting of the champions'

July 12, 2017- 
The global spotlight was on Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) physicist Tammy Ma when she took the stage at the World Economic Forum’s (WEF) Annual Meeting of the New Champions, recently held in Dalian, China. The theme of this year’s meeting was "Achieving Inclusive Growth in the Fourth Industrial Revolution," and focused on collaboration in innovation, entrepreneurship, science...

Probing the possibility of life on 'super-Earths'

June 16, 2017- 
Along with its aesthetic function of helping create the glorious Aurora Borealis, or Northern Lights, the powerful magnetic field surrounding our planet has a fairly important practical value as well: It makes life possible. By deflecting harmful charged particles from the sun and the cosmic rays that constantly bombard the planet, and preventing the solar wind from eroding the atmosphere,...

Probing the possibility of life on 'super-Earths'

June 16, 2017- 
Along with its aesthetic function of helping create the glorious Aurora Borealis, or Northern Lights, the powerful magnetic field surrounding our planet has a fairly important practical value as well: It makes life possible. By deflecting harmful charged particles from the sun and the cosmic rays that constantly bombard the planet, and preventing the solar wind from eroding the atmosphere,...

Optical Society of America honors Craig Siders

May 30, 2017- 
Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) physicist Craig Siders has been named a senior member of the Optical Society of America (OSA), an international society for optics and photonics scientists, engineers, educators and business leaders. Senior membership status recognizes members with more than 10 years of significant experience and professional accomplishments or service within the...

NIF technology could revolutionize 3D printing

May 25, 2017- 
A technology originally developed to smooth out and pattern high-powered laser beams for the National Ignition Facility (NIF) can be used to 3D print metal objects faster than ever before, according to a new study by Lawrence Livermore researchers. A team of Lab scientists report the findings in the latest issue of Optics Express, published online on May 15. This new method -- Diode-based...

Crash-proof virtual flying through NIF

April 28, 2017- 
In apparent defiance of the laws of physics, LLNL design engineer Paul Bloom leads flying tours through the National Ignition Facility from only three feet off the ground. As creator of the NIF virtual reality (VR) program, Bloom routinely allows engineers, scientists and technicians to soar through the facility by plugging his NIF tourists into special 3D Model Visualization portal headsets...

Rad to the bone: Meet NIF's rad control technicians

April 26, 2017- 
It is 6:30 a.m. when Myrna Gutierrez and Judy Zarco suit up inside the National Ignition Facility (NIF) to begin their 13-hour shift. As radiation control technicians (RCTs), they will maintain the safety of a 10-story building the size of three football fields housing the world’s largest, most energetic laser. It is not an average workplace, and the stakes are high when teams of researchers...

A new way to examine space, bugs and bones

April 25, 2017- 
A novel way to harness lasers and plasmas may give researchers new ways to explore outer space and to examine bugs, tumors and bones back on planet Earth. Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) physicist Félicie Albert led an international team pursuing this new regime in laser research, which was described in a Physical Review Letters (PRL) paper published online March 31. Albert...

Lab scientists develop next-generation NIF optics to boost energy and limit damage

April 6, 2017- 
A new anti-reflective coating and a novel chemical process for laser optics, developed by Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) researchers, represents an important breakthrough in its effort to boost the energy of the National Ignition Facility’s (NIF) 192 giant lasers, and cut the cost of repairing or replacing damaged optics vital to its operation. The coating was developed to...

Engineer wins scholarship for women veterans

March 23, 2017- 
U.S. Marine veteran Destiny Goddu has spent her whole life working with machines. As a young girl growing up in Livermore, she helped her father, a mechanic, disassemble and rebuild car engines and tinkered with auto parts in the family garage. After joining the Marines, she worked on missile guidance systems, and as a Lab employee, hired part-time through the award-winning Veterans to...

The softer side of NIF hohlraums

March 17, 2017- 
Considering that nothing precious comes from an online retailer without protective padding, could precision laser targets also benefit from similar high-tech swaddling? So far the answer is yes, for a group of scientists developing new target technologies for NIF that are intended to neutralize what they believe is one of the bigger challenges to achieving ignition. The goal, said Lawrence...

National Ignition Facility's dual-purpose positioner is proving its worth

Feb. 16, 2017- 
While multitasking may be easy for some people (and perhaps hard for others), it can be a particular challenge for the highly specialized equipment used to carry out experiments on the National Ignition Facility (NIF).But TanDM, NIF’s new Target and Diagnostic Manipulator, is designed to do just that. To date, it is proving itself more than up to the job of performing as a target positioner...

Fund aids commercialization efforts

Feb. 14, 2017- 
For three Lab engineers, a Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) commercialization fund has proven to be an oasis of assistance as they have sought to cross the legendary technology "valley of death."In technology transfer circles, there is a phase -- between when a technology is promising and when it moves forward into commercialization -- known as the "valley of death," beyond which...

LLNL meets key milestone for delivery of world's highest average power petawatt laser system

Feb. 2, 2017- 
The High-Repetition-Rate Advanced Petawatt Laser System (HAPLS), being developed at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL), recently completed a significant milestone: demonstration of continuous operation of an all diode-pumped, high-energy femtosecond petawatt laser system.  With completion of this milestone, the system is ready for delivery and integration at the European Extreme...

Recreating conditions inside stars in the laboratory with compact lasers

Jan. 17, 2017- 
Using compact lasers, a team including Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) scientists has created pressures more than a billion atmospheres, equivalent to the pressure in the center of a star.These conditions of extreme pressure and energy density have previously been created in the laboratory only with the world's largest lasers, which are the size of stadiums. But in new research,...

Fusion Power Associates award for Joe Kilkenny

Dec. 16, 2016- 
The Fusion Power Associates (FPA) Board of Directors has selected NIF Scientific Diagnostic Leader Joe Kilkenny to receive a 2016 Leadership Award. The award was presented at the FPA’s 37th Annual Meeting and Symposium on “Fusion Power: An International Venture,” held recently in Washington, D.C.Kilkenny was cited for “the leadership provided for inertial confinement fusion for nearly four...

Chris Barty named IEEE Fellow

Dec. 14, 2016- 
Chris Barty, chief technology officer in Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory’s (LLNL) NIF & Photon Science Directorate, has been named a 2017 fellow of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) for his contributions to ultrahigh-intensity lasers and the advancement of X-ray and gamma-ray science.The IEEE grade of fellow is conferred by the IEEE Board of Directors upon a...

Researchers develop new amplifier that could double the capacity of fiber-optic cables

Dec. 13, 2016- 
More than 3.4 billion people are connected to the Internet, placing ever-increasing demand on the telecom industry to provide bigger, better and faster bandwidth to users. Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) researchers have taken an important step in addressing that need by developing a new type of optical fiber amplifier that could potentially double the information-carrying...

Ibo Matthews elected fellow of Optical Society

Nov. 9, 2016- 
Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory physicist Manyalibo (Ibo) Matthews has been elected as a fellow of the Optical Society (OSA). He was recognized by OSA for his "outstanding contributions and sustained leadership in the field of high-power laser-induced damage science, laser-material interactions and processing and vibrational spectroscopy-based materials characterization." Matthews...