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OSIRIS simulation on Sequoia of the interaction of a fast-ignition-scale laser with a dense deuterium-tritium plasma. The laser field is shown in green. The blue arrows illustrate the magnetic field lines at the plasma interface. The red/yellow spheres are laser-accelerated electrons that will heat and ignite the fuel.

Star power

August 28th, 2013 Updated: August 28th, 2013

A Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory researcher simulates the physics that fuel the sun, with an eye toward creating a controllable fusion device that can deliver abundant, carbon-free energy.


A visualization of a Vlasov-Poisson simulation for a bump-on-tail instability problem, where a non-equilibrium distribution of electrons drives an electrostatic wave. The image shows particle density as a function of space and velocity. (Jeffrey Hittinger, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory.)

A passion for pressure

August 15th, 2012 Updated: August 15th, 2012

Plasmas are the purview of Livermore scientist and Computational Science Graduate Fellowship alumnus Jeffrey Hittinger. He works both sides of the fusion street – inertial confinement and magnetic confinement – while simulating aspects of these tremendously hot, fast-moving particle clouds.


The master of Monte Carlo

March 16th, 2010 Updated: November 30th, 2011

Berni Alder’s Monte Carlo methods have solved problems across the scientific spectrum. Yet the Livermore-based National Medal of Science-recipient still has questions.