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Virtual Pressroom 2007

49th Annual Meeting of the APS Division of Plasma Physics

Most of the matter we are familiar with in everyday life comes in three states — solid, liquid, or gas. But much more of the matter in the universe exists in a fourth state known as plasma. Plasmas are gaseous collections of electrically charged particles such as electrons and protons. Stars are primarily composed of hot plasmas. On Earth, plasmas are formed in lightning strikes and produce light in fluorescent bulbs. They are used to inscribe patterns in computer chips and other electronics, and they are also at the heart of the most promising nuclear fusion devices that may someday lead to an abundance of cheap, clean, and safe power sources.

Seven international partners, including the U.S., are committed to the construction of the International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor (ITER) as the next step toward fusion energy. Many new advances relevant to magnetic confinement in ITER—such as methods to suppress plasma instabilities, control losses, diagnose plasma characteristics, numerically simulate plasma behavior, and enhance heating—have been recently achieved. At the same time, impressive progress in inertially confined fusion plasmas, high-energy-density physics, space and astrophysical plasmas, basic plasma science, and industrial applications has been made.

These highlights and results of many other subjects will be addressed at the 49th Annual Meeting of the American Physical Society’s Division of Plasma Physics, to be held November 12-16, 2007, in Orlando, Florida. More than 1500 attendees will present 1600 papers covering the latest advances in plasma-based research and technology.

The American Physical Society is the world’s largest professional body of physicists, representing over 43,500 physicists in academia, national laboratories, and industry in the US and internationally.

Highlights & Press Releases

A New Imaging X-Rray Crystal Spectrometer Advances State-of-the-Art for Measurements of Ion Temperature and Plasma Rotation Velocity Profiles in Tokamaks

American Physical Society invites Orlando to discover plasma

Effects of relativity lead to "warp speed" computations

Electrons surf plasma waves to record-high energies

Heating laboratory plasma to 100 million degrees

Keep the fire burning in a fusion reactor

Keeping cool while studying plasma turbulence at 100 million degrees

Laser squeeze play a key step toward igniting inertial fusion

Lithium surface coatings improve plasma performance in the National Spherical Torus Experiment

Measuring electron-scale turbulence in a fusion plasma

More Efficient Penetration of Fusion Plasmas By Radiofrequency Beams

New insight on how fusion plasmas escape from their magnetic bottle

Plasma antennas can magically vanish

Plasma bursts eliminated by small archipelagos in a chaotic magnetic sea

Producing Continuous Electrical Currents in a Fusion Device Using High Power Radio Waves

Reversing plasma spin leads to higher performance

Shedding new light on old mysteries of Z pinches

Simulating a "soft landing" for an unstable fusion plasma

Subtle changes in plasma shape provides lift in fusion performance

Super-bright laser uses plasma as amplifier-compressor

Ultra Fast Programs Developed for Future Ultra Fast Computers: The Speed of Light is Too Slow

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Annual Meeting of the APS Division of Plasma Physics (DPP)