Virtual Pressroom

Virtual Pressroom

52nd Annual Meeting of the APS Division of Plasma Physics

November 8 - 12, 2010 | Chicago, Illinois

2010 Plasma Physics Research

Major achievements in plasma research this year include:

  • Significant performance improvements in magnetically confined fusion experiments around the world

  • Success in understanding the formation of large plasma structures on the Sun

  • The manipulation of relativistic effects for the creation of transparent windows through plasmas

  • Full 192 beam operation of the National Ignition Facility

  • Success in understanding the physics of rapid conversion of magnetic energy into energized particles.

Highlighted Plasma Physics Papers

Over 1800 papers covering the latest advances in plasma-based research and technology were presented at the 2010 APS DPP Annual Meeting. Highlighted below are some of the particularly newsworthy presentations.

All press releases are in PDF format.

American Physical Society Invites Chicago to Discover Plasma
Free Science Events Expected to Draw Thousands.

Fusion Makes Major Step Forward at MIT through Studies of the Plasma Edge
Researchers at MIT have taken steps toward practical fusion energy through better understanding of the physics that governs the interaction between plasmas and the material walls of the vessels that contain them. 

Getting to Know the Sun Advances Fusion Research
A method known as Coaxial Helicity Injection (CHI) could eliminate an expensive component in tokamaks, leading to a more economical fusion reactor. 

Imaging of Alfvén Waves and Fast Ions in a Fusion Plasma
New techniques give scientists detailed images of processes critical for the development of fusion reactors.

Landau's spark plug: Switch-like heating of compressing plasma
P. F. Schmit, I. Y. Dodin, N. J. Fisch. 

Lithium calms plasma
John M. Canik.

Many Faces of the Shear Alfvén Wave
Scientists show that 3D movies are no longer just for Hollywood blockbusters. 

New Ways of Spinning the Plasma Offer Opportunities for Improved Fusion Performance
W.M. Solomon and M.R. Wade.

Plasma as a Fast Optical Switch
Laser uses relativistic effects to turn otherwise opaque plasma transparent, creating an ultra-fast optical switch useful in next-generation particle accelerators.

Scientists Unlock the Secrets of Exploding Plasma Clouds on the Sun
Twisted "ropes" of magnetic field lines erupt from the Sun and tangle with the Earth's magnetic field. 

Small, external magnetic perturbations can break axisymmetry of exhaust pattern in fusion device
Joon-Wook Ahn, Rajesh Maingi, John Canik. 

Sometimes it is quiet at the edge
S.J. Zweben and R.J. Maqueda. 

Taming Thermonuclear Plasma with a Snowflake
Novel heat handling method holds promise for future tokamak reactor designs. 

Vacuum Arcs Spark New Interest
Scientists make progress in developing a self consistent model of vacuum arcs. 

Wave Effect Discovery May Lead to Improved Fusion Machines
Abraham Fetterman (Invited Speaker). 

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