Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory

Jim McCarrick

HED&PS Program Director

Jim McCarrick is the program director for the High Energy Density (HED) and Photon Systems element within the NIF & Photon Science (NIF&PS) Directorate. He oversees development and deployment of advanced short-pulse laser systems and the experimental platforms that leverage those systems, with application to HED science and inertial fusion energy.

McCarrick began his career at LLNL in 1998 with the Beam Research Program, working on beam transport and target interactions in electron linear induction accelerators. He eventually became theory lead for design and development of the multi-pulse converter target for the DARHT-II accelerator at Los Alamos National Laboratory. In 2005, he moved to the Weapons Technologies & Engineering Program and developed expertise in reactive flow of energetic materials, helping to resolve emerging issues in the safety and reliability of energetic components. He became lead for Initiation Systems in 2012. He also led research and development in weapon component technologies, including embedded microsensors for system state-of-health monitoring.

In 2015, McCarrick shifted focus to bringing Laboratory capabilities to external sponsors when he became LLNL’s program manager for the Joint Munitions Program, a long-running collaboration bringing research and development from National Nuclear Security Administration labs to the Department of Defense (DOD) for non-nuclear munitions needs. He extended this to more general interactions between Weapons Technologies & Engineering and the DOD in 2020 when he became associate program director for Conventional Weapons, and jointly the associate division leader for Strategic Partnership Programs in Engineering’s Defense Technologies Engineering Division. He moved to the NIF&PS Directorate in 2023.

McCarrick earned a B.S. degree in applied and engineering physics from Cornell University in Ithaca, New York, and a Ph.D. in nuclear engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where he studied plasma physics for magnetic fusion.