Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory

February 29, 2024

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Papers & Presentations

LLNL’s Ignition Breakthrough Published in PRL

Physical Review Letters (PRL) just published one of the first peer-reviewed papers detailing LLNL’s historic achievement of fusion ignition at NIF. Companion papers in PRL and Physical Review E provide further details.

Department of Energy seal

DOE Secretary Honors Fusion Ignition Teams

The Fusion Ignition Team and a team that helped tell the world the story of that historic LLNL accomplishment at NIF were among the Lab project teams to earn Department of Energy Secretary’s Honor Awards.

February 5, 2024

Outside the NIF Target Chamber

Tracing the Steps to the Fusion Ignition Breakthrough

The inside story of how LLNL ICF researchers solved physics and engineering challenges to achieve target energy gain is told in a comprehensive Reviews of Modern Physics article. Read more...

January 29, 2024

Dayne Fratanduono stands in a critical spot under the NIF beamline

Enhanced Yield Proposal Aims to Boost NIF Yield

Studies using recent ignition experiments indicate an upgrade to 3 MJ of laser energy at NIF could result in fusion output yields in the 30 MJ range. An early stage proposal could turn this idea into reality. Read more...

January 10, 2024

Dan Casey and Annie Kritcher in the NIF Target Bay

Dan Casey: Applying Ignition’s Lessons to IFE

LLNL physicist Dan Casey is leveraging the knowledge gained from the decades-long pursuit of ignition to the quest for clean, safe, and abundant inertial fusion energy. Read more...

LIA Fellows Jamie King of LLNL and Eric Mottay of Amplitude Laser Group

Laser Safety Officer Named LIA Fellow

Jamie King, LLNL and NIF and Photon Science certified laser safety officer, was named a fellow of the Laser Institute, the organization’s highest level of membership. Read more...

Paul Armstrong

Engineer Mentors High School Robotics Team

By day, NIF&PS engineer Paul Armstrong heads up an advanced laser applications team. In his spare time, he guides a high school robotics team. Read more...

Time story

Inside the Facility That Changed the World

Time followed LLNL researchers for months as they worked to successfully repeat fusion ignition at NIF in the months following the first historic shot in December 2022. Read more...

January 3, 2024

LLNL HBCU Week home page

LLNL HBCU Week Showcases Lab Expertise, Culture

LLNL HBCU Week’s goal is to increase the number of underrepresented groups in STEM fields. Lab staff presented an overview of LLNL research, culture, and career opportunities. Read more...

December 18, 2023

Tayyab Suratwala

Who Works at NIF: The Zen of the Gem

At work, Tayyab Suratwala leads research into grinding and polishing optics for NIF. In his free time, Suratwala immerses himself in faceting brilliant gemstones. Read more...

LLNL Ignition Logo

The Age of Ignition: Anniversary Edition

A year after LLNL achieved fusion ignition at NIF, we have expanded our special report The Age of Ignition with more stories explaining how scientific history was made. Download PDF...

December 12, 2023

A copper target for an extended x-ray absorption fine structure (EXAFS) experiment

Probing Copper Under Extreme Pressures

In new LLNL experiments at NIF, LLNL scientists measured the extended x-ray absorption fine structure of copper to probe its temperature under extreme pressure. Read more...

Inside the Lab: What is Fusion Ignition

Video: What is Fusion Ignition

In this edition of LLNL’s Inside the Lab video series, science communicator Maren Hunsberger explains what fusion ignition is, how it happened at NIF, and why is it important. Read more...

NIF Target Chamber

Ignition at NIF Makes Google’s Most Searched List

What do Beyoncé, Taylor Swift, and LLNL have in common? We’re all on Google’s list of most searched for figures and moments. We appear at the 1:53 mark of this 25 years of Google Search video: View video...

December 7, 2023


Team Receives DOE Award to Establish IFE Hub

The Energy Department awarded a four-year, $16 million project to a multi-institutional team led by LLNL to accelerate IFE science and technology. This effort will be carried out by a newly established hub named STARFIRE. Read more...

Physics World Top 10 Logo

Physics World Honors LLNL’s Ignition Breakthrough

LLNL’s fusion ignition achievement at NIF earned an honorable mention on Physics World’s 2023 Top 10 scientific breakthroughs list for work performed late last year after the publication picked its 2022 winners. Read more...

November 16, 2023

Larry Pelz, Jean-Michel Di Nicola, and John Heebner in the Master Oscillator Room

LLNL’s NIF Delivers Record Laser Energy

LLNL set a new record for laser energy at NIF, firing 2.2 megajoules (MJ) of energy for the first time on an ignition target. The experiment achieved ignition for the fourth time and delivered the second-highest neutron yield. Read more...

Defense Technologies Engineering Division (DTED) technologists staff members Chris Padagas, Joseph Advincula, Steven Keesee, and Aaron Torres

Engineering Divisions Provide Expertise to NIF

LLNL’s National Security Engineering Division and Defense Technologies Engineering Division have long histories of providing infrastructure for NIF’s operations. Read more...

Inside one of NIF’s two switchyards

NIF: An Engineering Marvel

With 7,500 large optics, 26,000 small optics, and more than 66,000 control points, NIF is a remarkable engineering and technology success story. Read more...

November 14, 2023

Optica Fellow Logo

NIF’s Wisoff, Di Nicola Elected Optica Fellows

Jeff Wisoff, NIF&PS principal associate director, and Jean-Michel Di Nicola, Laser Science & Technology and Systems Engineering organization co-program director, were selected as Optica fellows.

October 30, 2023

Ibo Matthews and Frank Graziani

Ibo Matthews, Frank Graziani Named APS Fellows

Ibo Matthews, who began his LLNL career helping mitigate NIF optics damage, and Frank Graziani, who works to foster academic collaborations in HED research, were selected as 2023 American Physical Society fellows. Read more...

Guests line up for NIF tours during LLNL Open House

NIF Draws Big Crowds During LLNL Open House

Thousands of guests eager to see the place where the world’s first ignition reaction occurred lined up for tours during an LLNL open house for family and friends of LLNL employees. Read more...

October 26, 2023

Simulation of an ultra-intense short laser pulse accelerating electrons in the wake it leaves behind while propagating through a plasma

LLNL-led Project to Advance Muon-Based Imaging

Naturally occurring subatomic particles called muons can help us see inside places like the Great Pyramid of Giza. Now LLNL has partnered with industry and academic partners to rapidly generate muons using lasers. Read more...

October 24, 2023

Kelli Humbird, Chris Young, Brian Giera, Kim Budil, and Ashley Bahney

Young Leaders Learn from Nobel Laureates

Early-career staff scientists Kelli Humbird, Chris Young, and Brian Giera connected with Nobel laureates and discussed important global issues at an annual science and technology forum in Japan. Read more...

LLNL plasma physicist Tammy Ma served as the keynote speaker

STEM San Joaquin Conference Celebrates 31 Years

LLNL physicist Tammy Ma, a member of the LLNL team that achieved ignition at NIF, shared her inspirational career journey as the keynote speaker at the STEM San Joaquin Conference. Read more...

October 18, 2023

Nathan Ray and Hoang Nguyen with the etcher used to create tilted pillars in an all-glass metasurface

LLNL Creates Birefringent All-Glass Metasurface

LLNL researchers have adapted their novel metasurface process in a way that could transform waveplate technology for high-power laser systems such as NIF. Read more...

October 12, 2023

NoVEL Group Tours SLAC

HBCU Students, Faculty Visit Builds STEM Pipeline

LLNL hosted a group of student scholars and faculty members from Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) on a recent five-day visit. Read more...

LLNL Director Kim Budil

Nuclear Fusion and the Future of Energy

LLNL Director Kim Budil discussed the Lab’s Dec. 5, 2022, achievement of ignition at NIF with the Council on Foreign Relations. Read more...

October 4, 2023

LLNL physicist Otto “Nino” Landen

Landen, Hurricane Receive Prestigious Teller Awards

Otto “Nino” Landen, LLNL ICF experiments group leader, and Omar Hurricane, ICF program chief scientist, were presented their Edward Teller Medals during the recent fusion sciences conference. Read more...

LLNL physicist Alex Zylstra

Experimental Physicist Awarded 2023 Fabre Prize

LLNL physicist Alex Zylstra has been awarded the 2023 Edouard Fabre Prize for his experimental leadership of the milestone “Hybrid-E” campaign that achieved fusion ignition at NIF. Read more...

September 20, 2023

Rendering representing a shocked diamond as a pore collapses under pressure

Understanding the Plasticity of Diamond

A study published in the journal Matter investigates the evolution of plasticity in diamond, which is important for high-energy-density experiments on high-energy laser systems such as NIF. Read more...

LLNL’s Wren Carr and Peter DeVore

Two Lab Physicists Named SPIE Senior Members

LLNL’s Wren Carr and Peter DeVore were elected as senior members of SPIE, the international society for optics and photonics. Read more...

The geometry of a tokamak with a single-null divertor, which will be addressed as part of the ABOUND project

Fusion Plasma Project Awarded $9.25 Million

An LLNL-led project aimed at using computing tools to improve understanding of fusion plasma dynamics was awarded DOE funding to accelerate fusion power plant development. Read more...

Illustration of the transportable Thomson scattering diagnostic developed at LLNL

Portable Optical Thomson Scattering Diagnostic

LLNL scientists collaborated with UC San Diego to design a portable optical Thomson scattering diagnostic system to support ARPA-E’s fusion energy ventures. Read more...

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