Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory


March 31, 2020
How the coronavirus pandemic is affecting the world’s biggest physics experiments
The vast, sparsely populated Argentinian Pampas would seem ideal for social distancing. In the Mendoza region, the Pierre Auger Observatory near Malargue consists of more than 1,600 car-sized plastic tanks filled with water, scattered across some 3,000 square kilometres of land that is usually visited only by grazing cattle. (Nature)

Emerging Laser Applications—New Demands on Optics
Talking about optics assumes a well-prepared optical surface—and that was what Jessica DeGroote Nelson, Director of Technology & Strategy, Optimax Systems, talked about: How to make such a surface on an optical component, which is ready for use under challenging industrial conditions. (LaserFocusWorld)

March 19, 2020
Superfast, Superpowerful Lasers Are About to Revolutionize Physics
They’ll serve as the heart as “discovery factories” for planetary science, astrophysics, materials physics, fusion and more. (Scientific American)

March 13, 2020
Nuclear diagnostics help pave way to ignition on NIF inertial confinement fusion
At its peak, a NIF inertial confinement fusion (ICF) implosion lasts about 100 trillionths of a second. The imploded fuel is a hundred millionths of a meter in diameter and as much as eight times denser than lead. The center of the imploded capsule is a few times hotter than the core of the sun. (

March 13, 2020
Focus: Magnetic Field Gets up to Speed
Simulations suggest that a relatively simple laser technique could produce femtosecond magnetic-field pulses, which currently are only available at a few major lab facilities. (Physics)

February 27, 2020
The Holy Grail Of Clean Energy Is Closer Than Ever
Nuclear fusion has been seen as the unattainable holy grail of clean energy for decades, but just in the last year it’s been seeming more and more within reach. (

February 25, 2020
Perseverance with Félicie Albert
In this installment of Senior Member Insights, OPN talks with Félicie Albert, currently a staff scientist at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL), USA, in the National Ignition Facility and Photon Science directorate and the Joint High Energy Density Sciences (JHEDS) organization. She is also the deputy director for LLNL’s center for High Energy Density Science. (Optics & Photonics News)

February 24, 2020
‘Yes, You Can’: UC Merced Students Learning, Growing at Livermore Lab
Leily Kiani (’16) was a graduate student who learned about LLNL early enough in her time on campus to build the foundation that would lead her to do her postdoctoral work at the lab. Now, as a laser physicist working on fiber technologies, Kiani has access to one of the best pieces of equipment in the world — the National Ignition Facility (NIF) at LLNL. (UC Merced)

February 23, 2020
We Won’t Have Fusion Generators in Five Years. But the Holy Grail of Clean Energy May Still Be On Its Way
Recent reports from scientists pursuing a new kind of nuclear fusion technology are encouraging, but we are still some distance away from the “holy grail of clean energy.”" (The Conversation)

February 21, 2020
CCCC Students Attend National Photonics Convention
Second-year students in the Laser and Photonics Technology program at Central Carolina Community College’s Harnett Main Campus recently attended the 2020 SPIE Photonics West Convention in San Francisco. The group also took time to tour the National Ignition Facility (NIF) at Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (The Johnston County Report)

February 19, 2020
Special Targets Boost Intensity of Lasers
Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory engineers devise compound parabolic concentrators (CPC) that increase a laser’s intensity so that laser can accelerate particles so that they experience the effects of relativity. (Machine Design)

February 12, 2020
Nuclear Fusion Power Without Regular Tokamaks Or Stellarators
When it comes to nuclear fusion, the most well-known reactor type today is no doubt the tokamak, due to its relatively straight-forward concept of plasma containment. That’s not to say that there aren’t other ways to accomplish nuclear fusion in a way that could conceivably be used in a commercial power plant in the near future. (Hackaday)

January 28, 2020
Machine Learning: Can machine learning improve computer models enough to ignite inertial-confinement fusion?
Machine learning applied to the University of Rochester’s OMEGA laser increased fusion yields; the same could happen at the National Ignition Facility (NIF), too. (LaserFocusWorld)

January 18, 2020
Conservation, Crystals, and the Corpus Callosum
On this episode: a marine biologist who helps turtle conservation (and shows us the miracle of life!), a physicist who accomplished what scientists said was impossible, and a neuroscientist who understands how your brain talks to itself. (Mission Unstoppable)

January 17, 2020
The Densest Object On Earth — Made By Lasers
There are places in space where truly extreme pressures exist. But normally you find them in unpleasant locations like the centers of planets where we do not usually visit. So, how do common materials look in those conditions? If we want to know then we need truly extreme devices. Such as the National Ignition Facility (NIF) at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL). (Steemit)

January 10, 2020
National Lab Teams Create Densest Object on Earth
Scientists used the National Ignition Facility at Lawrence Livermore National Lab to squeeze a microscopic sample of copper samples under 30 million atmospheres in less than a billionth of a second. This tripled the sample’s density, creating the densest object on the planet for a brief moment in time. (Machine Design)

January 1, 2020
Back in the Power Game
The U.S. is building one of the most powerful lasers in the world that could eventually break the quantum vacuum and produce matter from nothing. (SPIE)

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