American Physical Society honors PSFC graduate and professor

Mario Manuel SM '08 PhD '13 and Professor Anne White to receive awards at annual APS meeting

Paul Rivenberg    ·    August 7, 2014    ·    MIT News

Mario Manuel SM ’08 in AeroAstro, PhD ’13 in NSE will receive the 2014 Marshall N. Rosenbluth Outstanding Doctoral Thesis Award for his thesis, “Rayleigh-Taylor-Induced Electromagnetic Fields in Laser-Produced Plasmas.” The award was established to recognize exceptional young scientists who have performed original doctoral thesis research of outstanding scientific quality and achievement in the area of plasma physics.

As a graduate student in the Plasma Science and Fusion Center’s High Energy Density Physics division under the direction of division head Richard Petrasso, Manuel focused his research on the Rayleigh-Taylor (RT) instability, which is studied intensely in the inertial fusion community due to its destructive effects on laser-irradiated targets. Working from a 1978 theoretical and simulation study by K. Mima et al. (Physical Review Letters 41, 1715), Manuel was able to experimentally demonstrate for the first time the existence of RT-induced magnetic fields.

Anne White, the Norman C. Rasmussen Career Development Professor in Nuclear Engineering, will receive the 2014 Katherine E. Weimer Award, which recognizes outstanding achievement in plasma science research by a female physicist in the early years of her career. White’s research focuses on turbulent transport in fusion plasmas, with the goal of controlling the transport and improving performance of tokamaks. Her group is also beginning a collaboration with Germany’s largest tokamak experiment, ASDEX Upgrade, housed at the Max Planck Institute for Plasma Physics in Garching. She is the recipient of the 2013 PAI Outstanding Faculty Award (MIT student chapter of the American Nuclear Society), and the 2014 Junior Bose Award for Excellence in Teaching, School of Engineering.

The award ceremony will take place at the APS Division of Plasma Physics meeting, to be held in New Orleans in late October.

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