The fields of Plasma Physics and High Energy Density Science are some of the department's core strengths, with active research in experiment, theory, and modeling. Research groups are carrying out theoretical, computational, experimental and applied investigations into many physical systems under extremes of pressure, temperature and density.
Research areas include studies of the formation and time evolution of plasmas, and investigations of conditions ranging from the physics of the upper atmosphere to extreme pressures and temperatures found in astrophysical events.
The Physics Department has a number of distinctive research facilities that enhance the research activities in plasma physics and high energy density science including a 2 TW z-pinch accelerator, a 100 TW, 350 femtosecond laser, and a 800 cores cluster computer. In addition to these rich on-campus resources, additional research is done through collaborations at national research facilities such as the Rochester's Laboratory for Laser Energetics, Sandia National Laboratory, and Livermore National Laboratory.
The state-of-art laser system can produce a pulse with petawatt power. Such laser can create extremely hot and dense matters, which exists only in the interior of stars in nature, in laboratory. Developing a massively paralleled plasma simulation code on a cluster computer system, I study the high energy density physics in the extreme matter created by laser lights in numerical simulations (virtual lab). Works are related to the physics of particle accelerations, x-ray radiations, anti-matter positron production, and laser fusion science for the future energy.