Four scientists from Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) have been selected for the prestigious Presidential Early Career Award for Science and Engineering (PECASE), the highest honor bestowed by the United States government on scientists and engineers who are early in their careers and have distinguished themselves in their respective fields.
Félicie Albert, Daniel Casey, Richard Kraus and Arthur Pak are among 315 recipients nationwide who will be honored in a ceremony in Washington, D.C., later this year.
Félicie Albert serves as a staff scientist in the National Ignition Facility and Photon Science (NIF&PS) directorate and the Joint High Energy Density Sciences organization. She also is the deputy director for LLNL’s Center for High Energy Density Science.
Albert was recognized for “innovative research advancing the development of Betatron X-rays from laser-wakefield accelerators as a novel probe for characterizing high energy density states of matter and for leadership through mentoring and service to the scientific community.”
Daniel Casey is a physicist studying the properties and performance of inertial confinement fusion (ICF) implosions at the National Ignition Facility (NIF). He is co-leading a “principle degradations” effort to understand 3D areal-density asymmetries that threaten to damage and ultimately impact the quality of ICF implosions. Additionally, he is the experimental co-lead for a campaign that will test a high-temperature hohlraum along with campaigns within the ICF program that have successfully tested the impact of scale, velocity and adiabat on overall performance.
Casey was recognized “for exceptional contributions and impressive creativity, and innovation in the measurement and understanding of instability and mix for the Initial Confinement Fusion and High Density Physics Programs. He has consistently demonstrated leadership, originality and vision.”
Richard Kraus is a research scientist in the Physics Division in LLNL’s Physics and Life Sciences directorate. He serves as the project lead for an upcoming subcritical experiment at the Nevada National Security Site, and as a designer and experimentalist in the NIF Materials Diffraction campaign. He also is the project lead for a materials portfolio within the Global Security directorate.
Kraus was recognized for “advancing the field of materials science, planetary science and material issues that are critical to the nuclear security mission, through elegant and innovative design, analysis and understanding of dynamic compression experiments using gas-gun, magnetic compression and laser sources.”
Arthur Pak is a staff scientist in the NIF and Photon Science directorate, where his research is focused on understanding how to optimize the performance of inertial confinement fusion experiments.
He was recognized “for the quantitative assessments and mitigation of radiation drive asymmetries in indirect drive inertial confinement fusion and for significantly contributing to the milestone achievement of 50kJ fusion yield in X-ray driven implosions at the National Ignition Facility.”