WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, the Department of Energy’s Office of Science (SC) and the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) announced $9.35 million for 21 research projects in High-Energy Density Laboratory Plasmas (HEDLP).

High-Energy Density Laboratory Plasmas (HEDLP) research explores the behavior of ionized matter at extreme conditions such as high temperature, density, or pressure. Researchers apply these studies to fields including astrophysics, nuclear and particle physics, medicine, national security, and plasma science. The SC-NNSA Joint Program in High-Energy Density Laboratory Plasmas (JHEDLP) was established to leverage NNSA’s expertise to steward advances in HEDLP science within the Department of Energy.

“This joint program between SC and NNSA is an excellent example of leveraging resources within the Department of Energy to advance discovery-driven science,” said James Van Dam, Associate Director of Science for Fusion Energy Sciences (FES). “These projects at the frontier of high-energy density plasma science also have the potential for advancing our nation’s industrial capabilities and homeland security.”

Research funded in this announcement will explore many aspects of high-energy density plasma science. Selected projects will investigate the physics of magnetic reconnection that drives flares in stars and accelerates particles in astrophysical jets. They will explore the physical properties of plasmas at the core of unsolved problems in fusion energy and planetary sciences. They will also advance the shaping of plasmas by lasers to create high energy densities that mimic the interior of planets, enable novel accelerators, and lead to innovative technologies that directly benefit society.

The projects were selected by competitive peer review under the DOE Funding Opportunity Announcement for High-Energy Density Laboratory Plasma Science.

Total funding includes $7.95 million in FY 2021 - for research projects lasting up to three years in duration, with $1.4 million in outyear funding contingent on congressional appropriations. The list of projects can be found on the FES homepage under the heading  What’s New.”