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The PPPL function that reaches out to students, teachers and the general public through programs ranging from student internships to weekly talks on scientific topics from January through April.

Robotic Bees: Overview, Actuation, and Power

This talk will present an overview of the technologies involved in the development of insect-size flying robots, from manufacturing and assembly to sensing and characterization. All of these areas present opportunities for interesting research, as there are few existing components or manufacturing techniques in the required size and weight range. Over the past 5-10 years, this research has led to the development of a “Robobee” – an 80 mg flapping-wing robot actuated by piezoelectric bimorphs, and capable of controlled hovering with >130 mg of lift.

Containing A Star On Earth: Understanding Turbulence At 100 Million Degrees

One of the principal challenges remaining for realizing magnetic fusion energy is to understand and mitigate the chaotic flows of ionized gas, or plasma, that lead to unacceptable energy loss from the hot core of the device. These microscopic, randomly varying, or turbulent, fluctuations of plasma velocity and temperature arise owing to the strong differential in temperature from the hot core (>100,000,000 degrees) to the surrounding wall...

PPPL’s “Star Power” video offers compelling view of Laboratory’s research

(Watch video: http://www.pppl.gov/star%20power)

The U.S. Department of Energy’s Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory has released “Star Power,” a new informational video that uses dramatic and beautiful images and thought-provoking interviews to highlight the importance of the Laboratory’s research into magnetic fusion.

The 10-minute movie will be shown to the thousands of visitors who come to PPPL on tours and is posted on the Laboratory’s website, www.pppl.gov.

High school interns opt for research over relaxation

Summer is a time that many teenagers prefer to spend relaxing and soaking up the sun at the beach, but 10 high school students at PPPL decided instead to spend their summer soaking up plasma physics knowledge and performing hands-on research. 

The high school interns started on July 1, taking a three-day introductory course in plasma physics, offered as part of the program for the first time. Following the course, the students scattered throughout the Laboratory with each assigned a mentor.

At Plasma Camp, teachers experience research front and center

For one week every summer, a small group of teachers gathers at PPPL to relive student days. At this year’s Plasma Camp, a professional development program for science educators, 10 high school physics teachers lived together in a college dormitory, got lost together as they navigated the circuitous laboratory building, and learned as they created new plasma-based curricula.

From the Netherlands to PPPL: Student reflects on his study of light

Dutch graduate student Jasper van Rens recently completed a three-month assignment at PPPL to study a diagnostic technique that will be crucial to the success of ITER, the huge international fusion facility under construction in France. Working with Fred Levinton and Howard Yuh of PPPL subcontractor Nova Photonics, Van Rens investigated the impact of reflected light on the ITER Motional Stark Effect (MSE) instrument, which  measures the internal magnetic configuration of fusion plasmas.

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