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Worldwide conference on plasma science coming to Princeton area

More than 350 participants from around the world will gather in Plainsboro, N.J., on September 30 for the 66th Annual Gaseous Electronics Conference (GEC). The week-long event will bring together physicists from numerous plasma science disciplines for workshops, panels and poster sessions on topics ranging from basic research to uses for plasma in microchip etching, nano- material manufacturing and other technologies.

“This conference occupies a unique niche,” said PPPL physicist Igor Kaganovich, who serves as conference secretary. “The session topics include basic plasma physics that is relevant to new practical applications.”

Sponsors of the event, an annual topical meeting of the American Physical Society, include the U.S. Department of Energy, the National Science Foundation and Sandia National Laboratories, as well as companies from the plasma processing industry.

Invited presentations will include a foundation — or keynote — talk by physicist Rod Boswell of the Australian National University, who will speak on, “Thinking and doing, a long way to the top in commercialization.” PPPL Director Stewart Prager will discuss, “The path to magnetic fusion energy” in the conference’s opening tutorial. All sessions will be held in the Westin Princeton at Forrestal Village.

Special events include a tour of PPPL. Also scheduled are tours of the Princeton University Museum and the Grounds for Sculpture in nearby Hamilton, N.J., and a walk around downtown Princeton.

The annual GEC has long played a key role in advancing the many sides of plasma science. The presentations combine atomic, molecular and optical physics with low- temperature plasma physics, electrical discharges and plasma chemistry, together with recent developments employing these technologies. No other U.S. conference brings together so wide a range of plasma science topics and communities.

The GEC also strongly promotes the participation of students and has been a key factor in their development. Many leading figures in the field presented the first results of their graduate research at GEC conferences.

A complete listing of speakers, workshops and events at this year’s conference can be found here: http://www.aps.org/units/gec/meetings/annual/index.cfm

U.S. Department of Energy
Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory is a U.S. Department of Energy national laboratory managed by Princeton University.

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