Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory

Alongside scientists and researchers, graduate students at the Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory (PPPL) advance scientific discovery and work on solutions to pressing global challenges. They investigate large-scale science while part of a close-knit academic community. 

Discover how the Princeton Program in Plasma Physics — a graduate program within the Department of Astrophysical Sciences at Princeton University and based at PPPL, a U.S. Department of Energy national laboratory managed by Princeton — develops leaders in the field of plasma physics through their work in academia, national laboratories, industry and beyond. 

This video features Princeton Program in Plasma Physics graduates Steve Cowley, PPPL director; Jonathan Menard, deputy director for research; and Frances Kraus, X-ray spectroscopist and staff research physicist; as well as Silvia Trinczek, Ph.D. candidate in the Princeton Program in Plasma Physics. Learn more about the program:




Developing clean energy for all.

We’re leaders in the science and engineering behind the development of fusion — a clean, safe, and virtually limitless source of energy.




Top Projects







Building innovative technologies.

We’re improving the production of microchips like those used in laptops and smartphones, as well as aiding in the production of key elements used in quantum computers.




Contributing to a sustainable future.

We’re studying ways to remove fossil fuels from industrial and manufacturing processes to contribute to a Net-Zero America.




Exploring the universe and beyond.

We strive to understand plasma from the lab to the cosmos, and for good reason: plasma, the fuel of fusion, makes up 99% of the visible universe. 

Our Expertise


Plasma Science

We have an intricate understanding of plasma, and our work has shaped the field of plasma physics for decades.




Using sophisticated tools, our engineers create state-of-the-art components and design intricate electrical and mechanical systems.


Computational Sciences

Our researchers use powerful supercomputers to develop complex models used in applications across science and engineering.



Sensors & Analysis

We provide measurement systems used around the world, which are key in understanding the conditions needed for fusion.


We Are the Lab

PPPL staff member working at the lab




Advancing science requires a diverse,
empowered, and inclusive workforce.

Join us as we work toward building an
innovative and sustainable future.

Join Us

Our Impact

$150 million

Annual Funding from DOE, Government Agencies


Collaborations with Private Companies


Facility Users


Research Papers Published Annually


"Our national laboratory serves the state, the nation, and the world. For over 70 years, we've focused on the science and engineering behind fusion energy. Now, we're building upon our mission, using our expertise in plasma physics not only to help make fusion energy a reality, but also to help develop innovative, sustainable technologies. It's an exciting time to be here — one filled with great opportunity."


Professor Steven Cowley
Laboratory Director
Deputy Director for Research Jon Menard gives tour of Lab facilities




From start-ups to Fortune 500s to leading scientific institutions, we team up with companies and organizations worldwide to advance science and develop cutting-edge technologies.

Learn More




Get Involved


Head of Science Education Arturo Dominguez gives tour to young students


Welding apprentice working in the Lab's metal shop


Student intern working with a plasma experiment


PPPL Staff member gives demonstration to group of graduate students

Our Story So Far

Archival photo of Lyman Spitzer standing next to an early stellarator
Princeton Plasma Innovation Center (PPIC) west view render