American Physical Society Announces Winners of 5 Major Plasma Physics Prizes and Awards

COLLEGE PARK, MD, July 11, 2018 — The American Physical Society (APS) Division of Plasma Physics (DPP) has announced ten recipients of five prizes and awards recognizing physicists working on plasma physics experiments, theory, and applications.

The James Clerk Maxwell Prize recognizes outstanding contributions to plasma physics broadly, while the John Dawson Award focuses specifically on achievements in plasma physics research. The Landau-Spitzer Award emphasizes advancing collaboration between U.S. and European plasma physics research, theory, or technical contributions. And the Thomas H. Stix Award recognizes contributions to plasma physics research by early career physicists. The Marshall N. Rosenbluth Outstanding Doctoral Thesis Award goes to a young plasma physicist who has performed original thesis work of outstanding scientific quality and achievement.

The Landau-Spitzer Award is presented in even years, while the rest of the DPP prizes and awards are presented annually. The prize and award citations follow, with links to the winners’ biographical information.

James Clerk Maxwell Prize for Plasma Physics
Keith H. Burrell, General Atomics

“For pioneering research, including key experimental advances and diagnostic development, that established the links between sheared plasma flow and turbulent transport, leading to improved confinement regimes for magnetized plasmas through turbulent transport reduction by sheared flow.”

John Dawson Award for Excellence in Plasma Physics Research
Todd E. Evans, General Atomics
Max E. Fenstermacher, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory
Richard Alan Moyer, University of California, San Diego

“For the first experimental demonstration of the stabilization of edge localized modes in high-confinement diverted discharges by application of very small edge-resonant magnetic perturbations, leading to the adoption of suppression coils in the ITER design.”

Landau-Spitzer Award
Yevgen Kazakov, Laboratory for Plasma Physics of the Royal Military Academy (LPP-ERM/KMS), Brussels, Belgium
Jozef Ongena, Laboratory for Plasma Physics of the Royal Military Academy (LPP/ERM-KMS) Brussels, Belgium
John C. Wright, MIT Plasma Science and Fusion Center
Stephen J. Wukitch, MIT Plasma Science and Fusion Center

“For experimental verification, through collaborative experiments, of a novel and highly efficient ion cyclotron resonance heating scenario for plasma heating and generation of energetic ions in magnetic fusion devices.”

Thomas H. Stix Award for Outstanding Early Career Contributions to Plasma Physics Research
Frederico Fiuza, SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory

“For seminal contributions that advanced the field of laboratory astrophysics through numerical simulations and leadership of experiments on particle acceleration, collisionless shocks, and magnetic reconnection.”

Marshall N. Rosenbluth Outstanding Doctoral Thesis Award
Seth Davidovits, Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory

“For major contributions to understanding, simulating, and diagnosing turbulence in compressing plasmas; for the identification of the sudden dissipation effect and suggestions for exploiting it; and for the derivation of a practical lower bound on turbulent dissipation in compressing plasma.”

Additional information about the prizes and awards, including their establishment and support, rules and eligibility, and their nomination and selection procedures are available at the

Contact: James Riordon, APS,, (301) 209-3238

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