Ryan McBride, an associate professor in the U-M Department of Nuclear Engineering & Radiological Sciences, is the primary author of the paper selected as the winner of the 2021 Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) Transactions on Plasma Science (TPS) Best Paper Award. The paper, “A Primer on Pulsed Power and Linear Transformer Drivers for High Energy Density Physics Applications,” was published in November of 2018. Additional authors from NERS include PhD student Brendan Sporer, Associate Research Scientist Nicholas Jordan, and professors Yue-Ying Lau and Ronald Gilgenbach, all of whom conduct research in the Plasma, Pulsed Power, and Microwave Laboratory (PPML).
The IEEE TPS Best Paper Award is given annually to the paper deemed the best among those published in the IEEE Transactions on Plasma Science journal, and there is a mandatory 3-year delay from the time of publication to the time of the award announcement. The primary considerations in determining the best paper are its quantifiable usefulness to the community, including factors such as the number of downloads and citations, and its quality and clarity of presentation.
McBride was invited to give a tutorial presentation at the Mini-Course on Charged Particle Beams and High-Powered Pulsed Sources at the 2017 IEEE International Conference on Plasma Science (ICOPS). Presenters were challenged with bringing students and researchers who were new to the field up to speed quickly and efficiently. The mini-course speakers were then invited to publish their tutorials in the IEEE TPS journal, with emphasis placed on clear, simple explanations for the way things work in the field, and using language that students and new researchers can follow.
McBride’s tutorial reviews the current state of the field of pulsed-power-driven high-energy-density physics (HEDP). The field of pulsed-power-driven HEDP uses pulsed-power machines to deliver powerful bursts of electromagnetic energy (trillions of watts). These electromagnetic pulses are used to compress matter to extreme conditions. Applications include nuclear fusion, material properties, laboratory astrophysics, and radiation generation (e.g., neutrons, x-rays, and microwaves).
“This is a very exciting honor!” said McBride. “I would like to thank my many co-authors for their contributions to the paper, as well as the editors and reviewers at IEEE TPS for their support in preparing the paper. I hope that this paper serves as a valuable resource to the community for many years to come!”
The award will be presented to McBride at the 2021 IEEE Pulsed Power Conference & Symposium on Fusion Engineering this December.