Prize Recipient

Recipient Picture

Chikang Li
Massachusetts Institute of Technology


"For pioneering use of proton radiography to reveal new aspects of flows, instabilities, and fields in high-energy-density plasmas."


Chikang Li earned his Ph.D. in applied plasma physics in 1993 at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology after receiving a B.S. from Sichuan University in 1982. He is a senior scientist at the Plasma Science and Fusion Center at MIT, where he is also the associate head of the High-Energy-Density Physics Division, which he co-founded. His research interests are in experimental and theoretical studies of high-energy-density physics and inertial-confinement-fusion (ICF) implosions. After developing theoretical models for charged particles interacting with dense plasmas, Dr. Li helped design and build charged-particle diagnostics for laser-produced plasmas at the Omega Laser Facility and at the National Ignition Facility (NIF). He went on to use these technologies to delineate dynamics and critical parameters of ICF implosions. His recent research has focused on using proton radiography to study the generation, evolution, reconnection, and instability of spontaneously generated magnetic fields; the evolution of areal density and internal electric fields in ICF implosions; the evolving fields and flows in laser-driven hohlraums; the evolution of astrophysical jets in laboratory scaled experiments; and the stopping powers in Warm Dense Matters and classic plasmas. He has authored or coauthored more than 280 peer-reviewed journal papers. Dr. Li chaired the High-Energy-Density Science Association from 2011-2012 and has been an American Physical Society fellow since 2006.

Selection Committee:

2017 Selection Committee Members: Scott Baalrud, Univ. of Iowa (Chair); Walter Gekelman, UCLA (Vice Chair); Francesca Turco, Columbia University; James Bailey, Sandia National Laboratories (2016 recipient); Marilyn Schneider, LLNL