Prize Recipient

Recipient Picture

Troy Carter
University of California, Los Angeles


"For the experimental investigation of driven magnetic reconnection in a laboratory plasma. In this work, careful diagnostic studies of the current sheet structure, dynamics and associated wave activity provide a compre-hensive picture of the reconnection process."


Troy Carter received B.S. degrees in physics and in nuclear engineering (summa cum laude) from North Carolina State University in 1995. He received his Ph.D. in Astrophysical Sciences in 2001 from Princeton University, where he was supported first by an NSF Graduate Research Fellowship and later by a NASA Graduate Student Researchers Program Fellowship. For his dissertation, he performed an experimental study of turbulence in the current sheet of the Magnetic Reconnection Experiment, supervised by Dr. Masaaki Yamada and Prof. Russell Kulsrud. This work provided the first experimental evidence of the operation of the lower-hybrid drift instability in a laboratory current sheet and with it the first opportunity to study the role of the instability in the process of magnetic reconnection. After completing his graduate work, Dr. Carter was awarded a DOE Magnetic Fusion Energy Postdoctoral Fellowship, which he took to UCLA to pursue experimental studies of turbulence and transport in magnetized plasmas. Dr. Carter is now continuing this work as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Physics and Astronomy at UCLA.

Selection Committee:

Ricardo Betti (Chair), Christina Back (12/02), Richard Groebner ('01 Rcpnt) (12/02), Y.Y. Lau (V Chair) (12/03), K. (Dennis) Papadopoulos (12/03)