Fusion and Astrophysical Plasma Physics Group

The Fusion and Astrophysical Plasma Physics Group within the Physics Department and the Center for Astrophysics and Space Sciences at the University of California, San Diego is led by Professor Patrick H. Diamond, Distinguished Professor of Physics, and consists of two research scientists-- Mikhail Malkov, Fred Hinton, and two graduate student researchers-- and is managed by an administrative assistant.

Most Recent Publication:

Dynamics of Structures in Configuration Space and Phase Space: An Introductory Tutorial - P.H. Diamond, Y. Kosuga and M. Lesur

Some basic ideas relevant to the dynamics of phase space and real space structures are presented in a pedagogical fashion. We focus on three paradigmatic examples, namely G.I. Taylor's structure based re-formulation of Rayleigh's stability criterion and its implications for zonal flow momentum balance relations; Dupree's mechanism for nonlinear current driven ion acoustic instability and its implication for anomalous resistivity; and the dynamics of structures in drift and gyrokinetic turbulence and their relation to zonal flow physics. We briefly survey the extension of mean field theory to calculate evolution in the presence of localized structures for regimes where kubo number K 1 rather than K << 1, as is usual for quasilinear theory.



To the memory of Professor Marshall N. Rosenbluth - an American plasma physicist and member of the National Academy of Sciences - who passed away on September 23, 2003.


We are working primarily on the theory of fusion plasma including:

  • Nonlinear dynamics of plasmas and fluids
  • Anomalous transport
  • Self-organized criticality in confined plasma
  • L-H transition, transport barrier physics
  • Dynamo theory
  • Nonlinear waves in space plasma



Our work is primarily funded by the Office of Fusion Energy Sciences of the U.S. Department of Energy.

Grant No. DE-FG02-04ER54738.