Home Morningside Events - Morningside Area Alliance Lectures Plasma Physics Colloquium with Carolyn Kuranz, Univ. of Michigan

Plasma Physics Colloquium with Carolyn Kuranz, Univ. of Michigan

Speaker: Carolyn Kuranz, University of Michigan

Title: Creating Astrophysically Relevant Systems in the Laboratory in the High-Energy-Density Regime

Abstract: Laboratory astrophysics can provide insight into some astrophysical objects or processes, which are often observed from great distances under uncontrolled and unknown conditions.  For an experiment to be well-scaled to an astrophysical process, several specific conditions must be considered, including key governing equations, specific spatial and temporal scaling, and global dynamics. In some cases, these conditions can be met using high-energy-density experimental facilities, such as, high-energy lasers or pulsed power devices. Experiments conducted at the National Ignition Facility are relevant to SN1993J, a red supergiant, core-collapse supernova. We focused on the Rayleigh-Taylor instable interface between the forward and reverse shocks in SN1933J. Here the forward shock is moving into the low-density circumstellar medium and is highly radiative. In the scaled experiments, a hohlraum drive creates a blast wave structure in a mm-scale target with a decrease in density at a perturbed interface.  After the blast wave moves into the lower density material, the perturbation with grow due to hydrodynamics instabilities and the shock becomes radiative. We have detected the evolution of the interface structure under these conditions and will show the resulting experimental and radiation hydrodynamics simulation data. We found that significant energy fluxes from radiation and thermal heat conduction affect the hydrodynamics growth at the interface. Such effects are not currently included in astrophysical models but will have significant effects on the interface structure.

Bio: Professor Kuranz is an experimental plasma physicist with research interests in high-energy-density plasmas, hydrodynamic instabilities, radiation hydrodynamics, and magnetized plasmas. She performs her research on high-power laser facilities around the world, including the National Ignition Facility and the Omega Laser Facility. Professor Kuranz received her PhD in Applied Physics from the University of Michigan in 2009 and her Bachelors in Physics from Bryn Mawr College in 2002. Recently she was named a Fellow of the American Physical Society and has been awarded the Ted Kennedy Family Faculty Team Excellence Award and the American Astronomical Society Laboratory Astrophysics Division Early Career Award. Professor Kuranz also serves as Director for the Center for Laboratory Astrophysics, a National Nuclear Security Administration Center of Excellence, and has a joint appointment in the U-M Climate and Space Sciences Engineering Department.

This talk will be offered in a hybrid format. If you wish to participate remotely, please send an email to cr2090@columbia.edu.

Event Contact Information:
APAM Department


Oct 06 2023


3:00 pm - 4:00 pm

Formats (virtual, in person, hybrid)



Columbia University - Mudd Hall
500 West 120th Street


Columbia University
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