Above: The HIDRA control station
For the first time since HIDRA arrived at the Center for Plasma-Material Interactions, thousands of amps of current ran through its magnetic coils – all controlled from one place.
HIDRA, the Hybrid Illinois Device for Research and Applications, arrived on site from Germany in late 2014. Since then, students and university staff have worked together under the direction of Professor Daniel Andruczyk to assemble the machine and commission all of its systems. Their efforts led to the successful creation of the first plasma in HIDRA, achieved just over one year ago in April, 2016.
In the past year, work has been done to develop and install a control system so that the entire machine can be run from a single control station. The control software was written by undergraduate student Dan Johnson and implemented with assistance from Quad Plus. Graduate student Rabel Rizkallah and undergraduates Andrew Stone and Zack Jeckell all contributed many long hours of work to prepare the machine for testing the new system.
Last week, the HIDRA team commissioned the control system and successfully ran thousands of amps through the machine’s magnetic coils. “This was really a major milestone”, according to CPMI director Professor David Ruzic. “We are fully capable now of running any current.”
Having full computer control over the magnets makes it possible for the operator to program in exactly how much current they want to flow through the coils and for exactly how long. This flexibility opens the door to running world-class experiments on HIDRA, and will support the team’s collaborations with the Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory and the EAST experiment in China.
CPMI’s own Matthew Parsons was featured in Science Magazine this week! Young scientists from a variety of fields were asked to address the issue of what changes are required to preserve Earth’s ecosystems and biodiversity, specifically in their field. Matt’s response was featured: “To protect our environment, we must replace fossil fuels with cleaner energy options. One possibility, nuclear fusion, produces energy when hot hydrogen nuclei collide to form helium. At such high temperatures, hydrogen becomes
a new state of matter: plasma. Plasma physicists and engineers around the world are working together to learn how to con- trol plasmas, so that the energy produced in fusion reactions can be used to create electricity.” The entire article can be found here! Congratulations, Matt!
CPMI Director Professor Ruzic and graduate students Dren Qerimi and Gianluca Panici were in San Jose this past week at the SPIE Advanced Lithography Conference. While at this conference, Gianluca was featured in an oral presentation on his poster on Study of ion-enhanced Sn removal by surface wave plasma for collector cleaning!
Postdoctoral search now OPEN! The Center for Plasma Material interactions (CPMI) at the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign is looking to fill in a position at the post-doctoral research associate level, who will work on research areas relevant to plasma material interactions for several applications.The Center for Plasma-Material Interactions currently has 12 graduate students, and over 20 undergraduate researchers. In particular, we are looking for expertise in the field of atmospheric pressure plasmas for material modification/coatings.
More information can be found here PostDoc Illinois Ruzic 2017
Congratulations to Peter Fiflis for being named the 2017 Ross J. Martin Award recipient! The college-wide selection honors an outstanding graduate student for their research achievements – both in quality and magnitude. More information regarding the award can be found at this link. Congratulations, Peter, on a very well deserved award!
CPMI had a special visitor on Wednesday! President Tim Killeen visited and toured the lab, learning about CPMI and HIDRA from Professors Ruzic and Andruczyk. We were very excited about him coming to visit and learning about our liquid-metal fusion research.
Pictured is President Tim Killeen controlling a glow discharge with a magnet with CPMI Director, Professor David Ruzic
It’s true! Prof. Ruzic is back at it again with his famous demos, this time regarding surface tension. As part of NPRE/ENVS 101, Prof. Ruzic utilizes demos (and explosions) to intrigue students and energize their learning of new topics. As Chris Angel once did, Prof. Ruzic put his own spin on the “walking on water” trick. His own version included walking on water at the Activities and Recreation Center and teaching students about the concept of surface tension. His video can be viewed at https://youtu.be/rvi8Wd9rAlA
Prof. Ruzic is currently in Athens, Greece attending the seventh iPlasmaNano conference as an invited speaker! His talk is titled “Nano-Texturing by Femtosecond Laser Application” and he is excited to share. Throughout the week, he will be attending various talks related to plasma nano science, nanotechnology and its applications. More information regarding this conference can be found at http://www.iplasmanano.org/index.php.
CPMI is proud to announce that we have received a grant from LAM Research entitled “System to Measure Nitrogen Radical Concentrations”. We are excited to expand our work with LAM into this new area. Additionally, we welcome back our senior-most graduate student, Jason Peck, after his very successful 6-month internship at LAM!
Professor Ruzic was formally renamed as the Scientific Director of the International Union for Vacuum Science, Technique, and Applications (IUVSTA) at last month’s International Vacuum Congress (IVC-20), which was held in Busan, Korea. This officer position has a 3 year duration during which he will lead efforts across all nine technical divisions to sponsor schools, workshops, and technical training courses in and among the 33 member countries. IUVSTA is an umbrella organization of “vacuum” or “surface and interfaces” technical societies from across the world. More information can be found at http://www.iuvsta.org