Degree: Ph.D. in astrophysical sciences from Princeton University
Research: Plasma physics and quantum field theory
Joined LLNL: October 2018
Research at LLNL: Yuan works at the interface of plasma physics and quantum field theory, with the aim to break through bottlenecks in laser technology, theoretical physics, and scientific computing. (1) For laser technology, he exploits magnetized plasmas as new lasing media, and unfolds the physics underlying magnetized laser–plasma interactions, which is rich and largely uncharted. (2) For theoretical physics, he invents models to describe relativistic quantum phenomena in plasmas, such as laser-induced pair production, and explores how the presence of dark matter could modify properties of elementary particles. (3) For scientific computing, he creates algorithms for simulating QED plasmas, and develops toy problems for current quantum computers, which may ultimately surpass the capabilities of modern computers.
Bio: Yuan Shi earned his B.Sc. degree in mathematics and physics from the University of Hong Kong with minors in chemistry and biology. He earned his M.A. (2014) and Ph.D. (2018) in astrophysical sciences, Program in Plasma Physics, from Princeton University. There, he did an experimental project on laser diagnostics of Hall thrusters with Yevgeny Raitses and Ahmed Diallo, and a computational project on gyrokinetic turbulence with William Tang and Bei Wang, before completing his thesis project on strong-field plasma physics with Hong Qin and Nathaniel Fisch. Yuan Shi is a recipient of the Rosita King Ho Scholarship and the Carl Oberman Fellowship.
Joined the PLS/Physics Directorate in 2018