Experimental Division, Senior Scientist
Rick Spielman received his Ph.D. in Plasma Physics from the University of California, Davis, in 1978. Moving to Sandia National Laboratories in 1979, he was first a Member of the Technical Staff, then a Principal Member of the Technical Staff, and finally a Distinguished Member of the Technical Staff. He was the Chief Scientist and Project Manager at Sandia for the successful Z Machine – the most powerful pulsed-power driver in the world. In 1999, he was promoted to be the Manager of the Pulsed Power Research Department in the Pulsed Power Center at Sandia. He then worked for 4 years in start-up companies. From 2005-2012 he was the Vice President of Pulsed Power of kTech Corporation. In 2013 he joined Idaho State University where he was a Professor of Physics and Director of the Idaho Accelerator Center, where he was part of the pulsed-power effort. Rick joined the University of Rochester, Laboratory for Laser Energetics as a Senior Scientist in 2019. He has been appointed Professor of Physics at the University of Rochester.
Research Interests: High voltage pulsed-power design and engineering, vacuum power flow, circuit modeling, and PIC modeling of transmission lines, turbulence, hypersonic flow, and laser-material interactions.
Research Overview: Dr. Spielman is leading the design effort for potential intermediate pulsed-power facility and is working with Sandia National Laboratories in the design of the refurbished Saturn accelerator and Next Generation Pulsed Power (NGPP). He is heading the LLE experimental effort for short-pulse laser effects with external customers. Dr. Spielman works closely with Dr. Petros Tzeferacos in the Department of Physics and Astronomy modeling hypersonic flow.