The Computational Plasma Dynamics Lab's research projects focus on developing novel computational algorithms that simulate plasma dynamics with high-order accuracy using high-fidelity plasma models.
The plasmas are modeled with the magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) model and by more physically complete multi-fluid and kinetic plasma models. Multi-fluid and multi-species models allow for separate treatment of plasma and neutral constituents. The algorithms are implemented on parallel supercomputers using the message passing interface (MPI).
The codes are applied to study computational plasma science and develop insight into plasma phenomena. Codes developed include a 3-D MHD code, WARP3, a co-located electrodynamics code that includes current sources, WARP4, and a full multi-fluid (electron, ion, neutrals, impurities, ...) code, WARPX, a continuum kinetic code WARPM, and a full multi-fluid code for unstructured grids WARPXM. The codes and models are coupled to form hybrid combinations.
Electron number density contours of a developed lower hybrid drift instability. The instability develops from a planar current sheet with in-plane current to the left and out-of-plane magnetic fields into the top of the figure and out of the bottom of the page.