Livermore researchers win PECASE

Whitley and Banks

The Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE) is the highest honor bestowed by the U.S. Government on science and engineering professionals in the early stages of their independent research careers. Two LLNL researchers won a PECASE Award in 2012, and both of them have received LDRD support at critical stages in their award-winning research.

Heather Whitley

Whitley was recognized “for using path-integral Monte Carlo techniques to produce very accurate quantum statistical potentials for use in molecular dynamic codes, for applying these methods to first-principles understanding of thermal conductivity in ignition capsules for the National Ignition Facility, and for service to the laboratory Postdoctoral Association.” Heather was involved in the LDRD Strategic Initiative "The Microphysics of Burning, Hot Dense Radiative Plasmas." The paper she published in the journal High Energy Density Physics with the principal investigator of that project, Frank Graziani, was a backbone of the work for her nomination.

Jeffrey Banks

Banks was nominated by NNSA’s Office of Defense Programs for his work in computational physics, scientific computation, and numerical analysis, specifically for his pioneering contributions in numerical approximations to hyperbolic partial differential equations focusing on the development and analysis of nonlinear and high-resolution finite-volume and finite-difference methods, and for service to high schools and the scientific community. Jeff was a key contributor to an LDRD project titled "Efficient Numerical Algorithms for Vlasov Simulation of Laser–Plasma Interactions." He also contributed to an LDRD Strategic Initiative titled "The Advance of Uncertainty Quantification Science."