Awards & Fellowships
count: [2012-05-15]

2004 International S&T Cooperation Award of People’s Republic of China

Kenneth Gentle

Prof Kenneth Gentle attended the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, receiving an S.B. (1962) and Ph.D. (1966) in physics.  He continued as an instructor there in 1966.  He was appointed Assistant Professor of Physics at the University of Texas at Austin in 1966, Associate Professor in 1970, and Professor in 1976.  In 1964, when he was 24, Gentle published a paper titled “Effect of Gas Flow on the Properties of a Plasma Column” in Nature. He received an Alfred Sloan Fellowship for 1973-75.  He was appointed Josey Professor of Energy, 1986-88.

  Since 1966, he has been engaged in a variety of experiments on nonlinear plasma waves, weak plasma turbulence, strong plasma turbulence, and tokamak confinement physics.  In 1973, he assumed leadership of the first tokamak experiment at the University of Texas.  In 1976, he initiated the TEXT Tokamak project, serving as director until 1985.  He received a Department of Energy Certificate of Appreciation for this work in 1985.

He continued to work on TEXT, engaging in a number of experiments on transport and heating, until the completion of the project in 1996.  He has also conducted particle transport experiments on ASDEX as a guest of the Max Planck Institute for Plasma Physics, Munich, in a collaboration begun in 1986. 

His current transport research involves tokamak experiments using DIII-D at General Atomics, San Diego, CMOD at MIT, and HT-7 at Hefei, PRC.  The research concentrates on energy transport by electrons, the most complex of the transport channels.  Unique analyses of perturbations and transients have illuminated several novel phenomena.  He is also conducting experiments on a new device, the Helimak, for fundamental studies of plasma turbulence in a comparatively simple geometry, the sheared, cylindrical slab.

He has served on a number of advisory committees and review panels for the National Academy of Sciences, National Science Foundation, and Department of Energy.  In 1989, he served on the Foreign Applied Sciences Assessment Center panel assessing the West European magnetic fusion program, writing the chapter on tokamaks.  He is a member of the International Advisory Committee for EAST.
He has taught a great variety of graduate and undergraduate courses over the years but most often teaches undergraduate mechanics and electromagnetism courses, both lower and upper division.

He was chairman of the physics department from January, 1997, until January, 2001,  and has been Director of the Fusion Research Center since August, 1998.
  He is a Fellow of the American Physical Society and a member of the European Physical Society and the American Association for the Advancement of Science.
  He is a Consultant Professor of Huazhong University of Science and Technology (2002-4).

   2009 International S&T Cooperation Award of People’s Republic of China

  Vincent Chan

   Ph.D., Plasma Physics, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 
   1975 M.S., Electrical Engineering, University of Wisconsin-Madison,
   1973 B.S., Electrical Engineering, University of Wisconsin-Madison (High Honors),
   1972 Management Positions (General Atomics 1975 - present)
   1998-present  Director, Theory and Computational Science Division, Energy Group
   1991-1998 Director, Core Physics Division, DIII-D National Fusion Facility, Fusion
   1987-1991 Manager, Theory Department, Fusion
   1982-1987 Manager, Wave Heating Branch, Theory Department, Fusion

Honors and Recognitions
   - Eugene Hotaling Undergraduate Fellow (1971-72)
   - Wisconsin Alumni Foundation Research Fellow (1972-73)
   - Fellow, American Physical Society (since 1988)
   - Joint Institute of Fusion Theory Visiting Professor, Japan (1998)
   - US-PRC Magnetic Fusion Research Collaboration Coordinator (2000- present)
   - Chair, Magnetic Fusion Theory Coordinating Committee (2001-2005)
   - Member, DOE Fusion Energy Science Advisory Committee (2001-2003, 2007)
   - Chair, American Physical Society Division of Plasma Physics (2007)
   - Member, University of Wisconsin-Madison College of Engineering Industrial Advisory        
   - Board (2008-2011)