Zhihong Lin


Professor of Physics and Astronomy

University of California, Irvine, CA 92697, USA

Tel: 949-824-2717; Email: zhihongl@uci.edu



Google Scholars



I study the physics of high temperature plasma, the fourth state of matter, which constitutes 99 percent of the visible universe. Plasma physics is the scientific foundation for fusion energy, which powers the stars such as the Sun and promises for an environmentally clean and unlimited energy source for the mankind. I use advanced simulations on the world’s fastest supercomputers to study turbulent transport, which is one of the most important scientific challenges in burning plasma experiment ITER, the crucial next step in the quest for the fusion energy and the biggest international science collaboration involving US, EU, China, India, Japan, Russia, and South Korea. International collaboration plays a vital role in fusion simulations in support of ITER.


Because of the cross-disciplinary nature, fusion simulations in US have consolidated into eight multi-institutional projects in the US Department of Energy (DOE) Scientific Discovery through Advanced Computing (SciDAC) initiative. I lead the Center for Integrated Simulation of Energetic Particles (ISEP), a consortium of UCI, General Atomics (GA), and national laboratories PPPL, ORNL, LLNL, LBNL. The confinement of energetic particles is a critical issue for ITER because the ignition relies on the self-heating by energetic fusion products (α-particles).


I lead a DOE CAAR project, a consortium of UCI, Princeton University (PU), ORNL, and hardware vendors IBM and NVDIA to optimize a flagship fusion code GTC on the GPU-based Summit computer at ORNL available in late 2018, which will be the world’s fastest supercomputer with a speed of 200PF (i.e., performing 2x1017 calculations for second). The Center for Accelerated Application Readiness (CAAR) is a DOE program to prepare prominent codes across all DOE supported research portfolio for the emerging exa-scale computers (i.e., 1018 calculations for second) available in 2021.


My first-principles massively parallel simulations and associated theory have led to physics discovery in turbulence self-regulation by zonal flows, transport scaling, wave-particle decorrelation, energetic particle transport, Alfven eigenmodes in fusion plasmas.


Selected Recent Publications:

·        A conservative scheme for electromagnetic simulation of magnetized plasmas with kinetic electrons, J. Bao, Z. Lin, and Z. X. Lu, Phys. Plasmas 25, 022515 (2018).

·        Particle simulation of radio frequency waves with fully-kinetic ions and gyrokinetic electrons, Jingbo Lin, Wenlu Zhang, Pengfei Liu, Zhihong Lin, Chao Dong, Jintao Cao, and Ding Li, Nuclear Fusion 58, 016024 (2018).

·        Pushforward Transformation of Gyrokinetic Moments under Electromagnetic Fluctuations, Pengfei Liu, Wenlu Zhang, Chao Dong, Jingbo Lin, Zhihong Lin, Jintao Cao, and Ding Li, Phys. Plasmas 24, 112114 (2017).

·        A conservative scheme of drift kinetic electrons for gyrokinetic simulation of kinetic-MHD processes in toroidal plasmas, J. Bao, D. Liu, Z. Lin, Phys. Plasmas 24, 102516 (2017).

·        A closed high-frequency Vlasov-Maxwell simulation model in toroidal geometry, Pengfei Liu, Wenlu Zhang, Chao Dong, Jingbo Lin, Zhihong Lin, and Jintao Cao, Nuclear Fusion 57, 126011 (2017).

·        Nonlinear Co-existence of Beta-induced Alfvén Eigenmodes and Beta-induced Alfvén-acoustic Eigenmodes, Junyi Cheng, Wenlu Zhang, Zhihong Lin, Ding Li, Chao Dong, Jintao Cao, Phys. Plasmas 24, 092516 (2017).

·        Excitation of Low Frequency Alfven Eigenmodes in Toroidal Plasmas, Yaqi Liu, Zhihong Lin, Huasen Zhang, Wenlu Zhang, Nuclear Fusion 57, 114001 (2017).

·        Gyrokinetic particle simulations of the effects of compressional magnetic perturbations on drift-Alfvenic instabilities in tokamaks, Ge Dong, Jian Bao, Amitava Bhattacharjee, Alain Brizard, Zhihong Lin, and Peter Porazik, Phys. Plasmas 24, 081205 (2017).

·        Effects of electron cyclotron current drive on magnetic islands in tokamak plasmas, J. C. Li, C. J. Xiao, Z. H. Lin, K. J. Wang, Phys. Plasmas 24, 082508 (2017).

·        Drift-wave Stabilities in the Field-Reversed Configuration, C. K. Lau, D. P. Fulton, I. Holod, Z. Lin, M. Binderbauer, T. Tajima, and L. Schmitz, Phys. Plasmas 24, 082512 (2017).

·        New Paradigm for Turbulent Transport Across a Steep Gradient in Toroidal Plasmas, H. S. Xie, Y. Xiao, and Z. Lin, Phys. Rev. Lett. 118, 095001 (2017).

·        Effects of Magnetic Islands on Bootstrap Current in Toroidal Plasmas, G. Dong, Z. Lin, Nuclear Fusion 57, 036009 (2017).

·        Effects of Resonant Magnetic Perturbations on Microturbulence in DIII-D Pedestal, I. Holod, Z. Lin, S. Taimourzadeh, R. Nazikian, D. Spong, and A. Wingen, Nuclear Fusion 57, 016005 (2017).

·        Suppressed ion-scale turbulence in a hot high-b plasma, L. Schmitz, D. P. Fulton, E. Ruskov, C. Lau, B. H. Deng, T. Tajima, M. W. Binderbauer, I. Holod, Z. Lin, H. Gota, M. Tuszewski, S. A. Dettrick, L.C. Steinhauer, Nature Communications 7, 13860 (2016).