The Z machine is located in Albuquerque, N.M., and is part of the Pulsed Power Program, which started at Sandia National Laboratories back in the 1960s (courtesy Sandia).

As part of its science and national security missions, the U.S. Department of Energy National Nuclear Security Administration (DOE NNSA) supports a broad spectrum of basic and applied research in science and engineering at the agency's national laboratories, at universities and in industry. Because of its continuing needs, NNSA has a special interest in encouraging development of the next generation of leaders in stewardship science.

The DOE NNSA SSGF program's primary objective is to encourage the training of scientists by providing financial support to talented students who study and research designated areas of stewardship science accompanied by practical work experience at DOE NNSA research facilities.

Read below for a detailed description of the fields supported by the DOE NNSA SSGF. You may also view a list of current DOE NNSA SSGF fellows involved in each area of research.

Learn more about the DOE NNSA's mission specific to stewardship science by visiting their Office of Research, Development, Test, and Evaluation website.


The fellowship supports graduate students planning to study high energy density physics and fluid dynamics, with particular emphasis on experimental investigations using lasers and/or pulsed-power technology. This includes research in hydrodynamics, plasma physics, properties of materials under high energy density conditions, inertial fusion, atomic physics, radiation generation, the interaction of radiation with matter and physics of turbulence and fluid interfaces. Additional research areas the fellowship supports include turbulence and fluid interface physics, the understanding of astrophysical phenomena, and developing novel diagnostic and measurement techniques to study phenomena under high energy density conditions.

The DOE NNSA SSGF supports investigations leading to more accurate nuclear science knowledge with an emphasis on low energies. Some examples include development of advanced simulations and measurement techniques leading to improved radiation- and particle-detection methods, a more complete understanding of fission physics, advanced diagnostic techniques relevant to high-energy proton radiography and X-ray radiography, and the development of experimental diagnostic techniques for laser or pulsed-power implosion systems.

Examples of research subjects the fellowship supports in this area include the static and dynamic properties of materials under extreme conditions of high pressure, high temperature, high strain and high strain-rate; materials' thermodynamic properties and mechanical constitutive properties; hydrodynamic experiments in low energy density physics and condensed matter physics regimes where materials' properties dominate; and the development of novel advanced diagnostics and measurement techniques.