Profile photo

Suxing Hu

  • Associate Professor (Research), Department of Mechanical Engineering
  • Distinguished Scientist, Laboratory for Laser Energetics (LLE)
  • Group Leader, HEDP-Theory Group, LLE

PhD, Shanghai Institute of Optics and Fine Mechanics, Chinese Academy of Sciences, 1998

(585) 273-3794



Dr. Suxing Hu is a Distinguished Scientist and Group Leader of the theoretical High-Energy-Density Physics (HEDP) Group at the Laboratory for Laser Energetics, University of Rochester. His group focuses on the fundamental understanding of material/plasma properties under extreme conditions such as warm dense matter encountered in inertial confinement fusion, planetary science, and astrophysics. Dr. Hu started theoretical studies on how intense laser pulses interact with atoms, molecules, and clusters in late-1990s. He earned his Ph.D. in physics from the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS), at the Shanghai Institute of Optics and Fine Mechanics in 1998. He received the Distinguished Graduate Award from CAS in 1998 (only the top 20 out of 50,000 graduate students received this award annually). Dr. Hu was also awarded the Hundred Outstanding Doctorate Thesis Prize by China’s Department of Education in 2000. After graduation, he accepted the Alexander von Humboldt Fellowship and continued his theoretical AMO physics research at the University of Freiburg (with Dr. Christopher Keitel) and Max Born Institute (with Dr. Wilhelm Becker and Prof. Wolfgang Sandner) in Berlin, Germany. Having spent two years as a postdoc research associate at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln (with Prof. Anthony Starace), Dr. Hu became a Director’s Postdoc Fellow working with Dr. Lee Collins at Los Alamos National Laboratory in 2003. He joined LLE as a scientist in 2006 and became a Senior Scientist in 2013 and Distinguished Scientist in 2019. As a theoretician, he is interested in understanding how matter behaves under extreme conditions such as ultrahigh pressures [up to 100 peta-pascals (PPa)] and super-strong/ultrafast laser fields. He has published over 210 research articles in scientific journals that have received over ~7000 citations so far. For his significant contributions to ultrafast (attosecond) and strong-field physics, he was elected a Fellow of the American Physical Society in 2013, by APS’s Division of Atomic, Molecular, and Optical Physics (DAMOP).


Research Overview

My current research focuses on the following four physics areas:

Theoretical/Computational High-Energy-Density Physics (HEDP): We are interested in the fundamental understanding of how matter behaves under extreme conditions (ρ=10-1 ~ 107 g/cm3 & T=103~1010 K) widely existing in both laboratories and the universe. We perform first-principles investigations on the equation-of-state (EOS), transport properties, opacity, and stopping-power of materials at such extreme conditions through state-of-the-art methods, e.g., density-functional theory (DFT) based quantum molecular dynamics (QMD), orbital-free molecular dynamics (OFMD), path integral Monte-Carlo (PIMC), and quantum Monte-Carlo (QMC)  simulations. We are also exploring how Machine Learning and AI could help us understand HED physics better.

Inertial Confinement Fusion (ICF): Implementing/Using accurate first-principles-based EOS, transport, opacity, and stopping-power models in radiation-hydrodynamics codes for reliable ICF simulations; designing/analyzing implosion experiments to understand and control Rayleigh–Taylor instability growth and thermal-nuclear burns in ICF targets through multidimensional radiation-hydrodynamics simulations. We are also interested in alternative ICF target designs with the ultimate goal of realizing fusion ignition in laboratories.

Computational physics: Developing time-dependent density functional theory (TDDFT) codes for ab-initio studies of high-energy-density physics and chemistry; Exploring new rezoning/regriding strategies in Lagrangian hydrodynamics; Developing advanced finite-element algorithms for quantum/classical simulations of many-body systems

Ultrafast Dynamics & Attosecond Physics: Understanding the ultrafast (from attosecond to femtosecond time-scales) ionization and radiation in intense/ultrafast laser interactions with atoms, molecules, clusters, solids and plasmas.


Representative Publications

  1. S. X. Hu, V. V. Karasiev, V. Recoules, P. M. Nilson, N. Brouwer, and M. Torrent, “Interspecies Radiative Transition in Warm and Superdense Plasma Mixtures,” Nat. Commun.11, 1989 (2020).


  1. S. Zhang and S.  X Hu, “Species Separation and Hydrogen Streaming upon Shock Release from Polystyrene Under Inertial Confinement Fusion Conditions,” Phys. Rev. Lett. 125, 105001 (2020).


  1. S. X. Hu, V. N. Goncharov, P. B. Radha, S. P. Regan, E. M. Campbell, “Microphysics studies for direct-drive inertial confinement fusion”, Nuclear Fusion 59, 032011 (2019).


  1. R. Paul, S. X. Hu, V. V. Karasiev,“Anharmonic and Anomalous Trends in the High-Pressure Phase Diagram of Silicon”, Phys. Rev. Lett. 122, 125701 (2019).


  1. Y. H. Ding, A. J. White, S. X. Hu, O. Certik, L. A. Collins, “Ab initio studies on the stopping power of warm dense matter with time-dependent orbital-free density functional theory, Phys. Rev. Lett. 121, 145001 (2018).


  1. S. X. Hu, L. A. Collins, T. R. Boehly, Y. H. Ding, P. B. Radha, V. N. Goncharov, V. V. Karasiev, G. W. Collins, S. P. Regan, E. M. Campbell, “A review on ab initio studies of static, transport, and optical properties of polystyrene under extreme conditions for inertial confinement fusion applications”, Phys. Plasmas 25, 056306 (2018) [Invited].


  1. S. X. Hu, “Continuum Lowering and Fermi-Surface Rising in Strongly-Coupled and Degenerate Plasmas”, Phys. Rev. Lett. 119, 065001 (2017).


  1. S. X. Hu, L. A. Collins, J. P. Colgan, V. N. Goncharov, D. P. Kilcrease, “Optical properties of highly compressed polystyrene: An ab initio study”, Phys. Rev. B 96, 144203 (2017).


  1. S. X. Hu, R. Gao, Y. Ding, L. A. Collins, J. D. Kress, “First-principles equation-of-state (FPEOS) tables of silicon and its effects on high-energy-density plasma simulations”, Phys. Rev. E 95, 043210 (2017).

    10. S. X. Hu, B. Militzer, L. A. Collins, K. P. Driver, J. D. Kress, “First-principles prediction of the           softening of Silicon along its Shock Hugoniot”, Phys. Rev. B 94, 094109 (2016).


  1. S. X. Hu, V. N. Goncharov, T. R. Boehly, R. L. McCrory, S. Skupsky, L. A. Collins, J. D. Kress, and B. Militzer, “Impact of first-principles properties of warm-dense deuterium- tritium on inertial confinement fusion target designs”, Phys. Plasmas 22, 056304 (2015) (invited).


  1. S. X. Hu, L. A. Collins, T. R. Boehly, J. D. Kress, V. N. Goncharov, and S. Skupsky, “First- principles thermal conductivity of warm-dense deuterium plasmas for inertial confinement fusion applications”, Phys. Rev. E 89, 043105 (2014).


  1. S. X. Hu, “Boosting photo-absorption by attosecond control of electron correlation”, Phys. Rev. Lett. 111, 123003 (2013).


  1. S. X. Hu, G. Fiksel, V. N. Goncharov, S. Skupsky, D. D. Meyerhofer, V.A. smalyuk, “Mitigating laser imprint in direct-drive ICF implosions with high-Z dopants”, Phys. Rev. Lett. 108, 195003 (2012).


  1. S. X. Hu, B. Militzer, V. N. Goncharov, S. Skupsky, “First-principles equation-of-state table of deuterium for inertial confinement fusion applications”, Phys. Rev. B 84, 224109 (2011).


  1. S. X. Hu, B. Militzer, V. N. Goncharov, S. Skupsky, “Strong coupling and degeneracy effects in inertial-confinement-fusion implosions”, Phys. Rev. Lett. 104, 235003 (2010).


  1. S. X. Hu, L. A. Collins, B. I. Schneider, “Attosecond photoelectron microscopy of H2+”, Phys. Rev. A 80, 023426 (2009) [Viewpointed in Physics 2, 72 (2009)].


  1. S. X. Hu, V. A. Smalyuk, V. N. Goncharov, S. Skupsky, T. C. Sangster, D. D. Meyerhofer, D. Shvarts, “Validation of thermal-transport modeling with direct-drive planar-foil acceleration  experiments on OMEGA”, Phys. Rev. Lett. 101, 055002 (2008).


  1. S. X. Hu, V. A. Smalyuk, V. N. Goncharov, J. P. Knauer, P. B. Radha, I. V. Igumenshchev, J. A. Marozas, C. Stoeckl, B. Yaakobi, D. Shvarts, T. C. Sangster, P. W. McKenty, D. D. Meyerhofer, S. Skupsky, and R. L. McCrory, “Studies of plastic-ablator compressibility for direct-drive inertial confinement fusion on OMEGA”, Phys. Rev. Lett. 100, 185003 (2008).



  1. S. X. Hu, “Three-body recombination of atomic ions with slow electrons”, Phys. Rev. Lett. 98, 133201 (2007).


  1. S. X. Hu, L. A. Collins, "Attosecond pump-probe: exploring ultrafast electron motion inside an atom”, Phys. Rev. Lett. 96, 073004 (2006). [Highlighted in LANL NewsLetter &]


  1. S. X. Hu, D. Vrinceanu, S. Mazevet, L. A. Collins, "Molecular dynamics simulations of cold antihydrogen formation in strongly magnetized plasmas", Phys. Rev. Lett. 95, 163402 (2005).


  1. S. X. Hu, L. A. Collins, "Imaging molecular structures by electron diffraction using an intense few-cycle pulse", Phys. Rev. Lett. 94, 073004 (2005).


  1. S. X. Hu, A. F. Starace, "GeV electrons from ultra-intense laser interactions with highly charged ions", Phys. Rev. Lett. 88, 245003 (2002).


  1. S. X. Hu and C. H. Keitel, "Spin signatures in intense laser-ion interaction", Phys. Rev. Lett. 83, 4709 (1999).


  1. S. X. Hu, Z. Z. Xu, "Dynamics of an intense laser-driven multi-well system: A model of ionized clusters", Phys. Rev. A 56, 3916 (1997).


  1. S. X. Hu, Z. Z. Xu, "Enhanced harmonic emission from ionized clusters in intense laser pulses", Appl. Phys. Lett. 71, 2605 (1997).



Full Publication List can be found on Google-Scholar (


Research Interests

  • Theoretical/Computational High-Energy-Density Physics
  • Inertial Confinement Fusion
  • Warm-/Hot-Dense Matter
  • Intense Laser-Matter Interactions
  • Ultrafast Dynamics
  • Attosecond Physics
  • Computational Atomic
  • Molecular
  • Optical Physics