About CMEC 

Our Mission

The Center for Matter under Extreme Conditions (CMEC) leads research and technological breakthroughs in High Energy Density Physics (HEDP) with emphasis on creation and diagnosis of extreme states of matter, both un-magnetized and magnetized, exploiting novel combinations of HED drivers to train future scientists, utilizing both modeling and experiments to develop a physics understanding of HED systems. The Center also addresses the complex, interdisciplinary scientific problems pertinent to the Stockpile Stewardship Program (SSP). Learn more about the SSP below. 

The Center is based at UC San Diego's Center for Energy Research (CER), which is led by CER Director and CMEC PI, Farhat Beg. CMEC is a multi-University and National Laboratory collaboration. Our collaborators are listed below. For more information, please visit our Team page.  

Our Funding

Department of Energy’s National Nuclear Security Administration

Defense Programs, within the Department of Energy’s (DOE) National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA), directs research and development activities to maintain the safety, security, and effectiveness of the nation’s nuclear weapons stockpile. This nuclear deterrent remains a vital part of our national security infrastructure. It maintains strategic stability, deters potential adversaries, and reassures our allies and partners of our security commitments. Since 1992, the United States has observed the moratorium on underground nuclear testing while significantly decreasing the size of its nuclear arsenal. National Policy required NNSA and its weapons laboratories to institute the science-based Stockpile Stewardship Program (SSP) to ensure the safety, security, and effectiveness of the stockpile, while allowing the country to pursue a variety of nonproliferation and disarmament goals. The SSP combines sophisticated experiments, highly accurate physics modeling, and improved computational power to simulate and predict nuclear weapon performance over a wide range of conditions and scenarios.

The Stewardship Science Academic Alliances (SSAA) Program was established in 2002 to support state-of-the-art research at U.S. academic institutions in areas of fundamental physical science and technology of relevance to the SSP mission. The SSAA Program provides the research experience necessary to maintain a cadre of trained scientists at U.S. universities to meet the nation’s current and future SSP needs, with a focus on those areas not supported by other federal agencies. It supports the DOE/NNSA’s priorities both to address the workforce specific needs in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics and to support the next generation of professionals who will meet those needs.

The objectives of the SSAA Program are to: