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Professor John E. Scharer

Professor John Scharer has carried out research in the areas of laser, microwave and radiofrequency antenna coupling, propagation, heating and current drive in plasmas. He teaches courses in plasma waves, electromagnetics, optics, microwaves and computational methods in electromagnetics and plasmas. His work includes theoretical, experimental and computational research in these areas. He has consulted on radiofrequency coupling and heating of plasmas for Archimedes Technology (1999-2000), UCLA (1995-98), SAIC (1979-83), TRW (1980-81), Jaycor (1984-85), Fusion Power Associates (1982-88), and Blacklight Power, Inc. (2005-present).

He has also developed large scale computer codes for solution of plasma physics problems on MFE and NSF computers and local workstation facilities. They include radiofrequency antenna coupling to plasmas, solution of complex wave dispersion relations for inhomogeneous plasma wave propagation, local and nonlocal heating and solution of Fokker-Planck equations for plasma heating, current drive and confinement. He has served as thesis advisor for 20 Ph. D. and 14 M.S. graduate students in the above research areas.

Short Resume

John Scharer Professor, Department of Electrical & Computer Engineering Co-Director (1990 – present) Center for Plasma Theory and Computation


B.S. (E. E.) University of California, Berkeley, 1961
M. S. (E. E.) University of California, Berkeley, 1963
Princeton University (Plasma Physics Summer Institute) 1964
1978 - present Professor, Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, UW Madison

Professional Experience

1978 - present Professor, Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, UW Madison
2000 Visiting Professor, Plasma Research Laboratory, Austrailian National University, Canberra
1983 Visiting Scientist, Joint European Torus (JET), RF Heating Division, Culham, Abingdon, England
1969 EURATOM-CEA Center for Nuclear Studies, Plasma Physics Section, Fontenay-aux Roses, France (nonlinear plasma waves)

Contact Information

John Scharer

scharer at engr dot wisc dot edu

513 Engineering Research Building

Telephone: (608)-263-1614

Fax: (608)-265-2438