Jointly with each scientific day, PLAS@PAR organizes a photo/video competition open to all PLAS@PAR researchers.


Photo & video competition 2020

1st Prize: Gaëtan Gauthier, LPP (all categories)

Spectral lamps

Capture decran 2020 01 17 a 15.03.42 


Photo & video competition 2019

1st Prize: Laurent Lamy, LESIA (category: experiments & observations)

Saturn’s northern aurorae at solstice 

This composite image displays the bright northern aurorae of Saturn observed on 14 Aug. 2017 in the ultraviolet by the Hubble Space Telescope (HSTà, on top of a visible image of the planet also acquired with HST. Polar aurorae are intense electromagnetic emissions radiated around the magnetic poles. They are produced by the collision between energetic electrons, accelerated in the planetary magnetized environement (the magnetosphere) and guided along high magnetic field lines toward the poles, and the hydrogenic species predominant in Saturn’s upper atmosphere. Their study forms a rich proxy on the structure and the dynamics of the magnetosphere. Saturn reached the northern solstice in may 2017, which enabled HST to fully map the northern auroral region. This observation was part of a larger observational program, spread throughout 2017, and coordinated with the repeated passes of the Cassini space mission above the magnetic poles. An animated version of this image is accessible here :

Credit: ESA/Hubble, NASA/STSci, L. Lamy, Observatoire de Paris.

Image composite saturne

1st Prize: Basile Wurmser, LCPMR (category: theory & simulations)


This rose shows the continuum electronic wave function of a 2D model H2 molecule ionized by an 83.2 eV XUV photon polarized along the molecular axis. The real-valued wave function selected by the process encodes all the information upon the ionization dynamics in the phase and amplitude of its asymptotic oscillations. Leaves by Stelios Passalidis.

basile wurmser lovelectron 1

1st Prize: Éric Buchlin, IAS (category: video)

Solar prominence activity

Following a series of small flares and subsequent magnetic field destabilization, cool plasma is heated and transferred to a solar prominence, following magnetic field lines in the solar corona. Prominences are clouds of cool (few tens of thousands of Kelvin) material suspended in the hot (millions of Kelvin) corona by the magnetic field structure; this magnetic field also hampers thermal conduction from the corona to the prominence. Such prominence magnetic field structure can be further destabilized, producing a solar eruption, with possible consequences on “space weather” at Earth and elsewhere in the heliosphere.
To produce this movie, SDO/AIA observation data have been transformed to polar coordinates, so that gravity points towards the bottom of images. Five extreme-UV images (with wavelengths given in Ångström: 304, 171, 193, 211, 131) have been combined to give each image of the movie, with colors chosen according to the temperature of maximum UV emission of the coronal plasma in each band (from 50,000K to 10 million K). The image width could fit 150 times our planet’s diameter (1.8 million kilometers) at the solar limb.

Data courtesy of NASA/SDO and the AIA science team, processed at MEDOC (CNES/CNRS-INSU/Univ. Paris-Sud)
This event has been featured as “Sun dance“ by NASA Astronomy Picture Of the Day.


Photo & video competition 2018

1st Prize: Moustafa Zmerli, LCPMR (category: experiments & observations)

Coulomb Explosion of Iodomethane

Here we present the momentum distribution of three ions, Hydrogen, Carbon and Iodine, detected in coincidence, after photodissociation of Methyle Iodide using Tender X-ray photons (5 keV.


1st Prize: Pierre Lesaffre, LERMA (category: theory & simulations)

Turbulent energy dissipation field in magneto-hydrodynamic turbulence

Rendering of the fractal geometry of the extrema of turbulent dissipation in a pseudo-spectral simulation of non-ideal magneto-hydrodynamical turbulence. Viscous and ohmic dissipations appear in green and red, respectively, and that due to the friction between ions and neutrals is blue - (code ANK, Giorgos Momferratos). 

plasapar 2018 enhanced

1st Prize: Julien Guyot, LERMA & LPP (category: video)

Mad jets collision

Collision of two jets expanding axially in a magnetized medium.

- Top image: 3D view of the system, which is cut in half to observe its interior.

- Bottom left image: velocity magnitude slice in the plane of the two jets system.

- Bottom right image: density slice in the perpendicular plane of the jets, in the region of collision where a Rayleigh-Taylor instability is developing.


Photo & video competition 2017


1st Prize: Manuel de Anda Villa, INSP (category: experiments & observations)

Klimt in the Laboratory

After thermal annealing, the thin gold layer deposited on top of the Si substrate migrated and concentrated on some regions forming presumably gold crystallites but leaving behind uncovered Si islands and creating a beautiful “Klimt effect”.

Manuel de Anda Villa Klimt au laboratoire

1st Prize: Marie Labeye, LCPMR (category: theory & simulations)

One dimensional Helium continuum state

This is the bielectronic wave-function of a doubly ionized state of a one-dimensional system modeling Helium. This wave-function was calculated by inverse iteration performed on the Hamiltonian in a simulation box for an energy of 2.2 eV. 

Marie Labeye 1DHelium continuum state 

1st Prize: Andrea Sgattoni, LULI & LESIA - François Amiranoff, LULI (category: video)

Generation of radio waves in the interplanetary medium

Fast particles are emitted during solar flares and propagate from the Sun outwards. During their propagation in the solar-wind plasma, they excite electron plasma waves which through several three-wave processes decay into radio waves. The theoretical and numerical study of these mechanisms together with spacecraft measurements of these waves, help us to understand the energy flux of fast particles from the Sun to the Earth. This is very important to examine the impact of these particles on industrial infrastructures both on the Earth and on satellites.


Photo competition 2016


1st Prize: Anna Levy, INSP (category: experiments & observations)

Anna's contribution shows gold nanoparticles used for femtosecond laser-irradiation experiments observed by SEM.



1st Prize: Andrea Sgattoni, LULI/LESIA (category: numerical simulation)

Andrea is a postdoctoral fellow, his contribution shows 3D Particle In Cell simulation of a thin dense plasma slab deformed and accelerated by light pressure. Electron density in red vs Ion density in blue highlight the target deformation, the imprints of the laser fields and the rise of instabilities.






Photo competition 2015

1st Prize: Julien Jarrige, ONERA (category: experiments & observations)
Julien is a Research Scientist at ONERA. His contribution shows atmospheric pressure plasma bullets impacting a dielectric surface.
Capture decran 2016-02-04 a 15.50.05

1st Prize: François Risoud, LCPMR (category: numerical simulation)

François as selected a quantum simulations of an electron ionized in a strong laser field. Phase space representation (Wigner function) of the electron at the ionic core position (x = 0), as a function of time.

Capture decran 2016-02-04 a 15.52.41




Photo competition 2014

1st Prize: Romain Mayrand, LPP

Post doctoral fellow at the LPP, Romain's contribution is named Helcaraxe. It shows a beautiful representation of turbulence in a magnetized plasma using MHD simulation. The colors represent the intensity of the electric current in a plane perpendicular to the mean magnetic field. 

Capture decran 2016-02-04 a 15.38.31 

2nd Prize: Gabriel Labaigt, LCPMR

PhD student at the LCPMR, Gabriel's contribution is named Proton - Lithium collision, shows the Electronic dynamics induced by a proton passing in the vicinity of a lithium atom at a given collision time. The simulation illustrates a charge exchange process.

 Capture decran 2016-02-04 a 15.40.11