Women in Engineering Student Conversation with the World Renowned Natalia Zaitseva


Natalia Zaitseva

Armour College of Engineering is honored to welcome Natalia Zaitseva, Distinguished Member of the Technical Staff of Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, to campus on Wednesday, September 30.

Zaitseva received worldwide recognition for developing a process that led to growing the largest single optical crystal ever produced. It measured over three feet long and weighed nearly 500 pounds. The fast-growth method used to grow the crystal was pioneered by Zaitseva at Moscow State University and perfected at Livermore by Zaitseva and laboratory scientists over several years. It allowed scientists to grow the record crystal in six weeks, an achievement that would have required a growing period of 12 to 24 months using traditional methods.

Crystals grown using this process have been extremely useful in research performed at Livermore’s National Ignition Facility (NIF), the largest and most energetic laser in the world. There, scientists use crystals created with this method to enable fusion ignition using the NIF. Zaitseva’s research has also contributed to important breakthroughs used in the detection of radioactive materials, which could have important security applications such as preventing the smuggling of so-called “dirty bombs.”

In recognition of her groundbreaking work, Zaitseva has been named the recipient of numerous awards including the International Robert Laudise Award in crystal growth (2010), two 100 R&D awards for the development of Rapid growth technology for production of large-scale crystals (1994) and first PSD plastic scintillators for neutron detection (2012), numerous LLNL Directorate awards (1994-2013), and DNS/DNDO award for development of new crystals for radiation detection. She is an author of more than 80 publications and nine patents.

Zaitseva will deliver a lecture on Growth and Application of New Solution-grown Organic Crystals for an MMAE Department seminar on Wednesday, September 30 from 3:30-4:30 p.m. in the John T. Rettaliata Engineering Center, Room 104.

As part of Armour College of Engineering’s women in engineering initiative, Armour will also be hosting a Women In Engineering Student Conversation with Zaitseva from 5-6 p.m. – RSVP required. Although Armour’s female engineering students and faculty will find Zaitseva’s lecture of extreme importance, attendance from the entire engineering community is encouraged.