David McComas

Princeton University: Vice President for Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory, Professor of Astrophysical Sciences.
Designee for: Christopher Eisgruber, President

Dennis AssanisDavid McComas, an executive leader in managing various complex technical projects and programs, is vice president for the U.S. Department of Energy's Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory(PPPL). PPPL is the nation's leading center for the exploration of plasma science and magnetic fusion energy. McComas also has been appointed professor of astrophysical sciences at Princeton.

McComas, who earned a bachelor's degree in physics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and a Ph.D. in geophysics and space physics from the University of California-Los Angeles, continues to be engaged in the academic setting. In 2004, he was a key founder of a joint SwRI and University of Texas-San Antonio M.S./Ph.D. graduate program in physics, where he is an adjoint full professor in physics and astronomy.

McComas' scientific work includes numerous patents for mass spectrometry and other instruments. He has published more than 500 scientific and technical papers that have received over 22,000 citations.

McComas has served on numerous committees focused on developing programs in science, technology and engineering. In 2015, he completed a two-year term on the NASA Advisory Council (NAC). He also served as chair of the NAC Science Committee.

His many honors include an Exceptional Public Service Medal from NASA in 2015 and the Space Science Award from the International Committee on Space Research in 2014. He is a fellow of the American Physical Society, the American Association for the Advancement of Science and the American Geophysical Union. 



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One of ten national laboratories overseen and primarily funded by the Office of Science of the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), Brookhaven National Laboratory conducts research in the physical, biomedical, and environmental sciences, as well as in energy technologies and national security. Brookhaven Lab also builds and operates major scientific facilities available to university, industry and government researchers. Brookhaven is operated and managed for DOE’s Office of Science by Brookhaven Science Associates, a limited-liability company founded by Stony Brook University, the largest academic user of Laboratory facilities, and Battelle, a nonprofit, applied science and technology organization.