Dr. Heather Whitley

High Energy Density Science
Associate Program Director
Nuclear Fusion 101

Dr. Heather Whitley is the Associate Program Director for High Energy Density Science (HEDS) in the Weapons Physics and Design (WPD) Program. She is responsible for providing technical oversight and management of the design, execution, and analysis of experiments at the National Ignition Facility and other lasers.  Prior to this role, she served as a detailee on assignment to the NNSA Defense Programs Office of Experimental Sciences.  Whitley completed her graduate studies of quantum systems at the University of California, Berkeley prior to joining LLNL as a postdoctoral researcher in September 2007.  She was hired as a permanent staff member in August 2010 and was a recipient of the 2011 Presidential Early Career Award in Science and Engineering.  Her work at LLNL has broadly supported the physics data and modeling needs of nuclear warhead studies and high-energy density experiments.  She was awarded the NNSA Defense Programs Award of Excellence twice in 2018.

Heather Whitley, Ph.D.
Associate Program Director for High Energy Density Science
Weapons and Complex Integration Directorate
Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory


Ph.D., Theoretical Chemistry, University of California, Berkeley, 2007

B.S., Chemistry with a Minor in Physics, New Mexico State University, 2002

B.A., French, New Mexico State University, 2002