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Prof. Joe Blau



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Department of Physics
Spanagel Hall, Room 203
833 Dyer Road
Monterey, CA 93943-5216
(831) 656-2145
DSN: 756-2145

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Mission Statement

Joe Blau
Associate Research Professor of Physics
Ph.D. Physics, Naval Postgraduate School, 2002

Dr. Blau joined NPS in 1989. His research interest is computer simulations of Free Electron Lasers. Over the past 25 years he has developed, along with Prof. Colson, a set of programs for simulating FELs on desktop workstations. His recent research, and an aspect of his Doctoral Dissertation, has been on short Rayleigh length optical cavities for high power FELs, FEL amplifiers and oscillators, and the 4 dimensional simulation of optical pulses in the FEL.

Phone: 831-656-2635, Email:

Joseph Blau
Research Associate Professor
Mail Code: PH/Bl
Department of Physics
Graduate School of Engineering and Applied Sciences
Monterey, CA 93943
Phone: 831-656-2332
Email: blau (at)
PhD - Naval Postgraduate School, 2002
MS - UC San Diego, 1989
BS - UC Santa Barbara, 1987


  • 7/08 – present: Research Associate Professor of Physics
  • 7/02 – 7/08: Research Assistant Professor of Physics
  • 7/00 – 7/02: Lecturer of Physics
  • 7/94 – 7/00: Computer Engineer
  • 10/93 – 7/94: Computer Specialist
  • 11/89 – 10/93: Adjunct Research Instructor of Physics


  • Theory and simulation of Free Electron Lasers (FELs). Over 25 years, I have developed simulations of FELs that have been used to advance the theory, explain physical effects, and aid the design of new experiments at universities and national laboratories. The simulations include important effects such as distortions and vibrations of the mirrors and the electron beam. Currently I am working on designs for high-average power FELs to be used for naval ship defense, and a start-to-end simulation analysis of an FEL weapon system.

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