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Cutting-edge Facility on POSTECH Campus
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Cutting-edge Facility on POSTECH Campus


APCTP celebrated its 20th anniversary on March 24, 2016. Over the past two decades, it has advanced dramatically in quality and size, due mainly to the excellent leadership of past executives and to the support of the Korean government, Gyeongbuk province, the city of Pohang, POSTECH, and member countries.

The in-house research capability at APCTP greatly increased in 2007 with the establishment of the Junior Research Group (JRG) program by Prof. Peter Fulde when he became President. JRG has been a success, currently supporting eight groups made up of excellent group leaders and members. APCTP needs to continue to establish and maintain such innovative programs for further growth. Such programs should fulfill APCTP's mission of promoting in-person exchanges and collaborations among groups in its member countries.

Since relocating from Seoul in 2001, APCTP has spent more than two-thirds of its life on POSTECH campus. With more than 300 professionals in physics and related fields on campus, POSTECH has been a wonderful home for APTCP. POSTECH was recently ranked fourth by Times Higher Education (THE) in its list of "World Best Small Universities" after Caltech, 횋cole Normale Sup챕rieure, and 횋cole Polytechnique. Additionally, POSTECH is home to a 4th generation light source, PAL-XFEL, which is currently under commissioning at Pohang Accelerator Laboratory (PAL).

PAL-XFEL is a 1.1-km long, 10-GeV electron accelerator capable of producing extremely intensive X-rays of 0.1 nm, about 1010 times more intense than that of 3rd generation facilities. It is a cutting-edge facility comparable to LCLS at SLAC in the US and SACLA at SPring-8 in Japan. It can support research in a wide range of sciences, namely physics, chemistry, materials science, and life science. APCTP is fortunate to be in such close proximity to such a facility and it should take advantage of this proximity by developing a new paradigm for connecting researchers in the Asia-Pacific region to PAL-XFEL.

Fig.1: Aerial view of PAL with 1.1-km long, PAL-XFEL building.

Fig.2: Linac Tunnel for beam acceleration to 10 GeV.

Fig.3: Undulators for producing 0.1 nm SASE radiation.

Fig.4: Initial commissioning results in June, 2016.

I recommend that APCTP explore opportunities for collaboration with PAL-XFEL. There are certainly topics of mutual interest, since light sources support a wide range of sciences. Although there may be some initial difficulties for theorists to communicate with experimentalists and engineers, this can surely be overcome by in-person interactions. There are tremendous advantages to being on the same campus, and I see great opportunities for a productive exchange of ideas that will be beneficial to both APCTP and PAL-XFEL.


Won Namkung is Professor Emeritus in Physics and Executive Advisor at Pohang Accelerator Laboratory, POSTECH. His research interests are Particle Beam Physics and Plasma Heating in Tokamaks. He is currently Chair of the ITER Council, and has served as Editor-in-Chief of the AAPPS Bulletin, Chair of the APCTP Board of Trustees, and President of AAPPS.

AAPPS Bulletin        ISSN: 2309-4710
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