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Professor Sungyeol Choi Receives Science and ICT Ministerial Commendation
< Professor Sungyeol Choi > Professor Sungyeol Choi from the Department of Nuclear and Quantum Engineering received the Science and ICT Ministerial Commendation on the 9th Annual Nuclear Safety and Promotion Day last month, in recognition of his contributions to the promotion of nuclear energy through the safe management of spent nuclear fuel and radioactive waste. Professor Choi developed high-precision, multi-physics codes that can predict and prevent abnormal power fluctuations caused by boron hideout within nuclear fuel in a pressurized water reactor, solving the problem that has caused economic losses of tens of billions of won every year from industrial sites. He is now developing a new technology that can reduce high-level waste by recycling spent nuclear fuel, while preventing nuclear material from being used for nuclear weapons, which is one of the biggest challenges faced by the nuclear industry. In 2017, his first year in office as a KAIST professor, Professor Choi was selected as the youngest and the only member under 50 of the Standing Scientific Advisory Committee at the Information Exchange Meeting on Partitioning and Transmutation (IEMPT), an authoritative association on the disposal of high-level nuclear waste. The following year, he became the first Korean to receive the Early Career Award, which is given to one person every two years by the International Youth Nuclear Congress.
Professor Yim Appointed As Associate Editor of Nuclear Technology
Professor Man-Sung Yim from the Department of Nuclear and Quantum Engineering was appointed as the associate editor (for the Asian region) of Nuclear Technology ― a leading international research journal of the American Nuclear Society. Professor Yim will serve his term for three years from May 2019. The American Nuclear Society, established in 1954, is comprised of more than 11,000 global members and aims to advance nuclear science, engineering, and technology while supporting the peaceful and beneficial applications of nuclear energy. Since its first publication in 1971, Nuclear Technology has been a representative journal of the society, reporting state-of-the-art information on all phases of the practical applications of nuclear technology. Professor Yim is being recognized worldwide for his pioneering nuclear education, research, and policy studies in the fields of non-proliferation, safeguards for severe accident management, and waste management. He served as the head professor of the Department of Nuclear and Quantum Engineering and established the Nonproliferation Education and Research Center (NEREC) at KAIST. Professor Yim remarked, “Asia has an important role to play at the forefront of the world’s nuclear research considering that nuclear development is most actively being carried out in the Asian region these days.”
Chair Professor Seong Honored with Don Miller Award
(Professor Poong-Hyun Seong) Chair Professor Poong-Hyun Seong from the Department of Nuclear & Quantum Engineering was selected as the recipient of the Don Miller Award by the American Nuclear Society. The award, established in 2009 by the American Nuclear Society in honor of former ANS President Don Miller, is given to an individual or team who has made a significant contribution to the advancement of one or both of the fields of nuclear instrumentation and control of human-machine interfaces through individual or combined activities. The award ceremony will be held on June 10 during the 2019 annual meeting of the ANS in Minneapolis in the US. Professor Seong is being recognized for his pioneering research and training in the fields of nuclear instrumentation control and human factor engineering at Korea. His research significantly contributed to safety improvements in nuclear power plants and have been recognized worldwide. Professor Seong, a fellow of the ANS, now serves as the first vice chair of the International Nuclear Societies Council and will take up the role of chair in 2021. Professor Seong said that, “ Korea is one of the most outstanding countries working on research in the fields of nuclear instrumentation control and human factors. KAIST PhDs are teaching at many universities at home and abroad. I look forward this award bringing new hope to our nuclear research and the domestic nuclear industry, which is now in difficult times.”
The First Recipient of the KPS Award in Plasma Physics
( Research Professor Sanghoo Park) Research Professor Sanghoo Park received the Young Researcher Award in Plasma Physics during the Korean Physical Society (KPS)’s Spring Meeting from April 25 to 27. He is a KAIST graduate with a PhD in Physics and currently holds the position of research professor in the Department of Nuclear and Quantum Engineering. The Young Researcher Award in Plasma Physics is given to a specialist in plasma who has the potential to make a contribution to plasma and accelerator physics in Korea. Professor Park has gained recognition for his work, including awards, publications in 24 journals, and 12 technical patent registrations of plasma, which led to his selection as the recipient of this award. He is now conducting a leading role in this field nationally and internationally by delving into the study of partially-ionized plasma. Professor Park said, “It is my great honor to become the first recipient of the Young Researcher Award in Plasma Physics. I will continue to engage in research to develop the field of plasma in Korea.”
Professor Nam Jin Cho Selected as the Eugene P. Wigner Reactor Physicist Awardee
Professor Nam Jin Cho from the Department of Nuclear & Quantum Engineering was selected as the recipient of the 2017 ‘Eugene P. Wigner Reactor Physicist Award.’ The award, established in 1990 by the American Nuclear Society, honors individuals who have made outstanding contributions to the advancement of the field of reactor physics. The award is named after the late Eugene P. Wigner, a pioneer who helped nurture the nuclear age to technical maturity with his pioneering leadership in reactor design. Professor Cho was recognized for his outstanding leadership and achievement in the field of nuclear physics, especially with his original research in analytic function expansion nodal methods, coarse-mesh angular dependent rebalance methods, and neutron transport calculations. A fellow of the ANS, Professor Cho is the first awardee from the Asian region. Professor Cho gave all the credit to his colleagues and students at KAIST who have spared no effort while working together for three decades. “I am very grateful for the unique academic ambience which made this challenging work possible as well as the government’s continuing funding at the National Research Laboratory project.
Professor Poong Hyun Seong Selected as Fellow of the ANS
Professor Poong Hyun Seong of the Department of Nuclear and Quantum Engineering was selected as a fellow of the American Nuclear Society. The selection was announced at their annual meeting held in San Francisco on June 12, in recognition of Professor Seong's contributions to the field of nuclear instrumentation, control andhuman factors engineering. Founded in 1954, the American Nuclear Society selects scholars who have made outstanding achievements and contributions to the development of the nuclear engineering field each year. Professor Seong's researches in the field of nuclear instrumentation, control and human factors engineering have contributed to the safe operation of nuclear power plants, to the development of systems to maintain nuclear power plants safely in the event of emergency and to the enhancement of effective response capabilities of nuclear power plant operators. His researches significantly contributed to the safety improvement of nuclear power plants and have been recognized worldwide. Professor Seong said, "Korea has emerged as a nuclear powerhouse. I think not only my academic career but our national reputation in the field of nuclear research has been well recognized by our global peers.” Professor Seong has served as president of the Korean Nuclear Society, editor in chief of Nuclear Engineering and Technology, and as a commissioner of the Korean Nuclear Safety Commission. He is currently working as a commissioner of the Korean Atomic Energy Commission.
2017 Summer Nuclear Nonproliferation Education Program
The Nuclear Nonproliferation Education and Research Center (NEREC) at KAIST announced its 30 scholarship recipients for the 2017 Summer Nuclear Nonproliferation Education Program on April 18. The six-week program, starting from July 10, will be run in Korea, Japan, and China. The program provides young global scholars with focused and challenging nuclear nonproliferation studies. Young scholars will be exposed to diverse science and technology policies and practices concurrently conducted in many countries and the future direction for enhancing nuclear nonproliferation. They will participate in a series of seminars, projects, international conferences, and field trips. Since its launch in 2014, the program has educated 71 young scholars. This year, more than 150 scholars from 37 countries applied for the program, reflecting the growing reputation of the program both at home and abroad. The director of the NEREC, Professor Man-Sung Yim of the Department of Nuclear and Quantum Engineering at KAIST said that young scholars from very prestigious foreign universities have shown strong interest in the program. According to Professor Yim, this year’s recipients are from 26 universities from 16 countries including Harvard University, Oxford University, the National Research Nuclear University of Russia, and the Tokyo Institute of Technology
Professor Poong-Hyun Seong Appointed as the New President of the Korean Nuclear Society
Professor Poong-Hyun Seong of the Department of Nuclear and Quantum Engineering has been appointed as the 28th President of the Korean Nuclear Society (KNS). His presidency began on September 1, 2015 and will last one year. Professor Seong graduated from the Department of Nuclear Engineering at Seoul National University, Korea, and received his master’s and doctoral degree at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in the United States. He has filled various positions in the field of nuclear engineering, including a commissioner of the Nuclear Safety and Security Commission of Korea, manager of the Korean branch of the American Nuclear Society (ANS), and head of the Human Factors and Instrumentation and Controls Division of ANS. At KNS, he served as the vice president as well as the Editor-in-Chief of its academic journal Nuclear Engineering and Technology. The Korean Nuclear Society was established in 1969 to promote academic and technical research in nuclear engineering and develop safe and sustainable nuclear power. It is composed of more than 4,200 active members from ten research fields and has published the journal Nuclear Engineering and Technology since 2007.
KAIST's Research Team Receives the Best Paper Award from the IEEE Transaction on Power Electronics
A research team led by Professor Chun T. Rim of the Department of Nuclear and Quantum Engineering at the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST) has received the First Prize Papers Award from the IEEE (Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers) Transactions on Power Electronics (TPEL), a peer-reviewed journal that covers fundamental technologies used in the control and conversion of electric power. A total of three research papers received this award in 2015. Each year, TPEL’s editors select three best papers among those published in the journal during the preceding calendar year. In 2014, the TPEL published 579 papers. Professor Rim’s paper was picked out as one of the three papers published last year for the First Prize Papers Award. Entitled “Generalized Active EMF (electromagnetic field) Cancel Methods for Wireless Electric Vehicles (http://ieeexplore.ieee.org/xpls/abs_all.jsp?arnumber=6684288&tag=1),” the paper proposed, for the first time in the world, three generalized design methods for cancelling the total EMF generated from wireless electric vehicles. This technology, researchers said, can be applied to any wireless power transfer systems. The award ceremony will be held at the upcoming conference of the 2015 IEEE Energy Conversion Congress and Expo in September in Montreal, Canada.
Professor Rim Presents at IAEA Workshop in Vienna
Professor Chun-Taek Rim of the Department of Nuclear and Quantum Engineering at KAIST recently attended the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)’s workshop on the Application of Wireless Technologies in Nuclear Power Plant Instrumentation and Control System. It took place on March 30-April 2, 2015, in Vienna, Austria. Representing Korea, Professor Rim gave a talk entitled “Highly Reliable Wireless Power and Communications under Severe Accident of Nuclear Power Plants (NPPs).” About 20 industry experts from 12 countries such as AREVA (France), Westinghouse (US), Oak Ridge National Laboratory (US), Hitachi (Japan), and ENEA (Italy) joined the meeting. The IAEA hosted the workshop to explore the application of wireless technology for the operation and management of NPPs. It formed a committee consisting of eminent professionals worldwide in NPP instrumentation and control systems, communications, and nuclear power to examine this issue in-depth and to conduct various research projects for the next three years. In particular, the committee will concentrate its research on improving the reliability and safety of using wireless technology, not only in the normal operation of nuclear plants but also in extreme conditions such as the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear accident. The complementation, economic feasibility, and standardization of NPPs when applying wireless technology will be also discussed. Professor Rim currently leads the Nuclear Power Electronics and Robotics Lab at KAIST (http://tesla.kaist.ac.kr/index_eng.php?lag=eng). Picture 1: Professors Rim presents his topic at the IAEA Workshop in Vienna. Picture 2: The IAEA Workshop Participants
Professor Chun-Taek Rim Appointed as Associate Editor for IEEE TPEL
Professor Chun-Taek Rim of the nuclear and quantum engineering at KAIST was appointed as an associate editor of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) Transactions on Power Electronics (TPEL), an eminent academic journal bio-monthly published in the field of power electronics.The journal has a high impact factor (4.08), a measure reflecting the average number of citations to recent articles published in an academic journal, which ranks as the 6th the most influential journal among the 100 journals published by IEEE.Professor Rim was also appointed to an associate editor for IEEE Journal of Emerging and Selected Topics in Power Electronics in September in recognition of his expertise in wireless power and electric vehicles.
Professor Soon-Heung Chang meets with Bill Gates and discusses possible collaboration
Professor Soon-Heung Chang from the Department of Nuclear and Quantum Engineering, KAIST, who is also the president of Korea Nuclear Society (KNS), met Bill Gates, the co-founder and former chief executive officer (CEO) of Microsoft, on August 16, 2012 and discussed ways to cooperate for the development of a sodium-cooled fast reactor (SFR), a next generation nuclear power reactor. According to Professor Chang, Bill Gates was amazed at Korea’s successful bids for nuclear power plants in the United Arab Emirates, even though Korea was a latecomer in the field of nuclear power. Bill Gates also showed a keen interest in Korea’s low electricity rates. Gates focuses on solving fundamental problems in order to help improve the quality of life for humanity, rather than short-term temporary solutions, through infrastructure development such as energy. Particularly, he considers nuclear power as one of the most effective ways to supply clean energy which can provide electricity at a low cost while keeping carbon dioxide emission levels much lower than fossil fuels. Bill Gates is a primary investor for an energy company called “TerraPower” based in Bellevue, Washington. TerraPower develops and commercializes nuclear power technology for a traveling wave reactor (TWR) that is designed to use spent fuels, i.e., depleted uranium, and runs technically “forever” because once fueled, the reactor does not need to be refueled for over 50 years. TerraPower’s TWR is to use metallic fuel, and Korea is the only country that currently develops SFR (KALIMER 600) using metallic fuel. “Korea has an outstanding supply chain for the entire lifecycle of a nuclear power station from equipment manufacturing to operation,” said Professor Chang, while emphasizing the synergistic effects of forming partnership between Korea and TerraPower. Professor Chang emphasized that Korea should create an opportunity based on lessons learned from the Fukushima crisis and actively move forward to achieve its leading position in the field of next generation nuclear reactors. He said that cooperation with Bill Gates will be a significant step towards the development of next generation nuclear reactors. About Sodium-cooled Fast Reactor (SFR) Sodium-cooled Fast Reactor (SFR) is a next-generation nuclear power reactor that will use spent fuels from conventional reactors. Arrangement of a fuel recycling system in conjunction with currently-developing pyroprocessing technology would enable U-238, which makes up over 99% of natural uranium, to be used as a nuclear fuel. This would greatly reduce the toxicity and volume of spent fuels by up to 1,000 times and 100 times respectively when compared to existing reactors. This is truly a breakthrough innovation in spent fuel disposal and recycling.
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