Korea University joins ALICE

Hyeonjoong Cho

Recently, the Department of CIS (Computer and Information Science) at KU (Korea University) became an associate member of the ALICE collaboration. Faculty members of the department attended a meeting arranged by another Korean associate member, KISTI (Korea Institution of Science and Technology Information) in June 2014, where they met CERN scientists Pierre Vande Vyvre and Peter Hristov. Several topics of the ALICE experiment were introduced during the meeting and the department decided to join the collaboration to contribute in some of these topics.

The interest of the department in computing technologies of accelerators is tightly related to the construction of a future Korean accelerator. In 2009, the South Korea government approved the construction of the accelerator complex for the rare isotope science in Daejeon, a neighbouring city of Sejong where KU is located. To meet the need for advanced software researchers and engineers, the department proposed a graduate-level educational research programme and received a government grant named Brain Korea 21 Plus in 2013.

Currently, four faculty members and 27 graduate students of the department have joined this programme under the leadership of the principal investigator, Prof. Daihee Park. The department is now strengthening its curriculum by focusing on several relevant courses, such as parallel processing, data mining, cloud computing, etc. It is also searching for both domestic and international research partners to create and cultivate the synergistic research results.

KU has two campuses in South Korea, one in Seoul and the other in Sejong. Dept. of CIS is in Sejong that attracts unprecedented attention these days. It is because it becomes a new capital city of South Korea and most of the government departments will have moved to the city by 2015. In addition, this area is declared as an “International Science and Business Zone” by the Korean government in order to promote science and business activities, international collaboration, etc. Since the department is placed in the middle of this rapid regional improvement, it is expected to play an increasing role in education and research activities.

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