ISU Headlines

International meeting at ISU to focus on nuclear applications, utilization of accelerators

Posted July 24, 2007

More than 250 scientists, engineers, entrepreneurs and students coming from six continents and representing 38 countries will meet July 30-Aug. 2 on the Idaho State University campus to discuss the very latest in applications and utilization of accelerator science and technology.

The Idaho Accelerator Center (IAC) (www.iac.isu.edu) will host this four-day international conference, “The Eighth International Topical Meeting on Nuclear Applications and Utilization of Accelerators (AccApp’07),” which is sponsored jointly by the American Nuclear Society (ANS) and the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).

“This event marks the first time such a widely attended, international, scientific conference has been held in Pocatello, Idaho,” said ISU conference organizer Philip Cole, PhD, associate professor of physics. “The last AccApp meeting was held in Venice, Italy, in 2005, with approximately 100 fewer participants.”

Other conference supporters include Idaho National Laboratory, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Jefferson Laboratory, the University of Nevada, Las Vegas and TechSource/HYTEC.

Accelerators are electronic devices that take tiny sub-atomic charged particles – such as electrons, protons, and heavier charged particles – and speed them up to very high energies. Familiar applications of accelerators are to produce medical x-rays and to examine baggage at airports. In addition, accelerator research has been applied in the study of nuclear physics, high-energy physics, some medical therapies, industrial processes, materials science, and homeland security, as well as for fundamental research on the nature of the nucleus of atoms. The IAC at ISU, which is one of the largest academic accelerator centers, houses several accelerators, which enables it to be on the forefront of research in the nuclear sciences.

ISU President Arthur C. Vailas will open the conference. He will be followed by a representative of Sen. Larry Craig who will present a DVD message. Other opening speakers include Adm. John Grossenbacher, director of the INL, and honorary meeting chair Frank Harmon, PhD, founder of the IAC.

The conference features 13 distinguished plenary speakers as representatives of five U.S. laboratories, the IAC, four European laboratories, and one Japanese laboratory. The plenary speakers also include two senior government officials: the U.S. Department of Energy deputy assistant secretary for Fuel Cycle Management Dr. Paul Lisowski, and the European Commission principal scientific officer, Dr. Ved Bhatnagar, from Brussels, Belgium.   

In addition to the plenary speakers, there are 215 oral presentations during 44 parallel sessions that will cover 11 technical topics. Supplementing the oral presentations are 35 poster presentations during two evening sessions.

The technical topics of these presentations have a very broad range, including materials testing such as probing for cracks in bridges, medical applications such as manufacturing pharmaceuticals for enhancing the imaging of tumors and bacterial sterilization, and homeland security such as probing for buried explosives and searching for nuclear weapons concealed in cargo containers. Initiatives in employing accelerators for producing energy in nuclear power plants will be discussed.

AccApp’07 is a unique meeting of scientists and engineers that has attracted entrepreneurs from across the United States and the globe to exhibit information on their companies, products, and services.

“Such national and international exposure benefits the IAC, the state of Idaho, and the city of Pocatello,” Cole said. “The convening of this prestigious conference at ISU and its sponsorship by the IAC will strengthen the IAC’s international position as the place to be for pursuing advanced nuclear science applications research.”

The Bannock Development Corporation of Idaho is one of the AccApp’07 exhibitors and will increase Idaho’s exposure by presenting Idaho business opportunities to the conference’s heterogeneous group of professionals.  

The conference was organized by the Accelerator Applications Division of the American Nuclear Society (ANS), and many members of the Idaho Section of the ANS with support of the Idaho National Laboratory. Finally, AccApp’07 will bring national and international visitors to the greater Pocatello community. To this end, the Pocatello Convention and Visitor’s Bureau is supporting AccApp’07 by ensuring that conference participants have an opportunity to experience the hospitality, uniqueness, and richness of the Greater Pocatello area.

For more information on the conference and a complete conference schedule visit http://accapp07.com/.