by Panos Charitos. Published: 19 November 2012

Kim Beomkyu is a PhD student at the Yonsei University in South Korea working on the multiplicity density in pp collisions in ALICE. ALICE Matters met him and discussed his current research and his future plans

Why did you choose to study physics?

In my early teens I decided that I wanted to work in a scientific area since I always enjoyed studying subjects related to physics and more generally to natural sciences. So when I entered university it was very easy for me to decide my major subject. Following my undergraduate studies in physics I decided to continue with a master degree in physics and finally to pursue a PhD in physics. I had my bachelor and master courses from the same university and before entering the PhD course I digressed shortly in an industry specializing in the production of solar cells

How long you have been at CERN and for how long are you planning to stay?

My research institute always encourages physics students to spend some time at CERN to do their research. The maximum staying period is 3 years and since I have already spent here 2 years I will return to Korea after 1 year.

What is the topic of your PhD and how will you spend your time at CERN?

I am working on the multiplicity density in pp collisions in the PWGUD group. I spend most of my time coding and in between meeting with other colleagues as most of the people around. There are currently three people from my institute (Yonsei university) here at CERN. We started playing squash lately at the sports centre opposite CERN while some times we enjoy having delicious food in Geneva or villages in France.

Kim Beomkyu, PhD student at the Yonsei University in South Korea

Is this the first time you are visiting CERN?

In the beginning of my bachelor back in 2007 I had the chance to visit CERN for a short period. I don’t remember many things from that period apart from the delicious foods at R1. I came back to CERN in 2011, almost 4 years after my first visit. I feel excited being at CERN since everything is here, for example data I have to look into, people working at the same field, the accelerator, ALICE detectors and so on.

What are your plans for the future?

My first plan is to finish my PhD course, of course, with a good performance. Basically, I would love to continue working in ALICE in the future. I hope that I can continue with my research in ALICE as there are many interesting subjects to explore in high energy, heavy ion physics. I believe that everyone can succeed by working hard and consistently. My institute participates with 7 people, three of whom are currently at CERN and 4 more students are back in Korea. We are all working hard on our subject (flow, exotic mesons and baryons, correlations and extra things). If we are successful in our research and manage to publish results then my Institute will get higher funding from the Korean government and hence will be able to fund more researchers to work with CERN. Moreover, we will be able to extend the research areas in which we could contribute to ALICE.