J-PARC (Japan Proton Accelerator Research Complex) is a research facility engaged in cutting-edge research in a variety of fields. This research is carried out using world-class high-intensity proton accelerators built through a joint effort by the High Energy Accelerator Research Organization (KEK) and the Japan Atomic Energy Agency (JAEA). In a wide range of research fields-including materials and life sciences, elementary-particle and nuclear physics-we aim to contribute broadly to humankind by promoting diverse research and developments covering from basic science to industrial applications. We achieve this goal by offering new means of research, employing beams of neutrons, muons, neutrinos, K-mesons and various other secondary particles, to our many users not only from Japan but also from overseas.
Since J-PARC began operations in 2008, we have steadily increased beam intensities, worked hard to enhance the capability of facilities, and achieved a variety of results appropriately reflecting the nature as a multi-purpose research facility. Typical examples of achievements include: elucidation of the neutrino oscillation phenomenon and investigation of the strong interaction in the area of elementary-particle and nuclear physics research; and discovery of new superconductivity phenomena, elucidation of function in biological materials, and development of new materials in the area of materials and life sciences research. I hope to further develop these lines of research, and contribute to the solution of mysteries surrounding the origin of the cosmos, matter and life.
In the year before last, there was a radioactive material leak incident at the Hadron Experimental Facility, and as a result, we caused a tremendous amount of worries and troubles to many people. We have reflected deeply on this, and recognize more strongly than ever that our research can only be conducted with the support of the public. To ensure that the same mistakes are not repeated, we have worked hard to rebuild and strengthen our safety management system, and have reformed our organization to ensure even greater safety at J-PARC. We will continue to make unflagging efforts as a research facility with a total commitment to safety.
I feel my mission will be to develop J-PARC, this international research center built up by my great predecessors, into a research facility which can contribute further to the progress of humankind as an organization based in Japan in Asia. I plan to achieve this by promoting collaboration with research institutions inside and outside Japan, increasing use by industry, promoting interdisciplinary research which makes the most of J-PARC's unique characteristics as a multi-purpose facility, and broadly sharing the obtained research results with the public.
As we move forward, I would like to ask for your understanding, guidance and encouragement.
April 2015Naohito SaitoDirector of J-PARC Center