The Michigan Engineer News Center

Welcome new NERS faculty: Won Sik Yang

The NERS department welcomes Won Sik Yang, who joins the faculty as professor, effective September 1. | Short Read

Professor Yang is internationally renowned for his work in the areas of reactor physics and reactor design, particularly fast-neutron reactor core design and development of analytical methods. At U-M, he will head a fast reactor research program and teach related courses, including fast reactor physics and computational methods.

Among the six next-generation reactor designs selected by the Generation IV International Forum, three are fast reactor designs and two can be operated as fast reactors, noted Yang, who has served as general chair for the first four International Technical Review Meetings for Prototype Gen-IV Sodium-cooled Fast Reactor Development in Korea from 2013 to 2015.

After earning his bachelor’s degree in nuclear engineering from Seoul National University and his PhD in nuclear engineering from Purdue University, Yang spent seven years as a professor at Chosun University in Korea and 16 years at Argonne National Laboratory, most recently as a senior nuclear engineer. He then returned to Purdue in 2011 as a professor. A Fellow of the American Nuclear Society, he also serves as executive editor of the journal Nuclear Engineering and Technology.

At U-M, Yang is looking forward to continued collaborations with faculty colleagues and to working with students. “It’s always a pleasure to watch their learning and see how they develop themselves and their careers,” Yang said. “Education on reactor analysis and design is so important, not only for future Generation IV reactors but also for current Generation III reactors. As current engineers are retiring, we need to educate the next generation.”

Story by: Kim Roth

Portrait of Jennifer Melms


Jennifer Melms
Administrative Assistant

Nuclear Engineering and Radiological Sciences

(734) 764-4260

1906 Cooley Building

The electrons absorb laser light and set up “momentum combs” (the hills) spanning the energy valleys within the material (the red line). When the electrons have an energy allowed by the quantum mechanical structure of the material—and also touch the edge of the valley—they emit light. This is why some teeth of the combs are bright and some are dark. By measuring the emitted light and precisely locating its source, the research mapped out the energy valleys in a 2D crystal of tungsten diselenide. Credit: Markus Borsch, Quantum Science Theory Lab, University of Michigan.

Mapping quantum structures with light to unlock their capabilities

Rather than installing new “2D” semiconductors in devices to see what they can do, this new method puts them through their paces with lasers and light detectors. | Medium Read