Korean scientists learn about quality assurance at Fermilab

Members of Fermilab’s Quality Assurance group met with scientists from the Korea Institute of Energy Research. From left: Tom King, Jed Heyes and Bob Grant, all from Fermilab; Sang-Jin Choi and Seongeun Lee from the KIER; Hyukil Kwon from the Korea Reactor Integrity Surveillance Technology; John Martzel, Tom Gehrke and Kurt Mohr, all from Fermilab. Photo: Rhianna Wisniewski

Three Korean scientists visited Fermilab last week to learn how to get a quality assurance program up and running. Sang-jin Choi and Seongeun Lee from the Korea Institute of Energy Research and Hyukil Kwon from the Korea Reactor Integrity Surveillance Technology visited Fermilab to learn how the laboratory started its program and what challenges and successes occurred during its development.

“We need to have a team like the quality assurance representatives that Fermilab has. We are in the same stage now as the quality-assurance program was here at Fermilab in 2007,” Choi said. “We hope to learn about ways to convince people to follow rules and get them to understand why research and development quality assurance is so important.”

The scientists are working to get a quality-assurance program in place for KIER, which just opened its doors in January. They will also visit Brookhaven National Laboratory to learn from that laboratory’s quality-assurance professionals.

“Quality assurance in a research environment is very different than traditional quality assurance. It is more challenging,” said Jed Heyes, Fermilab’s Quality Assurance manager. During the Korean scientists’ brief time at the laboratory they learned implementation practices from quality-assurance staff members under Office of Quality and Best Practices, and representatives from two divisions.

Rhianna Wisniewski

Fermilab Quality Assurance representatives Don Rohde, AD, and Bakul Banerjee, CD, talk with Korean scientists about the challenges and successes of implementing quality assurance within their divisions. Photo: Rhianna Wisniewski