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Press Release | Argonne National Laboratory

Laurent Chapon to lead Argonne’s Advanced Photon Source

Laurent Chapon has been appointed director of the Advanced Photon Source (APS). Chapon will lead the Photon Sciences Directorate at the U.S. Department of Energy’s Argonne National Laboratory through a massive upgrade of the user facility.

Lemont, IL – October 7, 2021 – The U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Argonne National Laboratory has named Laurent Chapon as associate laboratory director for Photon Sciences and director of the Advanced Photon Source (APS), a DOE Office of Science User Facility at Argonne. He will begin his new role on January 10, 2022.

Chapon will join Argonne from Diamond Light Source in the United Kingdom, where he has been the director of physical sciences since 2016. Chapon led the scientific strategy in this division and oversaw five of Diamond’s eight science groups, which encompasses 22 X-ray beamlines and two electron microscopes. He led groups dedicated to technological advancements in optics, metrology and detectors technology at the facility and oversaw the Project Office, User Office, and Experiment Hall groups.

As part of Argonne’s senior management team, Chapon will lead the APS through a time of extraordinary change. The APS Upgrade project will result in a transformed facility that will generate X-ray beams up to 500 times brighter than those it currently delivers. This will require a year-long shutdown of the APS, currently scheduled to begin in April of 2023, and will keep the facility at the forefront of the world’s light sources for scientific discovery.

Diamond has been preparing for its own comprehensive upgrade, called Diamond-II, and since 2019, Chapon has served as the director of that program aiming to upgrade the synchrotron and experimental facilities and transforming data and computation. 

 I am very excited to join Argonne and the extraordinary team at the APS,” Chapon said. Time has flown by since having conducted my post-doctoral research at Argonne in 2001. The APS has developed into one of the greatest user facilities in the world, enabling discoveries in virtually all fields of the natural sciences, becoming a pillar of R&D and innovation in hard X-ray sciences, and firmly established as a key component of the national research infrastructure serving various experimental communities and DOE’s mission. I am looking forward to helping this great facility turning a new chapter in its life with the impending upgrade and benefit from synergies at Argonne to continue to add value to experimental programs in the United States.”

Prior to his time at Diamond, Chapon was a senior fellow and group leader at the Institute Laue-Langevin in Grenoble, France. He also spent nearly a decade at the ISIS Neutron and Muon Source at Rutherford Appleton Laboratory in the United Kingdom, as both an instrument scientist and a group leader. In the latter role he was responsible for the operation of eight scientific instruments.

I am confident that Laurent will provide the expert guidance and scientific foundation needed to steer the APS through the transformative changes ahead as both our light source and our new exascale computer, Aurora, come online in the next few years,” said Argonne Director Paul Kearns. Laurent’s experience and vision will ensure a bright future for the facility and maintain Argonne’s position as a global leader in X-ray science.”

About the Advanced Photon Source

The U. S. Department of Energy Office of Science’s Advanced Photon Source (APS) at Argonne National Laboratory is one of the world’s most productive X-ray light source facilities. The APS provides high-brightness X-ray beams to a diverse community of researchers in materials science, chemistry, condensed matter physics, the life and environmental sciences, and applied research. These X-rays are ideally suited for explorations of materials and biological structures; elemental distribution; chemical, magnetic, electronic states; and a wide range of technologically important engineering systems from batteries to fuel injector sprays, all of which are the foundations of our nation’s economic, technological, and physical well-being. Each year, more than 5,000 researchers use the APS to produce over 2,000 publications detailing impactful discoveries, and solve more vital biological protein structures than users of any other X-ray light source research facility. APS scientists and engineers innovate technology that is at the heart of advancing accelerator and light-source operations. This includes the insertion devices that produce extreme-brightness X-rays prized by researchers, lenses that focus the X-rays down to a few nanometers, instrumentation that maximizes the way the X-rays interact with samples being studied, and software that gathers and manages the massive quantity of data resulting from discovery research at the APS.

This research used resources of the Advanced Photon Source, a U.S. DOE Office of Science User Facility operated for the DOE Office of Science by Argonne National Laboratory under Contract No. DE-AC02-06CH11357.

Argonne National Laboratory seeks solutions to pressing national problems in science and technology. The nation’s first national laboratory, Argonne conducts leading-edge basic and applied scientific research in virtually every scientific discipline. Argonne researchers work closely with researchers from hundreds of companies, universities, and federal, state and municipal agencies to help them solve their specific problems, advance America’s scientific leadership and prepare the nation for a better future. With employees from more than 60 nations, Argonne is managed by UChicago Argonne, LLC for the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Science.

The U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Science is the single largest supporter of basic research in the physical sciences in the United States and is working to address some of the most pressing challenges of our time. For more information, visit https://​ener​gy​.gov/​s​c​ience.