The Advanced Photon Source
a U.S. Department of Energy Office of Science User Facility

Kerby Named Interim APS-U Project Director; Peoples-Evans is Interim Project Manager; Hettel Moves into New Advisory Role


Jim Kerby has been named interim director of the the Advanced Photon Source Upgrade (APS-U) project, effective December 23, 2021. Bob Hettel transitioned to a new role as advisor to Laurent Chapon, the incoming associate laboratory director (ALD) for photon sciences and APS director. Elmie Peoples-Evans, has stepped into the role of interim project manager.

Kerby has been with the APS-U project for nearly a decade. He has more than 30 years of engineering and technical management experience and has been a visible member of the APS-U leadership team. Peoples-Evans has worked on the APS-U project for nine years and has been involved in every aspect of the upgrade project. 

With Kerby and Peoples-Evans at the helm, the APS-U project is in familiar and capable hands. The transition will be smooth and seamless while a search for a new project director is undertaken.

“It’s an honor to lead a project of the complexity and importance of the APS Upgrade,” Kerby said. “Bob has played a very important role in maintaining our stakeholders’ confidence in our ability to deliver. Thanks to the team’s continued hard work and dedication, we will continue to move the project forward, ready to meet challenges as they arise.”

Hettel joined the APS Upgrade in November 2017 and led the project through crucial stages of its development. A veteran accelerator designer with specific expertise in storage-ring light sources, Hettel guided the APS-U as it moved from the design phase into preliminary construction.

The APS-U project will see the current electron storage ring at the heart of the APS replaced with a new multi-bend achromat lattice that will increase the brightness of the facility’s x-ray beams by up to 500 times. Nine new feature beamlines will be constructed and several more beamlines will see significant enhancements. This project requires a year-long installation period, during which the APS will not be operational. That period is currently scheduled to begin in April 2023.

“This is an exciting time for Argonne, the APS, and the APS-U project, which once completed, will be one of the centerpieces of our plan to transform science at the Lab,” said Argonne director Paul Kearns. “Our future is bright. Jim and Elmie have the Lab’s continued support meeting the APS-U project’s milestones. And we appreciate all of Bob’s accomplishments to maintain our leadership role within the light source community and continue APS’ global position in hard x-ray science.”

For more information on the APS Upgrade, please visit the project web page.

The Advanced Photon Source is a DOE Office of Science User Facility operated for the DOE Office of Science by Argonne National Laboratory under Contract No. DE-AC02-06CH11357

The U.S. Department of Energy's APS at Argonne National Laboratory is one of the world’s most productive x-ray light source facilities. Each year, the APS provides high-brightness x-ray beams to a diverse community of more than 5,000 researchers in materials science, chemistry, condensed matter physics, the life and environmental sciences, and applied research. Researchers using the APS produce over 2,000 publications each year detailing impactful discoveries, and solve more vital biological protein structures than users of any other x-ray light source research facility. APS 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.

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. DOE Office of Science.


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