KEK studies the origin of the universe and the material structure by means of accelerators.
Everything is made of molecules. A molecule is made of atoms, an atom made of nucleus and elecrons. A nucleus is made of protons and neutrons while protons and neutrons are made of quarks. Fundamental science studies include a wide range of fields: paricles and nuclear research, finding structures and functions of materials at the molecular level, life science and so on. Further, the research on elementary particles also leads to study of the universe right after its beginning.
A unique tool that makes these studies possible is the accelerator. Accelerators are apparatus that accelrate tiny particles such as electrons and protons almost to the speed of light to create high energy states.
KEK has been on the intellectual frontier through developing accelerators of highest performances, and developing particle detector of the highest resolutions in space and time.