National Nuclear Laboratory


Tuesday 22 April 2014

NNL and Culham Centre for Fusion Energy Sign Collaboration Agreement

NNL CCFE Signing

The two leading bodies in UK nuclear energy research have today signed an agreement to work more closely with one another.

The Culham Centre for Fusion Energy (CCFE), which leads UK work on nuclear fusion, and the National Nuclear Laboratory (NNL) which is focused on research related to the nuclear fission fuel cycle, will work together in a number of areas of common interest.

This will include working jointly on topics such as materials research, advanced computing technology, modelling and simulation, robotics and remote handling and neutronics all of which are relevant to both nuclear fission and nuclear fusion.

The two organisations will also work closely on important nuclear research facilities. They are already both partners in the National Nuclear Users Facility, along with The University of Manchester’s Dalton Cumbrian Facility, and will extend this collaboration to include other relevant research facilities in some of the topic areas listed above.

The Memorandum of Understanding agreement reflects the fact that CCFE and NNL each have a great deal of technology, skills, experience, capabilities and resources which could be relevant to the other and working more closely together will help to deliver the maximum benefit from those areas of synergy.

NNL’s Managing Director, Professor Paul Howarth, said: “This agreement is great news for both NNL and CCFE.

“We are increasingly identifying areas where it makes sense for NNL to be working with CCFE and capturing these in a formal agreement is going to help us to realise the benefits of joint working more effectively.”CCFE Director, Professor Steve Cowley added: “I am delighted to formalise CCFE’s strong working relationship with NNL. 

“Our increasing emphasis on fusion technology issues means that the overlap with advanced fission technologies is growing more significant all the time. 

“I look forward to working closely with NNL and personally with Paul in the future”

Notes for Editors

  • NNL provides the experts and technologies to ensure the UK nuclear industry operates safely and cost effectively today and for the future.  The company has also provided support and services to the UK and other Governments and to the European Union. NNL has over 10,000 person-years of nuclear industry experience across the whole nuclear fuel cycle. Follow NNL on Twitter: @UKNNL
  • Culham Centre for Fusion Energy, near Oxford, is home to the UK’s fusion research programme, including the MAST (Mega Amp Spherical Tokamak) experiment. It also hosts the world’s largest fusion device, JET (Joint European Torus), for scientists from 29 countries around Europe. Fusion research aims to copy the processes which power the stars to develop a new source of clean energy here on Earth. Fusion research at CCFE is funded by the Engineering & Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC – and by the European Union under the EURATOM treaty. Further information is available at or on Twitter: @fusionenergy

For more information, contact:

Adrian BullDirector of External Relations             

National Nuclear Laboratory

+44 (0) 7894 836553

Nick HollowayMedia Manager               

Culham Centre for Fusion Energy

+44 (0) 1235 466232