National Nuclear Laboratory


Sunday 25 May 2014

Teamwork for University and Nuclear Experts

The University of Central Lancashire (UCLan) and the UK’s National Nuclear Laboratory (NNL) have signed a collaborative agreement in the field of nuclear research and development.

They will work together on a range of business opportunities and research projects across a number of key areas including research, technology, knowledge sharing and the development of education, skills and training.

The two organisations will work together on the innovative development of techniques in decontamination and decommissioning, dose rates, radiological impact and environmental issues.

Students of UCLan will benefit from the expertise of NNL staff who will make contributions to the training of scientists and engineers through teaching material, guest lecturing and design projects.

NNL is based at six locations in the UK, at Springfields near Preston, the Central Laboratory at Sellafield, Workington in Cumbria for non-radioactive test rig work and other research facilities at Harwell in Oxfordshire, Stonehouse in Gloucestershire and Risley, Cheshire.

The collaboration will also include secondments or placements of personnel in each establishment, including visiting roles to gain maximum potential of the research, equipment, facilities and expertise in gaining funding from third parties.

It is also envisaged the agreement will help with recruitment into the NNL through sponsorship, careers advice and site visits.

Dr Graham Baldwin, Pro Vice-Chancellor (Skills and Employer Engagement) at UCLan, said: “This is great news for our students in science and engineering or those thinking of coming to UCLan.

“It adds another dimension to the university’s capability. The strength of the collaboration is in the relative position of each organization as a leader in its field.

“We have already been liaising on a number of projects but this commitment to knowledge sharing and the development of new thinking can only help support what already exists.”

Dr Peter Bleasdale, managing director of the National Nuclear Laboratory, said: “We’ve been working with UCLan for some time and this is a natural extension of that relationship.

“We believe in growing expertise and developing students and employees in a culture of learning combined with business disciplines. This is an exciting development and demonstrates our commitment to the development of these skills in our field.”

The partnership also supports students via bursaries, awards and vocational placements at NNL establishments. UCLan and NNL will identify students judged to be worthy of these incentives and UCLan will assist NNL in mentoring such students throughout their degree course.

Notes to Editors

The University of Central Lancashire

The University of Central Lancashire  (UCLan) has a long-standing association with the nuclear industry, mainly through the National Nuclear Laboratory, British Nuclear Fuels and its spin-off companies and the British Nuclear Group. This association stretches back over 10 years and covers all three of the main activities of a Higher Education Institution: Research & Development; Knowledge Transfer and Education & Training. The association has recently been strengthened through theWestlakes Research Institute  (WRI) which specialises in environmental science, genetics, epidemiology and policy studies.

National Nuclear Laboratory

The National Nuclear Laboratory was formed out of Nexia Solutions Limited, a wholly owned subsidiary of British Nuclear Fuels plc.  It is providing the experts and technologies to become an international centre of research and development and providing customers with tailored solutions by applying the appropriate level of technical innovation and intellectual support.  Customers include the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA), Sellafield Ltd, Westinghouse, Ministry of Defence, United Kingdom Atomic Energy Authority (UKAEA), VT Nuclear and British Energy plc.

NNL provides nuclear technology services across the full nuclear fuel cycle and is developing expertise across diverse science and engineering disciplines.