Dr Tom Scott

Materials scientist Dr Tom Scott has been appointed as the first Royal Academy of Engineering/AWE Senior Research Fellow at the University of Bristol, to develop new technologies to detect and observe materials containing uranium and plutonium.

The five-year Fellowship is jointly supported by the Royal Academy of Engineering and AWE, which plays a crucial role in national defence by providing and maintaining warheads for Trident, the UK’s nuclear deterrent.

Dr Scott’s Fellowship research will tackle the challenges faced by nuclear scientists around the world in understanding the unique properties of uranium and plutonium, together with their alloys and compounds. By enabling better understanding of the effects of ageing and corrosion on these metals, the project will enhance the reliability and safety of systems containing these materials, and extend their lifetimes. This is expected to benefit both civil and defence users of uranium and plutonium.

Dr Scott, who is currently Reader in Nuclear Materials at the University of Bristol, said: “This fellowship provides an exciting opportunity to deliver a programme of end-user inspired research which will deliver transformational benefits for our national nuclear safety and security”

Professor Ric Parker CBE FREng, Chair of the Academy’s Research Committee, said:  “The work of engineers such as Dr Scott is vital to the safety and economics of nuclear systems in the UK, and we are delighted to support him as a Senior Research Fellow.”

Notes for editors

  1. Royal Academy of Engineering. As the UK’s national academy for engineering, we bring together the most successful and talented engineers for a shared purpose: to advance and promote excellence in engineering. We provide analysis and policy support to promote the UK’s role as a great place to do business. We take a lead on engineering education and we invest in the UK’s world-class research base to underpin innovation. We work to improve public awareness and understanding of engineering. We are a national academy with a global outlook.

    We have four strategic challenges:
    - Make the UK the leading nation for engineering innovation
    - Address the engineering skills crisis

    - Position engineering at the heart of society
    - Lead the profession

  2. AWE. AWE plays a crucial role in national defence by providing and maintaining warheads for Trident, the UK’s nuclear deterrent.

    AWE is contracted to the Ministry of Defence (MOD) through a Government-owned Contractor Operated (GOCO) arrangement. Whilst our sites and facilities remain in government ownership, their management, day to day operations, and the maintenance of the nuclear stockpile is contracted to a private company AWE Management Limited (AWE ML). AWE ML is a consortium comprising three partners: Serco Group plc, the Lockheed Martin Corporation and Jacobs Engineering Group.

For more information please contact:

Aaron Boardley at the Royal Academy of Engineering
T: 020 7766 0655
E: Aaron Boardley