Autonomous Inspection for Responsive and Sustainable Nuclear Fuel Manufacture

A nuclear power plant

AIRS-NFM combines cutting-edge research in nuclear engineering, control systems, and signal and image processing to advance nuclear fuel pellet manufacturing. By improving monitoring methods, we aim to significantly reduce the cost of fuel production and contribute to a more sustainable and efficient energy landscape.


Autonomous Inspection for Responsive and Sustainable Nuclear Fuel Manufacture (AIRS-NFM) was established in 2021 to bring together researchers from a range of engineering disciplines with the purpose of advancing manufacturing methods for nuclear fuel pellets.

As a source of low-carbon electricity that is not weather-dependent, nuclear energy plays a vital role in the UK's energy mix. New reactor designs such as small modular reactors (SMRs) are expected to play a significant role in the future of sustainable energy, but these rely on nuclear fuel being available at a reasonable cost. One way to reduce costs is using responsive monitoring that allows for early detection of issues that may affect the quality of the pellets.

AIRS-NFM is an interdisciplinary collaboration of academics, researchers, and industry experts comprising expertise in nuclear engineering, signal and image processing, control systems, manufacturing processes, and gamma-ray spectrometry.


The AIRS-NFM team would like to thank UKRI and the EPSRC for funding this research program under the Responsive Manufacturing call.

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