In the clean room of the Quantum Technology Centre

Nuclear Science and Engineering

Lancaster University has an international reputation for high-quality research in the engineering and physical sciences, in which it is ranked consistently in the top 10 for UK universities.

Group Leader

James Taylor

Professor James Taylor PhD, FIET

Professor of Control Engineering

Doctorate Centre in Nuclear Engineering, DSI - Foundations, Energy Lancaster, Lancaster Intelligent, Robotic and Autonomous Systems Centre, LIRA - Environmental Modelling, LIRA - Extreme Environments, LIRA - Fundamentals, Nuclear

C16, C - Floor, Engineering Building


Could the sun fry chips on Earth? - Monitoring extreme space weather events
01/04/2022 → 31/07/2022

Research on key technologies of boron-10 nitride neutron detecting material growth and device fabrication
31/03/2022 → 31/03/2025

Control and Navigation of Cooperative Unmanned Aerial Systems for Characterisation of Environmental Processes
01/02/2022 → 01/08/2025

DERIvATE: Deployable ElectRochemIcally Assisted Tritium dEtection
08/11/2021 → 08/05/2022

Fault-Tolerant Visual Servoing Control of a Hydraulically Actuated Manipulator
01/10/2021 → 01/07/2025

Ground Level Enhancement Event Monitor (GLEEM)
28/06/2021 → 27/06/2022

Position Sensitive Neutron Dectection by Pulse Shape Analysis
11/11/2019 → 30/09/2020

Radiation tolerant real-time recriticality monitoring
01/11/2019 → 30/04/2023

Bird strike prevention using video analytics.
01/05/2018 → 01/05/2019

Self Expanding Foam-Based Medical Devices
02/04/2018 → 02/07/2018

Advanced Real-time Multiplicity (ARM)
01/03/2018 → 01/03/2019

National Centre for Nuclear Robotics (NCNR)
02/10/2017 → 31/03/2022

Fluorescence spectra of alpha emitting isotopes for stand-off detector development
01/08/2017 → 18/10/2017

Potable Water for Rural Africa Project Development
01/03/2017 → 31/07/2017

FST CASE studentship: Development of a Coded-aperture Neutron Imager for Nuclear Decommissioning Applications
01/09/2016 → 31/03/2019

Development of a hybrid coded aperture Compton Camera
01/08/2016 → 01/08/2017

In situ measurement and analysis of sludge using robotic platform
01/08/2016 → 31/08/2021

In-situ real-time monitoring of water borne low energy betas
01/06/2016 → 01/07/2023

GPR Integrated Mixed-field Imaging
01/04/2016 → 30/03/2020

Hyperspectral imaging of neutrons with a Compton Camera and Coded aperture
02/11/2015 → 02/05/2019

Adaptive Treatment and Robust Control
01/11/2015 → 31/01/2019

Industrial Case Account 2015
01/11/2015 → 30/10/2020

Alpha-induced Air Fluorescence even under daylight conditions
01/10/2015 → 30/04/2020

Autonomous Mobile Robotic Systems for Remote Handling and Decomissioning
01/10/2015 → 30/09/2018

IS 2015 - Advanced Materials
01/06/2015 → …

IS 2015 - Robotics and autonomous systems
01/06/2015 → 31/12/2015

Detection of Waterborne Tritium
06/10/2014 → 06/10/2017

The Development of a Semiconductor based Hybrid Pixelated Multi-modal Spectroscopic Gamma and Neutron Radiation Detector
06/10/2014 → 06/10/2020

The Microphenotron: Developing an Automated Microphenotyping Platform to Unlock the Potential of Chemical Biology in Plants
01/10/2014 → 30/03/2016

FST CASE Studentship: Design and testin of a Novel Neutron Meter
01/04/2013 → 30/09/2016

Intelligent Communication Management and Control Architecture for Smart Grid (Fully Funded Studentship)
01/10/2012 → 31/03/2016

Energy Management Methods for Scalable Smart Grid (Fully Funded Studentship)
01/08/2012 → 31/01/2016

Fast, smooth and co-ordinated control of a dual-arm manipulator used for nuclear decommissioning
01/01/2010 → 31/12/2012

Industrial Doctorate Centre: Nuclear Engineering
01/10/2009 → 31/03/2018

Research Activity

Our multidisciplinary approach in nuclear research covers areas such as instrumentation, robotic and chemical engineering.

Excellence in research in nuclear instrumentation, nuclear decommissioning, and chemical processes along with our location relative to Sellafield Ltd, Springfields Fuels Ltd and many supporting specialist companies have placed us in an internationally-leading position in nuclear engineering systems.

Nuclear applications cover a broad range of sectors from healthcare and cancer treatment through to power generation, national security and decommissioning activities. Our research capabilities are applied in the industrially- and strategically-important areas of decommissioning and clean up, waste management, geological disposal, nuclear safety and regulation, safeguards and security, fuel cycle development, existing operation support and new build.

Decommissioning of disused nuclear facilities and plans to construct a new wave of nuclear power plants has caused the UK’s nuclear industry to face one of its biggest challenges in decades. To address this, the industry has come together to create several graduate training programmes. Currently, for example, Lancaster is a partner in the “Next Generation Nuclear” Centre for Doctoral Training with Manchester, Leeds, Sheffield & Liverpool universities and is active in supporting the work of the UK government too. Furthermore, we lead the new Lloyd’s Register Foundation International Joint Research Centre for the Safety of Nuclear Energy, which is a collaboration with the Universities of Harbin (China), Tennessee and Coventry.

In the area of nuclear decommissioning our research in robotics targets the need to reduce the requirement for manned entry into radioactive environments. This provides invaluable possibilities for the safe retrieval and disposal of contaminated materials whilst safeguarding the environment and minimising radiation exposure to people, for example through the use of hydraulic manipulators and UAVs in this application.

We also lead a joint EPSRC/Department of Energy & Climate Change project, in collaboration with the University of Liverpool and the Culham Centre for Fusion Energy ‘ADRIANA’ as part of the second phase of the National Nuclear Users’ Facility. This will enable the most sensitive neutron multiplicity calorimeter in the world to be established based on Lancaster capability.