Simon Middleburgh
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Dr. Simon Middleburgh FIMMM

Sêr Cymru Reader in Nuclear Materials

Simon was appointed to the Nuclear Futures Institute in March 2018. His research is focused on developing new nuclear materials, investigating material behaviour in extreme environments (including nuclear and aerospace) and combining materials modelling techniques with experimental methods. He is a Fellow of the Institute of Materials, Minerals and Mining (FIMMM). 

Simon has over 65 peer reviewed journal articles and 13 patents.

He is building a suite of software and hardware capabilities at Bangor University in order to support industrially relevant research in order to produce research in a timely manner required by the nuclear and aerospace industries. This includes the MERLIN (Materials for Energy Research Laboratory: Innovating for Nuclear) facility at Bangor University that combines a manufacturing capability (including an inert atmosphere glove box, ultra-high temperature furnaces) with a materials characterisation facility (including electron microscopy, Raman spectroscopy and X-ray diffraction hardware).

He supervises a number of Ph.D. projects including:

Fabio Martini – Sponsored by Westinghouse Electric and KESS 2 – Developing composite nuclear fuels for commercial power plants.

Megan Owen – Sponsored by Westinghouse Electric and KESS 2 – Impact of alloying additions on grain boundary corrosion of zirconium oxide.

Gareth Stephens – Sponsored by Wood Plc. and the Nuclear Energy Futures CDT (EPSRC) – Impact of coolant chemistry on grain boundary corrosion of nuclear fuels.

Jack Wilson – Sponsored by UK-NNL and Nuclear Energy Futures CDT (EPSRC) – Development of high entropy alloys for advanced nuclear applications.

Mustafa Bolukbasi – Sponsored by the Ministry of National Education of the Turkish Republic – Assesment of the Economic Impacts of Nuclear Fuel Cycles for Current and Future Reactors

Corey Bevan Sponsored by AWE and the  Nuclear Energy Futures CDT (EPSRC) –  developing nuclear forensics methods to assess the ageing of plutonium oxide powders.

Simon brings experience from the nuclear industry to the Nuclear Futures Institute and has taken part in a number of expert panel groups including: the IAEA ACTOF group tasked with investigating accident tolerant fuels and SCIP III (the Studsvik cladding integrity project). He continues to consult and is a member of the Materials Advisory Panel at Tokemak Energy. Simon is part of international research collaborations including MUZIC-3 (a collaborative project investigating corrosion and hydrogen pickup mechanisms in zirconium alloys) and CARAT (consortium of academic researchers investigating accident tolerant fuels). Simon has been on the nuclear advisory committee at the Centre of Nuclear Engineering at Imperial College London, consulted for the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office and the UK National Nuclear Laboratory and has had visiting academic positions at Imperial College London and KTH, Stockholm during his time working in industry.

Simon completed his Ph.D. at Imperial College London in 2012 working on the simulation of doped nuclear fuels and materials for advanced nuclear systems sponsored by Westinghouse Electric Company. Simon then took up a Research Leader position at the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation (ANSTO) at Lucas Heights in Sydney, Australia. There he built a research team that focused on the simulation of nuclear materials with a focus on combining theoretical results with experimental investigations including work carried out at the Australian Synchrotron. Simon then joined Westinghouse Electric Sweden AB in Västerås, Sweden where he used his methods to advance fuel development and fuel performance modelling methods.