Framatome presents award recognising research excellence in nuclear science
28 November 2019
Framatome today presented its first Excellence in Nuclear Reactor Science in the UK Award to Professor Sergio Lozano-Perez of the University of Oxford in recognition of his significant contributions to nuclear science and research. Minister Counsellor François Revardeaux joined Framatome executives in presenting the award during a ceremony at the French Embassy in London.
“Nuclear energy is an important source of baseload, low-carbon electricity and a crucial part of both France’s and the UK’s pledges to achieve carbon neutrality by 2050,” said Counsellor Revardeaux. “Research and development are key to ensuring the development of nuclear energy and the safe, efficient operation of plants. I welcome Professor Lozano-Perez’s contributions to nuclear reactor science, which is incredibly important for our clean energy future.”
Throughout his professional career, Professor Lozano-Perez has focused on improving the understanding of how nuclear reactor materials change in an operating reactor over time. Among his numerous accomplishments, he has determined that the material properties around the area just in front of a crack, known as a crack tip, in components like steam generators can vary from other areas even when they are separated by just a few nanometres. He developed a reliable methodology to characterize the material properties of a crack tip using a transmission electron microscope and an atom probe, tools that can examine a component in great detail. Professor Lozano-Perez and his team also worked with several manufacturers to develop improved instruments and capabilities that can detect differences in these small areas.
Currently, Professor Lozano-Perez and his team are characterising the alloys used in both the primary and secondary systems of pressurised water reactors. Their goal is to explain what causes stress corrosion cracking and its propagation. This will allow technology developers and manufacturers to create better alloys and models for predicting stress corrosion cracking.
“The French nuclear energy industry has a proud history of partnering with companies and academic and research institutions in the UK,” said Alexis Marincic, senior executive vice president of the Engineering and Design Authority at Framatome. “All of us at Framatome are pleased to honour Professor Lozano-Perez with our first Excellence in Nuclear Reactor Science in the UK Award and recognise the important contributions he has made to advance our understanding of material behaviour in nuclear reactors.”
Framatome’s Excellence in Nuclear Reactor Science in the UK Award is open to all senior engineers and university professors who have completed extensive research and development work in the field of nuclear reactors, fuel and materials. This may include work focused on materials, manufacturing, safety, numerical simulation codes, core physics, non-destructive testing of reactors, instrumentation and control and mechanics, among other topics.
Framatome’s scientific director chooses members of the selection committee, which determines the award recipient. The recipient receives a monetary award and an invitation to deliver a lecture on their research at Framatome’s global headquarters in Paris, France.