Industry Keynote Lecture by Dr Mark Bankhead (National Nuclear Laboratory)


Hudson Beare Crush Hall


Thursday, November 5, 2015 - 12:45 to 17:00

Dr Mark Bankhead from the National Nuclear Laboratory is visiting IMP on 5th Nov. He will also be a keynote speaker for the day – and is keen to collaborate with us. If you would like to have a meeting with him – please get in touch with Martin Sweatman or myself. This should be possible after the seminar that day.

Thursday, 5th Nov 2015: 13:00 Classroom 3
12:40 for Pizza: Hudson Beare Crush Hall


Dr Mark Bankhead
National Nuclear Laboratory

Modelling and simulation are becoming ubiquitous in nuclear engineering driven by the increase in available computing power. At the same time the availability of sensors is increasing rapidly so that large amounts of data, known as “big data”, are being generated from both observations and simulations. New modelling approaches are been developed which allow for more accurate physical descriptions of complex coupled phenomena allowing a phenomenological descriptions of the various processes involving radiation, chemistry, thermal and stress that could impact on the performance of a nuclear plant. Methods for assessing the impact of uncertainty on predictions have the potential to be used to integrate across broad spatial and temporal domains, from the microscopic forces in a small engineered component to an engineered nuclear system of plants and reactors. Finally, these approaches must be combined with a fundamental understanding of the governing mechanisms in order to maintain credibility with the industry regulators.

NNL and the University of Liverpool have recently developed the concept of and Integrated Nuclear Digital Environment (INDE). This represents a high level design concept of how virtual prototypes and digital twins can be combined to produce an integrated model of the lifecycle of a nuclear engineering system. Practical benefits in the real-world exist in today’s problems for accelerating nuclear clean up to tomorrow’s problem of delivering safe, clean and sustainable nuclear energy in developed and emerging nations. For example, INDE could be developed into a tool for planning decommissioning operations in the UK. This could be achieved by integrating physically based chemical models of waste behaviour to strategic models of plant discharges providing a means of making informed decisions on likely discharges to the environment. INDE has the potential to be used to make strategic decisions on new nuclear build. Informed decisions could be taken based on information from integrated models governing materials performance, thermal and radiation, recycling and decommissioning.

There are many technical challenges to overcome to realising this vision.

Overcoming these will require the combined talents of academic and industry researchers across computer science and engineering disciplines.

Dr Mark Bankhead is a research chemist with over 13 years’ experience working in Industry with the National Nuclear Laboratory.  He is a technical specialist in quantum mechanical, atomistic and meso-scale modelling methods, with specific chemical expertise in the field of chemical reactivity at interfaces.  He has applied these skills to address a diverse range of technical challenges across the nuclear fuel cycle including, heterogeneous catalytic reactions, corrosion chemistry, reactive transport and predictive modelling of materials performance.  Since 2006, he has led High Performance Computing for NNL and is the lead in managing NNL’s £0.5m HPC facility.  He has authored a number of external peer reviewed scientific papers, several invited talks and conference articles and is the author of over 45 significant internal reports that have been subject to technical committee review.  He is a visiting research associate with the University of Sheffield and the University of Liverpool where he is involved in the industrial supervision of 5 current PhD projects across a range of technical areas.

Event Contact Name: 

Dr. Prashant Valluri

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