Exploring how materials behave

The work we do demands a deep technical understanding of how materials behave when subjected to a wide range of conditions.

Examples of the conditions of interest to our scientists include:

  • The effects of multi-decade-long timescale chemical processes associated with material ageing
  • The mechanical forces experienced by spacecraft under launch and the high pressures produced by explosive shocks
  • The heat and pressures experienced at the heart of a nuclear explosion – similar to some of the most violent astrophysical phenomena in the universe

Our research in nuclear physics, atomic physics, plasma physics, quantum chemistry, analytical chemistry, structural dynamics and hydrodynamics are all vibrant areas of both experimental and theoretical study. And, working with our partners, our scientists and metallurgists develop novel materials for a range of applications to support current and future nuclear deterrent requirements.

Studying plasma physics

Plasma physics is an important field of study for understanding the physics of the nuclear warhead.

Find out more