Case studies

Supporting innovative nuclear newcomers

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AFCP is connecting clean energy innovators across the UK to unlock new opportunities. SME Lucideon is translating its novel flash sintering technology to the nuclear sector. Business Manager Tim Abbott explores how Lucideon’s innovation is expanding fuel manufacture capability in the UK.

An infographic that summarises this case study. The top part of the infographic is a blue bar that says: "Lucideon Ltd, Tim Abbott, Business Manager" on the left. There is also a location icon that says: "Stoke-on-Trent, UK" on the right. Underneath the blue bar, there is a green box that has the following statement from Tim in quotation marks: "Lucideon is not a traditional nuclear supplier, so we bring new ways of thinking 
to nuclear sector challenges."

Challenge

Building reputation in a competitive industry  

As a highly skilled but relatively small company, Lucideon sometimes faces a challenge to effectively raise our profile within the nuclear sector. It can be difficult to demonstrate our ability to support existing efforts in materials development to larger organisations and universities.

Solution

Demonstrating value and efficiency

 Through our partnership with the UK National Nuclear Laboratory (NNL), AFCP helps Lucideon demonstrate, promote and secure our place in the UK nuclear sector. In advancing our ability to deliver high-value research and solutions, AFCP positions Lucideon to support existing efforts by other organisations and universities. This is an opportunity to develop novel, scalable solutions that will enable fuel manufacture in the UK.

Impact

Cross-fertilising technologies for greater impact

Lucideon is not a traditional nuclear supplier, so we bring new ways of thinking to nuclear sector challenges.

Lucideon has pioneered the development of flash sintering technology in a number of sectors. However, AFCP has enabled the first ever application of flash sintering to nuclear fuels. AFCP allows Lucideon to further scale up flash sintering within a specialist manufacturing environment. In doing so, we can sustain high value jobs and enhance our ability to cross-fertilise technologies between sectors.

Through AFCP, we are able to overcome previous challenges and publicly showcase our value to significant nuclear research programmes. This platform helps to promote our capabilities and demonstrate our commitment to the nuclear industry. AFCP also demonstrates to the wider industry the confidence that NNL and the UK Government Department for Business, Engineering and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) in Lucideon’s abilities, particularly our world-leading flash sintering facilities and capabilities.

AFCP utilises a wide range of scientists and engineers with experience in multiple market sectors. The programme’s collaborative approach allows us to form new partnerships, thereby accessing a range of opportunities and knowledge. AFCP is our stepping stone to further explore other technology applications within the nuclear sector.

A blue banner with the text: "Read more about Lucideon's AFCP work in Nuclear Engineering International" that links out to the magazine at https://secure.viewer.zmags.com/publication/fc6bae6e#/fc6bae6e/30

AFCP is part of the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) £505m Energy Innovation Programme.