Luke Menzies

University Of Manchester

I finished my MSc in Fusion Energy at the University of York. I am currently doing a PhD as part of the CDT at the University of Manchester, under the co-supervision of Paul Mummery at Manchester and Mark Gilbert at CCFE.

Within a fusion reactor, the materials within the blanket region are exposed to large fluxes of high energy neutrons. EUROFER, the main candidate for the material within breeder blankets is a ferritic martensitic steel (an iron chromium based alloy). The neutrons cause a build-up of helium within the metal which migrates to the grain boundaries of the EUROFER. This causes embrittlement of the material, hindering the usable lifetime of the material. My PhD project looks at investigating the time-scales in which embrittlement occurs through conducting rate theory simulations of helium migration and nucleation within steels.”

My PhD will involve using programmes like Abaqus (a Fortran-based programme) to perform stain analysis and finite element analysis to determine the suitability of a material in a simulation.