Research and development

As a centre of technical excellence, EDF UK research and development is delivering research and innovation to help Britain achieve Net Zero.

Established in 2012, the EDF UK R&D centre provides support to all business lines and subsidiaries of EDF in the UK in line with the EDF Group’s Cap 2030 project and prepares the future for new business. A wholly owned subsidiary of EDF Energy, the R&D Centre is also an integral part of the EDF Group R&D international network, bringing the UK perspective to international collaborations.

Researchers of EDF UK R&D are driven by two goals: improving performance in all EDF UK current activities, and preparing for the energy future by exploring breakthrough technologies or business opportunities. As of today, our diverse and international team is engaged in R&D projects across all energy aspects including Nuclear, Climate Change, Offshore Wind, Energy Systems, Flexibility & Storage, Zero Emissions Mobility, Low Carbon Hydrogen and Smart Digital Technologies.

Our vision is ”Driving research and innovation to go beyond Net Zero”.

“By coupling the advances in science and engineering with the emergence of new digital innovations and leveraging the UK ecosystem of Research and Innovation through strong and strategic partnerships, EDF UK R&D is delivering research and ground breaking innovations to our internal business units, policymakers, partners and customers in order to help Britain achieve Net Zero”
Patrick Dupeyrat, EDF UK R&D Director 


 

Delivering Research and Innovation to help Britain achieve Net Zero

  

Our vision is ”Driving research and innovation to go beyond Net Zero
Researchers of EDF R&D UK are driven by two missions: improving performance in all EDF UK current activities, and preparing for the energy future by exploring breakthrough technologies or business opportunities. As of today, our fully international team is engaged in R&D projects across all energy aspects including Nuclear, Climate Change, Off Shore Wind, Energy Systems, Flexibility & Storage, Zero Emissions Mobility, Low Carbon Hydrogen and Smart Digital Technologies.
 By coupling the advances in science and engineering with the emergence of new digital innovations and leveraging the UK ecosystem of Research and Innovation through strong and strategic partnerships, EDF R&D UK is delivering research and ground breaking innovations to our internal business units, policymakers, partners and customers in order to help Britain achieve Net Zero.


The latest R&D projects at EDF

   

Hydrogen stored in Depleted Uranium and used for decarbonising steel

Electrolytic hydrogen production from nuclear and renewable generation has a key role in decarbonising more challenging applications for industry, transport and heating. EDF in the UK is developing relationships with stakeholders for the production, distribution and consumption of hydrogen and the R&D UK Centre is leading on key projects with the newly formed Zero Carbon Hubs team in Smart Customers. The Zero Carbon Hubs team’s role is to couple low carbon generation with existing and new technology to decarbonise demand. The Zero Carbon Hubs team has just completed a feasibility study for a project on hydrogen storage with depleted uranium and is starting a project to switch some natural gas supply to hydrogen for a British Steel “reheat” furnace in Teesside. 

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24h Climate Fresk event at R&D UK Centre

The R&D UK Centre was very happy to be part of the 2nd edition of the 24 hours of the Climate Fresk that took place the 9th of June from 7:00am (UK Time zone) to the 10th of June 7:00am. During these 24 hours, more than 700 colleagues from EDF Group participated day and night to one of the numerous climate fresks organised across the world!

This event aimed to raise awareness on the causes and the consequences of the climate risks on Earth, people and society was led by EDF but goes beyond! In fact more than 1,000 people across different organisations and businesses created a Fresk that day, discussed and connected to understand how individually and as a society we can mitigate climate change.

ROMEO helps reduce LCOE thanks to reliable O&M support tools

ROMEO (Reliable OM decision tools and strategies for high LCoE reduction on offshore wind) is a European collaborative project that gathered 12 partners from 6 countries. From 2017 to 2022, they investigated on innovations and technologies allowing to drive down the costs of operation and maintenance (O&M) of offshore windfarms.

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EDF deploys unique underwater drone to carry out first ever autonomous robotic inspection of wind farm foundations

Partnership between EDF and the ORCA Hub sees ROV assess turbine foundations and create 3D reconstruction. 

EDF has deployed a uniquely customised a remotely operated vehicle (ROV) to carry out what is believed to be the first autonomous wind farm foundation inspection at its Blyth Offshore Wind Farm. The ROV, equipped and operated by researchers from the ORCA Hub, a strategic project within the National Robotarium, was modified to include cutting-edge robotic technologies for autonomous inspection capabilities and carried out visual inspections of the gravity-based foundations of three offshore turbines over the course of four days.

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Computer vision at the service of business units

Over the past three years, the Digital Innovation team at EDF's R&D centre in the UK has developed in-depth expertise in the field of computer vision ("Machine Vision"). It now works with different business units, such as EDF Renewables and EDF UK Customers

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StrataStore: An innovative Compressed Air Energy Storage solution

BEIS has awarded almost £7 million to UK projects that are developing innovative energy storage technologies, in first round of government-backed competition. These projects will benefit from this funding to develop new energy storage technologies that can utilise stored energy as heat, electricity or as a low-carbon energy carrier like hydrogen. Ranging from the development of thermal batteries to converting energy to hydrogen, they have been selected because of their potential to improve technology performance and reduce the cost of meeting net zero

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R&D UK Centre wins exciting Hydrogen competition bid

We are proud to announce that the R&D UK Centre have successfully won a Zero Emission Road Transport competition bid thanks to support from Midlands Engine, the Energy Research Accelerator and Cenex.

The funding competition is run by Innovate UK on behalf of the Department of Transport and will invest up to £10 million into Hydrogen truck innovation projects across the UK.

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Meet the EDF R&D team in the UK

  

R&D UK Centre locations

Based across 4 locations

Events, Collaborations and publications

  

Visit of UKAEA facilities by EDF: when fission met fusion

The United Kingdom Atomic Energy Authority (UKAEA) is a UK government research organisation responsible for the development of fusion energy. It is an executive non-departmental public body of the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) that aims to develop fusion power as a commercially viable, environmentally responsible energy source for the future. 

In June, the R&D UK Centre organised the visit of a high level EDF delegation (EDF (UK) and EDF R&D) at UK Atomic Energy Authority facilities in Culham.

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Celebrating 10 years of Research & Development

A small event was held in London on the 12th of July 2022 to commemorate the 10th anniversary of EDF UK R&D, attended by members of the team, the two former R&D Directors, Simone Rossi (EDF UK CEO) and a number of senior leaders and members of the Board from EDF UK and EDF Group. 
 

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Visit of UKAEA facilities by EDF : when fission met fusion

The United Kingdom Atomic Energy Authority (UKAEA) is a UK government research organisation responsible for the development of fusion energy. It is an executive non-departmental public body of the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) that aims to develop fusion power as a commercially viable, environmentally responsible energy source for the future. 

In June, the R&D UK Centre organised a visit of a high level EDF delegation (EDF (UK) and EDF R&D) at UK Atomic Energy Authority facilities in Culham.

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Celebrating early careers development in the R&D UK Centre!

Did you know that nearly a quarter of employees within the R&D UK Centre have come through the early careers pipelines and development schemes?

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Celebrating International Women's Day (IWD) 2022 - Meet Angeliki

As part of IWD 2022, we interviewed our Senior Research Engineer Angeliki Loukatou who is in the Smart Customers team.

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Our research publications

The Research staff in our teams Smart Customers, Renewables, Nuclear and Digital Innovation, have had numerous academic papers published on a variety of interesting technical topics.

 

Renewables

2019, E. Borras Mora, J. Spelling, Adriaan H. van der Weijde, E. Pavageau, "The effects of mean wind speed uncertainty on project finance debt sizing for offshore wind farms", Journal of Applied Energy


2019, J. Paterson “Offshore wind installation vessels – A comparative assessment for UK offshore rounds 1 and 2” 


2017, F. D'Amico, R. Mogre, S. Clarke, A. Lindgreen, M. Hingley, "How purchasing and supply management practices affect key success factors: the case of the offshore-wind supply chain", Journal of Business & Industrial Marketing


2017, A. Pérez-Ortiz, A G.L Borthwich, J. McNaughton, H C.M Smith, Q. Xiao, "Resource characterization of sites in the vicinity of an island near a landmass, Renewable Energy", Renewable Energy


2016, R. Mogre, S. Talluri, F. D'Amico, "A decision Framework to Mitigate Supply Chain Risks: An Application in the Offshore-Wind Industry", IEEE Transactions on Engineering Management


2013, I. Afgan, J. McNaughton, S. Rolfo, D.D. Apsley, T. Stallard, P. Stansby, "Turbulent flow and loading on a tidal stream turbine by LES and RANS", International Journal of Heat and Fluid Flow


2013, J. McNaughton, I. Afgan, D.D. Apsley, S. Rolfo, T. Stallard, P.K Stansby, "A simple sliding-mesh interface procedure and its application to the CFD simulation of a tidal-stream turbine", International Journal for Numerical methods in fluids


2013, J. McNaughton, F. Billard, A. Revell, "Turbulence modelling of low Reynolds number flow effects around a vertical axis turbine at a range of tip-speed ratios", Journal of Fluids and Structures


 

 

 

Nuclear

2022, C. Katsamis, T. Craft, H. Iacovides, J. Uribe, "Use of 2D and 3D unsteady RANS in the computation of wall bounded buoyant flows"


2021, A.J. Awang Draup; B. Rodgers; P.B. Prangnell; Q.M. Li; M.J. Lunt, "Modelling of Friction Stir Welded AA2139 Aluminium Alloy Panels in Tension and Blast"


2021, B. Liu, S. He, C. Moulinec, J. Uribe, "Coupled porous media approaches in sub-channel CFD"


2021, B. Liu, S. He, C. Moulinec, J. Uribe, "A coupling approach between resolved and coarse-grid sub-channel CFD"


2021, M. J. Owens, M. Lockwood, L. A. Barnard, C. J. Scott, C. Haines & A. Macneil, "Extreme Space-Weather Events and the Solar Cycle"


2021, C. Haines, M.J. Owens, L. Barnard, M. Lockwood, A. Ruffenach, K. Boykin, R. McGranaghan, "Forecasting Occurrence and Intensity of Geomagnetic Activity with Pattern-Matching Approaches"


2021, A. Faulkner, C. E Bulgin and C. J Merchant, "Characterising industrial thermal plumes in coastal regions using 3-D numerical simulations" 


2021, B. Mcilwaine, M. Rivas Casado, "JellyNet: The convolutional neural network jellyfish bloom detector"


2020, J L. Blackall, H. Iacovides, J. C. Uribe, "Modeling of In-Line Tube Banks Inside Advanced Gas-Cooled Reactor Boilers"


 

2020, I. Nistor, "Nuclear Digital Twins at EDF"


2020, A. Tilloy, B. Malamud, H.C. Winter, A. Joly-Laugel, "Evaluating the efficacy of bivariate extreme modelling approaches for multi-hazard scenarios" 


2020, B. Liu, S. He, C. Moulinec, J. Uribe, "A Numerical Study of Turbulent Upward Flow of Super Critical Water in a 2×2 Rod Bundle with Non-Uniform Heating"


2020, P. Nguyen, J. Uribe, I. Afgan, D. Laurence, "A Dual-Grid Hybrid RANS/LES Model for Under-Resolved Near-Wall Regions and its Application to Heated and Separating Flows" 


2019, B. Mcilwaine, M. Rivas Casado, P. Leinster, “Using 1st Derivative Reflectance Signatures within a Remote Sensing Framework to Identify Macroalgae in Marine Environments”, Remote Sensing


2019, A. Tilloy, B. Malamud, H.C. Winter, A. Joly-Laugel, “A review of quantification methodologies for multi-hazard interrelationships”, Earth-Science Reviews


2019, H.C. Winter, K. Brown, “How do we know how fast the wind may blow?”, Significance


2018, D. Cross, C. Onof, H.C. Winter, P. Bernardara, "Censored rainfall modelling of estimation of fine-scale extremes", Hydrol. Earth Systm. Sci, 22: 727-756


2018, P. Sharkey, H.C. Winter, “A Bayesian spatial hierarchical model for extreme precipitation in Great Britain”, Environmetrics


2017, T. Crump, G. Ferte, P. Mummery, A. Jivkov, P. Martinuzzi, V-X. Tran, "Dynamic fracture effects on remote stress amplification in AGR graphite bricks", Nuclear Engineering and Design


2017, T. Crump, G. Ferte, P. Mummery, A. Jivkov, V-X. Tran, "Dynamic fracture analysis by explicit solid dynamics and implicit crack propagation", International Journal of Solids and Structures


2017,P. Sharkey, J.A. Tawn, "A Poisson process reparameterisation for Bayesian inference for extremes", Extremes, 20(2):239-263


2017, H.C. Winter, "Making sense of multiple extreme weather events", Significance, 14: 6-7


2016, T. Crump, G. Ferte, A. Jivkov, P. Mummery, P. Martinuzzi, V-X. Tran, "3D Dynamic Crack Propagation within AGR Graphite Bricks"


2016, T. Crump, P. Mummery, A. Jivkov, V-X. Tran, "A meso-scale approach to modelling stable dynamic crack propagation in glass under rate-dependent loading", Procedia Structural Integrity


2016, H.C. Winter, S.J Brown, J.A. Tawn, ""Detecting changing behaviour of heatwaves with climate change", Dynamics and Statistics of the Climate System


2016, H.C. Winter, J. Tawn, S.J. Brown, "Modelling the effect of the El Niño-Southern Oscillation on extreme spatial temperature events over Australia", The Annals of Applied Statistics


2016, H.C. Winter, J.A Tawn, "kth-order Markov models for assessing heatwave risks", Extremes: Statistical Theory and Applications in Science, Engineering and Economics


2015, H.C. Winter, J.A. Tawn, "Modelling heatwaves in central France: a case study in extremal dependence", Journal of the Royal Statistical Society


 

 

 

 

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