About us

Key staff

Biographies of key staff at Culham Centre for Fusion Energy. Details of the organisation of JET can be found on the EUROfusion website.

Roger CashmoreProfessor David Gann CBE – Chair, United Kingdom Atomic Energy Authority and EURATOM/CCFE Fusion Association

David Gann became Chair of the UK Atomic Energy Authority in August 2018. He continues in his position as Imperial College London's Vice President, leading Innovation and as Professor of Innovation and Technology Management at Imperial College Business School and Department of Civil & Environmental Engineering.

Professor Gann has a PhD in Industrial Economics, is a Chartered Civil Engineer, a Fellow of the Institution of Civil Engineers, an Honorary Fellow of the Royal College of Art and a Fellow of the City & Guilds Institute. He is a non-executive board member of Directa Plus plc (the world's largest producer of pristine graphene), and member of NEC (EMEA) Advisory Council. He mentors start-ups and advises boards on innovation and technology management, including Citigroup, Gammon, IBM, Huawei, HS2, McLaren and Tata Group. Professor Gann was Chairman of the Smart London Board (2012-2017), responsible for London's digital strategy and reporting to the Mayor of London. He developed Crossrail's Innovation Strategy and was Group Innovation Executive, Laing O'Rourke plc (2007-2011).

Professor Gann publishes articles on technology management and innovation strategy and on systems engineering. He writes a blog with Professor Mark Dodgson for the World Economic Forum and is author and co-author of eight books exploring why and how innovation happens, the ways it continually transforms the world we live in, and how it can be managed.

He was appointed Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) in the 2010 Queen's Birthday Honours for services to engineering. He is the recipient of the 2014 Tjalling C. Koopmans Asset Award, for extraordinary contributions to the economic sciences. 

Ian ChapmanProfessor Ian Chapman –  
Chief Executive Officer, United Kingdom Atomic Energy Authority and Head of EURATOM/CCFE Fusion Association

Ian Chapman became CEO of the UK Atomic Energy Authority and Head of CCFE in October 2016. He joined Culham in 2004, becoming Head of Tokamak Science in 2014. Between 2010-2014 he led the Stability programme within Tokamak Science. He has also held a number of international roles in fusion. He was a Task Force Leader for JET from 2012 to 2014. He was appointed a member of the programme advisory committee for US experiment NSTX-U in 2013. He has chaired international working groups for ITER and led work packages within the EU fusion programme.

He has published over 110 journal papers, including three topical review papers with an h-index of 26 and given 30 invited lead-author presentations at international conferences. His research has been recognised with a number of international awards, including the European Physical Society Early Career Prize in 2014, the Institute of Physics Paterson Medal in 2013, the IUPAP Plasma Physics Young Scientist Prize in 2012 and the Cavendish Medal for best early-career UK physicist awarded by SET for Britain in 2011. He was made a Fellow of the Institute of Physics in 2013 and became a visiting Professor at Durham University in 2015.

Martin CoxMartin Cox – Director of Strategy and Technology

Martin Cox is responsible for leading future programmes and technology growth, following his appointment in May 2013. Prior to this he oversaw the MAST Upgrade project and the MAST Project Division. Mr Cox is a theoretical physicist who joined Culham upon graduating, working on plasma modelling. He then became involved in the operation of the experimental facilities. In 1994 he was appointed the Project Manager for the design and construction of the MAST device. From 2000, when UKAEA assumed responsibility for the operation of JET on behalf of the European fusion community, he became manager of Machine Operations Department, overseeing the operation of most of the JET facilities as well as MAST. In 2007 he was appointed Senior Manager for all aspects of JET operation and in 2008 was appointed Assistant Director (Operations), becoming Operations Director following the formation of CCFE in 2009.

David MartinDavid Martin – Chief Operating Officer

David Martin became Chief Operating Officer in March 2016, having previously been Operations Director. Mr Martin is a Chartered Mechanical Engineer and Fellow of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers who joined Culham after completing an apprenticeship at UKAEA Harwell in 1979. Following a role in the build and operation of the Neutral Beam Testbed on JET, he joined the Engineering Group in Neutral Beams before establishing the Engineering Analysis Section. He became Engineering Group Leader and then Department Manager in 2008. In 2011 he was appointed Head of Physics and Engineering Development Division and in 2012 Head of the Operations and Programme Delivery Division. In 2013 he was appointed Operations Director (Operations). He has held other senior engineering posts such as Engineer in Charge and Deputy Chief Engineer. David is committed to staff development and has initiated many of the training schemes presently being run at CCFE – including the apprentice and graduate programmes – helping to achieve accreditation by the Institution of Engineering and Technology, Institution of Mechanical Engineers and the Power Academy.

Catherine PridhamCatherine Pridham – Chief Finance Officer, Director of Support Division, and Secretary of the UK Atomic Energy Authority

Catherine Pridham qualified as a chartered accountant with Arthur Andersen and has worked in the pharmaceutical sector for SmithKline Beecham, Amersham plc and GE Healthcare, where she supported a number of different business areas including a commercial clinical trials business, a large R&D portfolio and a Joint Venture looking to exploit research capabilities commercially with large pharmaceutical companies. Prior to joining CCFE she completed several finance restructuring and process improvement projects for the Ministry of Justice and Department of Transport. She was appointed as CCFE's Head of Finance, Contracts and Integrated Planning in 2012 and became Chief Financial Officer, Director of Support Division and Secretary of the United Kingdom Atomic Energy Authority in January 2014.

Howard WilsonProfessor Howard Wilson – Programme Director

Howard Wilson was appointed as Programme Director in 2017, a post which he holds alongside a Chair in Plasma Physics at the University of York. He joined the UK Atomic Energy Authority in 1988 as a theoretical plasma physicist after graduating with a PhD in theoretical high energy particle physics from the University of Cambridge. He moved to the University of York in 2005, and became Director of the York Plasma Institute in 2011. He has been Director of the EPSRC Centre for Doctoral Training in the Science and Technology of Fusion Energy since 2012. He has served on international fusion programme advisory committees including for the Helmholtz Association, Research Laboratory for the Physics of Advanced Plasmas, St Petersburg, the KSTAR tokamak (South Korea) and Australia National University.

He has published over 160 papers in peer-reviewed journals. He served as co-editor for the journal Europhysics Letters, and is an editorial board member for the IAEA Nuclear Fusion journal. His awards include Fellow of the Institute of Physics (2004), Royal Society Wolfson Research Merit Award (2011), and the American Physical Society John Dawson Award for Excellence in Plasma Physics Research (2013).

Kay NicholsonKay Nicholson – Head of Assurance Division

Kay Nicholson took up the position of Head of Assurance in December 2014 proving assurance to the Board and Chief Executive. Prior to this she was employed by Bentley Motors delivering transformational change in occupational health and safety. In her early career she worked in operational roles in a diverse range of manufacturing industries. In the early 1990s she moved into safety, health and environment (SHE) and specialised in risk management. More recently, Kay has worked in the maritime defence sector for BAE Systems in Glasgow, Portsmouth and Melbourne, Australia, leading SHE improvement and cultural change programmes. She has also worked for QinetiQ UK, where she was responsible for Corporate Governance and Risk Management. Kay is a chartered member of the Institute of Occupational Safety and Health.

William MorrisDr William Morris – Chief Scientist

William Morris has responsibility for providing scientific advice to the Executive, initiating new research areas, assessing the programme and enhancing CCFE’s scientific impact. Dr Morris has spent his entire career in fusion research after a physics degree at the University of Oxford. He made wide-ranging physics contributions to the TOSCA, DITE and COMPASS experiments at Culham, to JET and to the PBX and TFTR devices at Princeton University. He led preparatory studies and the physics proposal for the MAST tokamak before becoming head of Culham’s Experiments Department in 1998. More recently, he co-ordinated initial Culham work on ITER diagnostics. Dr Morris has had many roles in EU fusion programme and project committees, starting with the JET Scientific Council, and he is currently an ad personam member of the EFDA Science and Technology Advisory Committee.