Imperial College London


Faculty of EngineeringDepartment of Materials

Professor of Materials Physics



+44 (0)20 7594 6730r.grimes




B303cBessemer BuildingSouth Kensington Campus





Since 2002 Robin has been Professor of Materials Physics. In 2013 he was appointed the Foreign and Commonwealth Office Chief Scientific Advisor and in 2017 Ministry of Defence Nuclear Chief Scientific Advisor (  He joined the Materials Department at Imperial College in 1995 as Governors'' Lecturer.  Prior to this he was Assistant Director of the Davy Faraday Research Laboratory at the Royal Institution.  He spent the year 2000 at Los Alamos National Laboratory as Bernd T. Matthias Scholar.

His primary research interest is the application and development of computer simulation techniques to predict structural and dynamic properties of inorganic materials.  Topics of particular interest include radiation damage, nuclear fuels and waste form behaviour and performance (in collaboration with industry and national laboratories), ionic conductivity and defect processes for fuel cell materials, surface structural processes and interfaces between glass and ceramic. 

Since 1984 Robin has authored over 300 peer-reviewed publications.  He is currently a member of the editorial board for Journal of Materials Science. In 2002 he and was awarded the Rosenhain Medal and in 2010 the Griffith Medal of the IOM3, of which society he is a Fellow.  From 2008 until 2013 he was Director of the Imperial Centre for Nuclear Engineering and from 2010 to 2013 he was Director of the Imperial College Rolls Royce University Technology Centre in Nuclear Engineering.  He was appointed Principal Investigator of the Research Councils Nuclear Champion consortium in 2010.  In 2011 he was Specialist Advisor to the House of Lords Select Committee on Science and Technology for their report on Nuclear Research and Development Capabilities, in 2013 was made a Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering, in 2016 Fellow of the Australian Academy of Technology and Engineering and in 2018 a Fellow of the Royal Society.

Robin has published a paper in Science with Bill Nuttall on Generating the Option of a Two-Stage Nuclear Renaissance (Abstract, Reprint, Full Text) and in Nature with colleagues from Cambridge, Open and Lancaster Universities, concerning proliferation risks of the thoriun nuclear fuel cycle (Vol 492, Pages 31–33, 2012).

For Robin's research group's web pages see:



Kuganathan N, Ghosh PS, Arya A, et al., 2018, Helium trapping and clustering in ThO<inf>2</inf>, Journal of Nuclear Materials, Vol:507, ISSN:0022-3115, Pages:288-296

Kuganathan N, Arya AK, Rushton MJD, et al., 2018, Trapping of volatile fission products by C-60, Carbon, Vol:132, ISSN:0008-6223, Pages:477-485

Pavlov TR, Wangle T, Wenman MR, et al., 2018, High temperature measurements and condensed matter analysis of the thermo-physical properties of ThO2, Scientific Reports, Vol:8, ISSN:2045-2322

Than YR, Wenman MR, Bell BDC, et al., 2018, Modelling and experimental analysis of the effect of solute iron in thermally grown Zircaloy-4 oxides, Journal of Nuclear Materials, Vol:509, ISSN:0022-3115, Pages:114-123

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