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Laboratory Fellows


Mike Harrison has an honours degree and PhD in Chemistry from the University of Oxford, where his research interests included inorganic solid state chemistry, glass fabrication and properties, and optical spectroscopy. He joined BNFL in January 2003 as a member of the High Level Waste Plants Team and has worked on the high temperature treatment of a wide range of radioactive waste streams, specialising in vitreous nuclear wasteforms.

Key areas of expertise

Mike is a Chartered Chemist and Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry.  He is senior technical lead of vitrified wasteform fabrication and performance activities, and has directed experimental research programmes on all aspects of vitrified nuclear wastes. In addition, he has interests in the use of pyrochemistry (molten salts) for the treatment of spent nuclear fuel along with the subsequent waste treatment.

Key achievements

Mike has been instrumental in the promotion of the importance of the long-term durability of vitrified HLW, developing he NNL’s capability by the introduction of new testing protocols and via collaborations with several UK universities and various overseas organisations.

Key positions held

He has recently been a work package leader in both the Euratom ‘SACSESS’ and EPSRC ‘REFINE’ molten salts projects, and is currently the Theme Lead for Waste Product Performance and Evolution NNL internal R&D programme. He is also a member of the International Congress on Glass Technical Committee 05 – Nuclear and hazardous waste vitrification.

Key Publications

  • M.T. Harrison & C.J. Steele Vitrification of simulated highly active calcines containing high concentrations of sodium and molybdenum in MRS Advances 1, 4233-4238 (2016).
  • M.T. Harrison Vitrification of High Level Waste in the UK and The Effect of Composition on Short- and Long-term Durability of UK HLW Glass in Procedia Materials Science 7 (2014).
  • S. Gin, A. Abdelouas, L.J. Criscenti, W.L. Ebert, K. Ferrand, T. Geisler, M.T. Harrison, Y. Inagaki, S. Mitsui, K.T. Mueller, J.C. Marra, C.G. Pantano, E.M. Pierce, J.V. Ryan, J.M. Schofield, C.I. Steefel, and J.D. Vienna An international initiative on long-term behavior of high-level nuclear waste glass, Materials Today 16(6), 243-248 (2013).
  • M. T. Harrison, C. J. Steele & A. D. Riley The effect on long term aqueous durability of variations in the composition of UK vitrified HLW product, Glass Technol.: Eur. J. Glass Sci. Technol. A, October 2012, 53(5), 211-216.