Delivering safe geological disposal of nuclear waste, London

3 April, 2017 | 18:00 - 20:30

Delivering safe geological disposal of nuclear waste, London

About this event

As a pioneer of nuclear technology, the UK has accumulated a diverse legacy of higher-activity radioactive waste.

This evening lecture, based on the paper that won the James Watt Medal in 2016, will discuss plans for implementing UK government policy for the safe geological disposal of UK’s radioactive waste.

Delegates will:

  • Learn more about the safety of geological disposal of nuclear waste
  • Discuss the challenges in the design, construction and operation of a project with a lifetime of more than 100 years
  • Understand how to ensure safety during the transport, operational and post-closure phases
  • Look at commonalities between the UK project and international experiences in this topic
  • Discuss the key developments to be expected in the coming years

The presentation will be followed by questions and answers session and a drinks reception.


18:00 Registration and refreshments
18:30 Welcome from the Chair
18:35 Main lecture
19:15 Questions and answers session 
19:35 Summation from the Chair
19:40 Drinks reception
20:30 Close

The paper that forms the basis of this presentation won the James Watt Medal at the 2016 ICE Annual Award Ceremony. This medal is awarded for papers that have substantial mechanical engineering content​.


John Corderoy, Science and Technology Director, Radioactive Waste Management

John Beswick

Born in Plymouth and educated at Queens College Taunton, Corderoy joined the Royal Navy in 1985 and completed initial officer training at Britannia Royal Naval College and in the Fleet.

Completing a first degree he graduated from the Royal Naval Engineering College (RNEC), and commenced submarine and nuclear courses in preparation for appointments as a nuclear marine engineer. In Sep 2013 he was promoted to Commodore and was appointed to the role Director of Nuclear Propulsion and Head of the DE&S Nuclear Propulsion Project Team based in Abbey Wood, Bristol. In April 2016 John joined Radioactive Waste Management Limited as their Science and Technology Director.

Professor Cherry Tweed, Chief Scientific Advisor, Radioactive Waste Management

John Beswick

Cherry is the Chief Scientific Advisor to Radioactive Waste Management and an Honorary Professor at the University of Birmingham.

As Chief Scientific Advisor, Cherry provides authoritative scientific advice and challenge to Radioactive Waste Management (RWM) in support of its activities. She works right across the organisation, covering implementing geological disposal and the advice which RWM gives to waste producers who need to package their wastes now.

Cherry oversees a number of RWM’s key relationships, particularly with the organisations responsible for implementing geological disposal overseas and with international organisations, primarily the Nuclear Energy Agency of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, the International Atomic Energy Authority and the European Commission. She sits on a number of international working groups, preparing guidance to support the implementation of geological disposal.

She has an MA in Natural Sciences and a PhD in Materials Science from Cambridge University and over 25 years’ experience in geological disposal.


John Earp BA. CEng. FIMechE. FNucI

A Fellow of both the Institution of Mechanical Engineers and the Nuclear Institute John’s career began as a mechanical apprentice with the CEGB in 1964 and progressed to the role of Generation Manager with British Energy from which he “retired” in 2001.  During this time he undertook various engineering, technical and managerial roles associated with AGR and Magnox stations enabling him to gain a detailed knowledge of the UK Nuclear Site Licence and its application to nuclear power stations.  This period also included extensive engagement with nuclear safety committees involving both the preparation of papers and their presentation.   A broad knowledge of technology and management of PWR and BWR reactors was gained whilst representing British Energy working with INPO in the USA.

Since “retiring” he established a consultancy supporting several companies to review their nuclear strategy initially in a declining market focused on decommissioning and subsequently on new build.  During this period he also assisted the setting up of the NDA, briefly becoming the interim Director of Nuclear Safety.  Latterly working with Aker Solutions (now Jacobs) he was the sponsoring director for the development of a new accelerator driven reactor concept utilizing thorium as its prime fuel.    

John is an independent member of the Pre-licence nuclear safety committee for Horizon Nuclear associated with the new nuclear build on Anglesey.  He also supports both the institutions of which he is a member and was privileged to be invited to sit on the UK’s Chief Nuclear Inspectors Technical Advisory Panel on the impact of Fukushima on the UK’s nuclear sector.  

Throughout this period John has accumulated more than 38 years of broad nuclear experience.