National Nuclear Laboratory

Our Science and Technology Agenda

As the UK’s technical authority on nuclear fission, we know it is our responsibility to look continually to the future of nuclear science and technology.

Investing in research and innovation is therefore fundamental to our work as a laboratory. It allows us to serve our customers, our partners, and our nation better, as well as shore up the UK’s sovereign capabilities ready for the challenges and opportunities ahead.  

Our Science and Technology Agenda is designed to ensure the UK has what it needs to underpin new and existing nuclear clean energy technologies, such as advanced reactors and hydrogen production. But it is also about breaking new ground and unlocking advancements across other parts of our lives and communities – keeping us at the cutting edge of science.

It is defined by three key pillars – Core Science, Innovation and Strategic Research – all of which are underpinned by Collaboration.

This work is already delivering ambitious, world-class outcomes for the UK and helping to drive international advancements in nuclear science and technology. You can read more about its progress below.

Core Science

Core Science is focused on pushing the boundaries of nuclear science, building NNL’s technical reputation and delivering knowledge and capability for our stakeholders. There are 14 areas of science that, in supporting our Focus Areas, provide a platform for innovative and scientifically challenging work for our teams.Find out more


Innovation is a cornerstone of our work as a national laboratory. Embedding an innovation-led approach across the business is how we continue successfully to address the needs of our partners and customers.Find out more

Strategic Research

Strategic Research encompasses the not-for-profit programmes we run for UK government and other key stakeholders, all of which fulfil a technical challenge of national importance.Find out more

Case studies

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Collaboration underpins every aspect of our Science and Technology Agenda. We are proud of our partnerships with universities and academic institutions in the UK, which allow us to maximise the groundswell of new ideas and grow the talent pipeline.Find out more