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Appointment: Professor Helen Atkinson

Professor Helen Atkinson, 42, has been appointed Professor in Metals Processing in the Department of Engineering at University of Leicester as from October 1, 2002, having previously been a Reader in Engineering Materials at the University of Sheffield since 2000. 

She joined the University of Sheffield from Sheffield City Polytechnic in 1989 and worked before that for the UK Atomic Energy Authority at Harwell. Her work at Harwell included a period as Assistant to the Director for Nuclear Power working on strategic business planning.  

Professor Atkinson is a Fellow of the Institute of Materials, Minerals and Mining and a Chartered Engineer. She has a first class degree in Metallurgy and Materials Science from Cambridge University and a PhD on the transmission electron microscopy of grain growth in oxide scales from Imperial College of Science and Technology.  

Professor Helen Atkinson

Her research now centres on semi-solid processing (thixoforming) of metallic alloys and also on the application of statistics to materials research problems (for example, prediction of inclusions sizes in clean steels).  She is currently the grant holder for an EPSRC project on Alloy Development for Thixoforming, and has held grants to the value of £1.8m whilst at the University of Sheffield. She has collaborated widely with industry and between departments, running interdisciplinary projects with both Statistics and Mechanical engineering.

A member of the UK Government Technology Foresight Materials Panel from its inception in 1994 to 1999 (reporting to Cabinet on the priorities for materials R & D in the UK), she was one of only four academics on a Panel of 22.  She was a member of the Chemicals and Materials Task Force for the Foresight Crime Prevention Panel run by the UK Government Office of Science and Technology (OST) and represented the Materials Panel on the OST Action Group on Sensors, which published its report in 1997. She is a member of the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) Structural Materials College and has served on and chaired Panels prioritising proposals for funding. She was a member of the EPSRC Panel evaluating the Materials Portfolio (~800 projects) in 1998-2000.

Professor Atkinson has been a member of the Institute of Materials Council (1992-96) and of the previous Institute of Metals Council (1989-91). She is a trained HEFCE Teaching Quality Assessor and has reviewed materials teaching in four other universities. She has also served on and chaired panels reviewing teaching within other Departments at the University of Sheffield.

Since February 1998, Professor Atkinson has served on the national committee for the British Transport Police, the body responsible for the public accountability and governance of the Transport Police. She has also been a member of the Lord Chancellorís Advisory Committee for the appointment of magistrates in Rotherham, South Yorkshire.

November 2002

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Last updated: 22 November 2002 17:00
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