The Minister for fusion energy, Andrew Bowie MP, has appointed Professor David Gann CBE as the inaugural Chair of UK Industrial Fusion Solutions (UKIFS). UKIFS is the delivery body for STEP – a prototype fusion energy plant to be built at West Burton in Nottinghamshire.
Professor Gann was Chair of the UK Atomic Energy Authority (UKAEA) from 2018. As Professor Gann stands down as UKAEA’s Chair, from 1st August 2023, the interim Chair for UKAEA will be Lady Eithne Birt, who is currently a Non-Executive Director on UKAEA’s board and chairs the People and Remuneration Committee.
Minister for fusion energy, Andrew Bowie, said:
“The journey to fusion energy is one which the UK continues to lead the way on by investing over £700m into research for this unique low-carbon energy.
“Fusion energy has the potential to transform our world for the better by harnessing the same process powering the sun to provide abundant, low-carbon power to bolster our energy security.
“I’m delighted to announce the appointment of Professor David Gann as the inaugural Chair of UK Industrial Fusion Solutions (UKIFS), who will bring the leadership required to drive forward this technology as a new clean energy source in the coming decades.”
Professor David Gann CBE, Chair of UKIFS, said of his appointment: “I am delighted to become UKIFS’ inaugural Chair, leading the UK’s programme to create a working fusion powerplant, demonstrating that we can produce electricity onto the grid. UKIFS will also expand the UK’s capabilities in fusion science and technology, developing industrial capability, creating new investment opportunities, new high-quality jobs, and extending our leadership in the transition to low carbon energy systems.”
Professor Sir Ian Chapman, CEO of UKAEA, said: “David has been an excellent chair for UKAEA during a period of considerable expansion, new facilities and world records. He has also overseen the beginning of the STEP programme, the siting process and most recently the creation of UK Industrial Fusion Solutions. He brings a very rare combination of skills in deep science and innovation, starting companies, raising capital and large infrastructure projects. When combined with his experience from UKAEA, this makes him ideally placed to be the inaugural chair of UKIFS and I look forward to continuing to work with him in this new role.”
The advert for the Chair of UKAEA can be found here: https://apply-for-public-appointment.service.gov.uk/roles/7607