ANSTO has appointed one of the world’s leading plasma accelerator experts, Dr Ceri Brenner, as its Leader of the Centre for Accelerator Science.

Dr Brenner is a world-renowned physicist, innovator, and leader in industry applications of plasma-based accelerators.

She will now oversee ANSTO’s accelerator science platform, which is home to accelerator science and engineering experts operating a suite of four ion accelerators across seventeen beamlines. 

“We are absolutely thrilled with Ceri’s appointment. She is a scientist who has a powerful combination of skills in strategic leadership, innovative research, and industry engagement,” said Head of Research Infrastructure, Dr Miles Apperley.

“Her expertise in engaging with industry to deliver innovative solutions perfectly suits our strategic goal of ramping up activity in this area.

“Being a female physicist in a male-dominated profession, she is committed to engaging with and empowering the next generation of women in science and technology. Ceri is also influential on social media and a proficient science communicator,” he said.

Dr Brenner has scientific expertise in relativistically-intense laser-plasma interactions, plasma-based particle acceleration, and the emission of bright bursts of ions, X-rays, and neutrons.

In association with the University of Bristol, she developed the idea to apply laser-driven X-rays and neutrons for nuclear waste management inspection and partnered with Sellafield Ltd to progress the R&D.

In 2017 the UK Institute of Physics awarded Dr Brenner the Clifford-Paterson medal for exceptional early career contributions to the application of physics in an industrial or commercial context.

She is passionate about accelerator technology and its impact on science, discovery, and driving industry growth.

Specifically, she is interested in the application of accelerator science in the design of next-generation healthcare technology, and in addressing grand societal challenges, such as environment and climate studies.

“I champion the application of accelerators for driving scientific progress and impactful innovation across a broad range of areas. This is what drew me to the Centre for Accelerator Science. I am passionate about research portfolios that have a clear link to societal, cultural, and economic benefit,” said Dr Brenner.

Dr Brenner will take up the role in February 2021.