Home » Sellafield hub looks to catalyse UK cyber security expertise

Sellafield hub looks to catalyse UK cyber security expertise

by Mark Cantrell
Dave Jones, Sellafield’s head of Operational Technology Group

Sellafield Ltd is looking to nurture the emergence of a cluster of expertise in UK operational technology cyber security with a new state-of-the-art centre.

The company is establishing its new Operational Technology Engineering Centre (OTEC) on the site of the iSH Enterprise Campus in Cumbria.

It’s all part of Sellafield’s mission to create a clean and safe environment for future generations, it says.

Dave Jones, who leads a team of 200 staff at Sellafield, is heading up the project to develop Unit 18, which is also expected to open up “far-reaching opportunities” for the wider community.

Jones, who is Sellafield’s head of operational technology group (OTG), said: “I want West Cumbria to be the centre of OT cyber security for the country. The plan for Unit 18 is part of that vision. We are developing an industry leading operational technology service.

“Some of the most skilled people involved in nuclear decommissioning on the planet work in our team. So how do we upskill the next generation who are going to take that journey on, and develop them so they have the knowledge and capability to work across multiple facilities?”

The plans are a major step forward for the new enterprise campus, which is being developed by Cumberland Council at Leconfield, Cleator Moor.

The campus is intended to be a base for the Industrial Solutions Hub (iSH), which is looking to build on the nuclear decommissioning expertise of Sellafield and the wider supply chain.

It will further seek to extend collaboration with other sectors, industries and academia, and find new markets to enable businesses and organisations to diversify and grow.

Up to 70 staff will work at Sellafield’s new OTEC when it opens next month.

Jones has already paved the way for the transition by moving part of his team’s operations to Sellafield’s Engineering Centre of Excellence, which shares the same Leconfield campus site.

He said: “We have used the Engineering Centre of Excellence as a pilot to start applying the standards that befit a professional engineer, and we are developing Unit 18 based on what we have learned there. This will enable us to create even more technology-centric specialist groups.

He added: “Our future development will also enable us to set the standards for instrumentation. Over the last 10 years we have seen the industry move from dumb instruments to smart instruments.

“To help the Sellafield site, we are investing in a new instrumentation test centre which will improve calibration, enhance craft skills, and enable more engagement with supply chain partners.”

According to Jones, Sellafield’s OTEC will enhance the organisation’s capability, both in terms of skills and technology in relation to control systems, and wider operational technology.

Main image: Dave Jones, Sellafield’s head of Operational Technology Group

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