Queen's Lane • Oxford • OX1 4AR • Tel: +44 (0)1865 279000
Steve Roberts studied Natural Science at Cambridge University (Queens’ College), and did a PhD there on modification of mechanical behaviour of materials by ion irradiation – and, 30 years later, this topic has gathered strength again in his group’s study of radiation-resistant materials. After completing his PhD, he moved in 1981 to Oxford, as a postdoctoral researcher under Sir Peter Hirsch, on a project to try to make diamond ductile… This project diverged into research into the basic mechanisms which control the balance between plastic flow and fracture in semiconductors, ceramics and metals. He became a University lecturer in 1992, with a Fellowship at St Cross College; he moved to St Edmund Hall as a Tutorial Fellow in 2002, so as to better combine teaching with research. He was made Professor of Materials in 2006.
Steve’s group’s research has recently concentrated on understanding mechanical behaviour at the micrometer scale – looking at the behaviour of the basic building blocks of engineering alloys. He currently leads a major EPSRC-funded project in which these techniques, in parallel with computer modelling, electron and atom-probe microscopy and new processing methods, are being used in the study and development of materials for the extreme conditions that will be experienced in new generations of fusion and fission power plants.
Steve is senior member of the Oxford University Cave Club, having been caving since he was graduate student.