Pyrochemical Research Laboratory

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Project lead: Prof Andrew Mount
The Pyrochemical Research Laboratory (PRL) is an open-access national user facility, established to provide academic, public, and private sector organisations with access to state-of-the-art equipment to support world-leading research in molten salt pyrochemical processing.


Image of glove boxes

© University of Edinburgh

The laboratory consists of a suite of interconnected controlled atmosphere dry-boxes. These are equipped with the necessary furnaces, cell systems, potentiostats and other equipment for characterisation, required for research into, and development of, each of the essential elements of pyrochemical reprocessing at the laboratory scale.

There is flexibility in the configuration of the PRL, with users able to request individual modules to demonstrate the feasibility of individual components of pyrochemical reprocessing. Alternatively the entire facility may be utilised to demonstrate a complete pyrochemical process, including monitoring and analysis.

Access to the PRL facility is facilitated by the lab manager, Dr Justin Elliott ( who can provide advice and guidance on utilising facility equipment to meet your research needs.

Aims of the PRL

Image of glove boxes

© University of Edinburgh

The University of Edinburgh established the PRL facility, in partnership with the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC now BEIS), and it is affiliated with the National Nuclear User Facility (NNUF). The PRL facility is unique in providing the facilities to develop and demonstrate integrated pyrochemical reprocessing of nuclear fuel, using fuel-relevant non-radioactive compositional mixtures at laboratory scale, along with the required process monitoring.

The PRL facility is therefore a unique research capability, providing hands-on user access to state-of-the-art equipment and instrumentation, utilising medium scale inventories, enabling the UK to deliver internationally competitive R&D.

Capabilities and equipment

The PRL facility has four interconnected but individually bookable glove boxes, each tailored to a given stage of a pyroprocessing system with associated equipment.

Please consult the "Capabilities and Equipment" section of the PRL's page on the University of Edinburgh's website for more details.

Further information

Please see the PRL's page on the University of Edinburgh's website, or contact Dr Justin Elliott, the facility manager, on



The PRL is open for research, although with COVID-19 control measures in place. If you would like to access or have research performed at the PRL, please contact the facility team so we can discuss your experimental needs and how we can best meet them.

Please note that the Molten Salts in Nuclear Technology Laboratory (MSNTL) is also now open for research, and all Edinburgh MSNTL equipment will be collocated with the PRL. Edinburgh MSNTL installation is progressively augmenting the current non-fluoride PRL molten salt infrastructure to enable equivalent fluoride molten salt study. Therefore, if you are also interested in fluoride molten salt work, please discuss this with the facility team.



© University of Edinburgh.