Professor Russell J Hand


Department of Materials Science and Engineering

Director of Learning & Teaching

Professor of Glass Science & Engineering, Past-President of the Society of Glass Technology

Professor Russell Hand
+44 114 222 5943

Full contact details

Professor Russell J Hand
Department of Materials Science and Engineering
Sir Robert Hadfield Building
Mappin Street
S1 3JD

Russell Hand joined the Department in 1989, from Cambridge University, as the Redland Research Fellow.

He was appointed to a Lectureship in 1990 (Senior Lecturer 2001; Reader 2010; Professor 2012) and in 1999 obtained an MEd in Teaching and Learning for University Lecturers.

From 2001 to 2012 he served as Sub-Dean for Undergraduate Affairs in the Faculty of Engineering and then Deputy FLTD Engineering. From 2013 to 2015 he was course director for the cross-Faculty Aerospace Engineering degrees.

Between 2014 and 2017, Russell was Head of the Interdisciplinary Programmes Office, Faculty of Engineering.

Research interests

Russell has wide-ranging research interests in glass with a particular foci on waste vitrification (linked to the Immobilisation Science Laboratory) and the mechanical properties of glass. Please contact Russell directly for details of currently available PhD projects.

  1. Radioactive waste vitrification
    Research is focussed on glass composition development for the immobilisation of "difficult" anionic species and legacy wastes into vitreous wasteforms. His group is currently working on developing novel glasses for the vitrification of Mo containing wastes and understanding the crystallisation of Mo containing phases in current waste glass compositions.
  2. Sensing using reinforcing fibres in polymer matrix composites
    Research is focussed on developing novel glasses for reinforcing fibres that can be used for both chemical and damage sensing in polymer matrix composites. This research is being undertaken in collaboration with CSIC.
  3. Durability of nuclear waste glasses
    Research is focussed on understanding the effects of high pH environments on the durability of nuclear waste glasses using laboratory-based durability test methods. In addition, he is responsible for the field-based long term glass burial site at Ballidon (a limestone environment), an experiment now in its 44th year, and which involves collaboration with Dr Strachan from Pacific North-West National Laboratory, USA.
  4. Mechanical properties of glasses
    Research is focussed on examining the effects of composition on the mechanical properties of silicate glasses. His group has previously demonstrated the important role of MgO in these glasses and we are currently investigating this further. We have also studied the mechanical properties of nuclear borosilicate glasses. His group is also focussing on assessing the changes in near surface mechanical properties of glasses due to hydration by nanoindentation and at the effects of high-temperature mechanical contact on surface damage and thus the practical strength of bulk glass.

Journal articles


Conference proceedings papers

  • Hyatt NC, Corkhill CL, Stennett MC, Hand RJ, Gardner LJ & Thorpe CL (2020) The HADES facility for high activity decommissioning engineering & science: part of the UK national nuclear user facility. IOP Conference Series: Materials Science and Engineering, Vol. 818. Manchester, UK, 4 February 2020 - 5 February 2020. View this article in WRRO RIS download Bibtex download
  • Hyatt N (2018) Evaluation of Novel Leaching Assessment for Nuclear Waste Glasses. Proceedings of Waste Management 2018 RIS download Bibtex download
  • Mann C, Thorpe C, Milodowski AE, Field LP, Shaw RP, Boast L, Hand R, Hyatt NC, Provis JL & Corkhill CL (2017) Interactions between Simulant Vitrified Nuclear Wastes and high pH solutions: A Natural Analogue Approach. MRS Advances, Vol. 2(12) (pp 669-674) View this article in WRRO RIS download Bibtex download
  • Wilson PR, Hayes SA & Hand RJ (2015) Practical demonstration of fibre evanescent wave spectroscopy for cure monitoring of epoxy resins using novel h-glass fibres. ICCM International Conferences on Composite Materials, Vol. 2015-July RIS download Bibtex download
  • Tan S, Ojovan MI, Hyatt NC & Hand RJ (2015) MoO3 incorporation in alkaline earth aluminosilicate glasses. MRS Proceedings, Vol. 1744 (pp 67-72) RIS download Bibtex download
  • Wilson PR, Hayes SA & Hand RJ (2013) Structural glass fibres for optical damage, cure and moisture ingress sensing in advanced reinforced polymer composites. ICCM International Conferences on Composite Materials, Vol. 2013-July (pp 4052-4060) RIS download Bibtex download
  • Yang G, Mobus G, Bingham PA & Hand RJ (2009) Electron beam induced structure changes in borosilicate and borophosphate glasses: a comparison by energy loss spectroscopy. PHYSICS AND CHEMISTRY OF GLASSES-EUROPEAN JOURNAL OF GLASS SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY PART B, Vol. 50(6) (pp 378-383) RIS download Bibtex download
  • Bingham PA, Connelly AJ, Hand RJ, Hyatt NC & Northrup PA (2009) Incorporation and speciation of sulphur in glasses for waste immobilisation. GLASS TECHNOLOGY-EUROPEAN JOURNAL OF GLASS SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY PART A, Vol. 50(3) (pp 135-138) RIS download Bibtex download
  • Hannant OM, Forder SD, Bingham PA & Hand RJ (2009) Structural studies of iron in vitrified toxic wastes. ISIAME 2008 (pp 539-544) RIS download Bibtex download
  • Bingham PA, Hyatt NC, Hand RJ & Wilding CR (2009) Glass Development for Vitrification of Wet Intermediate Level Waste (WILW) From Decommissioning of the Hinkley Point 'A' Site. SCIENTIFIC BASIS FOR NUCLEAR WASTE MANAGEMENT XXXII, Vol. 1124 (pp 161-166) RIS download Bibtex download
  • Bailey PBS, Hayes SA, Hand RJ & Zhang B (2009) Chemical Monitoring of Composite Matrices by Evanescent Wave Spectroscopy. EMBODING INTELLIGENCE IN STRUCTURES AND INTEGRATED SYSTEMS, Vol. 56 (pp 297-302) RIS download Bibtex download
Teaching interests

As well as being an active researcher Russell makes significant contributions to learning and teaching within the Department of Materials Science and Engineering and the Faculty of Engineering. He is currently Head of the Interdisciplinary Programmes Office (IPO) in the Faculty of Engineering.

This is the unit responsible for the administration of the cross-Faculty degrees Aerospace Engineering, Bioengineering and MEng Engineering as well as the Science & Engineering Foundation Year. He is also Director of Learning and Teaching within Materials Science & Engineering.

Russell’s teaching, particularly in glasses on which he delivers a specialist Masters level module (MAT4442), is informed by his research interests. He is also in charge of Amrophous materials Industrial Training Programme (MAT3335).

He currently contributes to first-year undergraduate modules for Materials Science & Engineering students and Aerospace Engineering students on the mechanical properties of materials (MAT1730 and MEC192) and a Masters module on heat and materials (MAT6667/9).

Russell also contributes to a first-year option on materials and the environment (MAT1920).