Skip to content
CAMS 2024
Professor Phil Withers

Philip Withers read Natural Sciences (82-85) at Cambridge before doing a PhD in metal matrix composites (85-89) and then becoming a lecturer there (89). He then took up a Chair at the University of Manchester (98). He became the inaugural Director of the $100m bp International Centre for Advanced Materials in (2012). In 2016 he helped to set up the Royce Institute for Advanced Materials becoming its first Chief Scientist. The Royce is a national institute that brings together capabilities at the Universities of Manchester, Sheffield, Leeds, Liverpool, Cambridge, Oxford, Strathclyde, Cranfield and Imperial College as well as the National Nuclear Labs, and the UK Atomic Energy Authority at Culham.

He is the first Regius Professor of Materials and is a Fellow of the Royal Society, Royal Academy of Engineering and a Foreign Member of the Chinese Academy of Engineering and the Indian National Science Academy. He is currently establishing the Defence Materials Centre of Excellence which is hosted by the Royce and brings together 24 different partners, being its Interim Director.

His research focusses on imaging, modelling and understanding the behaviour of materials in real time and 3D often in situ under demanding environments. To this end he has pioneered the use of synchrotron and lab. X-ray CT to and combined this with information from electron and neutron beams to shine a light on their behaviour. In 2008 he set up the Henry Moseley X-ray Imaging Facility. This was awarded the Queen’s Anniversary Prize in 2014 for innovation, impact and excellence. It is a world-leading suite of X-ray imaging systems for academic and applied research, which in 2020 became the lead partner the National Research Facility in Lab. X-ray CT.