Dr Darren Groombridge reflects on his career since graduating in Astrophysics

With a keen interest in Astrophysics, Darren chose to study BSc (Hons) Astrophysics at the University of Central Lancashire and is confident that it set him on the road to success. Darren commented: “The degree program at UCLan was unique in terms of structure and course elements offered. The commitment to teaching was also apparent during my attendance at the open day and interview.”

After graduating in 1997, Darren furthered his studies by completing a master’s and a PhD then worked as a postdoctoral researcher before moving into industry.

Reflecting on his decision to move from academia to industry, Darren said: “It has always been of paramount importance to me to use my knowledge to benefit society. I have focussed my career in applied nuclear physics and worked in areas ranging from astrophysics to drug development and cancer research. In 2008 I moved into the nuclear industry as this was a logical progression, given the nuclear renaissance the UK is experiencing.”

Dr Darren Groombridge
Dr Darren Groombridge

"UCLan gave me the firm foundation of knowledge that I needed to develop my career. I’m 100% certain I would not be where I am today without the quality of teaching, commitment and dedication from staff."

Darren reflecting upon his career and degree course

Over the last 15 years, Darren has worked in the nuclear industry and is currently a Principal Consultant at Safety and Reliability Engineering Limited, where he provides safety and reliability engineering expertise to clients in the nuclear industry. He has been involved in working on nuclear new build projects in the UK, including Hinkley Point C, Sizewell C and Wylfa Newydd. He has also worked in Finland on the Hanhikivi 1 project and in France on the ITER experimental fusion reactor.

Darren has also attained the status of Charted Engineer and Charted Physicist and has presented work at international conferences, as well as being published in peer-reviewed journals.

When asked about his time at University, Darren commented: “Astrophysics was a fantastic degree course taught by some of the best lecturers I’ve had the privilege to know. The social life at UCLan was great and I met some people that have become life-long friends.”