SAMBa’s 16th Integrative Think Tank (ITT) was delivered in partnership with the French Alternative Energies and Atomic Energy Commission (CEA) and Schlumberger. The ITT model brings participants from across SAMBa together with external partners to reformulate large challenges into mathematical questions that will lead to collaborative research projects.

Problem formulation

The ITT covered challenges including approaches to various aspects of nuclear reactor core modelling; early detection, modelling and remediation of failures in oil and gas and geothermal well drilling; and integrating different models across complexity, time and space scales towards a unified reservoir model.

Jeremy Worsfold, who is in the third year of his SAMBa PhD, and has participated in a number of ITTs, said:

From the general atmosphere to the engagement of the partners and staff, I think this was my favourite ITT. As always it was impressive seeing what each group had produced by the end of the week and it was delivered in a fun and positive environment, with each group working well together. Oh and the food was great!

Future research collaborations

Students compose technical reports following the ITT, which describe the potential of the research opportunities. ITT projects can lead to collaborative research for our SAMBa cohort, via PhD topics, or as smaller group projects. ITTs build deep and long-term relationships with partners that last a number of years. Schlumberger originally participated in ITT6, in June 2017. This led to three co-funded and co-supervised PhD projects, and a successful EPSRC research grant that has supported two postdoctoral researchers, including a SAMBa graduate.

More ITTs to come

We are currently planning for ITT17 which will be held from 30 January to 3 February 2023.

You can find out more about the ITT model, and read about previous ITTs, on the SAMBa webpage.