National Physical Laboratory

Strategic ResearchStrategic Research

We help strengthen NPL's position as a world leading centre of excellence in metrology and to develop capability, in line with NPL's science and business strategies, to respond to the future requirements of NPL's customers.

Areas of Research

Strategic Research investment aligns with the priority science areas outlined in NPL's Science Strategy:

  • Quantum technologies
  • Statistical modelling
  • Measurements and modelling to characterise atoms, molecules, bio-systems and materials
  • Quantitative environmental monitoring
  • Low-carbon and sustainable technologies

The Strategic Research programmes may also invest in projects outside of the priority science areas as long as the project aligns with the overarching science strategy and could lead to significant new capability or NPL opportunities.

The Strategic Research Programme is open to, and actively encourages, research collaborations at all levels with external organisations. The Programme offers a variety of options for collaborating with NPL, ranging from PhD studentships and postdoctoral positions, access to specific research equipment and/or facilities, small scale contract research to large-scale research programmes.

To find out more about working with the Strategic Research Programme, please email Neil Harrison or call 020 8943 6443.

Programme objectives

  • Develop NPL's scientific and technical standing as a world-class centre of excellence in measurement science
  • Create capability and facilities to enable the Laboratory to respond to future demands for new and more accurate measurements in existing and new business areas
  • Attract high-calibre research scientists
  • Build partnerships with industry, academia and other NMIs
  • Generate Intellectual Property/patents
  • Grow/diversify NPL's income opportunities


NPL's recent research into the Quantum Hall Effect was highlighted in Nature

More videos:
Scratching the surface


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