Our Expertise - Croft

Our Expertise

Without doubt, our biggest assets are our people.

We’re proud to work with so many professional Engineers and Scientists. Thanks to their vast experience and expertise they can deliver innovative packaging solutions time after time. Our technical team regularly provide input to various committees that set UK industry standards, and offer insight when regulations are under review.

Our team consists of a cross section of seasoned personnel who have spent many years within the nuclear industry working directly on nuclear plant and process and have gained a first hand knowledge of what delivering safe solutions means. We also look to the Young Generation Network which allows a unique blend of knowledge and experience to be exchanged between the older and younger generations. Younger people are encouraged to stay and provide a resource for the future.

In recognition of the need for continued improvement, we constantly strive to improve and enhance our training for all our staff. In recognition of this, we have been awarded NEF Assured Nuclear, the industry specific standard for assuring deliverers of training in the nuclear sector. The Independent Advisory Panel recommending the award commended the company for its engagement and drive in ensuring consistency in learning and training development particularly given its size and capacity to deliver. We are the first SME in the nuclear field to be granted the award. The NEF Assured Nuclear Award is recognised by the National Skills Academy Nuclear.

Our training helps us ensure consistency and benchmark against industry standards for training for all staff. The NEF scheme has been specifically developed to assure the quality of training that is delivered ‘in house’ by nuclear organisations, and helps us to enhance our approach to training. It recognises the need for continuous improvement and for training to impact directly on business objectives and highlights performance in six areas: strategy and planning, engagement, design and delivery, innovation, standards and impact.

 

Mark Johnson

Managing Director

As Managing Director Mark is ultimately responsible for all aspects of the business including both its day-to-day activities and its strategic direction and stakeholder interactions.

Mark is also the technical lead for the engineering design function. A Chartered Engineer with over 30 years of science and engineering experience, covering mechanical, nuclear decommissioning, repository design development and radioactive waste management. He has worked in the areas of research and design consultancy, both in the private and public sector.

Mark previously worked for the NDA Radioactive Waste Management Limited where for 10 years he led the design development of the generic geological disposal facility for higher activity wastes in the UK. He has in depth knowledge of package design and performance assessment, applied to the storage, transport and disposal of radioactive wastes and materials.

A recognised expert in his field, Mark has published a range of papers, been a prominent spokesperson at industry conferences and led UK and international project teams.

 

Alex Ferguson

Licensing Director

As Licensing Director Alex is primarily responsible for licensing packages for the transportation of radioactive materials. Alex has worked in the nuclear industry for 36 years, starting out with UKEA and AEA Technology before joining Croft. His background includes providing engineering support to active handling facilities, designing remote handling facilities and pressurised equipment for UKEA/AEA Technology and subsequently providing technical support for the licensing activities at Croft.

The work in which Alex is typically engaged includes project management of licensing work for internal and external customers, addressing elements such as package impact, thermal, shielding and containment assessments, regulatory interpretation and liaison with regulatory approval authorities such as ONR.

 

Ron Hows

Director and Technical Authority

Ron has worked in the nuclear industry for 36 years and during this time has been involved in the design and development of many of Croft’s standard designs. Ron was instrumental in the introduction of the use of ISO freight containers as IP-2 packages for the collection and disposal of Low Level Waste (LLW); the standards and specifications of which have been adopted as the industry standard for over 25 years. The half-height ISO Container is the standard for disposal of LLW at LLWR.

Ron has attended IAEA meetings regarding amendment and revisions to the IAEA regulations for the Safe Transport of Radioactive Materials on the use of Freight Containers as IP-2 Packaging’s; Ron attended with, and at the request of, the UK Competent Authority.

Ron was involved in the design of the Ductile Cast Iron range of packagings which Croft has introduced to the industry. Ron is a member of the Assurance Team and advises on technical aspects of design.

 

Bob Vaughan

Founding Director

As Founding Director of Croft, Bob established the company in 1980. From the beginning, Bob has been responsible for the successful management, development and expansion of the company, including the formation of Croft Inc in 1993, based in the US, to provide services to the US Department of Energy (DOE).

With a PhD in Physics Bob has worked in the nuclear industry for over 40 years. Bob is a member of several Committees including the Transport Container Standardisation Committee (TCSC), American National Standards Institute (ANSI) and the International Organisation for Standardisation (ISO), writing the standard on Leakage Testing of packages for the shipment radioactive materials. Bob is also a member of the Institute of Nuclear Engineers and a consultant to the IAEA.

Bob has published a number of papers on transport packaging for radioactive materials and wastes.

 

Steve Ralls

Quality Manager

As Quality Manager Steve is responsible for all quality aspects of Croft’s operations and maintenance of the ISO 9001:2008 and the US 10CFR 71 QMS certifications. In addition, Steve also administers the Health & Safety program and the NEF assured training development and delivery program.

Formerly an Aerospace Engineer, Steve served 10 years in the Royal Air Force followed by 2 years in civil aviation before moving into Quality Assurance. Gaining considerable experience in QA and Engineering Steve spent the next 13 years supporting the manufacture of superconducting magnets for use in NMRI scanners. After a brief spell as Chief Inspector supporting QA in the testing and manufacture of Cobalt alloy components, Steve took up the role of Quality Manager with a specialist Lithium battery manufacturer, eventually becoming General Manager of the UK facility before joining Croft.

 

Trevor Tait

Head of Engineering & Projects

As Head of Engineering & Projects Trevor is responsible for strategic Portfolio, Programme and Project management within Croft, in essence managing those projects which do not fall under “business as usual”.

In particular, Trevor has managed the strategic development of Croft’s capability with regards to Ductile Cast Iron Containers (DCICs) suitable for interim storage, transport and final disposal of Intermediate Level Waste (ILW). This has included project managing recent major programmes for Magnox and Sellafield Ltd pertaining to design, substantiation, testing and manufacture of DCICs.

As well as being a qualified APMP practitioner, Trevor is also a Chartered Mechanical Engineer. He has a background in engineering management within major nuclear industry tier 2 organisations. As such he compliments his project management capability with over 20 years experience of many aspects of engineering within safety critical and highly regulated environments.

Trevor has been with Croft for 5 years, during which he has successfully managed major tenders at a number of the UK site licence organisations.

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