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Current and future research strategy addresses industrial, commercial and societal needs in the design of materials in four themes relating to national and EU policies - Health;  Energy;  Transport; Clean Technology.

Research in these themes utilises an interdisciplinary approach to develop and characterise materials from the atomic to the macroscopic scale, providing new materials, processes and applications, which are guided by a fundamental understanding of material properties and design requirements. In addition to these themes which focus on application areas for materials, MSSI has significant research capabilities in a fifth theme, Characterisation which underpins research across all areas in MSSI and relates to the development and exploitation of characterisation techniques to examine the behaviour of materials from the nano- to the macro-scale.