The IOM3 Composites Group (formerly the British Composites Society) aims to provide a single authoritative voice for the community of professional scientists and engineers working with fibre-reinforced composite materials and structures. The group supports education, skill training, and professional development, and develops the technologies and sustainability of composites, to present a coherent face of the industry.
Senior lecturer, School of Engineering at Ulster University
Composites Group Chair, Emeritus Professor of Materials Engineering, Royal Holloway University of London and Director of Avalon Consultancy Services Ltd, Newbury
Paul is currently Chair of the Composites Group of the IOM3. He was a founding member and secretary of the original British Composites Society formed in 1987 and after merger into the IoM he served as a committee member and then Chair from about 2003 to 2009, returning as Chair in 2021. Paul has had a long career as an academic specialising in composites research, working at the universities of Liverpool, Queen Mary, Manchester and Royal Holloway. He was Head of Materials at QMUL and Manchester and was Vice Principal for Research and Enterprise and Dean of Science at Royal Holloway, until 2021. Whilst at the University of Manchester Paul was the Director of the NorthWest Composites Centre and the National Composites Certification and Evaluation facility.
He now works as a consultant, specialising in the mechanical properties and manufacturing of composites, as well as supporting a number of start-up technology businesses.
Composites Group Secretary, Professor of Composites Engineering, University of Plymouth
John Summerscales (CEng, CEnv, CSci, FIMMM) joined the Plastics Institute as a chemistry/polymer joint honours student in Cardiff. After a masters degree in the molecular science of materials at University of Greenwich, then a year indexing polymer industry patents, he moved to Plymouth for his doctoral studies on hybrid composites. He then spent five years characterising glass fibre composites for MOD(Navy). He returned to University of Plymouth (UP) as a founding member of the Advanced Composites Manufacturing Centre (ACMC) to provide professional development for composites manufacturing personnel. He has been Stage 4 “with composites” pathway tutor for undergraduate engineering students since 1990.
His research interests include composites manufacture especially infusion processes, and sustainability focussed on bio-based materials and end-of-life composites. He (co-)edited books on non-destructive testing (NDT), microstructural characterisation, and marine applications of composites. He currently leads the UP MAterials and STructures (MAST) research group. He has been involved in 10 previous Knowledge Transfer Partnerships (KTP), including the development of the award-winning inFINITE beamless seating for modern passenger terminals with Zoeftig Limited, and now a KTP with SWMAS to develop a Scope 3 assessment tool. He was awarded the IOM3 Outstanding Service Award in 2004, and the IOM3 Leslie Holliday Prize in 2023.
Composites Group Deputy Secretary, Senior Lecturer in Materials Science, Queen Mary University of London
Han Zhang (CEng, CSci, MIMMM, FHEA) joined the IOM3 Composites Leadership Team as the Deputy Secretary in 2023. Han is a Senior Lecturer in Materials Science at Queen Mary University of London. His experience in the field of composites range from manufacturing to characterization of advanced polymer composites and nanocomposites, especially of multifunctional composites for future lightweight structural applications. His current research focuses on the sustainable development of advanced composites, including energy efficient sustainable manufacturing, integrated sensing and structural health monitoring, and easy repairing functionalities for extended components’ life.
Han is the recipient of the Silver Medal from the IOM3 in recognition of his outstanding contribution to the field of composite materials as an early career researcher, also the RH Craven Award in 2010 for his excellence in polymer materials. He is also a member of the EPSRC Early Career Forum in Manufacturing Research, and a member of the Discover Materials working group.
Senior consultant, BAES
Richard is a Senior Consultant at BAES, he obtained his PhD in Composite Structures from Imperial College London. He is a Chartered Engineer and is a Fellow of the Institute of Materials Minerals and Mining and the Institute of Mechanical Engineers. He has been a member of the IOM3 Composite Leadership Group since 2019. Richard is currently the chair of the Professional working group which also acts as the Skills Development Group for the Composite Leadership Forum. Richard significant experience of the design, simulation, analysis, optimisation and failure of large composite and steel structures for the maritime and renewables sectors. He is also a NAFEMS member and sits on the Continuum Solid Mechanics working group.
Consultant, High Value Manufacturing Catapult
Prof Mike Hinton’s career spans 40 years of R&D conducted for the UK Ministry of Defence (and latterly QinetiQ) followed by 11 years (so far !) in support of the UK High Value Manufacturing Catapult. He is an experienced Director, Chief Technology Officer and Special Merit expert with a unique breadth of expertise, coupled with an extensive track record of creating / leading high performance capability groups that deliver a diverse and complex range of solutions to meet customer and business needs.
In addition, Mike is the CEO of a micro-SME which develops, manufactures and sells innovative structural health monitoring systems for the management of capital assets.
Mike’s experience encompasses the full TRL 1-9 and MRL 1-9 spectrum, together with an understanding of the associated business drivers across a wide variety of industrial sectors, academia and Government. He has personal experience of working on leading edge research (co-author of a book and many highly cited publications), major defence procurement programs, international defence collaboration, and many industrially focused development programs. He is currently working closely with senior industrial specialists, academia and the UK Gov’t to catalyse a national activity aimed at placing the UK at the forefront of engineering transformation.
Mike was elected as a World Fellow by the International Committee on Composite Materials.
Professor of Composite Materials, School of Mechanical Engineering Sciences at the University of Surrey
Paul Smith is Professor of Composite Materials in the School of Mechanical Engineering Sciences at the University of Surrey. He has been active in the field of composite materials for more than 40 years, with a wide range of research interests, but with a particular focus on damage and fracture in polymer and ceramic matrix composite systems. Paul is active in the ICCM (International Committee on Composite Materials) community - he is a former President and was elected as an ICCM World Fellow in 2017. He serves on the Editorial Board of Composites Part A and was previously the Editor-in-chief for that journal. Paul has been involved with the Composites Board and its forerunners at IOM3 for nearly 30 years and currently chairs the sub-committee focusing on external engagement.
Chair, IOM3 Composites Technology Working Group
Andrew Foreman (CEng, FIMMM) is a QinetiQ Fellow and Chief Engineer within the Science & Technology business unit at QinetiQ. Andrew has worked for more than 35 years on all aspects of Fibre Reinforced Polymer Composites, with particular expertise in carbon fibre composites, manufacturing, structural testing and impact. His current role as Chief Engineer includes responsibility for a large portfolio of programmes ranging from low TRL innovative research programmes, to product development and in service platform support.
Senior lecturer, School of Engineering at Ulster University
Dr Edward Archer is a Senior Lecturer of Advanced Composite materials in the School of Engineering at Ulster University. He is currently chair of the Meetings and Events Working Group in the IOM3 Composites Leadership Team. His research is focused on manufacturing and characterising 3D woven composite reinforcement structures and the prediction of their properties with key aspects of the work carried out in collaboration with major companies in several industrial sectors. His research group operates both within the Engineering Composites Research Centre at Ulster University and at Northern Ireland Advanced Composites and Engineering Centre (NIACE) in Belfast.
The unrivalled, biennial networking event for Europe's early career researchers, scientists, engineers and students to exchange ideas, share their research, and learn about the latest advances in materials science and engineering.
Let's do more than just 'touch the surface'! Join us to network and discuss advances in fundamental & applied aspects of surface technology to achieve original solutions towards important global challenges.