After graduating with a degree in Combined Arts from Durham University, Katie Bell decided to pursue a career in lab work, having worked as a technician in an agricultural laboratory during holiday periods. Initially training as a food microbiologist in Co. Durham, she then moved to Cumbria where she has worked in the Analytical Services Laboratories at Sellafield for 14 years, beginning in the Mass Spectrometry section and gaining an HND in Applied Chemistry via day-release to college.
Katie carried out the commissioning and validation of a new MC-ICP-MS instrument and subsequently led the lab for eight years, maintaining the instruments, training analysts and carrying out high-precision analysis of nuclear materials in support of nuclear fuel reprocessing. She then worked on the commissioning of a new ICP-OES lab, overseeing instrument installation and testing and coordinating the validation of an improved method for the analysis of trace elements in radioactive materials. Katie is currently a member of the Analytical Support Team, providing technical support to Sellafield’s instrumental labs, and last year achieved Chartered Chemist status.