The Anne Birt Award

Open Award 

The Anne Birt Award recognises a significant contribution to technology innovation, technology transfer or technology strategy in the field of NDT.

2017 winner: Dr Stephen F Burch

The Anne Birt Award for 2017 is awarded to Dr Stephen F Burch.

Dr Stephen Burch read physics at the University of Cambridge, where he also completed a PhD in radio astronomy. He then joined the United Kingdom Atomic Energy Authority (UKAEA) at Harwell, where he researched a number of advanced NDT techniques. The highlight of this period was the development of a technique for ultrasonic objective flaw characterisation using an approach based on feature extraction and statistical pattern recognition. He was also responsible for the development in the early 1990s of the Tomohawk system for X-ray computerised tomography.

In 1996, Stephen was part of the newly privatised AEA Technology and moved to the National NDT Centre at Culham Laboratory. Here, his work involved consultancy and the development of NDT techniques and systems, principally in the fields of X-ray imaging and digital ultrasonics.

Stephen currently works for ESR Technology and is based at Milton Park in Oxfordshire, where he heads the NDT group and also manages the HOIS joint industry project for improved NDT in the oil & gas industry. He is the principal author of many of the authoritative HOIS recommended practice and guidance documents, some of which are publicly available. He has also presented technical papers at numerous NDT conferences, including WCNDT and ECNDT.

Stephen is the principal UK national expert for the development of Radiographic European Standards via the CEN committee
TC 138/WG 1 and the ISO committee ISO/TC 44/SC 5/WG 1. He also led the development of the international standards on in-service radiography, EN 16407 parts 1 and 2, which are now being revised as draft ISO standards (ISO 20769).

Past winners:
2016    Keith Newton and Peter Thayer


A nomination form can be downloaded here.

Details of all Institute awards can be found here.