Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Chalk River Laboratories
The facility arose out of a 1942 collaboration between British and Canadian nuclear researchers which saw a Montreal research laboratory established under the National Research Council of Canada (NRC). By 1944 the Chalk River Labs were opened and in September, 1945 the facility saw the first nuclear reactor outside of the United States go operational. In 1946, NRC closed the Monteal lab and focused its resources on Chalk River.
In 1952, Atomic Energy of Canada Limited (AECL), was created by the government to promote peaceful use of nuclear energy. AECL also took over operation of Chalk River from the NRC. Throughout the 1950s-2000s various nuclear research reactors have been opened by AECL for production of nuclear material for medical and scientific applications.
Chalk River Labs are also near the site of Canada's first nuclear power plant, a partnership between AECL and Hydro-Electric Power Commission of Ontario, which went online in 1962. This reactor, Nuclear Power Demonstration (NPD), was a demonstration of the CANDU design, one of the world's safest and most successful nuclear reactor.
Chalk River Labs remain an AECL facility to this day and are used as both a research (in partnership with the NRC) and production facility (on behalf of AECL) in support of other Canadian electrical utilities.
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