A relic of Canada's atom age, the NRU reactor is shutting down for good
Chalk River is taking nuclear research in new directions. Anyone in the
market for a portable reactor?
On March 31, a little-known part of Canada's nuclear history will go dark
for the last time.
The National Research Universal Reactor — or NRU — at Chalk River, Ontario
will be turned off for good Saturday evening. It first came online in 1957.
Retired Atomic Energy of Canada Limited engineer Fred Blackstein was there
almost from the start. He got his first job in the lab when he was just 19
"I sort of think I grew up here. I hope I grew up," he said.
Blackstein would go on to work in a number of jobs at the reactor, from
1961 to 1985. He said that during those decades, Chalk River was the "place
to be if you were a scientist anywhere in the free world."