Chalk River — With over 2,700 people already registered to visit Canada’s national nuclear laboratories on Saturday, August 6, Atomic Energy of Canada Limited (AECL) and Canadian Nuclear Laboratories (CNL) are anticipating a strong turnout for the 2022 Open House at Chalk River Laboratories.

Last held five years ago, the special event is being organized to celebrate the continued revitalization of the Chalk River campus, AECL’s 70th anniversary, and all the accomplishments being made by AECL and CNL’s respective teams.

AECL and CNL are now finalizing details for what they hope will be a fun-filled and interactive day for visitors. In addition to over 50 informative booths and displays, hands-on experiments, demonstrations and tours, the Open House will feature family-friendly entertainment for kids and adults alike, including mega-machines, bouncy castles, a nerf gun challenge, decommissioning robots, food vendors and a whole lot more.

“Public reception to the 2022 Open House has been extremely positive so far, and we are on pace to exceed registration numbers compared to previous events,” said Joe McBrearty, CNL’s President and CEO. “Employees at both AECL and CNL are working really hard to ensure that we give our visitors a fun, interactive and engaging event. But it is also our hope that the public walks with away with a better understanding of the work that goes here at Chalk River Laboratories, whether it is research related to clean energy, health sciences or environmental remediation.”

In addition to the family-friendly entertainment, which includes the free watermelon and cake that has become one of the biggest draws at the Open House, visitors will also have the opportunity to tour some of the new buildings and laboratories that have been constructed as part of the site revitalization program. CNL will also be conducting a series of presentations discussing some of their exciting new research projects and programs, with topics that include small modular reactors (SMRs), a rare new medical isotope known as Actinium-225, hydrogen energy, and work to establish a new clean energy research park at Chalk River Laboratories.

“The 2022 Open House comes during a particularly exciting period of renewal for the Chalk River Laboratories that includes new buildings and facilities, but which also extends to our science and technology programs,” Mr. McBrearty added. “So, there will be a lot to see and experience if you are interested in what goes on here in Chalk River at the end of Plant Road.”

With the event now taking shape, a short list of the many attractions, tours, presentations and family-friendly fun that visitors can enjoy are included below:

Tours and Presentations:

  • An exterior tour of the new Science Collaboration Centre
  • Facility tours of laboratories in research areas that include hydrogen, nuclear security, health sciences, environmental sciences and analytical chemistry
  • Facility tours of emergency response organizations, including fire, security and the emergency operations centre
  • Bus tours of the proposed site for the Near Surface Disposal Facility, and the site’s waste management areas
  • A presentation on Actinium-225, an exciting new medical isotope for cancer treatment
  • A presentation on Global First Power’s proposed small modular reactor (SMR) project
  • A presentation on hydrogen as a clean energy solution
  • A presentation on CEDIR Park, CNL’s proposed clean energy research park

Booths and Displays:

  • Small modular reactors
  • Advanced nuclear fuels
  • Machine learning
  • Archeology and environmental studies
  • Nuclear forensics
  • Supercritical water reactor research
  • Thermalhydraulics
  • Environmental monitoring
  • Environmental remediation management

Family-friendly fun:

  • Free cake and watermelon at noon
  • A presentation on animals and wildlife at Chalk River Laboratories
  • An opportunity to ride the fire truck aerial ladder for a great view of the campus
  • A ‘Nerf Gun Challenge’ hosted by CNL’s engineering department
  • A glassblowing demonstration
  • A ‘Kids Zone’ featuring bouncy castles and other inflatables
  • The opportunity to see campus ‘mega-machines,’ including fire trucks, security trucks, cranes and other large-scale vehicles and equipment
  • Demonstration of robots used by CNL’s decommissioning team