2012 Year in Review

Happy New Year everyone… Another year is behind us!  2012 was another eventful year starting with the Request for Expression of Interest (RFEI) for the future of Chalk River Labs and continuing with a stream of announcements related to research funding cuts.  After the sale of the CANDU branch of AECL in 2011, the RFEI was meant to gauge any stakeholder (members of the public, universities, private industries) interest in participating in the future of AECL's Chalk River Nuclear Laboratories.  With the RFEI process completed by March 2012, the hope was that the government would announce its decision for the future of the lab by the fall 2012.  We are already into the New Year and there is still no news as to when the government will make an announcement.  One thing that is clear, and has been clear for many years, is that a replacement for the aging NRU reactor either at Chalk River Laboratories or at University of Saskatchewan (wouldn’t it be great if both would get one!!!) will guarantee the future of neutron scattering, nuclear research and isotope production in Canada and their many benefits to the country for many years to come! Once again as Theodore Roosevelt said:  “In any moment of decision the best thing you can do is the right thing, the next best thing is the wrong thing, and the worst thing you can do is nothing.”… Here is a look back at some highlights of the posts on the group wall (I have tested the links and they should all work) and let us hope 2013 brings more support and funding for basic research in Canada especially commitment to replace the aging NRU reactor:
Jan 9: Another milestone for U of Saskatchewan's nuclear research centre: U of S nuclear centre readies for research http://prosperitysaskatchewan.wordpress.com/2012/01/09/u-of-s-nuclear-centre-readies-for-research/ "The University of Saskatchewan's new nuclear research centre has its board of directors in place and will start accepting project proposals within the next few months." Great leadership and vision by Saskatchewan backed up true commitment!!!
Jan 15: Race for helium-3 (neutron-detector material) alternatives: http://www.rsc.org/chemistryworld/News/2012/January/helium-3-isotopes-shortage-alternatives-neutron-detectors.asp
Jan 21: Future use of fission for space travel: this is a great overview of the past and current use of nuclear technologies in space by the World Nuclear Association: http://www.world-nuclear.org/info/inf82.html  ... ,also see: http://news.discovery.com/space/project-bifrost-interstellar-space-fission-120120.html for Project Bifrost which is "examining emerging space technologies that could lay the foundation for future interstellar flights and investigates the utility of fission for future space missions." quite neat!
Jan 21: US takes first steps in manufacturing small nuclear reactors: http://www.ne.doe.gov/newsroom/2012PRs/nePR012012.html
Jan 22: Dutch govt approves new medical isotope reactor: http://af.reuters.com/article/energyOilNews/idAFL6E8CK1YE20120120
Jan 27: Japan eyes first trade deficit in 3 decades! http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/01/24/us-japan-economy-trade-idUSTRE80N0QX20120124 and let's not forget that in addition to economical problems, the increased use of fossil fuels just adds further to the CO2 emissions, air pollution and all of its consequences!!!
Jan 27: Westinghouse Electric moves to the north! http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/westinghouse-electric-canada-formed-to-meet-growing-business-opportunities-and-strengthen-ties-with-customers-and-suppliers-138121823.html   "Westinghouse Electric Company LLC today announced the formation of Westinghouse Electric Canada, Inc. to better serve its Canadian customers, strengthen its ties with Canadian suppliers, and align itself more appropriately with the regulations and requirements in Canada to meet growing business opportunities there. The headquarters will be located in Toronto, Ontario." move away ACR1000, hello Westinghouse AP1000®!!! at least this will create jobs...
Jan 28: Do you wonder what happened to medical isotopes crisis and how different countries trying to eliminate their dependency on the aging NRU reactor? here are a few recent announcements: non-reactor based methods in Canada in Alberta and Quebec (http://www.theglobeandmail.com/technology/science/radioactive-medicine-without-the-nuclear-headache/article547499/), and in Janesville, Wisconsin (http://www.healthimaging.com/index.php?option=com_articles&view=article&id=31478%3Ashine-to-build-new-usplant-for-moly-99-production ), and the recently announced new research reactor in Netherlands (http://www.nrg.eu/nuclear-services/news/item/?tx_ttnews%5Btt_news%5D=74&cHash=eef9580cf7388ea7da7886d56e1e975c)... among all of these, it will be only the new research reactor in the Netherlands that allows not only the production of medical isotopes but also production of other types of isotopes required for science and technology as well as other nuclear research including neutron scattering...
Feb 1: Well looks like SNC-Lavalin is doing pretty well as they secure $48M contract with Romania nuclear power plant. Remember SNC-Lavalin is the company who bought the Candu part of AECL for -$60M (paid the government +$15M and received $75M from them as initiative plus government keeping all the existing &future liabilities): http://business.financialpost.com/2012/01/24/snc-lavalin-secures-48m-contract-with-romania-nuclear-power-plant/
Feb 2: No big Fukushima health impact: "The health impact of last year's Fukushima nuclear disaster in Japan appears relatively small thanks partly to prompt evacuations, the chairman of a U.N. scientific body investigating the effects of radiation said on Tuesday." http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/01/31/us-japan-fukushima-health-idUSTRE80U1AS20120131
Feb 5: very cool! new material is found that could be used to remove radioactive gas from spent nuclear fuel:  http://phys.org/news/2012-01-chemists-material-radioactive-gas-spent.htmlLike%97Comment%97UnfollowPost%97Share%97February5/
Feb 6: The solution seems to be simple, isn't it? a new research reactor that replaces the aging NRU could supply medical isotopes for years to come, help Canada maintain and expand its expertise in nuclear R&D and neutron scattering for another 50 years... http://www.nytimes.com/2012/02/07/science/ge-ends-bid-to-create-a-supply-of-technetium-99m.html?_r=0
Feb 8: Wonderful news: RIM founder gives $21M to science and math faculties at University of Waterloo! They should write his words with gold and post them on the walls of where ever science policies/funding are being decided: "scientific research is key to innovation, which is needed more than ever. "History has shown us that a relatively small investment in fundamental research in physics and in science today can lead to huge innovation tomorrow"" http://www.macleans.ca/business/wire/article.jsp?content=b16976506
Feb 9: Government of Canada is now looking for private interest in Chalk River Laboratories: at the end of the day it doesn't matter who runs the lab, the government or a private firm (CRNL Partners, comprising EnergySolutions Canada, SNC Lavalin, AMEC NSS, Kinectric and Wardrop, and a team from CH2M Hill Canada, Babcock and Wilcox and the Battelle Memorial Institute are potential interested companies), what matters is whether there is a vision, direction and commitment to make that vision a reality... without a new research reactor replacing the aging NRU reactor, there is no way the lab could make any meaningful contribution is any of nuclear R&D, isotope and neutron scattering... http://news.nationalpost.com/2012/02/09/atomic-energy-of-canada-limited-tories-call-for-private-interest-in-chalk-river-nuclear-plant/  "A 2009 review of AECL found, “the primary issue surrounding CRL’s future is not whether it can become a profitable, commercially viable enterprise, but whether its activities are focused, driven by innovation and managed optimally.” It recommended the government, “seek an operating and management partner with the capacity to contribute risk capital, build new export markets, while sharing in the benefits of any gains. alliances with the private sector and academia, and develop new commercial opportunities in the domestic and export markets, while sharing in the benefits of any gains.”"... this is the direct link to the NRCan's announcement today: http://www.nrcan.gc.ca/media-room/news-release/2012/18/3768
Feb 11: Research Reactors: Ignored Yet Irreplaceable. Find out more about their useful applications. http://www.iaea.org/newscenter/news/2012/researchreactors.html
Feb 12: Big uranium business for Saskatchewan via new deal with China: http://www.globalregina.com/new+deal+with+china+means+big+uranium+business+for+saskatchewan/6442577639/story.html
Feb 12: Nuclear new build approved in U.S. for first time since 1978: http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=first-new-nuclear-reactor-in-us-since-1978-approved
Feb 15: Medical isotope production at CLS: as the faith of Chalk River Labs and its missions (isotope production, nuclear R&D and neutron scattering) hangs in the balance (see the post related to the government's request for expression of interest from private sector for Chalk River Labs), it seems more progress is made in medical isotope production using X-rays, ... again even if this method is successful in medical isotope production, there are other types of isotopes that NRU makes as well as allowing scientists to perform nuclear R&D and neutron scattering... A neutron source will be required to replace the aging NRU for Canada to maintain and expand it expertise and excellence in these areas... http://www.lightsource.ca/media/media_release_20120215.php
Feb 16: PiC latest issue: Nuclear Energy after Fukushima, a selection of great articles, notably the article by Jeremy Whitlock: "Are there options for better, cleaner, safer nuclear power?" http://www.cap.ca/en/publications/physics-canada-pic/issue/67/4
Feb 17: Is Canadian government 'muzzling its scientists'? read and decide for yourself: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-16861468
Feb 20: During a summit t week, UK and France have reaffirmed their enthusiasm for nuclear power and declared their desire for a joint nuclear industry: http://www.world-nuclear-news.org/NP_Summit_for_a_Franco_British_nuclear_industry_1702121.html
Feb 20: Commercial quantities of technetium made by cyclotrons: http://physicsworld.com/cws/article/news/48690
Feb 23: Last month Environment Canada and the CNSC announced a joint panel review of Ontario Power Generation's proposal to construct and operate a deep geological repository for radioactive waste at the Bruce Nuclear Generation Station in Tiverton, Ont. This is the link to the original announcement: http://www.ceaa-acee.gc.ca/050/document-eng.cfm?document=53989
Feb 23: Saskatchewan takes another important step in re-establishing its position in the nuclear industry: http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/saskatchewan/story/2012/02/21/sk-nuclear-innovation-centre-1202.html ... this is the direct link to the government of Saskatchewan: http://www.gov.sk.ca/news?newsId=5e36140e-d06e-4a51-a259-27e4c5460ea4  "Minister responsible for Innovation Rob Norris today signed a multi-year agreement for Innovation Saskatchewan to provide funding for the new $30 million Canadian Centre for Nuclear Innovation (CCNI), a world-class research centre housed at the University of Saskatchewan to support nuclear research, development and innovation. "The Canadian Centre for Nuclear Innovation is a key cornerstone of Saskatchewan's innovation and nuclear agendas," Norris said. "It will play a vital role in advancing our vision for a safe, responsible, value-added nuclear agenda that focuses on nuclear medicine, material science, safety and small reactor technology."
Feb 25: More on the government's recent announcement for expression of interests from private companies for Chalk River Labs: http://www.thedailyobserver.ca/ArticleDisplay.aspx?archive=true&e=3469085 "“This process will allow the government to benefit from the experiences of organizations, domestic or international, involved in the management or restructuring of nuclear science and technology or radioactive waste management,”
Feb 29: More on medical isotope production with cyclotrons: Best Theratronics (which began as a division of Atomic Energy of Canada Limited) announces plans to address the medical isotope shortage by manufacturing a range of cyclotrons http://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20120229006953/en/Cyclotrons-Medical-Isotopes-Theratronics-announces-plans-address
Feb 29: Bill Gates calls for a leap in nuclear energy R&D investment: http://www.coolhandnuke.com/Cool-Hand-Blog/articleType/ArticleView/articleId/95/Nuclear-news-roundup-for-022912.aspx
March 1: AECL, NB Power sue for $524M in reactor costs: http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/new-brunswick/story/2012/03/01/nb-point-lepreau-lawsuit-1137.html
March 1: $600-million contract for SNC-Lavalin and Aecon for refurbishment of Darlington nuclear plant: http://www.thestar.com/business/article/1139270--snc-lavalin-aecon-win-darlington-nuclear-ontract?bn=1
March 3: Saskatchewan's nuclear research funding will have benefits in a wide range of applications including agriculture: http://www.producer.com/2012/03/nuclear-research-funding-may-benefit-agriculture%E2%80%A9/
March 5: Significant increase in science (including basic science) funding in China announced in the draft budget today: http://news.sciencemag.org/scienceinsider/2012/03/another-bumper-year-for-chinese-.html
March 10: High optimism for nuclear power on Fukushima anniversary: http://www.world-nuclear-news.org/NP_Optimism_from_industry_on_Fukushima_anniversary_0903121.html  "Industry leaders remain bullish on nuclear power's prospects in coming decades, in part because of the high priority that has been placed on identifying and addressing potential weaknesses such as were revealed last year at Fukushima Daiichi.”
March 10: US DOE makes a commitment for advancing Small Modular Reactors: http://energy.gov/articles/energy-department-announces-small-modular-reactor-technology-partnerships-savannah-river  ... also see: http://www.examiner.com/article/doe-signs-agreement-to-move-forward-on-small-modular-reactor-testing
March 10: Science policy decision making, it could be difficult at times, this paper (http://www.plosone.org/article/info%3Adoi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.pone.0031824) addresses questions such as: “understanding the role of scientific evidence in policymaking” and “democratic governance of scientific advice”. The questions themselves include “Under what conditions does scientific evidence legitimise political decisions?” and “What impact has research on the relationship between science and policy actually had on science policy?” but are the "science" and "policy" separable? a thought provoking article in any case...
March 12: The Honourable Rob Norris on Saskatchewan's nuclear investments, a must watch video: "2012 Canadian Nuclear Association Conference and Trade Show. The Honourable Rob Norris on the Government of Saskatchewan's plan for the future of the province's nuclear industry." http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9wxV_nj0ja8 … paraphrasing: "we are working to adding value through innovation, we are very focused and energized to adding value to uranium though nuclear research in medicine, materials science, small reactor modules... we have been working on CLS in producing medical isotopes ($12M investment), Canadian Centre for nuclear innovation has been established and funded, research cyclotron, partnership with Hiotachi GE in nuclear research allowing us to make real progress, and recent announcement for uranium sale to China... SK intends to gain leadership role in nuclear R&D and we know we need partnerships as these could not be done alone"
March 16: CNSC allows the restart of the Bruce A Unit 2: Duncan Hawthorne, President and CEO's on youtube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HUIfQh5fn8M&feature=youtu.be
March 16: A must read: Now is the Time for Canada to Invest in Nuclear Energy: http://prosperitysaskatchewan.wordpress.com/2012/03/16/now-is-the-time-for-canada-to-invest-in-nuclear-energy/   "Canada has an opportunity to regain a leadership position in the one of the world’s pre-eminent clean energy technologies. But to do this, our leaders must take courageous, long-term decisions to invest in new nuclear energy projects today. As a proud Canadian and nuclear industry employee, I look forward to seeing the next new nuclear plant under construction in Ontario. While this may not be the easiest course of action, our leaders will find that new investment in nuclear energy is good for Canadians’ electricity rates, Canada’s industrial base, and Canada’s clean energy future."
March 22: Great video from Barry Brook of Brave New Climate stating a much needed perspective as to why we need nuclear energy!, please share: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=98frSed0F5s  "Climate change and sustainability of the global human enterprise are two of the most critical issues of the 21st Century. If we are to tackle these problems effectively, we need to make prudent, evidence-based choices about energy."
March 22: Training students in the field of neutron scattering, this is how NRU has enabled that for many years, a new research reactor replacing it will ensure that this could go on for many more years... http://archive.nrc-cnrc.gc.ca/eng/news/cnbc/2012/02/01/spectrometre-class.html
March 24: Helium shortage: http://www.redorbit.com/news/science/1112497113/helium-shortage-leaves-scientists-in-no-mood-to-celebrate/
March 26: Earth warming faster than expected: http://news.sciencemag.org/sciencenow/2012/03/earth-warming-faster-than-expected.html
March 27: US president's speech at Hankuk University on the value of nuclear technologies: http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2012/03/26/remarks-president-obama-hankuk-university
March 30: This is a good read: Shunning nuclear power will lead to a warmer world: http://e360.yale.edu/feature/shunning_new_nuclear_power_plants_will_lead_to_warmer_world/2510/
March 30: CINS submits expression of interest in AECL: http://www.cins.ca/news.html and http://www.cins.ca/docs/CINS_EOI_AECL.pdf  “CINS has responded to Natural Resources Canada's consultative process on the restructuring of AECL, known as a Request for Expressions of Interest. The following is a summary of the submission. The document may be downloaded here. CINS would seek to contribute to an oversight role so as to restore CRL to its proper position as a centre for research in Canada, and to ensure that its unique combination of capabilities is managed for the benefit of all clients, whether they be academic, government or industrial users. Our members are active users of the Canadian Neutron Beam Centre that is based around the NRU reactor at Chalk River. Our organisation seeks to promote the use of neutron beam research techniques and our members have been involved in research at Chalk River Laboratories almost since the facility was created. We believe that neither Chalk River Laboratories in general, nor Canadian neutron beam research in particular, have a meaningful future without a powerful research reactor on the Chalk River site, and that since NRU is coming to the end of its operational life, it is essential that a new research reactor be built as a matter of great urgency so that an orderly succession can be managed. Furthermore, in order to fully realise the scientific and technical potential of Chalk River Laboratories, a major shift in culture will be needed so that research is identified as a laboratory priority, and external users from academia, government and industry are both welcomed and supported in their research. The National Research Universal (NRU) reactor and the associated facilities at Chalk River Laboratories represent the largest national investment in research infrastructure in Canada. Despite decades of worldclass contributions to research in all aspects of nuclear science and technology, the site was allowed to decay from the mid-90s and it has become a pale shadow of its former self. With investment in a new research reactor, and active promotion of a new research-centred mission for the laboratory, a revitalised Chalk River Laboratories could regain its position as a world leader in nuclear and neutron-based science and technology and serve a broad range of academic, government and industrial users. It would advance knowledge and contribute to the training of thousands of highly qualified people, both those who work onsite, and the far larger number of people who would visit the laboratories to use the facilities and interact with the teams of local specialists. By re-defining the site's mandate as “research”, Chalk River Laboratories would be in a position to contribute to fields far from nuclear engineering and would support research in energy, environment, health, communications, materials science, fundamental physics and chemistry and manufacturing and process development for the automotive, aerospace and mineral processing sectors. The knowledge gained would both expand Canada's technological base, and also inform government as it seeks to develop science-based policies that support a technology-driven economy, and that both foster and regulate industry in Canada.”
March 30: Thinking outside of the box! Chalk River should consider nuclear waste as a business opportunity: http://www.thestar.com/business/cleanbreak/article/1154226--chalk-river-should-consider-nuclear-waste-as-a-business-opportunity
April 1: Great advancement! consuming plutonium as fuel while generating electricity!: http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2012/feb/02/nuclear-reactors-consume-radioactive-waste
April 1: Small reactors game changers for the nuclear industry? B&W and Bechtel form small modular reactor alliance: http://theenergycollective.com/djysrv/40078/bw-and-bechtel-form-small-modular-reactor-alliance
April 6: CREATE also submitted expression of interest in AECL: http://www.futurecrl.ca/CREATE.php?page=news&id=35&showcomments=0
April 6: CAP's summary of the proposed budget 2012: http://www.cap.ca/en/news/2012-03-30/proposed-2012-budget-supportive-research-times-fiscal-austerity... notably is the CAP's reaction to the $67 million for NRC: "$67 million in 2012–13 as the National Research Council refocuses on business-led, industry-relevant research. The budget document adds the comment that “in consultation with businesses and university and college stakeholders, the Government will consider ways to better focus the National Research Council on demand driven research, consistent with the recommendations of the Expert Panel.” It is not clear what this means, but suggests that there is a possibility for influencing the changes at NRC. The CAP letter to the Prime Minister pointed out that NRC’s own proposed changes were inconsistent with the Jenkin’s Report and recommended their Expert Panel review the proposed changes."
April 6: CAP writes to Prime Minister re Jenkins Report and NRC: http://www.cap.ca/en/news/2012-03-31/cap-writes-prime-minister-re-nrc-and-other-matters-jenkins-report
April 13: AECL provides update on NRU planned shutdown: http://www.aecl.ca/NewsRoom/Community_Bulletins/2012/120412.htm  ... "National Research Universal (NRU) reactor will enter a planned outage beginning on April 15, 2012 and ending May 15, 2012. The purpose of the outage is to conduct scheduled inspection and maintenance. In addition to the annual vessel inspection, work is planned during the outage to enhance the reliability and safety of NRU. A dedicated work management outage team has been established to coordinate the activities of suppliers, NRU specialists and supporting departments; ensuring the safe and successful execution of the outage."
April 17: Wow, a peek at the Canadian government's bureaucracy at play!!! thought provoking in addition to whether the federal government should be able to directly talk to media: A simple question, a blizzard of emails, and a peek
inside how Canada's bureaucracy works: http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2012/04/17/a-simple-question-a-blizz_n_1431718.html
April 21: Over 1000 employees of AECL, Municipalities, local businesses, related nuclear industry stakeholders from across Canada participated in request for opinions on next steps of AECL restructuring: Let us hope this help  the government recognize the importance of the lab and why Canada needs such infrastructure for nuclear, isotope and neutron scattering... http://www.cherylgallant.com/2012/04/19/mp-cheryl-gallant-thanks-community-for-participation-in-aecl-consultation/  ... "With all the change happening with this major Federal Government employer, the opportunity a business could be seeking may be right in its own back yard,” remarked Cheryl Gallant, MP. “What this also does is attract businesses from outside our region that see the opportunities, and are attracted to the activity taking place.”'
April 22: Is this for real happening in Canada in year 2012??? "Government media minders are being dispatched to an international polar conference in Montreal to monitor and record what Environment Canada scientists say to reporters." http://www.canada.com/news/national/6500175/story.html
April 27: Is the elusive fusion closer to reality??? it appears so as scientists see solution to critical barrier to it, remarkable!!! http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/04/120423143128.htm
April 28: Candu Energy employees holding strike vote May 3: http://www.spea.ca/media/news-media/spea-news-stories/169-may-3rd-2012-snc-lavalin-shareholders-stand-to-lose-millions.html
April 29: Ontario zeroes in on two nuclear reactor designs: Enhanced Candu 6 reactor by Candu Energy Inc and AP 1000 reactor by Westinghouse: http://www.thestar.com/business/article/1168935--ontario-zeroes-in-on-two-nuclear-reactor-designs
April 29: Fukushima revealed Canadian government’s confusion over nuclear emergency response, a new CNSC report says: why this is not surprising? when bureaucracy itself trumps the main cause for which the bureaucracy in the first place was created to assist the cause with, this is the expected outcome!:  http://www.nuclearsafety.gc.ca/eng/pdfs/japan-earthquake/April-2012-Final-Report-of-the-EAC_CNSC-Response-to-the-Japanese-Nuclear-Event_e.pdf
April 29: Looks like Candu is out of the running in Jordan: http://english.alarabiya.net/articles/2012/04/29/211058.html
May 2: More competition for DOE SMR funding: http://theenergycollective.com/dan-yurman/82909/competition-heats-doe-smr-funding
May 4: "The Society of Professional Engineers and Associates (SPEA) held a strike vote yesterday: an unprecedented 95% of employees participated in the vote, with over 94% voting to authorize strike action." http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/05/04/snclavalin-idUSL1E8G4OFS20120504
May 4: More on NSERC funding cuts, this is a must read! it includes excerpts from a (draft) letter "which is being signed by the leaders of various research facilities and labs. We are told that the “letter will also be sent to appropriate members of government and members of parliament.” It wouldn’t hurt if it also lands on the desks of Canada’s university presidents and VP-Rs." http://nghoussoub.com/2012/05/02/firstreactions-to-the-nserc-cuts/#more-8887
May 4: Wow! more funding cuts for science in Canada, this one is the elimination of the NSERC Major Resources Support (MRS) Grants! And that means the funding of Canadian Neutron Beam Centre is cut by %30!!! http://www.nserc-crsng.gc.ca/Professors-Professeurs/RTII-OIRI/MRSMemoToApps-ARMMemoCandidats_eng.asp
May 8: India will indeed build a thorium reactor! http://www.smartplanet.com/blog/intelligent-energy/safe-nuclear-indias-thorium-reactor/15707
May 10: Science could be expensive, but the payoffs more than justify the costs: http://www.npr.org/blogs/13.7/2012/05/08/152254500/is-big-science-introuble?sc=fb&cc=fp  The added issue for Canada is the fact that there is no science advisory mechanism in Canada that is based on public discussions, guided by the experts and debated by the MPs...
May 10: This is the link to the write up about the recent NSERC cuts to Canadian Neutron Beam Centre at a local newspaper: http://www.northrenfrewtimes.com/nrc-unit-faces-budget-cut/  "The Canadian Neutron Beam Centre (CNBC) is operated by the National Research Council (NRC) at Chalk River. However, the program also receives about 30 per cent of its operating funding from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC). Officials learned last week that, faced with cuts in the 2012 federal budget, NRSERC is cancelling the Major Resource Support program that provides the funding to the CNBC as well as other facilities across Canada. NSERC funding is intended to support basic science research at the university level, and the money provided to CNBC – roughly $1.5 million a year – supports the program to allow university-based researchers to access “beam time” at the NRU reactor. Dominic Ryan is a professor at McGill University and president of the Canadian Institute for Neutron Scattering (CINS), which represents over 500 researchers and students who make up the neutron-beam community. Ryan said he learned that the funding for the CNBC would be cancelled early last week. “To hear that we were getting gutted like that was quite a shock,” he said. “It’s not a good week.” Ryan said the loss of the funding represents “another step down” in the level of basic science research being done at Chalk River, with the government “chipping away” at its support for the science community. “If you chip away enough, eventually the whole thing comes down,” he said."
May 15: Federal cuts called a 'disaster' for Canadian science: http://nationalhealthwatch.ca/federal-cuts-called-a-disaster-for-canadian-science/
May 15: Meanwhile elsewhere in the world: The Starting Grants given by the European Research Council (ERC): a tremendous boost to the careers of young scientists:  http://www.aps.org/publications/apsnews/201205/international.cfm  "The ERC program has unique features among all those funded by the European Community for supporting research and innovation. It is fully in the hands of the scientists, with very modest administrative support. It is devoted solely to fundamental research, and all proposals are of the bottom-up sort.”
May 17: Dr. Ted Hsu, the Member of Parliament for the riding of Kingston and the Islands, speaks against recent funding cuts to NSERC: "Dr. Hsu’s statements in the House of Commons on this subject: http://openparliament.ca/debates/2012/5/8/ted-hsu-1/ “Mr. Speaker, my hon. colleague speaks about the CFI program. It is indeed a good program, but the problem that we have had for many years now is that we need funds to operate the infrastructure that we buy. We need to train technical people. That is why there was a program called the MRS program at NSERC, and that was just frozen. It has ended. There is no new money allotted for places like the Brockhouse Institute. The neutron scattering groups are going to be losing their MRS funding, so they are not going to have the money to use the infrastructure that we have. That is a problem. Why did the government choose to cut that money?”
May 17: The Honourable Gary Goodyear, Minister of State for Science and Technology, speaks about research funding cuts at the annual Research Money conference: http://news.gc.ca/web/article-eng.do?nid=674769  does this means support for research or just another way of supporting industry!!!??? no one says stop supporting industry but that should not come at the expense of supporting science oriented research...
May 17: NRU is back up and running after the planned one month shutdown, come over for your neutron experiments!... this is the link to the news of startup from AECL but not a lot of info there as far as what was learnt from the vessel inspections.... http://www.aecl.ca/NewsRoom/Community_Bulletins/2012/120516.htm  "AECL reports that the National Research Universal (NRU) reactor was returned to operation, as planned, from its extended outage during the early morning of May 16. The purpose of the 2012 planned outage was to perform annual vessel inspections and to complete maintenance work designed to enhance the reliability of NRU. Prior to the start of the outage, facility users and the isotope community were notified well in advance and took steps to adjust their activities. The NRU is currently operating at high power, producing medical isotopes and available to provide vital research and testing support to the science community, universities, and industry from across Canada and around the world."
May 19: Point Lepreau engineers in strike position: http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/new-brunswick/story/2012/05/16/nb-point-lepreau-engineers-strike.html
May 23: new nuclear power plants for UK: http://www.nytimes.com/2012/05/23/world/europe/british-energy-plan-would-add-nuclear-plants.html
May 23: Post Fukushima, intensified interest in Nuclear Power in the MENA region continues: Read more: http://www.digitaljournal.com/pr/715283#ixzz1vgYrZF9Y
May 27: In contrast to Japan South Korea looks increasingly to nuclear energy to satisfy its energy needs: http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2012/may/17/japan-nuclear-south-korea
May 29: More trouble brewing at SNC-Lavalin as CANDU workers respond to company bullying: http://www.spea.ca/media/news-media/spea-newsstories/181-may-23-2012-marketwire-press-release-more-troublebrewing-at-snc-lavalin-as-candu-workers-respond-to-company-bullying.html
May 31: Phasing out use of HEU: http://isotopix.com/?p=26 .... note that NRU runs on LEU but uses HEU to produce medical isotopes... I am not aware of any programs to convert that to LEU at NRU...
May 31: Fossil fuels now provide some 90% of Japan's electricity as nuclear plants remain shut down: http://www.world-nuclear-news.org/EE_Fossil_fuels_rule_Japan_3105121.html
June 4: Celebrating 80 years of neutrons: http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b01j6t0n
June 4: Canada Celebrates 50th Anniversary of Nuclear Power Generation: http://www.newswire.ca/en/story/986277/canada-celebrates-50th-anniversary-of-nuclear-power-generation
June 6: China moves ahead with its plans for producing nuclear energy: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052702303506404577444173316508002.html
June 6: more opposition to federal science cuts: http://www.reddeeradvocate.com/news/provincial/Scientists_protest_federal_cuts_to_open-air_lake_research_facility_157485335.html
June 8: Japan’s PM says 2 nuclear reactors must be restarted to protect livelihoods, economy: http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/06/08/us-japan-nuclear-reactors-idUSBRE8570GO20120608
June 9: Canadian Centre for Nuclear Innovation website is now launched: http://ccni.nu/index.php
June 12: A good read: Medical isotopes – the Coming crisis in supplies for Technetium-99: http://www.kidela.com/resources/medical-isotopes-the-coming-crisis-in-supplies-for-technetium-99/
 June 13: Need for a national energy policy in US? http://theenergycollective.com/jesse-parent/87121/does-us-need-national-energy-policy  same question is also applied to Canada.
June 16: Britain aims to lead on nuclear energy: http://www.aftenbladet.no/energi/aenergy/Britain-aims-to-lead-on-nuclear-energy-2989235.html#.T9uhkVLzEYk  glad to see sense and sensibility is prevailing despite the unfounded fears especially after Fukushima!
June 23: Jordan to select technology for first nuclear reactor from Russia's Atomstroyexport or Areva/Mitsubishi: http://www.hispanicbusiness.com/2012/6/21/jordan_in_talks_to_select_technology.htm
 June 23: Candu Energy grapples with strike and soft markets: http://www.thestar.com/business/article/1214610--candu-energygrapples-with-strike-and-soft-markets
 June 23: New $25-million funding announced to diversify sources for medical isotopes: http://www.nrcan.gc.ca/media-room/news-release/2012/6327 also see: http://www.nrcan.gc.ca/energy/sources/uranium-nuclear/1245
June 25: Some movement on new builds at Darlington: http://www.world-nuclear-news.org/NN-Vendors_to_prepare_bids_for_Darlington-2407124.html and http://www.opg.com/news/releases/20120622Press%20Release%20Signing%20of%20the%20SLA%20--%20News%20Release%20--%20June%2022%20FINAL.pdf
June 25: SPEA bargaining update: http://www.spea.ca/media/spea-news/210-june-25-2012-strike-flyer-bargaining-update.html
 June 27: Calculating the economic impact of basic science: http://www.symmetrymagazine.org/breaking/2012/06/26/the-unreasonable-tevatron-calculating-the-economic-impact-of-basic-science
June 27: perhaps there is hope for EC6 reactors: Candu Energy Inc. (Candu) works with UK Nuclear Decommissioning Authority to study deployment of EC6 reactors: http://www.newswire.ca/en/story/1000343/candu-works-with-uk-nuclear-decommissioning-authority-to-study-deployment-of-ec6-reactors
June 29: Canadian Centre for Nuclear Innovation (CCNI) First Call for Project Proposals, Submission deadline: August 10, 2012: http://ccni.nu/projects/project-proposals.php
July 3: A writeup in Physics Today on recent science funding cuts in Canada: http://www.physicstoday.org/resource/1/phtoad/v65/i7/p20_s1?bypassSSO=1
July 4: World’s first nuclear power plant opened 58 years ago: http://www.wired.com/thisdayintech/2012/06/june-27-1954-worlds-first-nuclear-power-plant-opens/  
July 5: NRC staff enraged by gift cards: http://www.winnipegfreepress.com/local/nrc-staff-enraged-by-gift-cards-161407515.html  and http://www.theglobeandmail.com/report-on-business/careers/careers-leadership/john-mcdougall-hungry-for-better-return-on-research/article600382/  also http://www.cbc.ca/news/technology/story/2012/03/06/technology-goodyear-national-research-council.html  and http://www.scansite.ca/news/2011/07/nrc_narrows_the_door_for_smes.html and http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fb4bWVBX47s&feature=player_embedded
July 8: Nordion International Provides Update on AECL MAPLE Arbitration: http://www.biospace.com/News/nordion-international-provides-updateon-aecl/265606
July 8: SNC-Lavalin nuclear engineers may strike on Monday: http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/07/08/snclavalin-strike-idUSL2E8I84S320120708 
July 8: Saskatchewan Seeking Nuclear Leadership: http://www.saskatoonhomepage.ca/seeking-nuclear-leadership/itemid_21-dp1
July 8: Science community to protest research cuts with funeral march: http://o.canada.com/2012/07/08/science-community-to-protest-research-cuts-with-funeral-march/ 
July 8: Is SNC-Lavalin Bending Rules to Avoid Paying Taxes? http://www.exchangemagazine.com/morningpost/2012/week27/Friday/12070607.htm
July 9: Not surprising!: Anti-Nuclear Hysterics, not Melted Reactors to Blame for Fukushima Health Impacts: http://thisweekinnuclear.com/?p=1473
July 10: Report on the Death of Evidence rally today: http://thechronicleherald.ca/canada/115611-scientists-march-on-parliament-hill-to-protest-death-of-evidence
July 16: OPG pays out $26M for nuclear cost estimate: http://www.nugget.ca/ArticleDisplay.aspx?e=3593407  ..."Ontario Power Generation (OPG) has agreed to pay two prospective reactor builders $26 million to come up with an estimate on how much two new nuclear reactors at the Darlington Generating Station would cost, Energy Minister Chris Bentley told a Queen's Park committee Wednesday.”
July 18: Nuclear waste-burning reactor moves a step closer to reality: http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2012/jul/09/nuclear-waste-burning-reactor#
July 20: Uprating a way of increasing nuclear power capacity: http://www.eia.gov/todayinenergy/detail.cfm?id=7130
July 20: AECL, union reaches agreement, union membership ratification scheduled on July 25: http://www.thedailyobserver.ca/2012/07/19/aecl-union-reaches-agreement 
July 20: CNSC Allows Bruce A Unit 1 Restart: http://www.nuclearsafety.gc.ca/eng/mediacentre/releases/news_release.cfm?news_release_id=417
July 20: This sounds about time, glad to see nuclear has a prominent place: 'Maintain strong support for Canada’s nuclear industry, Nuclear energy has an important role to play in Canada energy future"! Senators see urgent need for national energy policy: http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/story/2012/07/19/pol-paris-senate-energy-report.html
July 20: Point Lepreau restart may be ahead of schedule: http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/new-brunswick/story/2012/07/20/nb-point-lepreau-restart-627.html
July 22: China in talks to build five new reactors in UK: http://in.reuters.com/article/2012/07/21/nuclear-britain-china-idINL6E8IKHDI20120721
July 22: Sask. to benefit with Canada-China uranium export agreement: http://www.newstalk650.com/story/sask-benefit-canada-china-uranium-export-agreement/66340
July 23: CNSC allows Point Lepreau restart: http://www.nuclearsafety.gc.ca/eng/mediacentre/releases/news_release.cfm?news_release_id=418
July 24: Another interesting read: How I learned to stop worrying and embrace the atom Fukushima 'crisis' changed my mind on nuclear power: http://www.japantimes.co.jp/rss/fl20120724zg.html
July 26: Inventory of radioactive waste in Canada: http://www.radiationsafety.ca/resources/library
July 26: Uranium supplies good for the long haul: http://www.world-nuclear-news.org/ENF-Uranium_supplies_looking_good_for_the_long_haul-2607127.html  "Uranium resources are good for 100 years at current rates of usage, but new mining investment will be needed to supply the sector in 2035 when it will have grown by 45-100%."
July 30: Nuclear powered Mars rover Curiosity scheduled to land on 1:31 a.m. EDT, Aug. 6, 2012, closing in on Mars to hunt for life clues!... here you could follow Curiosity on her journey, through these simulated views, which are updated daily: http://mars.jpl.nasa.gov/msl/
July 31: APS: This Month in Physics History: July 1957: Bardeen, Cooper, and Schrieffer submit their paper, “Theory of Superconductivity” http://aps.org/publications/apsnews/200707/history.cfm
July 31: And for anyone wondering about the price tag for nuclear energy: Study rates nuclear a cheap source of energy: http://www.smh.com.au/opinion/political-news/study-rates-nuclear-acheap-source-of-energy-20120731-23d56.html#ixzz22F0QGaM2
Aug 3: Ever wondered how nuclear powered Mars Rover Curiosity was built, this is a good video: http://ansnuclearcafe.org/2012/08/03/ans-nuclear-matinee-mars-rover-curiosity-a-nuclear-powered-mobile-laboratory/
Aug 3: SPEA strike update: http://www.spea.ca/strike-update/259-august-2-2012-strikeflyer-a-bargaining-update.html
Aug 6: Curiosity's successful lands: http://blogs.nasa.gov/cm/blog/bolden/posts/post_1344232802884.html
Aug 8: Candu Inc expands deal with Chinese for development of alternative reactor fuels: http://www.world-nuclear-news.org/ENF-Candu_expands_cooperation_with_China-0308124.html
Aug 13: AECL marks 60 years by opening its door to the public, first in 12 years! http://www.thedailyobserver.ca/2012/08/12/aecl-marks-60-years
Aug 13: Latest from SPEA on Candu strike: Striking Candu Energy Engineers and Scientists to Picket Bay Street: http://www.spea.ca/strike-update/265-august-9-2012-press-release-striking-candu-energy-engineers-andscientists-to-picket-bay-street.html
Aug 21: Clean energy ‘mega-trend’ sweeping globe, Canadian economy left vulnerable, Harper government told in briefings: http://forum.canucks.com/topic/334120-clean-energy-mega-trend-sweeping-globe-canadian-economy-left-vulnerable-harper-government-told-in-briefings/
Aug 21: Nuclear power project in Canada receives site preparation license: http://www.power-eng.com/articles/2012/08/nuclear-power-project-in-canada-receives-site-preparation-license.html
Aug 21: good for Canadians! knowledge is power, admitting a problem is the first step to solving it! Only 2 per cent of Canadians don’t believe in climate change: poll http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/politics/only-2-per-cent-of-canadians-dont-believe-in-climate-change-poll/article4482183/
Aug 21: Candu strike is leading to brain drain, union warns: http://www.theglobeandmail.com/report-on-business/candu-strike-is-leading-to-brain-drain-union-warns/article4483047/
Aug 22: Environmental approval for the Midwest uranium project in Saskatchewan: http://www.world-nuclear-news.org/ENF-Environmental_approval_for_Canadian_mine-2008124.html
Aug 23: Merkel’s Green Shift Forces Germany to Burn More Coal: http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-08-19/merkel-s-green-shift-forces-germany-to-burn-more-coal-energy.html  ... too bad!
Aug 28: CNSC allows "New Brunswick Power Nuclear (NBPN) to increase reactor power above 0.1% of its full capacity, in order to complete further safety checks. Looking forward, NBPN will also require  regulatory approval to increase power above 35% of full power." http://www.nuclearsafety.gc.ca/eng/mediacentre/releases/news_release.cfm?news_release_id=421
Aug 28: CAP submission to House of Commons Finance Committee: http://www.cap.ca/en/news/2012-07-29/cap-submission-house-commons-finance-committee ... among recommendations is to preserve the basic research capabilities currently housed in federal organizations: "While the economy will benefit from industry-driven research at AECL and NRC, which are being restructured, these organizations also support basic research and access to large-scale research infrastructure. The basic research capacity at other federal organizations, such as CSA and Environment Canada, is being reduced. Transferring these functions to other organizations may be the best way to preserve them if these functions no longer fit their current organizational mandates." the full pdf document is found at this link... will any one listen???
Aug 28: The results of the CAP member survey on NSERC's DG, RTI and MRS programs are now available on the CAP's website: http://www.cap.ca/en/news/2012-08-27/summary-capnserc-survey-results-and-observations   ..."78% agree that it will be difficult to maintain and/or grow their research infrastructure with only the CFI program."
Sept 4: Set your calendars for 2012 CINS Anunal General Meeting October 26-27, 2012 at Brock University: http://www.cins.ca/meetings/agm2012.htm
Sept 5: In case anyone has missed it, there is a recent report prepared by NDP's Critic for Science & Technology that details repercussions of recent NSERC MRS cut to major research facilities in Canada including the Canadian Neutron Beam Centre. The full report can be found at http://kennedystewart.ndp.ca/posts/sci-tech , the direct link to pdf is: http://kennedystewart.ndp.ca/download/3787/mrs_program_moratorium_impact_report.pdf  ... here isthe related excerpt from the pdf: "Canadian Neutron Beam Centre (Chalk River, ON) The Canadian Neutron Beam Centre enables researchers to use neutron beams as tools for world-class materials research, which provides new understandings of materials and improves products for businesses. It is the only major neutron beam facility in Canada, and is part of an international network of about 20 such facilities around the world. This facility is a world-leader in the application of neutron beams to industrial research, working with researchers in heavy industries such as automotive, aerospace, defence, metal production, nuclear power, oil and gas, and rail to improve safety and performance of their products and services. In operation for 54 years, it was also home to Bertram Brockhouse, one of only three Canadians awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics, for his work in the 1950s developing neutron beams into research tools. Without MRS funding, the $30 million of installed capital in the neutron beam laboratory will be greatly underutilized, and the $500 million National Research Universal reactor that generates the neutrons will be further underutilized. The principal investigator outlines how the loss of MRS funding will affect educational and training opportunities: The educational mandate associated with NSERC funding has allowed us to broaden the mission of the Canadian Neutron Beam Centre to include extensive outreach activities. Every two years we run a 5-day neutron summer school with 40-50 attendees where the students are introduced to neutron beam methods… The staff expends considerable efforts to assist new users to design and carry out their experiments and then follows through the analysis phase to make sure that experiments work and yield published results. It is this consistent commitment to the users’ success that has enabled us to grow the Canadian neutron user community. Falling back on the more limited (both in amount and scope) NRC support will leave us without the ability to carry out the usertraining missions, but it will also constrain us as NRC’s mission does not include a strong teaching or outreach component."
Sept 10: Nordion Announces Decision in Arbitration with AECL Over Cancelled MAPLE Project: http://news.nordion.com/phoenix.zhtml?c=68761&p=irol-newsarticle&ID=1733262
Sept 13: Are wind farms saving or killing us? http://www.dailymail.co.uk/home/moslive/article-2199284/Wind-farms-Are-wind-farms-saving-killing-A-provocative-investigation-claims-thousands-people-falling-sick-live-near-them.html
Sept 16: Nuclear scientists end strike at Candu Energy: http://www.thestar.com/business/article/1255160--nuclear-scientists-end-strike-at-candu-energy
Sept 16: Point Lepreau to return to service at end of month: http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/new-brunswick/story/2012/09/12/nb-point-lepreau-service-schedule.html
Sept 16: nuclear new-build investment set to top some $1.5 trillion (that is a "T") by 2030: http://www.world-nuclear-news.org/NN-Strong_supply_chain_supports_new_build-1309128.html
Sept 17: Physicists patent nuclear waste-burning technology: http://rdmag.com/News/2012/09/Energy-Physicists-Patent-Nuclear-Waste-Burning-Technology/
Sept 18: Gentilly or Not To Be: Let’s Set the Record Straight http://www.nuclearsafety.gc.ca/eng/mediacentre/updates/2012/September-18-2012-Gentilly-or-not-to-be.cfm "The recently released documentary Gentilly or Not To Bemay, regrettably, raise unfounded concerns about the safety record of the Gentilly-2 nuclear power plant, and the nuclear industry in general. Let's set the record straight!"
Sept 19: Australia leads the way with nuclear medicine initiative: http://minister.innovation.gov.au/chrisevans/MediaReleases/Pages/Australialeadsthewaywithnuclearmedicineinitiative.aspx
Sept 26: remarkable! did you know Bruce Power’s Unit 1 reactor is now synchronized to Ontario’s electricity grid, adding power to the grid for the first time in 15 years, congratulations to all involved, a milestone indeed!: http://www.brucepower.com/6791/news/bruce-power%E2%80%99sunit-1-sends-electricity-to-ontario-grid-for-first-time-in-15-years/
Sept 26: Canada, UAE sign cooperation accord: http://www.world-nuclear-news.org/NP-Canada_UAE_sign_cooperation_accord-2009124.html
Sept 26: Too bad it seems a similar faith for Bruce unit 1 is not happening for Gentilly 2, even more sad that it is not due to technical issues: http://www.world-nuclear-news.org/C-Bruce_back_Gentilly_going-2109127.html
Oct 3: Truly remarkable! all scientists and researchers deserve a pat on the shoulder!!! :) Canada ranked fourth in the world for scientific research http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/national/canada-ranked-fourth-in-the-world-for-scientific-research/article4571162/
Oct 3: More on Australia's expansion of isotope production: this is a country with vision and will to make it happen: http://www.world-nuclear-news.org/NN-Australia_to_expand_isotope_production-0310124.html
Oct 3: quite neat: Radiation saves the bees! http://www.symmetrymagazine.org/article/october-2012/beehives
Oct 3: great news: Construction of Japanese reactor to resume: http://www.world-nuclear-news.org/NN-Construction_of_Japanese_reactor_to_resume-0110124.html
Oct 3: Canadian Centre for Nuclear Innovation to be named after Sylvia Fedoruk: http://ccni.nu/news/news-releases/canadian-centre-for-nuclear-innovation-to-be-named-after-sylvia-fedoruk.php
Oct 4: A great resource put together by a couple of MIT engineers: The fear of nuclear power is mainly from a widespread misunderstanding and fear of radiation: http://thingsworsethannuclearpower.blogspot.ca/2012/05/sunburn-is-worse-than-400x-background.html
Oct 4: Candu Energy Statement on the Decision to Close the Gentilly-2 Nuclear Facility: http://www.candu.com/en/home/news/mediareleases/canduenergysstatementonthedecisiontoclosethegentil.aspx
Oct 7: A petition in favour of Gentilly-2 is now available for signing on-line, on the web site of the Quebéc parliament: https://www.assnat.qc.ca/fr/exprimez-votre-opinion/petition/Petition-3337/index.html
Oct 11: Japanese firm continues investing in nuclear: http://www.world-nuclear-news.org/C-Toshiba_to_buy_Shaws_stake_in_Westinghouse-1010124.html  
Oct 11: Fast moves for nuclear development in Russia: http://www.world-nuclear-news.org/NN_Fast_moves_for_nuclear_development_in_Siberia_0410121.html
Oct 11: AECL Whiteshell Laboratories technicians and technologists to strike: http://www.marketwire.com/press-release/aecl-technicians-and-technologists-to-strike-1709593.htm
Oct 14: China continues to make progress with its construction of new nuclear power reactors: http://www.world-nuclear-news.org/NN-Chinese_units_get_their_domes-1010125.html#.UHWcX2PDXss.facebook
Oct 14: A great read: The Tragedy of Radiation Phobia: A great read: http://www.nucleartownhall.com/blog/william-tucker-the-tragedy-of-radiation-phobia/
Oct 16: A talk "about the “new” AECL and how it contributes to Canada" on Wednesday, October 24, 2012... perhaps some more details about how the "new" AECL will look like and whether a replacement for the aging NRU research reactor is in its future or not will be revealed in the talk? http://members.peo.on.ca/index.cfm?ci_id=1849&la_id=1&year=2012&month=10&day=24&event_id=69805&ch_id=36  if you are able to attend please tell us about it...
Oct 17: A reminder that the CINS AGM meeting is fast approaching: http://www.cins.ca/meetings/agm2012.htm#discuss  it will be held at Brock University on October 26-27, 2012: Please plan to attend if you have not already... there is an important discussion session that will take place in this meeting: "In light of the cancellation of the NSERC-MRS program, the on-going uncertainty surrounding the future of AECL, NRU and NRC, and the absence of a plan to build a new research reactor in Canada, we feel that it would be timely to reflect on the future of the Canadian neutron beam user community." ... in addition there is a lineup of great speakers....
Oct 17: Bruce Power's Unit 2 sends electricity to Ontario grid for first time in 17 years: http://www.nuclearsafety.gc.ca/eng/mediacentre/releases/news_release.cfm?news_release_id=418
Oct 17: Hornepayne, ON: the location of deep geological repository for Canada's spent nuclear fuel? http://www.cbc.ca/news/technology/story/2012/10/16/pol-nuclear-waste-site-hornepayne.html
Oct 17: A report by American Security Project: Small Modular Reactors: A Possible Path Forward for Nuclear Power: http://americansecurityproject.org/news/2012/asps-smr-report-quoted-in-heraldonline/
Oct 17: Did you also find it odd that both candidates last night seem to support fossil fuels? at times it seemed they were attacking each other for the lack of their support for coal, oil drilling etc... seems fossil fuels are the winners of this upcoming election! http://theenergycollective.com/josephromm/131496/sound-climate-silence-romney-and-obama-spar-over-who-wants-drill-more-fossil-fuels
Oct 19: Food for thought: Hidden costs of grid intermittency of clean energy: http://www.thestreet.com/story/11740857/1/little-known-filth-fouls-clean-energy-costing-trillions.html
Oct 19: Neat!: Japan robot suit offers hope for nuclear work: http://phys.org/news/2012-10-japan-robot-nuclear.html
Oct 22: Remarkable achievement!: Refurbished Bruce approaching full strength: http://www.world-nuclear-news.org/C-Refurbished_Bruce_approaching_full_strength-1810127.html
Oct 22: Start of the end for the solar hype perhaps? Siemens Exits Solar, Desertec in Green Portfolio Setback: http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-10-22/siemens-exits-solar-business-in-setback-for-green-portfolio-push.html
Oct 26: Great news: All twenty of Canada's nuclear power reactors are on line now: http://www.world-nuclear-news.org/C_Point_Lepreau_back_in_operation_2410121.html
Oct 28: That Ontario nuclear power scene is worth a snapshot, after the return of Bruce A units 1 & 2 to service: http://media.cns-snc.ca/ontarioelectricity/ontarioelectricity.html
Oct 29: A must read: Non speak week: silencing scientists by Stephen Strauss: http://pencanada.ca/blog/how-science-can-help-the-feds-save-face/
Oct 30: Hitachi buys right to build next generation of British nuclear power plants in £700million deal: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2225160/Japanese-build-700m-UK-nuclear-power-plants-Hitachi-deal-provide-energy-14m-homes-60-years.html
Oct 31: Cool! First X-ray diffraction analysis of Martian soil shows that it is similar in composition to volcanic soils in Hawaii: http://www.nasa.gov/home/hqnews/2012/oct/HQ_12-383_Curiosity_CheMin.html
Nov 2: Nordion seeks new Russian isotope supplier: http://www.obj.ca/Technology/2012-10-29/article-3109534/Nordion-seeks-new-Russian-isotope-supplier/1
Nov 2: Update on strike of Technicians and Technologists at AECL Whiteshell Labs: http://www.pipsc.ca/portal/page/portal/website/news/newsreleases/news/102312
Nov 2: More cuts at NRC: Public science continues its downward spiral in Canada: http://www.pipsc.ca/portal/page/portal/website/news/newsreleases/news/102512
Nov 6: Premier welcomes new Canada uranium deal with India: http://gov.sk.ca/news?newsId=f87af4f5-bbd3-4f14-9c6e-e67c7c2dec78
Nov 7: A change in supply to meet isotope demand: http://seekingalpha.com/article/976731-a-change-in-supply-to-meet-isotope-demand  "Nordion does not produce isotopes itself, but uses the NRU reactor in Canada, which is scheduled to be shut down in the next four years. The reactor is currently operating at full capacity, yet the demand is greater due to a shortage in other regions. The company has had to  evolve over the years with more efficient means of producing medical isotopes-- in other words, getting more bang for the buck. Nordion has become the world leader in cobalt-60, which is used to produce gamma radiation, and also in the creation of targeted therapies with yttrium-90. Therefore, Nordion is a diversified company; but if the NRU reactor were to close, it would be a huge hit to the company. The company does have a backup isotope supply in Russia; but in terms of supplying the U.S. (its largest market), the costs would drastically rise if the NRU reactor closes because of the logistics involved in transporting and producing various isotopes."
Nov 8: Federal scientists muzzled to protect tar sands reputation? read and decide for yourself: http://www.desmogblog.com/2012/11/08/stephen-harper-hates-science-federal-government-muzzles-scientists-protect-tar-sands-reputation
Nov 13: Bragg Centenary: http://crystallography.org.uk/bragg-centenary/  "In 2013 it will be 100 years since the pioneering work undertaken by William Henry Bragg and his son, William Lawrence Bragg, which underpins the discipline of X-ray crystallography, and for which they were jointly awarded a Nobel Prize in Physics in 1915.
Nov 19: Astronauts Could Survive Mars Radiation, Curiosity Rover Finds: http://www.space.com/18504-mars-rover-curiosity-astronaut-radiation.html
Nov 21: The US government to fund up to half the cost of a five-year project to design and commercialize small modular nuclear power reactors: http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2012/11/20/obama-doefund-modular-nuclear-reactors/1717843/
Nov 22: Uranium Moratoriums Are Not Supported by Science: CNSC President http://www.nuclearsafety.gc.ca/eng/mediacentre/issues/letters_to_the_editor/20121122-uranium-moratoriums.cfm
Nov 23: An Open letter from the eight EIROforum directors general, preparatory to the European Council summit on the EU Multiannual financial framework. The letter is signed by - among others - the ILL Director, Andrew Harrison: We need a similar letter for Canada! http://www.ill.eu/en/news-events/news/open-letter-from-eiroforum-dgs-about-the-future-of-european-research/  "We call on you – the Heads of State or Government of the EU Member States and the Presidents of the European Council, the European Parliament and the European Commission – to reconfirm your collective support for science so that it can continue to make a significant contribution to Europe’s economic recovery and beyond."
Nov 23: A good read: Why Communicate Science? People Need What Scientists Have; Scientists Need People to Have it... http://www.aps.org/publications/apsnews/201210/backpage.cfm
Nov 23: South Korea invests big in basic research, really amazing that such recognition for support of basic research is recognized by a country that is traditionally big in industry, it is a simple but important fact: The countries that lead in science and technology have “not only produced numerous Nobel laureates but also generated colossal national wealth on the strength of the achievements of basic research.” yet why is Canada moving in the opposite direction???: http://www.physicstoday.org/resource/1/phtoad/v65/i10/p26_s1?bypassSSO=1
Nov 26: The French state has authorised full construction of the world's largest tokamak nuclear fusion reactor with a formal decree to allow creation of a 'basic nuclear installation': http://www.world-nuclear-news.org/NN-State_blessing_for_ITER_construction-2011127.html
Nov 26: UK grants first nuclear site licence for 25 years: http://www.powerengineeringint.com/articles/2012/11/uk-grants-first-nuclear-site-licence-for-25-years.html
Nov 28: Stop the War on Science: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_cjmlo8yBS4&feature=youtu.be  "It's time to stop the war on science. Since Prime Minister Harper came into power, Canada has been subjected to a ruthless assault on its science capacity. This attack has been systemic and strategic, targeting science that seeks to understand the impacts of industry on the environment -- information the Harper Government considers inconvenient to their economic agenda. These actions will result in the significant and widespread degradation of our country's environment and natural resources. The crippling of Canada's public science capacity under the guise of austerity measures, coupled with the weakening of federal environmental laws in the absence of open debate, is a blatant desecration of science, nature, and democracy. We need to stop this war on science, and let's start by saving the ELA. Help spread this video in the name of ending the Harper Government's war on science. Go to http://www.saveela.org/ for more information on how YOU can take action!"
Nov 29: History of crystallography, a great listen from BBC radio: http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b01p0s9s
Nov 30: Neutron science: Give us more neutrons: http://www.newscientist.com/article/mg21628933.000-neutron-sciencegive-us-more-neutrons.html  
Dec 1: Michael Binder is reappointed as CNSC President for another five year term: http://www.nuclearsafety.gc.ca/eng/mediacentre/releases/news_release.cfm?news_release_id=433
Dec 2: Dec 2, 2012 marks the 70th anniversary of the first self-sustained nuclear reaction! Happy 70th! http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-3445_162-57556651/almanac-the-1st-self-sustained-nuclear-reaction/
Dec 3: Wow! Fossil-Fuel Subsidies of Rich Nations Five Times Climate Aid http://www.businessweek.com/news/2012-12-02/fossil-fuel-subsidies-of-rich-nations-are-five-times-climate-aid  ... I wonder why you don't hear the same amount of complaint about such subsidies as you always hear for nuclear???
Dec 5: A great read at Nature magazine on nuclear energy and its future: http://www.nature.com/news/nuclear-energy-radical-reactors-1.11957 “If you're going to get off fossil fuel, you have to have a serious nuclear programme.”
Dec 10: UK to dramatically increase nuclear power generation through use of mini -reactors: http://www.thisismoney.co.uk/money/markets/article-2245205/Mini-nuclear-reactors-Government-energy-plan.html#ixzz2EdqUz1jLLikeラCommentラUnfollowPostラShareラDecember10
Dec 11: Nuclear Power in Canada at World Nuclear Association updated Nov. 2012: http://www.world-nuclear.org/info/inf49a_Nuclear_Power_in_Canada.html
Dec 11: Nordion Provides Update on MAPLE Arbitration Costs: http://www.obj.ca/Technology/2012-12-06/article-3135029/Nordion-adds-up-potential-arbitration-liabilities/1
Dec 11: Interesting perspective from David Jackson: More Glory Days for Chalk River? http://reactorscanada.com/2012/05/31/more-glory-days-for-chalk-river/  perhaps that has been and continues to be the worst mistake eliminating “curiosity oriented research”.
Dec 12: UN to adopt advice on radiation: http://www.world-nuclear-news.org/RS_UN_approves_radiation_advice_1012121.html
Dec 18: UK nuclear regulator approves EDF, Areva reactor design: http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-12-13/u-k-nuclear-regulator-said-to-approve-edf-areva-reactor-design.html
Dec 18: Berkeley Lab developing quick way to ID people exposed to ionizing radiation: http://newscenter.lbl.gov/feature-stories/2012/12/14/radiation/
Dec 20: Chamber seeking nuclear science centre: http://www.thedailyobserver.ca/2012/12/19/chamber-seeking-nuclear-science-centre  "The Upper Ottawa Valley Chamber of Commerce is proposing the establishment of a centre to promote the area’s tourism while celebrating its rich science and technology heritage.”
Dec 21: Nuclear best option for Europe, report says: http://www.world-nuclear-news.org/EE-Nuclear_best_option_for_Europe_report_says-1912124.html
Dec 21: Cuts and short-term thinking pose threat to Canadian scientific research: http://www.thestar.com/opinion/editorialopinion/article/1300365--cuts-and-short-term-thinking-pose-threat-to-canadian-scientific-research

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