The Spring of 2009 marked the 50th anniversary of the McMaster Nuclear Reactor first achieving criticality. A series of events were organized to celebrate this occasion, beginning with a luncheon that was attended by research pioneers from the early days of MNR, local politicians, current and past MNR staff, faculty members who currently use MNR facilities and McMaster University officers including Dr. Peter George (President) and Dr. Mo Elbestawi (Vice President, Research & International Affairs). This was followed by a reception in the recently renovated Thode Library, where Dr.s George and Elbestawi spoke about the role of the nuclear reactor within the university community, and members of the provincial and federal government offered their congratulations to MNR on reaching this milestone. Several staff members reminisced about their years at the reactor, while current McMaster faculty members spoke about the importance of MNR to their research programs and the impact that access to the nuclear reactor has had on their careers. Finally, Director of Nuclear Facilities Chris Heysel, with assistance from Sophia Aggelonitis (MPP, Hamilton Mountain) and Reza Moridi (MPP Richmond Hill, Parliamentary Assistant to the Minister of Training, Colleges and Universities), served up anniversary cake to the attendees. Throughout the day, visitors were able to participate in guided tours of the nuclear reactor.

             MNR Staff sit at a banquetUniversity Staff sit at a banquet Staff talking at the banquet

Past and current researchers, staff and invited guests at a luncheon celebrating the 50th Anniversary of MNR.

Mo Elbestawi

Mo Elbestawi (Vice President, Research & International Affairs, McMaster University) speaks at a reception celebrating the 50th Anniversary of MNR

Peter George

Peter George (President, McMaster University), speaks at a reception celebrating the 50th Anniversary of MNR.

Notable Attendees of the Ceremony

(L-R) Peter George (President, McMaster University), Lisa Raitt (MP & Minister of Natural Resources), Patrick Thode (Harry Thode’s son), Mo Elbestawi (Vice-President, Research & International Affairs, McMaster University) and David Sweet (MP, ADFW) attend a reception celebrating the 50th anniversary of the McMaster Nuclear Reactor.

Chris, Lisa and David

(L-R) Chris Heysel (Director of Nuclear Facilities, McMaster University), Lisa Raitt (MP & Minister of Natural Resources), and David Sweet (MP, ADFW) attend a reception celebrating the 50th anniversary of the McMaster Nuclear Reactor.

 Sophia Aggelonitis cuts the cake

Reza Moridi (MPP, Parliamentary Assistant to the Minister of Training, Colleges and Universities) (left) and Chris Heysel (Director of Nuclear Facilities, McMaster University) look on as Sophia Aggelonitis (MPP, Hamilton Mountain) cuts the cake at a reception celebrating the 50th anniversary of the McMaster Nuclear Reactor.

Photo credit: Science Media Lab