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Let's Talk Nuclear Resources

Pickering nuclear power generation station

Pickering nuclear power generation station

Pickering nuclear power generation station

Pickering nuclear power generation station

Discover a list of resources to get you thinking about all things nuclear!

Controlled nuclear energy generation has been with us only a relatively short time, compared to a number of other human ways of generating energy. The Chicago Pile-1 reactor, the world's first artificial nuclear reactor, came on-line in 1942. Given that this was the dark days of the Second World War, it is unsurprising that this human first was actually in the pursuit of making weapons out of nuclear science. Since the end of that war, however, the actual use of nuclear energy has been peaceful. One common use is, of course, in generating electricity; approximately 15% of Canada's electricity generation came from nuclear reactors in 2018. While it still requires relatively scarce resources, nuclear-powered electricity has a key advantage over some other forms of generation in that it does not produce greenhouse gases. Nuclear science isn't just about electricity generation, though. Nuclear medicine has become a key factor in the detection and treatment of certain diseases, including various forms of cancer. 

Join Let's Talk Science virtually for an exploration of nuclear energy and power generation here in Canada, as well as the many ways radioactivity is used for diagnosing and treating disease. Industry speakers will give short talks explaining how we harness nuclear reactions for electricity and medicine, as well as the science of radiation protection. A career panel will explain the diverse array of jobs available in the nuclear industry and what a day in their lab, office, or reactor might look like. Below are a set of resources designed to get you thinking about the major aspects of nuclear energy and medicine, as well as some career profiles of people who work in and around the industry.


Cloud model of an atom

Introduction to the Atom

Learn about the parts of an atom and its history.

Medical image of the brain using Technetium-99m

Innovations in Nuclear Technologies

Learn about why Canada is a world leader in nuclear technology.

dental x-ray

Radiography & X-ray Imaging

Learn about radiography and x-rays as a form of medical imaging technology.

Screen captures from embedded Kurzgesagt – In a Nutshell videos

What are the Pros and Cons of Nuclear Energy?

These two “point-counterpoint” videos provide arguments for and against using nuclear energy to generate electricity.

Measuring radiation in Chernobyl

Radiation Effects on the Body

This backgrounder explains the potential effects of radiation on the human body.

How does nuclear power work?

Generating Electricity: Nuclear Energy

Learn how electricity is generated at a nuclear power generating station.

Beamline Assembly at TRIUMF

Exploring Canada’s Particle Accelerators

Particle accelerators have amazing applications - from growing food to making airplanes safe.

Gentilly-2 nuclear reactor

Cleaning Up Nuclear Waste After Decommissioning

When a nuclear reactor is no longer in use, the radioactivity in its materials remains. That’s why it’s important to safely deal with the radioactive waste those plants leave behind.

Damage to DNA

Radiation Effects on Cells & DNA

This backgrounder explains the effects of radiation on cells and DNA.

Career Profiles


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