Of interest

Dear editor:
I was interested to see the Rolphton nuclear plant mentioned in the Budreau funeral announcement in last week’s Times.
It seems to me that a lot of people would not know how this came about as an off-shoot of the nuclear plant at Chalk River.
The nuclear demonstration plant–hence the shortened acronym NPD–at Rolphton, Ont. on the Ottawa River was the first proof of concept plant to produce commercial electricity that was fed in to the grid.
It was quite a thing back then.
A friend of mine remembers the day they trucked the reactor core assembly (minus the fuel, of course) up Highway 27 past their business. They all came out to watch the thing go by under police escort.
Bectel was the prime contractor for the plant and the work was a real boost to the local economy, not the least of which was all the workers who patronized their gifts and hamburger emporium. A lot of people got temporary jobs there during the construction phase.
The subsequent installations at Pickering, Darlington, and the one on Lake Huron were the follow-on large capacity nuclear generating plants.
It is not known if Chalk River ever produced commercial quantities of power there as they produced medical isotopes as a product of their research program.
Gord Woollard
Emo, Ont.