On Saturday, May 4th, McMaster Nuclear Operations & Facilities (NO&F), the Brockhouse Institute, and H.G. Thode Library/Makerspace participated in the 17th annual Doors Open Hamilton – an event that encourages members of the community to discover more about some of Hamilton’s hidden heritage treasures.

Over 300 people attended the McMaster University Nuclear Reactor to experience science first-hand and learn more about the most powerful research reactor in Canada. NO&F staff lead visitors on virtual tours of the nuclear reactor and guests were encouraged to participate in activities including practicing identifying radioactive objects and trying on personal protective equipment; such as lab coats, goggles, and respirators. Guests of all ages were invited to view the particle accelerator and hot cell facility’s and were educated on medical isotopes, neutron science and the historical uses of radioactive materials.

Staff showed visitors of all ages how to properly put on personal protective equipment.

Attendees were also invited to visit the Small Angle Neutron Scattering (SANS) facility to learn more about neutron research and the scientific legacy of Bertram Brockhouse, who was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1994 for his contributions to the development of neutron scattering techniques. Visitors had the opportunity to view some of Brockhouse’s memorabilia and explore the guide-hall while staff provided information on crystal structure.

Visitors got to view the guide hall at the Small Angle Neutron Scattering facility.
Staff taught visitors about crystal structure.
Bertram Brockhouse memorablia was on display for visitors to view.

Visitors were able to visit the H.G Thode Library – named after Henry “Harry” Thode, a distinguished nuclear researcher, which is celebrating 40 years. Let’s Talk Science was on-site demonstrating a medley of science experiments and guests were encouraged to try their hand at 3D printing and button making in the Makerspace.