NRU Status Update No.64

AECL provides update on NRU activities

CHALK RIVER, ON, July 7 /CNW/ - The following information bulletin is in accordance with Atomic Energy of Canada Limited's (AECL) ongoing commitment to voluntary public disclosure of events related to the Chalk River Laboratories (CRL).

On Monday July 5, 2010, AECL appeared before the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC) in a public hearing to consider AECL's application for the restart of NRU. During the hearing, AECL presented its case on NRU's readiness to resume safe operation and the path forward for planned operation and maintenance of the reactor.

AECL was notified today by the CNSC that it has received approval to proceed with restarting the NRU reactor. A copy of the CNSC's summary decision on AECL's application to restart the NRU reactor can be found on the CNSC website: www.nuclearsafety.gc.ca.

The approval received today marks an important milestone in the NRU return-to-service project.

Return-to-service activities continue including the reactivation of the NRU's auxiliary operating systems. A detailed and integrated work plan has been developed for all maintenance, testing, system configuration and training activities. Progress is being made on completing the many tests, system configurations and tasks required prior to actual re-start of NRU. These activities will continue over the next few weeks.

Guidance on the duration of the shutdown continues to be founded on the best evidence available, and completing the critical path requirements for restart after an extended shutdown. It is estimated that NRU will resume isotope production by the end of July. Further guidance on the return-to-service date will be provided when more information becomes available.

CNSC safety inspectors continue to provide independent regulatory oversight of AECL activities at the Chalk River site.

The NRU continues to be in a safe shutdown state with return to service activities in progress.

SOURCE Atomic Energy of Canada Limited

For further information: For further information: Dale Coffin, Director, Corporate Communications, AECL, 1-866-886-2325

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