The base building construction actually started before the cyclotron bunker due to licence from the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission so the base building was constructed around the bunker location and hole in the building left for the bunker to be inserted later.
On February 10, 2015, the 28-ton cyclotron was slowly lowered to its position in the bunker through an opening in the ceiling and sealed with an oblong, three-tiered pyramid concrete plug. The below-ground bunker is well encased in concrete and lead so that radiation exposure is the same as everyday background radiation.
When in operation, the doorway to the cyclotron is plugged by a 15-ton block of concrete and steel, 2.5 metres thick – similar to the ceiling plug but balanced on rails to move in and out. The plug has the same pyramid shape to eliminate the straight lines, absorbing all gamma rays and other harmful particles so they cannot escape the room.
Construction in and around the Cyclotron Bunker and Radiopharmacy encompassed many unique construction techniques including the lead shielding around the bunker and pharmacy trenches.
At A Glance
Project Name: Cyclotron and Radiopharmacy
Role in Project: General Contractor
Client: Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Centre