Information identified as archived on the Web is for reference, research or recordkeeping purposes. It has not been altered or updated after the date of archiving. Web pages that are archived on the Web are not subject to the Government of Canada Web Standards. As per the Communications Policy of the Government of Canada, you can request alternate formats by contacting us.
The Pacemaker... The heart pacemaker, co-developed by NRC's Dr. Jack Hopps, is introduced at the October annual congress of the American College of Surgeons in Boston. The pacemaker not only starts a stopped heart but also regulates the heart rate by supplying a gentle electric stimulus to the organ muscle.
Salt Ahoy... Salt-water corrosion of war ships and shipping vessels is a problem of the past with the invention of an impressed current cathodic protection system in which electrically powered anodes attached to the hull reverse the current that normally causes corrosion.
One, Two... Fourteen Million, Nine Thousand, Four Hundred and Twenty-Nine... An electronic statistical machine, conceived in Canada and built by IBM, is used to calculate the 1951 federal census. It produces results within three years, as opposed to the 11 years it took for the 1941 census to be painstakingly compiled from enumerators' hand-written documents.
The Cobalt Cure... Doctors begin treating cancer with cobalt-60, a radioactive isotope that saves as many as 500,000 lives a year. Canadian reactors produce about 85% of the world's supply of cobalt-60, which in 1964 is also used to sterilize disposable medical supplies, ointments and solutions.
Geiger Counter... The world's first low-voltage Geiger tube to find uranium is developed in collaboration with the Electronic Association of Canada. Soon after, the first uranium production plant goes into operation in Uranium City, Saskatchewan.
Beacon of Hope... An emergency beacon locator called the Crash Position Indicator, invented by NRC's Harry Stevinson, is used by the military for the first time to locate downed aircraft. By 1960, commercial aircraft are equipped with the technology, which sends distress signals even when buried in snow, lying upside down or floating on water.
Lighten Up On Pests... Pest management techniques that include alternative cultivating methods, use of natural predators and the development of biological agents, lessen the reliance on chemical pest control products. Used for agricultural crops and, in the next decade, for forest protection, these early efforts lead to Canada's status as a world leader in environmental pest management.
Sonar Spotting... Detection of submarines becomes easier with the Variable Depth Sonar System that allows navies to lower sonar sets into the water rather than mounting them on a ship's hull. An updated version, which couples a towed system of array sensors to compact, ultra-fast computers, later becomes a major feature of destroyers around the world.
A Timely Invention... The NRC designs one of the world's earliest cesium beam atomic clocks that is accurate to a few millionths of a second per year. By the 1970s, NRC time sets official time scales and clocks around the world.
The Avro Arrow... After 12 years of hard work, the Avro Arrow takes flight on March 25, a maiden voyage at twice the speed of sound at an altitude of 50,000 feet. Although the Canadian government chose not to proceed with the project, the Avro's talented design and development team go on to excel in other aviation fields, including NASA's space program.
Black Brant... A high-altitude research rocket called the Black Brant is launched from Churchill, Manitoba on its first test flight. The Canadian-made rocket is still used by NASA to check atmospheric conditions before space shuttle liftoffs.