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Illinois is by far the most nuclear state in the United States. We have been plagued by a series of firsts and mosts ...

In December 1942, under the stands of Stagg Field at the University of Chicago, Enrico Fermi and Leo Szilard initiated the first atomic chain reaction in history. Thus began the atomic age.
The reactor, Chicago Pile One (CP-1), was later rechristened the CP-2 and moved to nearby Palos Park as part of the Manhattan Project. A second reactor, the CP-3, was also built there. After the war,waste from and parts of both reactors were buried there; the dumpsite area is now part of the Palos Hills forest preserve. Here are pictures of CP-1 and CP-3.

Illinois was also home to the first commercial power reactor, Unit 1 at Commonwealth Edison's Dresden Power Station. Subsequent problems forced the permanent shutdown of this unit, thus also making it one of the first commercial power reactors to close prematurely.

ComEd's two large PWR reactors in Zion, IL also had to close prematurely. They are the second and third large (over 1000 MegaWatt) power reactors to close prematurely.

We also have the first and only commercial storage facility for high level waste, the GE Morris Operation.

Besides the 3 plants which closed prematurely, Illinois currently has eleven operating nukes - far more than any other state.  The Dresden Nuclear Power Station is one of the three first sites to apply for a license extension that would let the plant run for much longer that its original design intended. (Incidentally, the NRC has agreed to give ComEd taxpayer money for free to fund this application process! NEIS is not pleased with this turn of events.)

You can download a map of Nuclear Illinois here.


So what are the sites and facilities that make this "Nuclear Illinois"?