South Carolina was home to a pioneering facility in nuclear energy: the Savannah River Site. The federally-owned plant was built and used primarily for atomic weapons research, but experiments there also affected the nation's later use of nuclear energy. While power generated by nuclear fission first came to the United States in 1954, nuclear energy usage didn't reach South Carolina until 1963, when the Carolinas-Virginia Tube Reactor/Parr Nuclear Station began operation. This facility served as a four-year experiment with heavy water nuclear power production. The state delved further into nuclear energy production in 1969 with the opening of the Columbia Fuel Fabrication Facility, which to this day produces fuel for nuclear power plants across the country. A year later, the H.B. Robinson Steam Electric Plant, South Carolina's first non-experimental commercial nuclear energy facility, opened for business. Since then, three other facilities have begun operation across the state; all four facilities continue to power the state.
Drawing from "Nuclear Power Plants and You: A Citizens Handbook" of the Environmentalists, Inc. Papers, South Carolina Political Collections, The University of South Carolina. Click to expand.