Few things are as controversial as nuclear energy. Although atomic energy has a tremendous safety record it attracts much more criticism than praise. That aside, uranium provides nearly one-fifth of the nation's energy. In fact, America produces more nuclear energy by far than any other country in the world. So it should go without saying that it figures to play an important role in the future of domestic energy.

Trends and forces in the power markets will go a long way in dictating the growth of atomic energy, which is a big deal for the generation companies. Here's how capacity stacks up in the industry:

Company

Nuclear Capacity

Exelon

19,000 MW

Duke Energy

11,350 MW

Southern Company

8,280 MW

NextEra Energy

5,691 MW

Source: Company websites.

The producers above have faced varying degrees of difficulty with short-term trends. Will these drag out over the long term? Where is domestic nuclear energy production heading? Fool.com contributor Maxx Chatsko answers those questions in the following video.

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Fool contributor Maxx Chatsko has no position in any stocks mentioned. Check out his personal portfolio, his CAPS page, or follow him on Twitter @BlacknGoldFool to keep up with his writing on energy, bioprocessing, and biotechnology.

The Motley Fool recommends Exelon and Southern Company. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.