Fayetteville Public Utilities recently announced improvements that will result in added reliability and room for growth.

FPU recently installed a 161 kV transformer at their Hamilton Substation to enhance system redundancy. The new 161 kV transformer will be tied to the TVA delivery point and will be fully operational by the end of the year to serve as a “back-up” unit in case of an equipment failure or major outage either at the station or in the areas served by the station.

“It has long been our goal to build an electric system with a redundancy plan that’s second to none,” says Ron Thomas, FPU’s supervisor of substations and metering. “Many years ago we began by constructing additional substations across Lincoln County and installing the SCADA link to communicate with each station so that when there was an operation affecting one substation, the electric load could be transferred to another substation temporarily to reduce the time that our customers are without electric service. Since that time, we’ve been able to install fiber communication to several of our substations to further improve outage response time and system monitoring.”

“Redundancy and system reliability planning has greatly helped us reduce the number of outages we experience as well as the length of those outages,” says Britt Dye, FPU’s CEO and general manager. “As a result of these types of upgrades, FPU continues to have one of the lowest power outage duration times across the nation.”

“Each year, FPU’s electric work plan calls for system upgrades which include power line and substation upgrades to better serve our growing communities across the area,” said Dye.

The Hamilton Substation was built in 1995 and provides service to approximately 4,500 customers who live in the city of Fayetteville north of the Elk River Bridge and portions of the communities of Molino and Howell.

In addition to the substation upgrade, FPU’s Electric Department also completed upgrades to 2.8 miles of three-phase line from their Park City Substation to Lincoln Road in the southern portion of Lincoln County. FPU upgraded existing 4/0 ACSR to 795 AAC and changed 46 electric poles to accommodate the new line. Crews also upgraded 2.8 miles of single-phase line to three-phase line in the Elora area along East Limestone Road. FPU crews will soon begin a new work plan to covert 2.6 miles of single-phase to three-phase in the Brookwood Subdivision area also located in southern Lincoln County.