PPL electric utilities plans ten new electric substations for 2010-11

Source: PPL Electric Utilities

For electric service, substations are the hubs of power delivery, and PPL Electric Utilities is working on 10 new electric distribution substations in the next two years to improve reliability for thousands of customers in eastern and central Pennsylvania.

Building 10 substations in only two years is one example of the company's increasing investment in its energy delivery infrastructure to improve reliability, strengthen aging infrastructure and better meet customer needs, said David G. DeCampli, president of PPL Electric Utilities.

This year, PPL Electric Utilities expects to complete construction of electric substations in the Beltzville area of Towamensing, Carbon County; in Lower Macungie in Lehigh County, known as the new Schoeneck substation; and in the Valley View Business Park in Jessup, near Scranton.

These facilities were planned to meet increasing demand for electricity in those areas, accommodate local growth and improve the utility's operations.

Additionally, PPL has work under way on eight new substation facilities for service in 2011. The largest of the projects is a $9 million project in Chestnuthill Township, Monroe County, which also includes a 5.6-mile transmission feeder to supply power to the facility and two new distribution circuits to serve local customers. The new project will relieve electric load on existing facilities and ensure more reliable service for the area. This project, known as the Effort Mountain substation, is pending review by the state Public Utility Commission.

Additionally in 2011, PPL expects to build new electric substations in

-- Lansford, Carbon County.

-- South Mechanicsburg in Cumberland County.

-- Moore Township, Northampton County (known as the Blue Mountain

-- Hawley section of Palmyra Township, Wayne County.

-- Jackson Township, Monroe County (known as the Appenzell project).

-- Lower Windsor Township, York County (known as the Red Front

"We are committed to invest in our electric delivery system to ensure we meet the energy needs of our customers and ensure solid service reliability. These projects represent our investments in these communities to improve service," DeCampli said, noting more than $1.5 billion in new capital investment across the service area over the next five years. "Our engineers, system operators and field personnel work diligently to keep our system working well, but it's time to expand, upgrade and modernize in many parts of our region."

Substations are a source of power supply for a community. The facilities tap into nearby electric transmission lines and convert the power to lower voltage for local distribution. The facilities generally feature large circuit breakers, transformers and controls for power distribution. The facilities allow PPL to provide additional electric supply to a growing area and enhance reliability. The company operates about 400 electric substations currently across its service area.

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