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Fiber Placement on a Short Timeline

Control of electrical substations is a critical part of a utilities' business. These stations perform many functions for utility companies. The most important is stepping down the transmission voltage levels, through the use of step down transformers, to distribute power, at a useable voltage to homes and businesses. Since these stations are remotely controlled. They must be monitored 24/7 and in the event there is an alarm, or other problem, fiber optic cable provides a faster, more secure, data path between stations and control center. This is a critical pathway that allows for more efficient management of this critical infrastructure.

When new fiber is required the time line can very short between installation and cut over. Such was the case in this project where 2000 feet of 24 count fiber had to be installed. 2 hand holes had to be moved in order to create slack. Four man holes cored and 670 linear feet of conduit was placed. The fiber run followed a diverse path and involved horizontal directional drilling, aerial placement, open cut trench, foundation penetrations and some civil work inside the substation. In order to meet this time frame Electric Conduit Construction (ECC) employed 3 crews. 

One crew focused on trenching/boring to the man holes from the aerial risers. This enabled them to meet the time line while crew 2 rodded to existing man holes to place the ipp for fiber placement. This crew also performed 70' of hydro-vac trenching in the substation.  Crew 3 took on the aerial placement. Equipment include a rodder truck, horizontal directional drill, mini-excavator, hydro-excavator, skid steer, and a bucket truck.

With this many people, and moving equipment, safety was emphasized through the safe work plan, daily tool box talks, and lift plans. Even with the tight 5 day schedule, our three crews installed all conduit and completed the fiber run along with restoration. 

Our customer tested the new cable and proceeded with the cut over. No safety incidents occurred during this project. 


 Aerial fiber placement

 Horizontal directional drilling

Wall penetration and man hole coring

Fiber in man hole and building conduit

Hydro-excavation (L) and aerial fiber slack (R) 

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