Out with the Old, In with the New

Morrow Point Powerplant

Written by: Larry Lingerfelt

New low maintenance SF6 Unit breaker
New low maintenance SF6 Unit breaker
Morrow Point Powerplant has gone through some major changes. The station service switchgear, generator breakers and segregated electrical bus at Morrow Point had been in service since 1970 and periodic testing showed it was nearing the end of its service life. In addition to the age and performance of the existing equipment it had proven to be a challenge to meet today’s safety protocols with equipment that was designed and built in the late 1960’s.

The Curecanti Field Division started planning the replacement project in 2008. The Denver Technical Service Center and Upper Colorado Region’s Power Office Engineering collaborated closely with Curecanti personnel to develop the replacement specification. The design team capitalized on this opportunity and incorporated features into the design that meet current safety protocols and reduce risk to operations and maintenance personnel when working on or around high voltage equipment.

New remote Human machine interface, now the Plant operator can safely stand clear of high voltage equipment as he operates.

In order to meet current Occupational Safety and Health Administration and National Fire Protection Association 70E safety protocols the design team incorporated safety features that were unheard of in the 1960’s. These features include capability to remotely open and close circuit breakers, motor operated racking devices that allow maintenance personnel to be up to 25 feet away when removing or installing circuit breakers, maintenance switches to temporarily override circuit breaker settings and reduce incident energy, integrated grounding points that allow personal protective grounds to be applied easily, and infrared scanning ports that allow thermographic survey of connections without exposing personnel to energized equipment.

By incorporating these safety features, the design team significantly reduced risk to operations and maintenance personnel. While there are still many risks involved with working in a power plant, the design team did an outstanding job of reducing those risks at Morrow Point.

CE Power was awarded a $2.3 million dollar contract in 2016. Construction began in July 2017 and will be completed by the end of August 2017.

Published on October 01, 2017