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Castleberry Fairs

Northern Pass proposes 85-foot-tall towers in WMNF


September 26, 2012
MANCHESTER — The application for the Northern Pass Transmission project has been updated to reflect shorter towers than previously proposed.

The application was filed in the summer of 2011 with the U. S. Forest Service (USFS) for a proposed use within an existing, approximately 10-mile-long 150-foot-wide right-of-way (ROW) about 10 miles near Kinsman Mountain.

The original application detailed a preliminary design for the NPT line, but pointed out that its design could change based on both changing engineering data and dialogue with the USFS, the federal Department of Energy, and other stakeholders.

As a result of these efforts over the past year, the NPT design team has been able to significantly lower the height of the proposed structures.

Submittal of this proposed redesign serves as a formal update to NPT's application before the USFS. The proposed structure design has been lowered to a typical height of 85 feet for areas within the WMNF. As before, NPT engineers believe that this new design can safely be sited within the existing 150-foot ROW without any widening.

"The lower structure heights are a result of installing horizontally configured structures, with V-String insulators, instead of using the vertical structures," according to the online "Northern Pass Journal." A V-String design reduces the spacing requirements associated with horizontal designs (see drawing on the right side of the graphic). The proposed V-String design minimizes how much an insulator can move under windy conditions, keeping the transmission line a safe distance from the ROW's edge.

The modified design is "a positive step forward in ensuring the transmission corridor in the WMNF can continue to co-exist with the Forest, as it has for the past 60 years," concludes the Sept. 19 journal entry.

Garnett Hill
Parker Village
Martin Lord Osman
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