CPS Energy selects Burns & McDonnell as contractor for multi-year turnkey grid modernization program





CPS Energy selects Burns & McDonnell as contractor for multi-year turnkey grid modernization program

100% employed engineering and construction company selected to lead the program to improve service quality for 850,000 utility customers in San Antonio

SAN ANTONIO, Texas (June 21, 2021) – CPS Energy has selected the 100% -owned engineering, construction and architecture firm Burns & McDonnell to be the program manager for a state-of-the-art grid modernization program to improve service quality for the utility’s nearly 850,000 electricity customers.

The state-of-the-art network modernization initiative will use the latest equipment and technology to reduce the frequency and duration of power outages, reduce storms and restore service more quickly in the event of a failure. Burns & McDonnell will serve as engineer and site manager for the next four years when CPS Energy launches its Accelerated Recloser Deployment Program.

In executing this four-year program, CPS Energy leverages Burns & McDonnell’s capabilities from system design to final equipment commissioning. The company will carry out the planning, construction, testing, installation / construction and commissioning of the Recloser and TripSaver® devices on a turnkey basis. CPS Energy will be responsible for the procurement of equipment and materials.

The program envisages the installation of approx. 144 recloser devices and an additional 300 TripSavers® per year on distribution lines throughout the city. The number of reclosers will be increased during the term of the program.

Reclosing devices are often used in place of traditional fuses and test whether faults are transient and, if so, can quickly restore power with very little noticeable interruption. The devices are designed in such a way that they open automatically, interrupt the power in the event of a fault, and then close again automatically to detect whether the fault is still present.

“We are incredibly excited and humble at the trust CPS Energy has placed in us,” said Leslie Duke, president and general manager of Burns & McDonnell’s Houston area offices. “This is an investment that will pay off many times over for the residents of San Antonio, and we look forward to seizing this groundbreaking opportunity.”

1898 & Co., a part of Burns & McDonnell, will conduct all planning activities for specific substations where distribution network analysis will identify needs and placement of equipment down to individual circuits.

Once installed, the company’s supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) and field technical service (TFS) teams in Houston will perform the final stage of testing and commissioning the equipment and bring it online for CPS Energy. The project is on track to start construction in mid-July with the delivery of the first batch of resealers.

“Automated fault detection equipment is one of the most important elements of a more reliable and resilient electrical infrastructure,” said Don Cannon, Burns & McDonnell’s Texas Region distribution engineering manager. “With the ability to detect everything from minor voltage dips to more severe power events, these system enhancements will greatly improve the overall quality of service and reliability for CPS Energy.”

With seasoned professionals who have developed some of the largest electrical transmission and distribution projects in North America, Burns & McDonnell leverages its Houston teams to streamline project delivery and tailor solutions to meet the needs of any utility company.

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About Burns & McDonnell

Burns & McDonnell is a family of companies that brings together an unmatched team of 7,600 engineers, construction professionals, architects, planners, technologists and scientists to design and build our critical infrastructure. With an integrated mindset for engineering and design, we offer full service capabilities with more than 60 offices worldwide. Burns & McDonnell was founded in 1898 and is 100% employee owned. Find out how we’re built.



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