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Recloser Upgrade Program

Recloser Upgrade Program

Northern Indiana Public Service Co

Commonwealth Associates, Inc. was hired by Northern Indiana Public Service Company (NIPSCO) to provide engineering design services for the replacement of 206 obsolete oil and vacuum reclosers. The program was slated to be engineered over four years. Commonwealth collaborated with NIPSCO as NIPSCO expanded the program duration to seven years and then reduced the engineering schedule to five years. The change in schedule was due to the need to execute an abundant amount of upgrades that are part of Transmission, Distribution, and Storage System Improvement Charge (TDSIC) upgrades because of the State of Indiana’s legislation.

Commonwealth collaborated with NIPSCO to work with, and in many instances, train NIPSCO staff on substation, distribution line, and transmission line project execution. What started as a program to replace old 15 kV oil or vacuum reclosers ended up being a program to upgrade distribution stations. Project work included 15 kV disconnect switch replacements’, addition of 15 kV load break switches to separate 15 kV busses’, 15 kV regulator installations or replacements’, additional station service transformer installations, including manual transfer switches’, replacement of 15 kV aluminum bell and cap and pin insulators and line arresters’, and installation of 15 kV potential transformers for the new line relays installed within the new reclosers.

Throughout all the changes within NIPSCO’s plans and the scope of work for the recloser program, Commonwealth met the challenges and executed the projects on time and under budget each project year. Commonwealth received accolades for its dedication to meeting NIPSCO’s needs.

The Recloser Program is the smoothest and best executed program we’ve had at NIPSCO.

James Rey
Manager of Substation Engineering at NIPSCO

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