American Electric Power Doubles Capacity, Saves Time and Money

One of the largest electric energy companies in the U.S. saved millions by completing their reconductoring project ahead of schedule and without modifying existing structures with the ACCC® Conductor.


The Capacity


Reduced line losses

34 MW

Generation Freed Up


upfront cost savings


Increase the Capacity of the two parallel 120 miles 345 kV lines to accommodate growing demand.

Meet their Capacity requirements without modifying or replacing existing structures.

Complete the upgrade while the line remains energized.


Increased Efficiency: Use of ACCC® conductor nearly doubled capacity of the old line, and reduced sag .

Time and Cost Savings: Project completed 8 months ahead of schedule and millions under budget by maintaining the existing structures and keeping the line in service.

Line Loss Reduction: Freed up over 40 MW of generation capacity (cost estimate = $50M+)

Award-Winning: Project awarded Edison Award, the electric power industry’s top honor, by the Edison Electric Institute.

Setting the Standards for Safety, Efficiency and Reliability

American Electric Power (AEP) needed to increase the capacity of two parallel 120 miles 345 kV lines near the Gulf of Mexico to accommodate growing demand. The valley experienced tremendous population growth, causing record power demand in AEP’s service area. Making matters worse the two 30-year-old transmission lines were the sole source of power to the region. The ambitious project required replacing the conductor on the two lines while energized.

During one of the coldest winters in Texas, the temperatures dropped to freezing. It may not seem cold; however, it caused significant issues for the community since over 99% of homes and businesses in the area relied solely on electric heating. The new peak demand of 2730 MW exceeded the previous Summer Peak by 500 MW. This resulted in load shedding and rolling blackouts to maintain stability.

At the time the project was completed it was estimated that the ACCC® Conductor: Reduced line losses by 300,000 MWh per year; Reduced CO2 by ~200,000 metric tons per year; Freed-up 34 MW of generation otherwise lost. These benefits, and the savings realized by completing the project while the line remained energized, have saved consumers tens of millions of dollars.

“These benefits, and the savings realized by completing the project while the line remained energized, have saved consumers tens of millions of dollars.” – AEP


240 Mi

of circuits

345 kV




Conductor Size: ACCC® Drake

Project Features
  • Energized Reconductor of both 120-mile lines. A temporary single-phase line was designed in collaboration with AEP’s contractor to replace 240-line miles of conductor while
    energized, ensuring uninterrupted service.
  • Kept existing Tubular Steel H-Frame structures
  • Replaced 2-conductor vertical bundled 795 kcmil ACSR with 2-conductor vertical bundled ACCC® Drake (1020/TW)
  • Designed to withstand hurricane winds and corrossive salt spray from the Gulf of Mexico

Questions ?

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