ELECTRIC ENERGY | SUMMER 2019 - 17

their specific equipment and specifications of the
streetlight pole.25
The city also agreed to allow carriers to use
"small cell friendly" poles ("swap/drop") to replace
existing poles. Such poles are aesthetically more
pleasing than attaching "back packs" (i.e. antenna,
small cell transmitter, radio, disconnect, etc.) to
existing poles.
The willingness to allow swap/drop poles
(streetlight and traffic light) again required design
standards. For example, AE wanted to ensure
the bolt pattern for swap/drop poles matched
existing bolt patterns so AE could quickly
replace streetlights if they were knocked down
or damaged. However, many small cell-friendly
poles did not match the existing bolt pattern.
Austin addressed this issue in two ways, carriers can: (1) use adapters between the bolt patterns; or (2) stock replacement poles to replace
damaged poles.

SIGNAGE ISSUES
Initially, Austin denied small cell applications
for poles with existing signage (e.g. "No Parking"
or "One Way") because an existing design standard allowed "one attachment" per pole and the
sign was an "attachment." Rather than rule out
hundreds of poles due to signs, Austin developed
a maximum square foot limit for signs before a
pole is ineligible for a small cell.26 Carriers can
also install standalone poles for sign(s) adjacent
to streetlight or traffic light poles.

METERING SERVICE
Originally, Austin proposed not metering service to small cells. Instead, AE would determine
"typical" small cell usage and charge carriers a flat
monthly charge. Not using meters had aesthetic
appeal (no meters on poles throughout the city)27
and would have made installation easier and less
expensive. Alternatively, using meters has certain
benefits: more "traditional;" tracking actual use
and providing accurate data; "future proofing" a
location because consumption may increase as
technologies change; and creating a clear demarcation point for service delivery.
Ultimately, AE opted to use metered service to
provide a clear demarcation point and address
variability of current and future loading. AE gave
carriers the option to place a meter on the pole
or on adjacent "ground furniture."28 AE will install

the secondary riser to the meter and will not
allow meter loops.

PLACEMENT ON UTILITY POLES
Finally, AE needed guidelines for equipment
on utility poles. Questions/issues included: allowing equipment on pole top, communications
zone, or both; potential safety issues for climbing
poles; equipment spacing; conduit for power and
backhaul; equipment shrouding; and poles with
electric equipment on them (e.g. transformers,
switches, etc.). Ultimately, AE decided:
■	 Poles must be "truck accessible" (to alleviate
climbing)
■	 Carriers may use only "tangent" poles (i.e. no
other electric equipment)
■	 Only AE-approved electricians may work above
the supply zone (e.g. pole top antennae)
■	 Revised design standards to address:
■ Conduit
■ Max 3" through distribution
■ Schedule 80 PVC
■ Bolted Unistrut w/U bolt
■ Max 2-3" risers through supply
■ Shrouding of equipment
■ Fiber demarcation point
■ ½ of pole for all equipment
■ ≥ 40" between neutral and top of
top-most com installation
■ Max equipment weight: 125 pounds
■ Max size: 36"H x 24"W x 18"D
■ Mounting between 12' and 15' above
ground level
■ Through bolt mount or Bolt A Band if
steel, concrete or fiberglass pole
■ Spacing
■ Max 2 antenna systems
■ If in com zone, total of 7' for antennae
■ Top of antenna > 40" from lowest electric
■ Top of highest com > 1' below bottom
of lowest antenna

CONCLUSION
As technologies change and develop, cities will
continue to encounter challenges to "business
as usual." We are on the cusp of the "internet of
things" and autonomous cars, etc. These developments will push city employees to "think outside
the box" to provide solutions to help our citizens
take advantage of these new, developing technologies. We live in exciting times!

REFERENCES

1. Sprint and T-Mobile are currently considering a merger. Fitzgerald,
D. (2018, April 30). MarketWatch. Sprint, T-Mobile agree to merge in
$26 bln deal. Retrieved from https://www.marketwatch.com/story/
sprint-and-t-mobile-agree-to-all-stock-merger-2018-04-29
2. Fendelman, A. (2019, February 9). Lifewire. 1G, 2G, 3G, 4G, & 5G
Explained-Understand the technology behind your cell phone.
Retrieved from https://www.lifewire.com/1g-vs-2g-vs-25g-vs-3g-vs-4g-578681.
3. Id.
4. Id. Fitchard, K. (2019, January). Opensignal. USA Mobile Network
Experience Report January 2019. Retrieved from https://www.opensignal.com/reports/2019/01/usa/mobile-network-experience
5. Fendelman, supra.
6. Fitchard, supra
7. SDX Central. (2019, March). What is 5G? Everything You Need to
Know. Retrieved from https://www.sdxcentral.com/5g/definitions/
what-is-5g/
8. Id.
9. SDX Central. Key Elements for 5G Networks. Retrieved from https://
www.sdxcentral.com/5g/definitions/key-elements-5g-network/
10. Id.
11. Interestingly, the author recently received a "Magic Box" from Sprint
due to poor reception at his home. To improve call quality, Sprint
send a device about the size of a bread box which enhances the
signal. That box is, in essence, a "small cell." See https://newsroom.
sprint.com/sprint-announces-faster-more-powerful-and-smallersprint-magic-box.htm
12. SDX Central, supra.
13. Id.
14. Qorvo. (2017, May 17). Small Cell Networks and the Evolution of 5G
(Part 1). Retrieved from https://www.qorvo.com/design-hub/blog/
small-cell-networks-and-the-evolution-of-5g
15. https://statutes.capitol.texas.gov/Docs/LG/htm/LG.284.htm
16. Fees are limited to FCC-approved rates under 47 U.S.C. §224(e) of
the U.S. Code.
17. h t t p : // w w w. a u s t i n te x a s . g o v/d e p a r t m e n t / w i r e l e s s telecommunications
18. Typically, a streetlight pole, traffic light pole or utility pole.
19. The city provides a template here: http://www.austintexas.gov/
sites/default/files/files/Telecommunications/Feasibility_Review_
Template.pdf
20. Austin's downtown electric service is provided via an underground
network.
21. A list of the various applicable requirements can be found here:
http://www.austintexas.gov/page/documents-and-resources
22. https://www.csdcsystems.com/project/city-austin-liveintegrated-amanda-e-plan-review-system/
23. ht tp: //w w w. aus tinte xas.gov/sites/def ault /f iles/f iles/
Telecommunications/SmallCellInfrastructureDesignRef
Guidelines_jan2019.pdf
24. Carriers envision thousands of small cells in the city. If getting
electric power to each location required open trenching, city
streets would be a mess for years to come.
25. https://austinenergy.com/wcm/connect/b8c218f1-44e5-4bc88fcf-403bfe071c96/PLA+Requirements.pdf.pdf?MOD=AJPERES
&CVID=mgtvsnI&CVID=lP69igI&CVID=lP69igI
26. Of course, the pole would still have to pass a PLA (with the sign
attached).
27. However, some cities (including Austin) are considering smaller,
"hockey puck" meters which are more aesthetically-pleasing than
"standard" meters.
28. The city's Urban Design Department will also have input regarding
meter placement depending on design districts, etc.

WWW.RMEL.ORG 17


https://www.marketwatch.com/story/sprint-and-t-mobile-agree-to-all-stock-merger-2018-04-29 https://www.lifewire.com/1g-vs-2g-vs-2-5g-vs-3g-vs-4g-578681 https://www.opensignal.com https://www.sdxcentral.com http://www.sdxcentral.com/5g/definitions/key-elements-5g-network/ https://newsroom.sprint.com/sprint-announces-faster-more-powerful-and-smaller-sprint-magic-box.htm https://www.qorvo.com/design-hub/blog/small-cell-networks-and-the-evolution-of-5g http://www.statutes.capitol.texas.gov/Docs/LG/htm/LG.284.htm http://www.austintexas.gov/department/wireless-telecommunications http://www.austintexas.gov/sites/default/files/files/Telecommunications/Feasibility_Review_Template.pdf http://www.austintexas.gov/page/documents-and-resources https://www.csdcsystems.com/project/city-austin-live-integrated-amanda-e-plan-review-system http://www.austintexas.gov/ https://www.austinenergy.com/ http://WWW.RMEL.ORG

ELECTRIC ENERGY | SUMMER 2019

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of ELECTRIC ENERGY | SUMMER 2019

RMEL Board of Directors
Former NFL Star and Cancer Survivor Merril Hoge’s “Find A Way” Journey Sparks Intention at RMEL’s Spring Conference
Austin’s Experience Instituting a 5G Wireless Program
APS’ Fossil Unit Monitoring Tool Improves Efficiency, Generates Savings
Charging a Path Towards Battery Storage
Xcel Energy’s Unmanned Aircraft Systems Future
28 Steam Turbine Cycling—Operator Considerations, Best Practices and Options for Optimization
Maximize on the New Energy Paradigm at RMEL’s 116th Fall Convention
2019 Calendar of Events
Member Listings
Foundation Board of Directors
Advertiser’s Index
ELECTRIC ENERGY | SUMMER 2019 - Intro
ELECTRIC ENERGY | SUMMER 2019 - cover1
ELECTRIC ENERGY | SUMMER 2019 - cover2
ELECTRIC ENERGY | SUMMER 2019 - 3
ELECTRIC ENERGY | SUMMER 2019 - 4
ELECTRIC ENERGY | SUMMER 2019 - 5
ELECTRIC ENERGY | SUMMER 2019 - RMEL Board of Directors
ELECTRIC ENERGY | SUMMER 2019 - 7
ELECTRIC ENERGY | SUMMER 2019 - Former NFL Star and Cancer Survivor Merril Hoge’s “Find A Way” Journey Sparks Intention at RMEL’s Spring Conference
ELECTRIC ENERGY | SUMMER 2019 - 9
ELECTRIC ENERGY | SUMMER 2019 - 10
ELECTRIC ENERGY | SUMMER 2019 - 11
ELECTRIC ENERGY | SUMMER 2019 - Austin’s Experience Instituting a 5G Wireless Program
ELECTRIC ENERGY | SUMMER 2019 - 13
ELECTRIC ENERGY | SUMMER 2019 - 14
ELECTRIC ENERGY | SUMMER 2019 - 15
ELECTRIC ENERGY | SUMMER 2019 - 16
ELECTRIC ENERGY | SUMMER 2019 - 17
ELECTRIC ENERGY | SUMMER 2019 - APS’ Fossil Unit Monitoring Tool Improves Efficiency, Generates Savings
ELECTRIC ENERGY | SUMMER 2019 - 19
ELECTRIC ENERGY | SUMMER 2019 - Charging a Path Towards Battery Storage
ELECTRIC ENERGY | SUMMER 2019 - 21
ELECTRIC ENERGY | SUMMER 2019 - 22
ELECTRIC ENERGY | SUMMER 2019 - 23
ELECTRIC ENERGY | SUMMER 2019 - Xcel Energy’s Unmanned Aircraft Systems Future
ELECTRIC ENERGY | SUMMER 2019 - 25
ELECTRIC ENERGY | SUMMER 2019 - 26
ELECTRIC ENERGY | SUMMER 2019 - 27
ELECTRIC ENERGY | SUMMER 2019 - 28 Steam Turbine Cycling—Operator Considerations, Best Practices and Options for Optimization
ELECTRIC ENERGY | SUMMER 2019 - 29
ELECTRIC ENERGY | SUMMER 2019 - 30
ELECTRIC ENERGY | SUMMER 2019 - 31
ELECTRIC ENERGY | SUMMER 2019 - Maximize on the New Energy Paradigm at RMEL’s 116th Fall Convention
ELECTRIC ENERGY | SUMMER 2019 - 33
ELECTRIC ENERGY | SUMMER 2019 - 34
ELECTRIC ENERGY | SUMMER 2019 - 2019 Calendar of Events
ELECTRIC ENERGY | SUMMER 2019 - Member Listings
ELECTRIC ENERGY | SUMMER 2019 - 37
ELECTRIC ENERGY | SUMMER 2019 - Advertiser’s Index
ELECTRIC ENERGY | SUMMER 2019 - cover3
ELECTRIC ENERGY | SUMMER 2019 - cover4
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