The powerline industry and its hard-working linemen/workers are essential to the success of America. Check out these ten interesting facts from the start of the industry to the daily details.
10 Facts You Might Not Know About Power Lines:
- The first commercial power grid was first established by Thomas Edison in 1882.
- There are not one but three separate grids that supply power through the country. The three grids work independently from each other with some small links connected in a few places. The three grids include the:
- Texas Interconnected System
- Western Interconnection
- Eastern Interconnection
- There are around 120,376 linemen working the US grid at the moment with the career rate growing 1.94% each year.
- Power Lines buzz more loudly when it rains. This is because moisture in the air causes ionizes to happen quickly, making the buzzing sound (corona) louder.
- In order to supply electricity to over 323 million Americans more than 450,000 miles of power lines are needed. Additionally including 160,000 miles of overhead transmission lines.
- The majority of electricity is sourced from coal. This involves 27% from natural gas and 39% from total consumed energy.
- Cybersecurity is a big concern for the grid infrastructure. Hence over $100 million dollars have been invested since 2021 to strengthen the infrastructure by the Department of Energy and Homeland Security.
- 90% of power lines are not covered in electrical insulation. Many have weather-resistant coatings but are still located outside bare and insulated.
- The number one cause of power outages in the US is severe weather. This results in approximately $33 billion dollars of repair each year depending on severity.
- The Recover act of 2008 allowed for the US gov to invest $4.5 billion to update and repair the grid. This funded about:
- 10,000 automated capacitors
- 7,000 automated feeder switches
- 15.5 million smart meters.