New Ameren technology will help keep lights on during severe weather

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CREVE COEUR, Mo. – Severe weather and power outages are often synonymous, but Ameren Missouri has installed new technology to help prevent these issues during severe weather.

It will help customers keep the power on during severe weather situations. And if it goes off, it will be returned quicker.

This new technology includes new state-of-the-art substations, stronger utility poles, and smart technology that can take outages from hours to minutes.

Approximately 200 new composite poles have been installed along Ballas Road. These are twice as strong as traditional wood poles, more compact, and more flexible. They can withstand stronger winds, along with strong tornados. The poles perform much better in the presence of lightning thanks to optical ground wire.

Along with the poles being stronger, there is smart technology that quickly senses damage and reroutes power so the lights will stay on.

“What the smart switches do is break the line. If there is a particular part of a line where a car hits a pole or it is damaged during a storm, the switches can operate in tandem on either side of the damage, open, and isolate that damage,” said Kevin Anders, Ameren Missouri. “The rest of the line can be connected to an alternate source automatically and the lights come back on for those customers.”

This new technology will help Mercy Hospital, Missouri Baptist Medical Center, other businesses, and up to 10,000 residences. This is all a part of the Ameren Missouri Smart Energy plan, a long-term strategy of expanding this technology to other areas in St. Louis in the next five years.

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