College Fixes Power Grid Near Clark Hall

 College Fixes Power Grid Near Clark Hall

03/04/2013 

SUNY Cortland completed repair to underground high voltage electrical wires beside the entranceway to Clark Hall ahead of schedule, at 2:15 p.m. on Saturday, March 2.

The work was finished safely, and Clark Hall has been restored to normal power, leaving only an area of disturbed bricks that has been cordoned off until campus masons can reset it later this week.

An electrical short — like a giant spark — had occurred there on Monday, Feb. 25, in an underground concrete vault containing the power grid to that area of the campus. As a result, the electricity service was lost temporarily to several buildings on campus.

The cause of the outage was later determined to be a fault that developed in one of the underground conductors, which ultimately shorted. The damaged splice — connection point — that resulted was limited to one electrical line at the underground manhole in front of Clark Hall.

The original electrical outage had affected a major dining facility, Neubig Hall, several mid-campus lecture halls and six student residences, creating the need for many temporary arrangements that day involving evening class cancellations in Cornish and Van Hoesen halls and the Education Building, the direction of students to alternative dining sites, and overnight accommodations for Clark Hall residents with friends or at motels. The SUNY Cortland Child Care Center was closed after 3:30 p.m. on Feb. 25 and reopened the following day.

Because the line needed to be repaired with the power to Clark Hall turned off, the facility was put on an auxiliary generator the next day until the work could be completed this past weekend.

At 10 a.m. on Saturday, power was again temporarily shut down to 10 buildings on campus including six residence halls during the successful repair work, which lasted a little more than four hours.

The College’s Facilities Planning, Design and Construction Office officials learned that the original failure was due to the old age of the high-voltage wires carrying current into the electrical vault or manhole. Insulation covering the electrical wires failed and the escaped electricity caused the arc within the confines of the concrete structure.

The manhole works on a large scale somewhat like the electrical junction box in the walls of a home, explained Jeff Lallas, director of facilities planning, design and construction. The systems are configured to limit a short to inside the protective structure, and that’s what happened in this case.

The new design will be configured for greater reliability and ease of maintenance.

The College is midway through a five-year project to replace all major electrical wiring outside the buildings on the main campus with the new and more effective equipment.


More News

Husband-and-Wife Grads Break World Record

Husband-and-Wife Grads Break World Record

Stephen ’75, M ’83 and Patricia Aspinwall Jordan M ’83 own longest mini golf hole.


Institute to Focus on ‘Re-imagining Schools’

Institute to Focus on ‘Re-imagining Schools’

Influential author Will Richardson will address school and district leaders Aug. 14.


Movie Shoot Offers Students an ‘Extra’ Experience

Movie Shoot Offers Students an ‘Extra’ Experience

Musical theatre and new communications media majors get involved with "Cold Brook."


 College Sees Big Opportunities in Drone Technology

 College Sees Big Opportunities in Drone Technology

A new partnership promises to uplift SUNY Cortland and maybe the region.


Movie Production to Film Scenes on SUNY Cortland Campus

Movie Production to Film Scenes on SUNY Cortland Campus

William Fichtner's "Cold Brook" will shoot two scenes on campus


Student Research Focuses on Fractal Tilings

Student Research Focuses on Fractal Tilings

Mathematics and physics dual major studying complex concepts as Summer Research Fellow.


Film on First U.S. Women’s Soccer Champion – SUNY Cortland – Premieres

Film on First U.S. Women’s Soccer Champion – SUNY Cortland – Premieres

Documentary tells the story of the team's incredible journey in 1980.


New Light Fixtures, Big Savings in Old Main

New Light Fixtures, Big Savings in Old Main

Energy-efficient light fixtures have paid for themselves in just six months.


Summer Blast Color War Day Camp Pits Red Vs. White

Summer Blast Color War Day Camp Pits Red Vs. White

Week-long camp to foster sportsmanship, camaraderie and fun.


Nicole Wentz Hired as Cortland Women's Volleyball Head Coach

Nicole Wentz Hired as Cortland Women's Volleyball Head Coach

Nicole Wentz has been selected as the new women's volleyball head coach at SUNY Cortland.


Explore

Visit

Contact