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Highgate Falls Hydroelectric

Highgate FallsHydroelectric Station Upgrades

Highgate Falls Hydroelectric—Swanton, Vermont

Under the jurisdiction of the FERC, this project upgrade for additional power production included installation of one of the largest pneumatic crest control “gates” in North America. The 15’ high by 240’ long inflatable rubber spillway was installed with automatic controls, a sealed access hatch for future maintenance, and a decompression chamber adjacent to the spillway for any access periods of long duration.

The pneumatic spillway was installed on top of a new 5’ thick reinforced concrete “cap”. The entire installation was structurally stabilized by the design of a series of multi-strand, 600kip post-tensioned, tendon rock anchors. The anchor installation included the monitoring of the applied anchor force by permanently installed vibrating wire technology load cells.

As a follow-up to the original project upgrade, a minimum flow Ossberger cross flow turbine was installed in the previously designed and constructed reinforced concrete powerhouse shell. This replaced wasted minimum water flows with power production capacity.