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Lori McCutcheon, Jackson EMC Director of Technical Services

Engineered for POWER

Providing our members with safe, reliable power is what Jackson EMC is all about. Our engineers work in some areas you might not realize in order to keep the lights on for our 220,000+ members. Here’s a look at five areas where engineers work at Jackson EMC.

Communications:

Everything from fiber optics, radios and phones to monitoring and controlling substations, meters and line switches requires engineering expertise. Communication between people and equipment is vital for employee safety, reliability and the day-to-day business operations.

My number one priority is to keep the phone lines working so members can call in and talk to someone when they need to. When members need to report outages or have a question about their bill, it’s important they get to someone who can help. – Lori McCutcheon, Director of Technical Srvcs

Planning:

Planning for a system as large as Jackson EMC takes coordination and time. Project engineers work on 10-year long-range plans and three-year construction work plans that include everything from where substations should be built to which lines need to be upgraded and where new lines will be needed. Engineers are needed every step of the way, from planning construction to computer programming and then installing new technology as it becomes available.

All of our planning activities have one goal-to ensure service reliability. It gives me a tremendous level of job satisfaction knowing the work that I do is helping to keep the lights on for our members. – Tommy Parker, Director of Operation Srvcs

Forecasting:

Jackson EMC needs engineers knowledgeable in power generation, planning for green power, solar energy programs, forecasting future needs, distributed automation and load management. Ultimately, we need to ensure there is enough power coming through our lines to supply all 220,000+ members with enough electricity, and at a low price. Our engineers pay attention to population growth trends, weather forecasts and the cost of power generation so decision makers can have informed models.

Our members want their co-op to be as green as possible – economically and environmentally. Balancing these two desires is the basis for our decisions in green power participation. – Jonathan Weaver, Director of System Engineering

Designing:

Engineers work with businesses and homeowners to design electrical system plans for individual locations. Decisions about whether wire will be overhead or underground, the size of the transformer and the cabling are important capacity decisions that go into the work order, or blueprints, linemen use while working. Using integrated GIS mapping, designs guarantee coordination across the system for reliability.

At Jackson EMC, we have the tools to get the job done; we have the technology, the resources, and capable people that we need to provide affordable, reliable electric service. – Mike Hudlow, Engineering Supervisor 

Efficiency:

Jackson EMC’s commercial and industrial engineers work with Jackson EMC’s business members to ensure they are using energy wisely. They help identify energy efficiency issues through energy audits and help members monitor equipment operation using infrared imaging. When members need to make design changes to their lighting or HVAC system, engineers work with them during the design process to maximize efficiency and save them money.

Commercial members make up 10 percent of the members, but they consume 40 percent of the energy. When we help them identify areas for energy efficiency, I know it’s going to be really big deal. At the end of the day, the less energy consumed, the less we have to buy, and the less we have to produce. - Brittany Caison, Vice President for Strategic Planning and Analytics