Overhead & Underground Line Design Workshop

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Overhead & Underground Line Design Workshop

Overhead & Underground Line Design Workshop

Date: January 21-22, 2020
  • Day 1: 8:00 am - 4:00 pm
  • Day 2: 8:00 am - 4:00 pm
Location: Comfort Inn, 3000 Harbor Lane, Plymouth, MN 55447
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This event is now closed for online registration

Sorry, registration is sold out. However we have started a Wait List (in the event of cancellations).

If you wish to have your name placed on the wait list please contact Theresa at 763-551-1230 or tneddermeyer@mmua.org.


Due to MMUA's offices relocating early January, this workshop has been moved off-site. The new location is the Maplewood meeting room at the Comfort Inn near our office. This is the same hotel we have a room block in so you may already be planning to stay here. See above for address and link to directions should you need them.


Electrical Distribution Theory & Applications

No matter how large or small your utility, it is important that you understand and can properly apply the engineering principles that underlie distribution system planning, design, construction and maintenance. At stake is safety (for the public, for your customers, and for your workers) as well as the ability of the system to delivery adequate and reliable service.

This workshop offers a thorough overview of electrical distribution theory and its application to overhead & underground distribution systems. Participation in this workshop will help you make better customer load estimates and decisions about the sizing and location of service transformers, cable and conductors. You will also gain a better understanding of distribution component designs and the purposes and practices of voltage regulation, grounding, lightning protection and maintenance.    

Who Should Attend

This workshop is intended for:

  • Electrical Managers and Superintendents
  • Technicians
  • Crew Leaders and Crew Members
  • Engineering Staff
  • And anyone else routinely involved with the electrical distribution system

About the Instructor

Instructor: R. John Miner, Collaborative Learning – Collaboration Unlimited
John Miner is a registered professional engineer and an accomplished executive manager and educator with over 45 years of experience in the electric utility industry.

He is President of Collaborative Learning, Inc. of Austin and San Antonio, Texas, a firm that presents management and technical education programs and, through Collaboration Unlimited, provides management consulting services to the electric utility industry.

John is a frequent presenter at MMUA workshops and was formerly General Manager of Rochester Public Utilities and Chief Operating Officer for the Austin, Texas, Electric Utility Dept. He has been a course instructor for APPA for 30 years.

John is a senior life member of the IEEE and past chair of the IEEE Committee on Technology Accreditation Activities.


Tuesday, January 21

8:00 am  Introductions/Overview of Course Objectives

8:15 am  Review of Alternating Current (AC) Electricity

  • Voltage and current sine waves & frequency
  • Resistance, reactance and impedance
  • Phase relationship, power factor and phasor concepts
  • Power triangle
  • Application examples and exercises

10:15 am  Three-Phase AC Electricity

  • Wye and delta circuit connections
  • Phasor relationships and phase rotation
  • Phase balance
  • Three-phase power
  • Application examples and exercises

12:00 pm  Lunch

12:45 pm  Introduction to Customer Load Estimation

  • Electrical ratings of loads
  • Connected load and demand
  • Load diversity
  • Customer load data
  • Application example and exercise

2:00 pm  Voltage Drop & Variations

  • Voltage standards and design criteria
  • Power factor and reactive current effects
  • Voltage drop and voltage profiles
  • Short-term voltage variations

2:45 pm  Voltage Regulation

  • Conductor/cable length limits
  • Capacitor applications
  • Voltage regulator applications
  • Application exercise

3:15 pm  Distribution Grounding

  • Purposes of grounding and grounding terminology
  • Earth resistivity and grounding resistance
  • Circuit and equipment grounding methods and practices

Wednesday, January 22

8:00 am  Medium Voltage Underground Cable

  • Cable types and features
  • Cable specifications
  • Cable failure (causes and prevention)
  • In-service cable testing

9:00 am  Distribution Transformers

  • Transformer theory
  • Transformer impedance
  • Transformer loading
  • Transformer features and specifications
  • Application exercise

10:45 am  Underground Subdivision Layouts

  • Design and layout criteria
  • Application exercise

12:00 pm  Lunch 

12:45 pm  Lightning Protection

  • Nature of lightning and over-voltages
  • Basic impulse insulation level (BIL)
  • Line and equipment insulation coordination
  • Lightning arresters
  • Application exercises

2:30 pm  Distribution Maintenance

  • Regulatory requirements for maintenance (NESC)
  • Maintenance management principles
  • Overhead distribution inspection and maintenance practices
  • Underground distribution inspection and maintenance practices

3:30 pm  Reliability Improvement

  • Overview of best practices in reliability improvement

Professional Development Hours

Earn up to 11 (eleven) Professional Development Hours (PDHs) for attending this workshop. Course eligibility and number of PDHs may vary by state. Attendee is responsible for documenting their Professional Development Hours.   

Registration Fee

Members: $650 per person
Non-Members: $800 per person
NOTE: Registration fee increases $50 on December 2, 2019.

Registration fee includes: workshop tuition, materials, refreshment breaks, lunch on Tuesday and Wednesday and a certificate of achievement.

NOTE: Registration is limited to the first 30 registrants.

Registration deadline: December 23, 2019 or when full.

Cancellations / Refunds

MMUA charges a $30 per person processing fee for registrations cancelled by December 23, 2019. MMUA must be notified by 4:30 pm on December 23 to qualify. Sorry, no refunds after December 23.

Hotel Information

MMUA has arranged for discounted lodging with two hotels in the area. We recommend making your reservation as early as possible as availability cannot be guaranteed.

Comfort Inn (closest to the office)
3000 Harbor Lane, Plymouth, MN 55447
Phone: 763.559.1222
Ask for MMUA's corporate rate—$90 per night plus tax. You must call to get our rate.
More information about the hotel can be found at this link: www.choicehotels.com/minnesota/plymouth/comfort-inn-hotels/mn055

Country Inn & Suites
210 Carlson Parkway North, Plymouth, MN 55447
Phone: 763.473.3008
Ask for MMUA's corporate rate—$90 per night plus tax for standard King or 2-Queen; $100-$105 per night plus tax for King Suites.
Use our special link to make reservations online. MMUA's corporate ID is 113714.


By registering for this event I/we authorize Minnesota Municipal Utilities Association (MMUA) to photograph me at this event and use such photographs in MMUA marketing materials (both electronic and print). I/we understand that I/we will not be paid for giving this consent.


Contact Theresa Neddermeyer by calling 763.551.1230 or email tneddermeyer@mmua.org.

printable brochure is also available. NOTE: the meeting location HAS NOT been updated in the brochure.


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