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Powering Your Life: Integrating New Technologies with Tried-and-True Power Generation


By Andy Rogers, PE, Electrical Engineer

Waking up in the morning. Turning on the lights. Taking a shower. Making breakfast. Just four of the things you do in a day that require power generation facilities that run seamlessly and produce the needed electricity.

At Merrick, we’re as passionate about revitalizing existing and aging infrastructure as we are about working with newest technologies and advancements. We’re especially proud to work with one of the first and most prevalent forms of power generation: hydro production.

Over the last year, Merrick’s energy team has visited all of Tennessee Valley Authority’s (TVA) power generating dams, some dating back to the Great Depression in the 1930s. Merrick has designed sewage waste management systems, performed power board replacements, and upgraded turbine blade controllers. We’re currently facilitating the design upgrades to TVA’s Integrated River Operations Control (IROCs) system.

IROCs is a complex interconnected system with direct communication and control ties to each hydro facility within TVAs generation fleet. IROCs allows TVA to balance the river system—supporting navigation, flood control, recreation, and affordable and reliable electricity—from a single command point. TVA uses the IROC system to systematically raise and lower dam gates to control water flow and stabilize the grid, keeping the entire region operating at a healthy 60 hertz.

We love being a part of projects that transform the old into new. Absorbing the beauty of these facilities across the Tennessee Valley isn’t half bad either.



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