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Shock and Vibration
Volume 17 (2010), Issue 4-5, Pages 551-561

Modal Characteristics of Two Operating Power Transmission Poles

Shen-En Chen and Kaoshan Dai

Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of North Carolina at Charlotte, 9201 University City Boulevard, Charlotte, NC 28223 - 0001, USA

Received 18 June 2010; Accepted 18 June 2010

Copyright © 2010 Hindawi Publishing Corporation. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Unique conductor-pole couplings complicate the dynamic behaviors of electric transmission pole line systems. Finite element modeling is performed on two typical transmission poles used in southeastern USA – a steel pole and a prestressed concrete pole. The two poles are representative of unique structure types: a heavy rod-like structure and a lightweight, shell-type structure. Since coupling issues between the pole and the cable introduce great complexities for modeling the pole line system, simplified numerical models are used. Limited full-scale modal test results are presented to verify the numerical models. The prestressed concrete pole is shown to be easier for mode identification than the steel pole – but both numerical models show complicated coupled vibration modes. This study is part of a larger study to establish an understanding of the dynamic response analyses of power grid under ground vibrations.