Publication: The Electrical Engineer
New York, NY, United States
ELECTRICAL POWER DEVELOPMENT ON THE APPLE
APPLE RIVER is one of the most interesting water powers in the northwestern country, the stream having a minimum flow of over 22,000 cubic feet per minute, and it is now proposed to develop it for the benefit of New Richmond and other places nearby. The Apple River Power Company was organized in June last with $50,000 capital stock, and after a careful survey of the river for 25 miles, the company decided to locate its power plant at Somerset, a village 7 1-10 miles from New Richmond. Mr. P. W. Epley is the president and general manager.
Plans for a dam and raceway with 21 foot head were made by Mr. C. B. Pride, of Appleton, Wis., and the contract let to Rob. A. Lane, of Eau Claire, Wis., to construct the work. It is now nearing completion. The power thus developed will be partially taken up by a pair of 42-inch New American special turbine water wheels set horizontally, and transmitted by belt direct to a 250 kilowatt inductor type generator made by the Westinghouse Electric and Manufacturing Company. Thence with an initial voltage of 6,000 volts current will be sent over three No. 5 bare copper wires set in triangle and insulated by No. 2 Imperial porcelain insulators, furnished by C. K. Knowles, of Boston, Mass., to New Richmond. There it will be reduced to a voltage of 200 by means of step-down oil transformers and distributed about the city. The company have long term contracts with the city and roller mills for 100 horse-power each and others pending the completion of the plant. The flume is constructed with two compartments, and provision has been made for another pair of 42 inch wheels, which will consume the flow of the river except in the very dryest seasons when these will be run at part gate. But for 11 months in the year there is ample water for the four wheels. As more power is needed, the second pair of wheels and another generator will be installed, provision having been made in the power house for two generators of equal capacity. The company own and will operate at Somerset a custom flour and feed mill which will be run in connection with the transmission of power.
Apple River is formed by 21 large lakes and is only about 30 miles long, so that the flow of water is very constant.
New Richmond is a bustling city of 2,000 inhabitants, and the current there will be fed right into the lines of an old three-wire direct current Edison plant. The city water supply comes from an artesian well, delivering 600 gallons per minute at the top of an 8-inch drill hole in the rock upon which rests a 750,000 gallon Smith-Valle pump, which pumps directly into a 100-foot stand pipe, and will soon be supplemented by a Quimby screw pump of the same capacity. New Richmond Roller Mills, taking the electric power, have a capacity of 300 barrels, running day and night; and the Northern Grain Company have an elevator and feed mill of half the capacity of the flour mill. Other industries requiring power are a wool carding mill, wood novelty factory, machine shop, two grain elevators, etc. It is believed that the plant will be the best illustration of power transmission of its size in the Northwestern States.