Telecommunications Infrastructure


PSM has been the preferred provider for structural engineering services for the telecommunications industry in the Northwest for over 25 years. These diverse services include a range of projects, from rooftop equipment installation, to analysis and strengthening design of electrical transmission and telecommunication towers. PSM’s versatility is further represented by the design of switching centers and the design of large battery installations in existing structures. Serving architects, geotechnical engineers, and communications companies, we have helped to create thousands of cell sites in the Northwest.

Our reputation with Private Carriers and Utilities, including Puget Sound Energy, Seattle City Light, Sprint, Verizon, AT&T, and T-Mobile means that our clients can rely on design and analysis work that is reliable and readily accepted by reviewers. We are also known for our rapid service and turnaround time, for individual projects and groups of projects.

Telecom Lattice Towers and High Voltage Transmission Towers

PSM designs and analyzes dedicated telecommunications towers and high voltage transmission towers and their associated foundations for new and existing antennas and equipment. These towers, which are both guyed and unguyed, have extreme performance requirements, and must function in the worst anticipated weather conditions. We use the industry standard analysis program, PLS-TOWER, for this analysis. If members or supports are overstressed we provide a retrofit design package for upgrade. Our work in analysis and design for these towers is known by the local utilities, Puget Sound Energy and Seattle City Light, for its high quality.

Equipment Attachment and Installation: Existing Buildings and Other Structures

Telecommunications equipment is often supported by structures other than buildings, such as water tanks. We have developed specific methods of analysis for these installations, and have created attachment designs that support the equipment and satisfy the tank owners.

Large battery installations inside buildings are sometimes required to provide power to telecom equipment. Once again, PSM’s knowledge of existing building framing systems allows us to increase the capacity of the existing structure to support larger loads from batteries.

Telecom Monopoles

This ubiquitous symbol of the mobile phone age, with apparently simple structural requirements, actually needs creative engineering, specialized software, and field experience to maximize equipment capacity on existing poles, while resisting severe environmental loading. PSM has a large database of poles that we have designed, analyzed, and upgraded for new antennas. We use specialized software for analysis, which reflects specific design codes used for this work. PSM has designed custom retrofit details for these poles, which minimize field construction work while maximizing capacity. We also have the ability to perform highly technical foundation analysis to allow increases in pole loading.

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