Title:
SYSTEMS AND METHODS FOR MONOPOLE REINFORCEMENT
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
According to various embodiments of the present invention, a monopole reinforcement with an elongated base plate and a stiffening cross plate protruding substantially perpendicularly from the elongated base plate, the stiffening cross plate having an inner edge substantially flush with the outer surface of the elongated base plate and an outer edge whose distance from the elongated base plate varies along the length of the stiffening cross plate between a minimum protrusion height and a maximum protrusion height. According to some embodiments, the outer edge is shaped in a wave or sinusoidal pattern to maintain stiffness while decreasing material usage and wind drag, and reinforcement members formed from the base plate and cross plate are interconnectable with other such members for ease of installation.



Inventors:
Cook, Bradley J. (Boulder, CO, US)
Application Number:
11/276507
Publication Date:
09/07/2006
Filing Date:
03/02/2006
Assignee:
BCI Wireless LLC (Boulder, CO, US)
Primary Class:
International Classes:
B65D1/42
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Primary Examiner:
BARTOSIK, ANTHONY N
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Faegre Drinker Biddle & Reath LLP (MINNEAPOLIS, MN, US)
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. A monopole reinforcement comprising: an elongated base plate comprising an inner surface, an outer surface, and a length extending substantially along a first direction, the inner surface configured to abut a monopole structure, the outer surface opposite the inner surface, the elongated base plate comprising one or more holes formed therein at one or more intervals along the first direction, the one or more holes configured to receive one or more bolts for attaching the elongated base plate to the monopole structure in a substantially vertical orientation; and a stiffening cross plate protruding substantially perpendicularly from the elongated base plate, the stiffening cross plate comprising an inner edge substantially flush with the outer surface of the elongated base plate, the stiffening cross plate further comprising an outer edge whose distance from the elongated base plate varies along the first direction between a minimum protrusion height and a maximum protrusion height.

2. The monopole reinforcement of claim 1, wherein the minimum protrusion height occurs at or near the one or more holes, and the maximum protrusion height occurs within the one or more intervals.

3. The monopole reinforcement of claim 1, wherein the one or more holes are formed in the elongated base plate along a lengthwise centerline of the elongated base plate, wherein the stiffening cross plate extends between two of the one or more holes, wherein the minimum protrusion height occurs near the two of the one or more holes, and wherein the maximum protrusion height occurs at a midpoint between the two of the one or more holes.

4. The monopole reinforcement of claim 3, wherein the distance between the elongated base plate and the outer edge varies from the minimum protrusion height to the maximum protrusion height to the minimum protrusion height along a curve selected from the group consisting of: a bell curve, a parabolic curve, and a sinusoidal curve.

5. The monopole reinforcement of claim 3, wherein the distance between the elongated base plate and the outer edge varies from the minimum protrusion height to the maximum protrusion height in a linear fashion.

6. The monopole reinforcement of claim 1, wherein the stiffening cross plate protrudes continuously from the elongated base plate along a lengthwise centerline of the elongated base plate, wherein the one or more holes are formed in the elongated base plate on alternating sides of the stiffening cross plate at the one or more intervals along the first direction, and wherein the distance between the elongated base plate and the outer edge varies continuously between the minimum protrusion height at the one or more holes and the maximum protrusion height at midpoints between the one or more holes.

7. The monopole reinforcement of claim 6, wherein the distance between the elongated base plate and the outer edge varies between the minimum protrusion height and the maximum protrusion height along a sinusoidal curve.

8. The monopole reinforcement of claim 6, wherein the distance between the elongated base plate and the outer edge varies between the minimum protrusion height and the maximum protrusion height along a pattern selected from the group consisting of: a linear pattern, a stepped pattern, and a curved pattern.

9. The monopole reinforcement of claim 3, wherein the elongated base plate and the stiffening cross plate form a first reinforcement member, the monopole reinforcement further comprising: a first splice plate protruding substantially perpendicularly from the outer surface of the elongated base plate near one end of the base plate, the first splice plate comprising a first plurality of holes formed therethrough; and a second splice plate comprising a second plurality of holes formed therethrough, the second plurality of holes having a size and placement pattern substantially the same as the first plurality of holes, such that bolts placed through the first plurality of holes also fit through the second plurality of holes to permit bolting of the second splice plate to the first splice plate and to a second reinforcement member for connecting the first reinforcement member to the second reinforcement member.

10. The monopole reinforcement of claim 6, wherein the elongated base plate and the stiffening cross plate form a first reinforcement member, and wherein the stiffening cross plate comprises a first plurality of holes formed therethrough, the monopole reinforcement further comprising: a splice plate comprising a second plurality of holes formed therethrough, the second plurality of holes having a size and placement pattern substantially the same as the first plurality of holes, such that bolts placed through the first plurality of holes also fit through the second plurality of holes to permit bolting of the splice plate to the stiffening cross plate and to a second reinforcement member for connecting the first reinforcement member to the second reinforcement member.

11. The monopole reinforcement of claim 1, wherein the elongated base plate and the stiffening cross plate are cut from a single original plate.

12. A method for reinforcing an antenna tower structure, the method comprising: providing a plurality of reinforcement members, each of the plurality of reinforcement members comprising: an elongated base plate comprising a first plurality of holes formed therein at one or more intervals along a length of the elongated base plate, the first plurality of holes configured to receive one or more bolts for attaching the elongated base plate to the antenna tower structure in a substantially vertical orientation; a stiffening cross plate protruding substantially perpendicularly from the elongated base plate, the stiffening cross plate comprising an inner edge substantially flush with the elongated base plate, the stiffening cross plate further comprising an outer edge whose distance from the elongated base plate varies along the length between a minimum protrusion height and a maximum protrusion height; a first splice plate interface member at one end of each of the plurality of reinforcement members, the first splice plate interface member configured for attachment with a splice plate; a second splice plate interface member at another end of each of the plurality of reinforcement members, the second splice plate interface member configured for attachment with the splice plate; providing the splice plate configured to join successive reinforcement members of the plurality of reinforcement members; affixing a first reinforcement member of the plurality of reinforcement members to the antenna tower structure in the substantially vertical orientation; affixing a second reinforcement member of the plurality of reinforcement members to the antenna tower structure in vertical alignment with the first reinforcement member; and rigidly connecting the first reinforcement member with the second reinforcement member via the splice plate.

13. The method of claim 12, wherein the minimum protrusion height occurs at or near one or more of the first plurality of holes, and wherein the maximum protrusion height occurs within the one or more intervals.

14. The method of claim 12, wherein affixing the first reinforcement member to the antenna structure comprises bolting the first reinforcement member to the antenna structure.

15. The method of claim 11, wherein the first splice plate interface member is integral with the stiffening cross plate.

16. The method of claim 11, wherein the splice plate is a first splice plate, the method further comprising: providing a second splice plate configured to join successive reinforcement members of the plurality of reinforcement members; providing a stiffener plate embedded within a caisson at a base of the antenna tower structure; and rigidly connecting the stiffener plate with the second reinforcement member via the second splice plate.

17. The method of claim 16, further comprising: providing an anchor rod for anchoring within the caisson; and rigidly connecting the anchor rod to the stiffener plate.

18. The method of claim 12, wherein the stiffening cross plate of the first reinforcement member comprises a second plurality of holes formed therein, the method further comprising: providing a first stiffening strip comprising a third plurality of holes formed therein; providing a second stiffening strip comprising a fourth plurality of holes formed therein; aligning the second plurality of holes with the third plurality of holes and with the fourth plurality of holes; and bolting the stiffening cross plate of the first reinforcement member between the first stiffening strip and the second stiffening strip through the second, third, and fourth plurality of holes.

19. A method for adding an extension with a new base plate to an existing monopole structure with an existing top plate, the method comprising: mounting an extension mount member to the monopole structure below the existing top plate; providing a new top plate comprising a top plate bracket connector; providing an extension member, the extension member comprising a top bracket connector and a bottom bracket connector; coupling the bottom bracket connector with the extension mount member; coupling the top bracket connector with the top plate bracket connector; placing the extension onto the new top plate; and securing the new base plate onto the new top plate.

20. The method of claim 19, further comprising: forming a first set of holes in the new top plate; forming a second set of holes in the new base plate corresponding to the first set of holes; and securing the new base plate onto the new top plate by bolting the new top plate to the new base plate through the first set of holes and the second set of holes.

21. A method for reinforcing an antenna structure, comprising: providing an elongated base plate comprising a first set of pre-drilled holes and preformed slots; attaching a reinforcement member to the antenna structure; attaching a splice plate to the reinforcement member; hanging the elongated base plate from the splice plate; mounting a magnetic drill to the elongated base plate; drilling a second set of holes into the antenna structure through at least one of the first set of pre-drilled holes; stacking onto the elongated base plate a top plate, the top plate comprising a substantially perpendicularly protruding stiffening cross plate, the top plate further comprising notches formed therein and a third set of pre-drilled holes, such that the notches overlap the preformed slots and the third set of pre-drilled holes overlap the first set of pre-drilled holes when the top plate is stacked onto the elongated base plate; providing a tabbed connector comprising tabs configured to pass through the notches and fit within the preformed slots; inserting the tabs of the tabbed connector into the preformed slots; attaching the tabbed connector to the top plate; and bolting the top plate and the elongated base plate to the antenna structure through the first and third sets of pre-drilled holes.

Description:

CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS

This application claims the benefit of U.S. Provisional Patent Application Ser. No. 60/593,997, filed on Mar. 2, 2005, and entitled, “Method for Strengthening Monopole Structures Using a Bolt-on System.” The aforementioned application is incorporated by reference herein for all purposes.

BACKGROUND

1. Field

Embodiments of the present invention relate generally to the field of reinforcement structures, and more particularly to the field of tower and/or monopole structure reinforcement.

2. Description of Related Art

Prior monopole and/or tower reinforcement systems often employ solutions such as inserting a reinforcing skin or sheath around an existing pole, securing radially-spaced bars, rods, or V-channels to the outside of an existing pole along its length via collars or the like, and/or building reinforcement struts into the material of the existing pole itself. Such solutions often involve highly expensive materials and/or complex installation procedures, and often fail to maximize structural efficiency with a minimal mass of reinforcement material. Such solutions often employ the direct welding of reinforcing apparati directly to an existing pole, which also increases cost and time required for installation. Therefore, there is a need in the art for improved systems and methods for reinforcing existing tower structures, such as existing monopole structures.

BRIEF SUMMARY

According to various embodiments of the present invention, a monopole reinforcement is provided, including an elongated base plate with an inner surface, an outer surface, and a length which extends substantially along a first direction. The inner surface may be configured to abut a monopole structure, the outer surface is opposite the inner surface, and the elongated base plate may include one or more holes formed therein at one or more intervals along the first direction, the one or more holes configured to receive one or more bolts for attaching the elongated base plate to the monopole structure in a substantially vertical orientation. Embodiments of the monopole reinforcement may further include a stiffening cross plate protruding substantially perpendicularly from the elongated base plate, the stiffening cross plate comprising an inner edge substantially flush with the outer surface of the elongated base plate, the stiffening cross plate further comprising an outer edge whose distance from the elongated base plate varies along the first direction between a minimum protrusion height and a maximum protrusion height.

According to some embodiments of the present invention, the minimum protrusion height occurs at or near the one or more holes, and the maximum protrusion height occurs within the one or more intervals. In some instances of the embodiments, the one or more holes are formed in the elongated base plate along a lengthwise centerline of the elongated base plate, and the stiffening cross plate extends between two of the holes in the base plate. In such instances, the minimum protrusion height may occur near the two holes, and the maximum protrusion height may occur at a midpoint between the two holes. In some cases, the distance between the elongated base plate and the outer edge varies from the minimum protrusion height to the maximum protrusion height to the minimum protrusion height along a bell curve, a parabolic curve, and/or a sinusoidal curve. In other cases, the distance between the elongated base plate and the outer edge varies from the minimum protrusion height to the maximum protrusion height in a linear fashion.

According to some embodiments of the present invention, the stiffening cross plate protrudes continuously from the elongated base plate along a lengthwise centerline of the elongated base plate, and one or more holes are formed in the elongated base plate on alternating sides of the stiffening cross plate at one or more intervals along the first direction, and the distance between the elongated base plate and the outer edge varies continuously between the minimum protrusion height at the one or more holes and the maximum protrusion height at midpoints between the one or more holes. In some cases, the distance between the elongated base plate and the outer edge varies between the minimum protrusion height and the maximum protrusion height along a sinusoidal curve. In other cases, the distance between the elongated base plate and the outer edge varies between the minimum protrusion height and the maximum protrusion height along a pattern such as, for example, a linear pattern, a stepped pattern, or a curved pattern.

In some instances of the embodiments, the elongated base plate and the stiffening cross plate form a first reinforcement member, and the embodiments of monopole reinforcement may further include a splice plate protruding substantially perpendicularly from the outer surface of the elongated base plate near one end of the base plate, the splice plate including a first set of holes formed therethrough. Embodiments of the monopole reinforcement may further include another splice plate including a second set of holes formed therethrough, the second set of holes having a size and placement pattern substantially the same as the first et of holes, so that when bolts are placed through the first set of holes they also fit through the second set of holes to permit bolting of the one splice plate to the other splice plate and to a second reinforcement member for connecting the first reinforcement member to the second reinforcement member.

In other instances of the embodiments, the elongated base plate and the stiffening cross plate form a first reinforcement member, and the stiffening cross plate includes a first set of holes formed therethrough. In such instances, embodiments of the monopole reinforcement may further include a splice plate with a second set of holes formed therethrough, the second set of holes having a size and placement pattern substantially the same as the first set of holes, such that bolts placed through the first set of holes also fit through the second set of holes to permit bolting of the splice plate to the stiffening cross plate and to a second reinforcement member for connecting the first reinforcement member to the second reinforcement member. In yet other embodiments of monopole reinforcement, the elongated base plate and the stiffening cross plate are cut from a single original plate.

According to various embodiments of the present invention, methods for reinforcing an antenna tower structure are set forth. Such embodiments of methods include providing a plurality of reinforcement members, each of which includes an elongated base plate with a first set of holes formed therein at one or more intervals along a length of the elongated base plate, the first set of holes configured to receive one or more bolts for attaching the elongated base plate to the antenna tower structure in a substantially vertical orientation. The plurality of reinforcement members may each further include a stiffening cross plate protruding substantially perpendicularly from the elongated base plate, the stiffening cross plate including an inner edge substantially flush with the elongated base plate and an outer edge whose distance from the elongated base plate varies along the length between a minimum protrusion height and a maximum protrusion height. The plurality of reinforcement members may also include a first splice plate interface member at one end of each of the plurality of reinforcement members, the first splice plate interface member configured for attachment with a splice plate, and a second splice plate interface member at another end of each of the plurality of reinforcement members, the second splice plate interface member configured for attachment with the splice plate. Such embodiments of methods may further include providing the splice plate configured to join successive reinforcement members of the plurality of reinforcement members, affixing a reinforcement member to the antenna tower structure in the substantially vertical orientation, affixing another reinforcement member to the antenna tower structure in vertical alignment with the first reinforcement member, and rigidly connecting the first reinforcement member with the second reinforcement member via the splice plate.

In some cases, the minimum protrusion height occurs at or near one or more of the first set of holes, and the maximum protrusion height occurs within the one or more intervals. In other cases, affixing the first reinforcement member to the antenna structure comprises bolting the first reinforcement member to the antenna structure. According to some alternative embodiments of the present invention, a splice plate interface member is integral with the stiffening cross plate. According to some instances of the embodiments, another splice plate is provided which is configured to join successive reinforcement members of the plurality of reinforcement members, and a stiffener plate may also be provided and embedded within a caisson at a base of the antenna tower structure, either directly or via an anchor bolt. According to such instances of the embodiments, the methods may further include rigidly connecting the stiffener plate with the second reinforcement member via the other splice plate.

In some cases, embodiments of the methods may further include providing an anchor rod for anchoring within the caisson and rigidly connecting the anchor rod to the stiffener plate. In other cases, the stiffening cross plate of the first reinforcement member includes a second set of holes formed therein, and embodiments of the methods may further include providing a first stiffening strip with a third set of holes formed therein, providing a second stiffening strip with a fourth set of holes formed therein, aligning the second set of holes with the third set of holes and with the fourth set of holes, and bolting the stiffening cross plate of the first reinforcement member between the first stiffening strip and the second stiffening strip through the second, third, and fourth sets of holes.

According to various embodiments of the present invention, methods for adding an extension with a new base plate to an existing monopole structure with an existing top plate are provided. According to such embodiments of methods, an extension mount member may be mounted to the monopole structure below the existing top plate, and a new top plate may be provided, where the new top plate has a top plate bracket connector. Such embodiments of methods may further include providing an extension member which includes a top bracket connector and a bottom bracket connector, coupling the bottom bracket connector with the extension mount member, coupling the top bracket connector with the top plate bracket connector, placing the extension onto the new top plate, and securing the new base plate onto the new top plate. Such embodiments of methods may further include forming a first set of holes in the new top plate, forming a second set of holes in the new base plate corresponding to the first set of holes, and securing the new base plate onto the new top plate by bolting the new top plate to the new base plate through the first set of holes and the second set of holes.

According to various embodiments of the present invention, methods for reinforcing an antenna structure are provided, such methods including providing an elongated base plate comprising a first set of pre-drilled holes and preformed slots, attaching a reinforcement member to the antenna structure, attaching a splice plate to the reinforcement member, hanging the elongated base plate from the splice plate, mounting a magnetic drill to the elongated base plate, drilling a second set of holes into the antenna structure through at least one of the first set of pre-drilled holes, stacking onto the elongated base plate a top plate, where the top plate includes a substantially perpendicularly protruding stiffening cross plate. The top plate may further include notches formed therein and a third set of pre-drilled holes, such that the notches overlap the preformed slots and the third set of pre-drilled holes overlap the first set of pre-drilled holes when the top plate is stacked onto the elongated base plate. Embodiments of the methods may further include providing a tabbed connector comprising tabs configured to pass through the notches and fit within the preformed slots, inserting the tabs of the tabbed connector into the preformed slots, attaching the tabbed connector to the top plate, and bolting the top plate and the elongated base plate to the antenna structure through the first and third sets of pre-drilled holes.

This summary provides only a general outline of some embodiments of the present invention. Many other objects, features, advantages and other embodiments of the present invention will become more fully apparent from the following detailed description and the accompanying drawings.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

A further understanding of the various embodiments of the present invention may be realized by reference to the figures which are described in remaining portions of the specification.

FIG. 1 illustrates a front view of an elongated base plate for a monopole reinforcement according to various embodiments of the present invention.

FIG. 2 illustrates a side view of a stiffening cross plate according to various embodiments of the present invention.

FIG. 3 illustrates a side view and a top view of a reinforcement member formed with the elongated base plate of FIG. 1 and the stiffening cross plate of FIG. 2, according to embodiments of the present invention

FIG. 4 illustrates perspective views of a monopole, reinforcement members, and splice plates for interconnecting reinforcement members according to embodiments of the present invention.

FIG. 5 illustrates a front view of an elongated base plate for a monopole reinforcement according to various embodiments of the present invention.

FIG. 6 illustrates side views of stiffening cross plates and splice plate interface members according to various embodiments of the present invention.

FIG. 7 illustrates a side view and a top view of a reinforcement member formed with the elongated base plate of FIG. 5 and the stiffening cross plates and splice plate interface members of FIG. 6, according to embodiments of the present invention

FIG. 8 illustrates perspective views of a monopole, reinforcement members, and splice plates for interconnecting reinforcement members according to embodiments of the present invention.

FIG. 9 illustrates a front view of an extra reinforcement plate in accordance with various embodiments of the present invention.

FIG. 10 illustrates perspective views of application of extra reinforcement plates to a reinforcement member via connector plates according to embodiments of the present invention.

FIG. 11 illustrates perspective views of application of extra reinforcement plates to connect two reinforcement members via splice plates according to embodiments of the present invention.

FIG. 12 illustrates a front view of an extra reinforcement plate in accordance with various embodiments of the present invention.

FIG. 13 illustrates perspective views of application of extra reinforcement plates to a reinforcement member via connector plates according to embodiments of the present invention.

FIG. 14 illustrates perspective views of application of extra reinforcement plates to connect two reinforcement members via splice plates according to embodiments of the present invention.

FIG. 15 illustrates a front view of a reinforcement member adapted for use with round cross-sectional monopoles in accordance with various embodiments of the present invention.

FIG. 16 illustrates a side view and a top view of the reinforcement member of FIG. 15 in accordance with various embodiments of the present invention.

FIG. 17 illustrates perspective views of a monopole, reinforcement members, and splice plates for interconnecting reinforcement members in accordance with various embodiments of the present invention.

FIG. 18 illustrates a front view of an elongated base plate blank in accordance with various embodiments of the present invention.

FIG. 19 illustrates a front view of the elongated base plate blank of FIG. 18 after the stiffening cross plate sections have been cut out in accordance with various embodiments of the present invention.

FIG. 20 illustrates a side view of a reinforcement member formed by bending the cut elongated base plate blank of FIG. 19 and adding stiffening cross plates and splice plate interface members in accordance with various embodiments of the present invention.

FIG. 21 illustrates a perspective view of the reinforcement member of FIG. 21 in accordance with various embodiments of the present invention.

FIG. 22 illustrates perspective views of a tower structure, reinforcement members, and splice plates for interconnecting the reinforcement members in accordance with various embodiments of the present invention.

FIG. 23 illustrates perspective views of reinforcement members and reinforced splice plates for interconnecting the reinforcement members in accordance with various embodiments of the present invention.

FIG. 24 illustrates perspective views of reinforcement members and splice plates for interconnecting the reinforcement members in accordance with various embodiments of the present invention.

FIG. 25 illustrates a front view of a top reinforcement member of a multi-layer reinforcement member according to various embodiments of the present invention.

FIG. 26 illustrates a front view of a bottom reinforcement member of a multi-layer reinforcement member according to various embodiments of the present invention.

FIG. 27 illustrates a side view and a top view of the top reinforcement member of FIG. 25 placed over the bottom reinforcement member of FIG. 26 according to various embodiments of the present invention.

FIG. 28 illustrates a front view and a top view of the top reinforcement member of FIG. 25 placed over the bottom reinforcement member of FIG. 26, along with side views of splice plates and tabbed splice connectors for connecting the one set of top and bottom reinforcement members with another set according to various embodiments of the present invention.

FIG. 29 illustrates a side view of the top and bottom reinforcement members, splice plates, and tabbed splice connectors of FIG. 28 according to various embodiments of the present invention.

FIG. 30 illustrates a side view of a monopole with reinforcement members installed thereon, as well as a reinforcement section spanning a monopole obstruction or access hole according to various embodiments of the present invention.

FIG. 31 illustrates a cross-sectional view of the monopole of FIG. 30 with reinforcement members installed thereon, as well as a reinforcement section spanning a monopole obstruction or access hole according to various embodiments of the present invention.

FIG. 32 illustrates a side view of a transition structure for the extension of a monopole or the addition of an additional monopole structure according to various embodiments of the present invention.

FIG. 33 illustrates a cross-sectional view of the transition structure of FIG. 32 according to various embodiments of the present invention.

FIG. 34 illustrates a cross-sectional view of a new top plate member according to various embodiments of the present invention.

FIG. 35 illustrates side views of a new top plate member, an extension member, and an extension mount member used in the transition structure of FIG. 32 according to various embodiments of the present invention.

FIG. 36 illustrates a side view of a base mount for a reinforcement member according to various embodiments of the present invention.

FIG. 37 illustrates a side view of an alternative base mount for a reinforcement member according to various embodiments of the present invention.

FIG. 38 illustrates a side view of yet another alternative base mount for a reinforcement member according to various embodiments of the present invention.

FIG. 39 illustrates a top view of the base mounts of FIG. 36 or 37 according to various embodiments of the present invention.

FIG. 40 illustrates a side view of a base extension and mounting system according to various embodiments of the present invention.

FIG. 41 illustrates a top view of the base extension and mounting system of FIG. 40 according to various embodiments of the present invention.

FIG. 42 depicts a flow diagram illustrating a method for reinforcing an antenna structure according to various embodiments of the present invention.

FIG. 43 depicts a flow diagram illustrating a method for adding an extension to an existing antenna structure according to various embodiments of the present invention.

FIG. 44 depicts a flow diagram illustrating a method for reinforcing an antenna structure according to various embodiments of the present invention.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

According to various embodiments of the present invention, systems and methods are described for reinforcing and strengthening existing monopoles by attaching vertical strength plates in-line to transfer stress out of the existing pole shaft and into the new reinforcement strength plates in the overstressed areas. Such a reinforcement process may be adaptable to any tubular structure, such as, for example, round or multi-sided monopoles of eight to eighteen sides, according to embodiments of the present invention. In addition to use for overstressed, fatigued, or otherwise weakened monopoles, embodiments of the present invention may also be used to reinforce existing monopoles in order to support additional antennae or co-sharing, new or additional monopole structure, and/or a heavier load capacity attached thereon. According to embodiments of the present invention, a system for monopole reinforcement which employs sets of vertically-connected interchangeable and adaptable elements allows one continuous stress flow without putting additional stress on the base plate, pole shaft, or existing stiffener plates or anchor bolts. According to some embodiments of the present invention, monopole reinforcement complies with the latest TIA/EIA-222-F tower standard for design and upgrade of communication structures.

FIG. 1 illustrates a front view of an elongated base plate 100 for a monopole reinforcement according to various embodiments of the present invention. A monopole may be a tubular structure, round or multi-sided, that supports antennae and communications equipment for the purpose of sending and/or receiving broadcast signals, such as radio frequency signals to mobile communications equipment. Base plate 100 may include holes 102 formed therein for receiving bolts or other such fasteners (such as, for example, bolts, nails, screws, pins, and/or stakes) by which base plate 100 may be attached to a monopole structure 400. Base plate 100 may further include slots 104 to which reinforcing sections may be affixed, and may include an outer surface 114 and a inner surface 116.

FIG. 2 illustrates a side view of a stiffening cross plate 200 according to various embodiments of the present invention. Stiffening cross plate 200 may include an outer edge 110 and an inner edge 108, and may include holes 112 formed therethrough as well as tabs 106 for insertion into slots 104. Base plate 100 and/or stiffening cross plate 200 may be cut from plates, such as, for example, metal plates, using methods that, based on the disclosure provided herein, are known to those of ordinary skill in the art. For example, base plate 100 and/or stiffening cross plate 200 may be laser cut from metal plates. For continuous cross plates 102 which span the length of base plate 100, holes 102 may be placed on alternating sides of stiffening cross plate. A stiffening cross plate 200 of steel may be galvanized without warping the steel. Such galvanization process may also be facilitated, in addition to the installation process, by making reinforcement member 300 shorter than ten feet long. According to some embodiments of the present invention, reinforcement plates and elements are all made of steel and the final product (such as a reinforcement member 300) is galvanized.

FIG. 3 illustrates a side view and a top view of a reinforcement member 300 formed with elongated base plate 100 and stiffening cross plate 200, according to embodiments of the present invention. Stiffening cross plate 200 may be affixed to base plate 100 by inserting tabs 106 into slots 104 and by plug welding tabs 106 to slots 104 from inner surface 116, for example. Next, the perimeter of inner edge 108 may be tack- or bead-welded to top surface 114. A plug weld on the underside 116 of base plate 100 may provide additional shear capacity, fit-up and minimize heat concentration from normally larger welds all around the base plate 100 on top surface 114. Alternatively, cross plate 200 may be formed integrally with base plate 100, or adhered to base plate 100, or otherwise affixed or fastened to base plate 100.

As depicted in FIG. 2, outer edge 110 varies in distance from inner edge 108 over the length of stiffening cross plate 200. FIG. 2 shows outer edge 108 varying in a sinusoidal or wave-like pattern, between a minimum protrusion height 115 and a maximum protrusion height 117. This configuration or shape of stiffening cross plate 200 imparts several advantages in the context of monopole reinforcement. First, such a configuration permits stiffness to vary along the reinforcement member, whereas a flat bar provides the same stiffness along its length regardless of whether such a level of stiffness is needed in all areas. The sinusoidal or wave-like configuration of outer edge 110 also provides increased stiffness at the maximum protrusion height 117 and permits the placement of maximum protrusion height 117 at a location or locations along a reinforcement member where increased stiffness is needed. For example, outer edge 110 may be configured such that maximum protrusion height 117 falls in the lengthwise interval between two holes 102 of base plate 100, or may be configured such that maximum protrusion height 117 falls both at the midpoint between two holes 102 as well as at the location of the two holes, so that the “wave” goes through two periods between each hole. Second, such a configuration decreases wind drag on the reinforced structure as compared with other reinforcement means such as straight flat bar or pipe. Third, such a configuration decreases material expenses by eliminating unnecessary protrusion height where not needed, whereas use of a straight flat bar requires that the entire bar be as thick enough to correspond to the maximum thickness needed at any point along the bar. Fourth, such a configuration is more aesthetically pleasing than straight/flat bar reinforcement. Fifth, such a configuration permits greater center-to-center spacing of bolts along the length a reinforcement member by increasing the stiffness of the reinforcement member at the midpoint of the bolt spacing intervals (by increasing the radius of gyration value while minimizing the slenderness ratio in buckling (given by the expression KL/r, where K is a constant, L is the unsupported length, and r is the radius of gyration)). This increase in bolt spacing may significantly reduce installation time and costs. A similar effect may be achieved by shaping outer edge 110 such that the transition between maximum protrusion height 117 and minimum protrusion height 115 is linear or stepped, according to some embodiments. In addition, maximum and/or minimum protrusion height may vary based upon the materials used, the stiffness required, and other case-by-case factors.

Holes 112 in the stiffening cross plate 200 may be used for connecting two subsequent reinforcement members 300 via splice plates 406, for connecting extra reinforcement members to reinforcement member 300 (see discussion of FIGS. 9-14, below), and/or for connecting external elements to stiffening cross plate 200 (such as wire or antenna structures) according to embodiments of the present invention.

FIG. 4 illustrates perspective views of a monopole 400, reinforcement members 300, 399, and splice plates 406 for interconnecting reinforcement members 300, 399 according to embodiments of the present invention. Holes 402 may be drilled into monopole 400 using a template that matches the hole 102 pattern of base plate 100; alternatively, base plate 100 may be used at the template for placement of holes 402 in monopole 400. According to some embodiments of the present invention, reinforcement members 300 may be installed beginning at the top of monopole 400. One or more splice plates 406 may be used to connect two or more reinforcement members 300. For example, reinforcement member 399 is the same as reinforcement member 300, and if reinforcement member 399 has been installed on the monopole by installing bolts 404 through holes 102 of reinforcement member 399 and through holes 402 in monopole 404, then reinforcement member 300 may be connected to reinforcement member 399 by a) placing one splice plate 406 on each side of holes 112 at the end of cross plate 200, b) aligning the holes 112 at the end of cross plate 200 with holes 408 of splice plate 406, and c) threading bolts 414 through holes 112 and 408 before securing bolts 414 with washers 410 and/or nuts 412, according to some embodiments of the present invention. According to some embodiments of the present invention, bolts 404 are 20 mm AJAX bolts with sleeve, which are one-sided bolts currently produced in Australia and sold commercially off-the-shelf in the United States. In some cases, bolts such as Lindapter hollo-bolts may be used at or near the troughs of the “wave”-shaped stiffening cross plate 200, and may not be adequate for use where multiple reinforcement members 300 are connected together, or at a welded transfer plate connection. Monopole reinforcement according to embodiments of the present invention is typically done on at least three sides of a monopole structure 400, with each reinforcement installation having an approximately equal radial angle therebetween.

FIG. 5 illustrates a front view of an elongated base plate 500, FIG. 6 illustrates side views of stiffening cross plates 560 and splice plate interface members 550, and FIG. 7 illustrates a side view and a top view of a reinforcement member 750 formed with elongated base plate 500 and stiffening cross plates 560 and splice plate interface members 550 of FIG. 6, according to embodiments of the present invention. Base plate 500 may include holes 502 formed therein for receiving bolts or other such fasteners (such as, for example, bolts, nails, screws, pins, and/or stakes) by which base plate 500 may be attached to monopole structure 400. Base plate 500 may further include slots 504 to which splice plate interface members 550 may be affixed, slots 506 to which stiffening cross plates 560 may be affixed, and may include an outer surface 514 and a inner surface 516.

Stiffening cross plate 560 may include an outer edge 510 and an inner edge 508, and may include holes 512 formed therethrough as well as tabs 511 for insertion into slots 506. Base plate 100 and/or stiffening cross plate 200 may be cut from plates, such as, for example, metal plates, using methods that, based on the disclosure provided herein, are known to those of ordinary skill in the art. For example, base plate 500 and/or stiffening cross plate 560 may be laser cut from metal plates.

As compared with reinforcement member 300, reinforcement member 750 is configured to reinforce lighter monopoles and monopoles which do not need as high a level of reinforcement stiffness. The holes 502 for attaching reinforcement member 750 to monopole 400 are located along the centerline of top surface 514 of base plate 500, and so the tabs 511 of stiffening cross plates 560 may be inserted into slots 506 and welded to base plate 500 in much the same fashion as described above for attaching cross plate 200 to base plate 100. In this way, the stiffening cross plates 560 extend substantially perpendicularly from base plate 500 between holes 502, with the maximum protrusion height 589 occurring in the interval between holes 502 (such as, for example, at the midpoint between two holes 502), and with the minimum protrusion height 588 occurring near the holes 502. Splice plate interface members 550 may also be welded to base plate 500 after tabs 551 have been inserted and plug welded into slots 504. Holes 552 formed through splice plate interface members 550 permit the connection of splice plate 406 to splice plate interface member 550 in order to connect two reinforcement members 750.

FIG. 8 illustrates perspective views of monopole 400, reinforcement members 750, 759, and splice plates 406 for interconnecting reinforcement members 750, 759 according to embodiments of the present invention. Reinforcement members 750 and 759 are the same. Reinforcement members 750 and 759 may be installed onto monopole 400 and connected to each other in much the same way that reinforcement members 300 and 399 may be installed onto monopole 400 and connected to each other, described above. Although two splice plates 406 are depicted for connecting reinforcement members 750 and 759 and others, a single splice plate 406 may be used, although the dual plate configuration may provide better stability and stiffness. A spacer 892 may also be used between two splice plates 406 when connecting reinforcement member 750 with 759. Again, the wave-like shape of the stiffening cross plates 560 provides the same advantages discussed, above, and again, a similar effect may also be achieved by varying the height of outer edge 510 along cross plate 560 from the minimum protrusion height 588 to the maximum protrusion height 589 in a linear or stepped fashion.

FIG. 9 illustrates a front view of an extra reinforcement plate 900 in accordance with various embodiments of the present invention. Extra reinforcement plate 900 includes holes 901 formed therein corresponding to holes 112 formed in stiffening cross plate 200. As shown in FIG. 10, extra reinforcement plates 900 may be bolted on either side of stiffening cross plate 200 and connected by connector plates 902 which also have holes 904 formed therethrough to line up with bolts placed through holes 901, 102. FIG. 10 depicts one way in which extra reinforcement plates 900 may be connected through stiffening cross plate 200, while FIG. 11 shows one way in which splice plates 406 may be bolted over extra reinforcement plates 900 where two reinforcement members 300 meet. Adding such extra reinforcement plates 900 simply increases the overall stiffness of the reinforcement.

FIG. 12 illustrates a front view of an extra reinforcement plate 1200 in accordance with various embodiments of the present invention. Extra reinforcement plate 1200 includes holes 1201 formed therein corresponding to holes 512 formed in stiffening cross plates 560 as well as holes 552 formed in splice plate interface members 550. As reinforcement member 750 includes the bolt holes 502 along the centerline of base plate 500, extra reinforcement member 1200 may include notches 1202 configured to pass over bolt heads for bolts used to secure base plate 500 to monopole 400. Connectors 902 may be used to connect two consecutive extra reinforcement plates 1200, as shown in FIG. 13, and bolts may be secured through two extra reinforcement places 1200 on either side of stiffening cross plate 560. FIG. 13 depicts one way in which extra reinforcement plates 1200 may be connected through stiffening cross plates 560 and splice plate interface members 550, while FIG. 14 shows one way in which splice plates 406 may be bolted over extra reinforcement plates 1200 where two reinforcement members 750 meet. Adding such extra reinforcement plates 1200 simply increases the overall stiffness of the reinforcement.

FIG. 15 illustrates a front view of a reinforcement member 1500 adapted for use with round cross-sectional monopoles 400 in accordance with various embodiments of the present invention. As seen from the top view at the top of FIG. 16, inner surface 1510 is configured to face monopole 400 while channel sides 1506 abut monopole 400. Such a configuration for reinforcement member 1500 permits it to be more easily applied to round-type monopoles where a flat plate interface would leave an exposed gap between the reinforcement member and the monopole through which bolts would pass. Such a configuration may permit channel sides 1506 to fit on any diameter of round monopole. The flat outer surface of reinforcement member 1500 also works as a template to attach a magnetic drill directly to this surface and use the existing hole as a guide for the new hole in the monopole and poles inserted thereafter. Such a reinforcement member configuration may also lead to decreased material cost; material having a channel cross-section is readily available and has a favorable radius of gyration value (KL/R) to span bolts even without a protruding stiffener plate.

Reinforcement member 1500 may also include splice plate interface members 1504 affixed thereto or protruding therefrom. Splice plate interface members 1504 may also include holes 1504 formed therethrough, through which bolts may be used to secure one reinforcement member 1500 to another similar reinforcement member 1550 via one or more splice plates 406. FIG. 17 illustrates perspective views of monopole 400, reinforcement members 1500, 1550, and splice plates 406 for interconnecting reinforcement members 1500, 1550 according to embodiments of the present invention. Reinforcement members 1500 and 1550 may be installed onto monopole 400 and connected to each other in much the same way that reinforcement members 300 and 399 may be installed onto monopole 400 and connected to each other, described above. Although two splice plates 406 are depicted for connecting reinforcement members 1500 and 1550 and others, a single splice plate 406 may be used, although the dual plate configuration may provide better stability and stiffness.

FIGS. 18-24 depict an alternative reinforcement member 2000 which may be effectively used to reinforce non-monopole tower structures. FIG. 18 illustrates a front view of an elongated base plate blank 1800, FIG. 19 illustrates a front view of elongated base plate blank 1900 after the stiffening cross plate sections 1804 have been cut out, and FIG. 20 illustrates a side view of a reinforcement member 2000 formed by bending the cut elongated base plate blank 1900 of FIG. 19 to form bent down sections 2004 and adding stiffening cross plates 1804 and splice plate interface members 2002 in accordance with various embodiments of the present invention. FIG. 21 illustrates a perspective view of reinforcement member 2000 in accordance with various embodiments of the present invention.

The front view of base plate blank 1800 depicts the patterns which are cut out to form the cut base plate blank 1900. Once stiffening cross plates 1804 have been cut from base plate blank 1800, tabs 1802 may be inserted in slots 1904 and welded or otherwise secured in place. For example, stiffening cross plates 1804 may be welded to cut base plate 1900 in much the same way that stiffening cross plate 200 is welded to base plate 100. Holes 1902 may also be cut or drilled into base plate blank 1800. Bent down sections 2004 may be bent down as shown in FIG. 20, and splice plate interface members 2002 may be welded or otherwise secured in place in corresponding slots formed on base plate blank 1800. Once reinforcement member 2000 has been completed as shown in FIGS. 20 and 21, the pattern of the outer edge 2006 of reinforcement member 2000 resembles the pattern of the stiffening cross plates 1804. Such a cut-out pattern at edge 2006 may allow for a narrower neck to decrease wind load and also provide foot room to climb on existing step pegs up a reinforced tower. Bent tabs 2004 may allow for bolt-on diagonal bracing, connecting reinforcement members 2000 in a triangular pattern to create a tower outside an existing tower or “tower wrap.” Bent tabs 2004 may also accommodate existing step pegs by taking off the existing tower legs and relocating to the middle hole where reinforcement member 2000 is at its widest (but such would not be required in the vicinity of outer edge 2006). Stiffening cross plate 1804 may also allow for mount attachments thereto in addition to strengthening the plate and spanning bolts. Flange plate 2002, while used as a connecting splice between reinforcement member 2000 parts, may also allow for the relocation of existing guy wires (metal strands attached from an outer anchor ring to the tower mast to hold in place) or new guy wire attachments.

FIGS. 22-24 illustrate perspective views of a tower structure 2250, reinforcement members 2000, 2020, 2040, and splice plates 406, 2302 for interconnecting the reinforcement members 2000, 2020, 2040 in accordance with various embodiments of the present invention. U-bolts 2202 may be used to secure reinforcement members 2000, 2020, 2040 to a tower member 2252 of the tower structure 2250 through holes 1902 formed in base plate blank 1900. In addition, reinforcement members 2000 may be bolted directly to tower member 2252 via holes 2205 formed in tower member 2252 and via other holes 1902 formed in reinforcement member 2000. FIGS. 23 and 24 illustrate alternative fashions in which consecutive reinforcement members 2000 may be connected. In one embodiment of FIGS. 22 and 23, reinforcement member 2020 may be connected to reinforcement member 2040 via one or more reinforced splice plates 2302, where the reinforced splice plates each have a stiffening cross plate 1804, which may also be in a varying-height pattern such as a wave pattern. In another embodiment of FIGS. 22 and 24, reinforcement member 2000 may be connected to reinforcement member 2020 via one or more splice plates 406 bolted to a splice plate interface member of reinforcement member 2000 as well as to a splice plate interface member of reinforcement member 2020.

FIGS. 25-29 illustrate an alternative double-layer reinforcement member 2900 which interconnects to other similar reinforcement members via a tabbed connector 2800, according to various embodiments of the present invention. FIG. 25 illustrates a front view of a top reinforcement member 2500 of a multi-layer reinforcement member 2900, FIG. 26 illustrates a front view of a bottom reinforcement member 2600 of a multi-layer reinforcement member 2900, and FIG. 27 illustrates a side view and a top view of top reinforcement member 2500 placed over the bottom reinforcement member 2600 according to various embodiments of the present invention. Top reinforcement member 2500 resembles reinforcement member 750 according to various embodiments of the present invention, except top reinforcement member features fewer holes 2502 formed therethrough, as well as notches 2504 formed therein. Notches 2504 may be formed in top reinforcement member 2500 such that they overlap slots 2604 of bottom reinforcement member 2600 to permit insertion of tabs 2802 of tabbed connectors 2800 past notches 2504 and into slots 2604. Holes 2502 of top reinforcement member 2500 are configured to align with holes 2602 of bottom reinforcement member. Top reinforcement member also includes stiffening cross plate members 2706 having holes 2708 formed therethrough, as well as a splice plate interface member 2704 on each end lengthwise. Each splice plate interface member 2704 may also include holes 2704 formed therethrough for bolting splice plates 406 and tabbed connectors 2800 on either side of splice plate interface member 2704 in connecting consecutive reinforcement members 2900.

The embodiment of FIGS. 25-29 may facilitate drilling of holes into a monopole 400. One commonly used drill for this purpose is a moveable drill press with an electromagnetic grip; however, the electromagnetic grip may not be readily used on non-flat surfaces. According to some embodiments of the present invention, bottom reinforcement member 2600 may be placed against monopole and a magnetic drill placed thereon for drilling the holes, after which top reinforcement member 2600 is inserted over bottom reinforcement member 2500 and bolted to the monopole 400 through holes 2502 and 2602 and tabs 2802 of tabbed splice connectors 2800 are inserted into slots 2604 and bolted to splice plate interface member 2704 and to each other. Such a reinforcement member 2900 configuration may also be used for more than two layers of reinforcement; for example, more than one bottom reinforcement member 2600 may be stacked under top reinforcement member 2500 prior to installation on the monopole 400 as long as longer bolts are used and as long as tabbed connectors 2800 are configured with longer tabs to pass into each of the layered bottom reinforcement elements. Based on the disclosure provided herein, one of ordinary skill in the art will recognize various ways in which reinforcement members 2900 may be connected to each other and to monopole 400 while providing a flat surface during the installation process for the use of a magnetic “mag” drill to drill holes into monopole 400.

FIG. 30 illustrates a side view of a monopole 400 with reinforcement members 750 installed thereon, as well as a reinforcement section spanning a monopole obstruction 3004 or access hole according to various embodiments of the present invention. For monopole locations where it would be inconvenient or impossible to lay reinforcement member 750 directly over the monopole location, for example monopole obstruction 3004 or an access hole, a reinforcement section may be built which crosses the obstruction above the monopole 400 surface. First, section of reinforcement pipe 3002 (or other suitable reinforcement material) may be cut to a length corresponding to the distance between the reinforcement member 750 just before the obstruction and the reinforcement member 750 just after the obstruction. Alternatively, the lengths of reinforcement pipe 3002 may be pre-formed, or may be formed of another suitable reinforcing bar such as a solid or hollow bar having a square, rectangular, or triangular cross-section. According to some embodiments of the present invention, use of pipe for reinforcement material 3002 may minimize drag while maintaining a favorable radius of gyration value; pipe may also be more readily available and cheaper than other sections. A bracket 3006 may be welded to each end of reinforcement pipe 3002, and bolted through holes in bracket 3006 and through holes in the splice plate interface member of each reinforcement member 750. In addition, the length of brackets 3006 at the top and/or bottom may be varied depending on the level of clearance needed to span the obstruction. Such a span of reinforcement pipe 3002 serves to maintain continuity between reinforcement members 750 above the obstruction 3004 and those below the obstruction 3004. FIG. 31 illustrates a cross-sectional view of the monopole 400 of FIG. 30 with reinforcement members 750 installed thereon, as well as a reinforcement section 3002 spanning a monopole obstruction 3004 or access hole according to various embodiments of the present invention.

FIGS. 32-35 illustrate a transition structure for the extension of a monopole 400 or the addition of an additional monopole structure 3200 according to various embodiments of the present invention. As seen in FIG. 32, the original monopole structure 400 extends to pre-existing top plate 3210. Often, pre-existing top plate 3210 may have equipment such as antennae already affixed thereto. Often, it would be time consuming and expensive to remove such equipment in order to secure a new monopole structure 3200 directly to the pre-existing top plate 3210. For example, if antennae are already mounted on pre-existing top plate, a mobile antenna service may need to be hired during installation of the monopole extension 3200 to avoid a service outage. Therefore, a transition structure for attaching a new monopole structure 3200 at a location above the pre-existing top plate 3210 is described.

In adding the new monopole structure, a set of extension mount members 3500 may be bolted to monopole 400 just below the pre-existing top plate 3210, as shown in FIG. 32 at the radial placements shown in FIG. 33. An extension member 3550 may either be custom-made or pre-formed to include a top extension bracket 3506, a bottom extension bracket 3504, an extension pipe 3502 (or other suitable solid or hollow bar). Top extension bracket 3506, bottom extension bracket 3504, and extension pipe 3502 may each vary in length depending on the clearance needed to span pre-existing top plate 3210 and/or other existing structures. Extension member 3550 may further include crossbar brackets 3508. A new top plate member 3570 may include a new top plate 3579 and new top plate member bracket connectors 3577 also having holes 3507 formed therein. Extension members 3550 may be bolted to or otherwise coupled with extension mount members 3500 through holes 3503 in bottom extension bracket 3504, and extension members 3550 may be bolted to or otherwise coupled with new top plate member bracket connectors 3577 via top extension bracket 3506. According to some embodiments of the present invention, holes 3402 in new top plate 3579 have been pre-cut, such as laser pre-cut, to match holes in a new base plate 3201 of new monopole extension 3200. This permits new monopole extension 3200 to be set directly ontop of new top plate 3579 and bolted on, thereby vastly minimizing installation time. Crossbar members 3202 may be added to connect crossbar brackets 3508 to provide further structure and reinforcement between extension mount members 3500 and new top plate member 3570.

FIG. 36 illustrates a side view of a base mount for a reinforcement member 300 according to various embodiments of the present invention. At the lower termination of reinforcement member 300, an anchor splice plate 3602 (or a set of anchor splice plates 3602—one on each side of reinforcement member 300) may be bolted to reinforcement member 300 and welded to an anchor bolt 3604, which may be, for example, a pipe. The pipe may be, for example, a 4.5-inch diameter XS pipe (approximately one foot long) welded vertically to anchor splice plate 3602. Such welding may be performed prior to installation. In addition, according to some embodiments anchor splice plate 3602 may be welded directly to monopole 400. Anchor bolt 3604 extends to a pre-existing caisson 3606 to provide further stability to reinforcement members 300.

FIG. 37 illustrates a side view of a base mount for a reinforcement member 300 according to various embodiments of the present invention. At the lower termination of reinforcement member 300, a splice plate 406 (or a set of splice plates 406—one on each side of reinforcement member 300) may be bolted to reinforcement member 300 and welded to an anchor plate 3702. Anchor plate 3702 may in turn be welded to an anchor bolt 3704, which may be, for example, a pipe. The pipe may be, for example, a 4.5-inch diameter XS pipe (approximately one foot long) welded vertically to anchor plate 3702. Such welding may be performed prior to installation. In addition, according to some embodiments anchor plate 3702 may be welded directly to monopole 400 and/or base plate 3708. Anchor bolt 3704 extends to a pre-existing caisson 3606 to provide further stability to reinforcement members 300.

FIG. 38 illustrates a side view of a base mount for a reinforcement member 300 according to various embodiments of the present invention. At the lower termination of reinforcement member 300, a splice plate 406 (or a set of splice plates 406—one on each side of reinforcement member 300) may be bolted to reinforcement member 300 and welded to an anchor plate 3802. Anchor plate 3802 may in turn be welded directly to monopole 400 and/or base plate 3708. Such welding between splice plates 406 and anchor plate 3803 may be performed prior to installation. FIG. 39 illustrates a top view of the base mounts of FIG. 36 or 37 according to various embodiments of the present invention.

FIG. 40 illustrates a side view of a base extension and mounting system according to various embodiments of the present invention. According to various embodiments of the present invention, it may be desirable or necessary to extend the base mount further from the center of monopole 400 in order to improve stability or to better distribute forces from reinforcement members 300 or the monopole 400 itself. FIG. 41 illustrates a top view of the base extension and mounting system of FIG. 40 according to various embodiments of the present invention. At the lower termination of reinforcement member 300, an anchor plate 4002 (or a set of anchor plates 4002—one on each side of reinforcement member 300) may be bolted to reinforcement member 300. According to some embodiments of the present invention, anchor plate(s) 4002 may further be welded to monopole 400 and/or base plate 3708. A base extension beam 4004 may be bolted to, welded to, or otherwise coupled with anchor plate 4002. Another base extension beam 4008 may be bolted to base extension beam 4004 via a base extension beam splice plate 4006. Use of multiple base extension beams 4004, 4008 may permit the size and weight of each piece to be wieldy, thus decreasing installation time. For example, according to some embodiments of the present invention each independent element used in monopole reinforcement weighs less than 200 pounds, and may be bought in a kit of interconnectable components which may be mixed and matched depending upon the application.

FIG. 42 depicts a flow diagram 4200 illustrating a method for reinforcing an antenna structure according to various embodiments of the present invention. Such embodiments of methods may include providing a plurality of reinforcement members, each of the plurality of reinforcement members comprising an elongated base plate comprising a first plurality of holes formed therein at one or more intervals along a length of the elongated base plate, the first plurality of holes configured to receive one or more bolts for attaching the elongated base plate to the antenna tower structure in a substantially vertical orientation, a stiffening cross plate protruding substantially perpendicularly from the elongated base plate, the stiffening cross plate comprising an inner edge substantially flush with the elongated base plate, the stiffening cross plate further comprising an outer edge whose distance from the elongated base plate varies along the length between a minimum protrusion height and a maximum protrusion height, a first splice plate interface member at one end of each of the plurality of reinforcement members, the first splice plate interface member configured for attachment with a splice plate, and a second splice plate interface member at another end of each of the plurality of reinforcement members, the second splice plate interface member configured for attachment with the splice plate (block 4202). Such embodiments of methods may further include providing the splice plate configured to join successive reinforcement members of the plurality of reinforcement members (block 4204), affixing a first reinforcement member of the plurality of reinforcement members to the antenna tower structure in the substantially vertical orientation (block 4206), affixing a second reinforcement member of the plurality of reinforcement members to the antenna tower structure in vertical alignment with the first reinforcement member (block 4208), and rigidly connecting the first reinforcement member with the second reinforcement member via the splice plate (block 4210).

FIG. 43 depicts a flow diagram 4300 illustrating a method for adding an extension to an existing antenna structure according to various embodiments of the present invention. Such embodiments of methods may include mounting an extension mount member to the monopole structure below the existing top plate (block 4302), providing a new top plate comprising a top plate bracket connector (block 4304), providing an extension member, the extension member comprising a top bracket connector and a bottom bracket connector (block 4306), coupling the bottom bracket connector with the extension mount member (block 4308), coupling the top bracket connector with the top plate bracket connector (block 4310), placing the extension onto the new top plate (block 4314), and securing the new base plate onto the new top plate (block 4316).

FIG. 44 depicts a flow diagram 4400 illustrating a method for reinforcing an antenna structure according to various embodiments of the present invention. Such embodiments of methods may include providing an elongated base plate comprising a first set of pre-drilled holes and preformed slots (block 4402), attaching a reinforcement member to the antenna structure (block 4404), attaching a splice plate to the reinforcement member (block 4406), hanging the elongated base plate from the splice plate (block 4408), mounting a magnetic drill to the elongated base plate (block 4410), drilling a second set of holes into the antenna structure through at least one of the first set of pre-drilled holes (block 4412), stacking onto the elongated base plate a top plate, the top plate comprising a substantially perpendicularly protruding stiffening cross plate, the top plate further comprising notches formed therein and a third set of pre-drilled holes, such that the notches overlap the preformed slots and the third set of pre-drilled holes overlap the first set of pre-drilled holes when the top plate is stacked onto the elongated base plate (block 4414), providing a tabbed connector comprising tabs configured to pass through the notches and fit within the preformed slots (block 4416), inserting the tabs of the tabbed connector into the preformed slots (block 4418), attaching the tabbed connector to the top plate (block 4420), and bolting the top plate and the elongated base plate to the antenna structure through the first and third sets of pre-drilled holes (block 4422).

As can be seen from the above description, several elements of various embodiments of the present invention are standard, interchangeable, interconnectable, and/or modular for increased manufacturing and installation efficiency. Embodiments of the invention have now been described in detail for purposes of clarity and understanding. However, it will be appreciated that certain changes and modifications may be practiced within the scope of the appended claims. Thus, although the invention is described with reference to specific embodiments and figures thereof, the embodiments and figures are merely illustrative, and not limiting of the invention. Rather, the scope of the invention is to be determined solely by the appended claims.