Jim Phillips

Freelance Writer

Jim Phillips, P.E., founder of www.brainfiller.com and www.ArcFlashForum.com, conducts training programs around the world and is author of the book “Complete Guide to Arc Flash Hazard Calculation Studies.” He is Secretary of the IEEE 1584 Arc Flash Working Group as well as many other national and international standards organizations. Reach him at jphillips@brainfiller.com.

Articles by Jim Phillips

  • System upgrades, short-circuit current

March 2014
It goes up. It goes down. Sometimes, it is thought to be infinite (although it isn’t), and other times, it seems impossible to find. The available short-circuit current from the electric utility is one of the more important pieces of information for an arc flash hazard calculation study. READ MORE
January 2014
Two simple words, a total of six letters, help define which electrical equipment is required to have an arc flash label. Although these two words are used with good intentions, they can often leave a person second-guessing themselves.
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November 2013
Mistakes happen, and there are plenty of opportunities to make them when performing an arc flash calculation study. The good news is commercially available arc flash software can help simplify the study process and perhaps even reduce errors. Software typically contains extensive libraries of data and can sometimes provide default data. READ MORE
  • In the third test, the cover blew open.
September 2013
Edward Murphy is famous for his law that states: “Anything that can go wrong will go wrong.” When performing an arc flash study, Murphy’s Law becomes very important if assumptions are made about this rare but potentially deadly event. 
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July 2013
The first step in conducting an arc flash study is to obtain the data necessary to accurately represent the electrical system. Equations defined by IEEE 1584–IEEE Guide for Performing Arc Flash Hazard Calculations are at the heart of most studies and require a lot of data.
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May 2013
Without warning, smoke rolled out from under the tires as they squealed against the pavement with the brakes locked up. The big truck seemed to come from nowhere. It felt like an eternity; although it was really only a matter of seconds, then … CRASH! READ MORE
May 2013
A lot has happened since 2002 when IEEE 1584–IEEE Guide for Arc-Flash Hazard Calculations was first published by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers. The development of this landmark document included conducting more than 300 arc flash tests, which were used to create the empirically derived equations. READ MORE
May 2013
The surface area of the earth is approximately 197 million square miles, and IEEE 1584—IEEE Guide for Performing Arc-Flash Hazard Calculations has been covering more of it every day since it was first published almost 11 years ago. READ MORE
March 2013
After having consultants crawl all over the place, asking questions and gathering mounds of data, the arc flash study for your facility is finally done. Now the big question: with endless calculations based on IEEE 1584, IEEE Guide for Performing Arc-Flash Hazard Calculations, what do the numbers mean? More important, how do you incorporate the results into your electrical safety program? READ MORE

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