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

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
January 2013
“Kill the Circuit.” This phrase is a colorful way of saying de-energize the circuit. Easy enough­—just open a switch or other protective device and the circuit is “dead.” It should then be safe to work on, right? Wrong! Simply opening a switch does not guarantee the circuit is de-energized. Really? What could go wrong?
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November 2012
One of the first steps in performing an arc flash hazard calculation study is to request the short-circuit data from the electric utility company. This information is critical because it defines the magnitude of current that could flow from the utility and is used as a starting point for arc flash calculations. READ MORE
September 2012
OUCH! I can’t believe I just did that. While trimming the hedge at home one afternoon, I moved the orange extension cord around one of the bushes. Simple enough—being a very safety conscious person, I wanted to ensure I did not accidently cut it. As I grabbed the cord, I felt an unexpected surprise. The painful buzz in my hand said it all. I had just received an electric shock. READ MORE
July 2012
It happened once again! In one of my training programs, someone asked the all-too-familiar question, “What color should arc flash warning labels be?” It’s no wonder people are confused. This question could have more than one answer. READ MORE
June 2012
A few months ago, I was driving home from the Los Angeles area and suddenly found myself surrounded by thousands of wind turbines lining both sides of Interstate 10. Even though I have made this trip many times, I am still in awe at the scale of it all. READ MORE
May 2012
Plato, the Greek philosopher, had it right almost 2,500 years ago. He is widely credited for the quote, “Necessity is the mother of invention.” When it comes to arc flashes, many creative methods have been developed out of necessity to reduce or eliminate these potentially deadly hazards. READ MORE
May 2012
The famous phrase “The more things change, the more they stay the same” has never been further from the truth than when it comes to NFPA 70E, the Standard for Electrical Safety in the Workplace. Many changes occur with each new edition in an effort to continually improve electrical safety. READ MORE

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