Richard P. Bingham

Power Quality Columnist

Richard P. Bingham, a contributing editor for power quality. He can be reached at 732.287.3680.

Articles by Richard P. Bingham

September 2016
The quote “The more I learn, the more I realize how much I don’t know,” is popularly attributed to Albert Einstein. The sentiment accurately summarizes analyzing the power quality (PQ) and quantity data collected over the past year at a residential site with 14 kilowatts of photovoltaic (PV) roof panels.
September 2016
The PQ industry has lost another giant with the passing in June of Erich Gunther, formerly of Electrotek Concepts and co-founder of Enernex. Erich had a unique capability to be truly a jack-of-all-trades and master-of-all, with regards to the utility electrical and communication systems, electronic instrumentation design, and programming of complex algorithms in software and firmware. READ MORE
August 2016
My January 2015 article, “It’s Just Math,” explained how various parameters used to evaluate power quality (PQ) are derived while avoiding formulas and other mathematical expressions. This article follows up on testing operational aspects of PQ monitors to verify that they meet your application’s needs. READ MORE
July 2016
A while back, I wrote about a house with 14 kilowatts (kW) of solar panels installed on the southern exposure roof. Voltage and current monitoring at the breaker panel prior to the solar panel installation had shown 10–12-volt (V) deep sags occurring as frequently as every 22 minutes. READ MORE
June 2016
At a recent meeting, a comment was made that many power quality (PQ) monitor users purchase equipment that is just “good enough.” PQ monitors can be a significant capital equipment purchase for some companies, particularly smaller electrical contracting firms. Return on investment is important, but an equally critical factor is determining what, exactly, “good enough” means.
May 2016
When people send in data from a power quality monitor to be reviewed, some common questions include “Is my site normal?” and “Does this data look OK to operate my facility?” Such questions usually get the same ambiguous answer: “It depends.” The quality of electric power as supplied and how much is consumed is not one-size-fits-all.
  • Figure 1: Notching caused by semiconductor-controlled rectifier switching during commutation period
April 2016
Maybe it is because they are rarely seen by the human eye or because the proliferation of surge protector strips makes everyone feel immune, but transients still exist and can wreak havoc with electrical equipment. The high magnitude and fast rise time of voltage transients, caused by lightning or switching operations, can degrade or cause immediate failure in all equipment classes. READ MORE
March 2016
With the fifth generation of power quality monitors comes more parameters, features, communication modes and, for some users, challenges getting the answers that they want from the instruments. More of everything means more things to set up or program and, with that comes more chances to do it incorrectly. READ MORE
  • Figure 1: Using horse and railcar to explain power factor
February 2016
While few would argue about of the wealth of information on the Internet, there isn’t a mechanism for qualifying its accuracy. Basically, anyone can post anything. Even such peer-reviewed sites as Wikipedia can fall short of the facts. A relatively simple concept in power is a good example. READ MORE