Systems

 

 

Integrated electrical and low-voltage systems of all types—inside and outside a building—encompass the range of work that electrical contractors do. The articles in this section highlight different types of work, from security, fire and life safety, to traditional electrical power and distribution, to lighting, cabling and more. 

Don’t blink! If you do, you may miss some of the rapidly developing changes occurring in the technology sector.


I’m sure all of you have run into an issue such as this when installing a fire alarm system: One authority having jurisdiction (AHJ) wants one thing, and another AHJ wants exactly the opposite. What do you do? You can’t make both happy.

Last month, we discussed how long-distance dark fiber is used to connect data centers. Everywhere you look, you read about new data centers being built by Google or Facebook or Amazon or some other one with a strange, unpronounceable name.

Building-system-automation implementation has paved the way for sensor technology to make buildings more efficient, healthier and more comfortable for occupants.

More on Systems

 
Connect And Power Up
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Power over Ethernet (PoE) is a way to safely transmit electrical power and data over standard structured cabling to remote devices where there may not be a power outlet or where it is too expensive to install a new outlet or bring in additional electrical service.


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Automation for the People
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While the home-automation market is still in a bit of a Wild West state, the combined factors of industry consolidation and consumers’ growing interest in interoperability are forcing some order into the chaos of available products.

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Blink And You'll Miss It
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The blinks and flickers referred to here can best be described as “voltage fluctuations on electric power systems [that] sometimes give rise to noticeable illumination changes from lighting equipment.” The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) standard that covers this is about to

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LED lighting can be powered and controlled through a PoE system in a data center application.
The Power of PoE
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Power over Ethernet (PoE) is any of several standardized or ad-hoc systems that pass electrical power along with data on Ethernet cabling.

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Communication Breakdown
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The 2010 edition of NFPA 72, National Fire Alarm and Signaling Code, established a new and separate chapter for emergency communication systems (ECS), which continues to evolve.

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Step One: Commissioning
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In its basic form, commissioning means testing every device, process and procedure in an integrated systems solution to ensure the final specification operates as planned and according to the owner’s design. 


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A Key Component of Reliability
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I have often described the reliability of a fire alarm system installation as dependent on four elements: design, equipment, installation and maintenance. I have also explained that the last two elements contribute the most to a fire alarm system’s operational reliability.


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