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. 

Along with solar power, wind turbines, electric vehicles and other alternative-energy technologies, microgrids are now playing a bigger role in the nation’s energy infrastructure. Recently, the state of New Jersey announced its own microgrid project.

Last Fall, a contractor working for Google Fiber in Nashville, Tenn., made headlines for breaking a 36-inch water main while doing directional boring. That was the second time that contractor had broken a water main in a week.

Reviewing data files from power quality (PQ) monitors to find evidence pointing to the cause of a customer’s problems may sound simple enough for someone who has worked in the industry for more than 35 years.

Many contractors work on building tenant fit-outs or reconfigurations of existing spaces where an existing fire alarm system requires updating. Often, a fire alarm equipment salesperson will lure the contractor into thinking it is OK to reuse the existing system’s wiring and cable.

More on Systems

 
Fiber Optic Testing

Continuing the thread of measurement uncertainty in fiber optics, this month I discuss measuring the loss of an installed fiber optic cable plant. Optical loss, tested with a light source, power meter and two reference cables, is the most common measurement in fiber optics.



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Waveform with harmonics: 8 percent of fundamental for the 2nd harmonic, 18 percent for 3rd, 10 percent for 5th, 5 percent for 7th, 2 percent for 9th
Up And Coming

There was a recurring topic at the summer meetings of the IEEE Power Quality Subcommittee’s various working groups and task forces, and it came to a head at a panel session on the latest version of IEEE 519 2014, IEEE Recommended Practice and Requirements for Harmonic Control in Electric Power Syste


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The Shift Continues: Service Revenues Rise in Security Systems Integration


Moving to upstart revenue streams and mobile, remote systems management is the way smart, low-voltage electrical contractors are doing something about the changing security and integrated systems market.


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Central Intelligence: The IoT Brings Big Changes 
to Data Centers

The Internet of Things (IoT) may alter the appearance of data centers. The IoT is a growing system of data that puts demand on existing data centers and pushes for new facilities that are centrally located and “on the edge,” a trendy phrase to describe the point at which sensors are installed.


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Outside Influences

The green buildings market can offer a significant opportunity for electrical contractors that install fire alarm systems. Are you ready for this? How does your plain old fire alarm system installation help to meet the requirements of a green building?


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Web Exclusive
Critical Infrastructure, Data Centers and Cybersecurity, Part 2

As stated in Part 1 of this series last month, when it comes to the architecture of mission critical systems for any organization, the power and network infrastructure layers need to be reliable, redundant, and resilient.


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New York Puts Green Backup Power on Wheels

This summer, New York-based Consolidated Edison (Con Edison) spent $1.6 billion to upgrade its delivery system, including 12 network transformers, 70 overhead transformers, 16 underground feeder sections, 37 overhead sections of power lines and reinforcement of 25 electric feeders.


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