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. 

There is an old saying that liars figure and figures lie, which implies that the truth can be a challenge to discern from both people and data. At a recent standards-making conference, I encountered some examples of this concept that seemed worth sharing.

For electrical contractors with a low-voltage or security division—or for any company involved in physical security and surveillance—keeping pace with new technology is one of the greatest challenges.

When I entered the business, I “sold” fire alarm systems. Codes at the time had begun to require that such systems be installed in some occupancies.

In its paper, “Intelligent Efficiency: Innovations Reshaping the Energy Efficiency Market,” Greentech Media notes that efficiency is an untapped energy resource that is already embedded in every commercial building, manufacturing facility and corporate campus.

More on Systems

Wireless LANs

From a systems standpoint, wireless has been the talk of the town. It seems as if everyone was promoting this technology as one that would change the way we all view networking. Wireless has finally taken the great leap from industry projection chatter to commonplace buzzword.

Solving the Labeling Dilemma

Labeling and documentation can be separate tasks, but they go hand in hand and should be completed, at least in part, at the same time.

Quick Fiber Optic Terminations

One often needs a fast fiber optic termination.

Lubrication Rooms with Pits, Receptacles Above Suspended Ceilings and More

CODE CITATIONS Article 110 Requirements for Electrical Installations Article 230 Services Article 240 Overcurrent Protection Article 250 Grounding Article 310 Conductors for General Wiring Article 400 Flexible Cords and Cables Article 406 Receptacles, Cord Connectors and Attachment Plugs (Caps) Arti

Integrated Building Systems Today...and Tomorrow

Chances are, the buildings of tomorrow will be smarter, safer, more automated and computerized than the buildings in which we now live, work, shop and play. Sunlight will be used with maximum efficiency to boost indoor lighting. Lighting will work in concert with security.

Lessons (to be) Learned

Consider the following statements summarized from a description of a “recent” blackout: • Needles on meters in utility control centers were swinging wildly.

Calling All Contractors

Call centers have come full circle, mainly because they have helped to redefine and reshape customer service functions for a wide variety of businesses. Due to competition within almost all market sectors, customer service has become a defining business function.