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. 

The years leading up to 2016 were transitional for the security industry. As products and services continue to move to the cloud, the industry has been hard at work learning the morphing landscape and how to best approach the new wave of opportunity emerging from every front.

In the past year, fiber optics underwent some important developments, some technical and some market-related. For those of you working in fiber optic network design and installation, the changes present opportunities and challenges.


This article is the first in a series that provides a step-by-step approach for performing arc flash calculations.
 Arc flash studies and software


I often give my power quality (PQ) 101 course to new engineers or salespeople. This introduction starts with the basics: an overview of PQ phenomena based on IEEE 1159 Table 4.2 followed by Ohm’s and Kirchhoff’s laws and how they apply to power quality.

More on Systems

 
Biometrics for the Common Man

Biometrics has gone beyond the realm of space-age applications. Now, and in the future, biometrics is a perfect fit with nearly every user in every market.


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Plastic Optical Fiber

Every year around Christmas, stores roll out artificial trees made with optical fibers. You know the ones—they glow and shine colored light out the ends of the branches. Who would think that these trees are made of a type of optical fiber that offers easy-to-install cheap communications links?


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Have a Backup Plan

In the past, blackouts have led us to focus on preventing systemwide single component failures. But August’s blackout increased nationwide awareness for the need for backup power systems.


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Money in the Bank

Bank security systems are now so sophisticated that it is virtually impossible to use a hankie without being in full view of a surveillance camera. Uniformed guards making their presence obvious are as much an ornament as a deterrent to crime.


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Redundancy Bears Repeating

System redundancy—for electrical, security, fire, alarm or communications systems—is one of those areas that cause many people to go blank.


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Bank Robbers Beware

Each September, Northfield, Minn., celebrates the foiling of the legendary James-Younger gang’s 1876 raid on the First National Bank.


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Financial Security Focuses on CCTV

Remember the V-8 advertisement where the guy slapped his head when he realized he had missed his chance to have his favorite drink? Having a “V-8 Moment” about security systems as the crooks escape a bank robbery is bad news all around.


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