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. 

Energy consumer demand for distributed-energy resources (DER) is growing for a number of reasons—unexpected utility power outages, planned rolling blackouts, power quality problems, increases in power costs, etc.


The 2016 Profile of the Electrical Contractor reveals how electrical contractors see the industry changing and how they intend to adapt. Change occurs in the fire alarm and communications world as well. As you know, keeping up with these changes can prove difficult. 


Evolution in action


Much has been said and written about analog video cameras and the move to internet protocol (IP) networked digital surveillance. Some predicted the demise of analog and takeover by IP devices would progress quickly, but clearly that hasn’t happened.

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.

More on Systems

 
Deterring the Mob Mentality

The State College (Pennsylvania) Borough Council was looking for answers. During the summers of 1998 and 2000, students from Penn State took part in large-scale riots.


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Security Forecast

Perhaps Homeland Security Defense initiatives haven’t been the windfall the security industry expected, but this market and other related low-voltage segments continue to grow. After Sept. 11, the phones wouldn’t stop ringing for many manufacturers.


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Cabling on a Shoestring

It doesn’t always take cutting-edge technology to launch new applications, although that certainly has been the case for the most part in low-voltage in recent years.


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Saved by the Bell

Educational construction continues to lead the non-residential market in new construction spending.


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Wiring Air Conditioning and More

CODE CITATIONS Article 210 Branch Circuits Article 250 Grounding Article 300 Wiring Methods Article 310 Conductors for General Wiring Article 334 Nonmetallic Sheathed Cable: Types NM, NMC and NMS Article 422 Appliances Article 518 Places of Assembly Article 700 Emergency Systems Wiring air condition


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Fiber Optic Update

Fiber optics, as we all know, has not had a very good time the last couple of years, with the overall market dropping by almost 80 percent (see chart at top right).


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Installing a Service Disconnect

Many changes have occurred to the National Electrical Code (NEC) since the first NEC was published on Aug. 31, 1897. Even though the electrical industry was in its infancy, this “first” NEC was remarkably insightful and has withstood the test of time.


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