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. 

At a small telecommunications facility, equipment mysteriously started self-destructing for no apparent reason. Laptops, routers, printers and cell phones were apparently just becoming nonfunctional.

After 15 years of rural living on a small farm in Southern California, my wife and I recently moved back into the city. Now, as we walk around our neighborhood, we are often reminded that we live in one of the smartest “smart cities” in the world: Santa Monica, Calif.

As new technology such as Amazon Alexa is linked to smart home devices, lamps are becoming more than simple lights that turn on when you flip a switch.  


In the last year or two, I have written a few articles about NFPA 3, Recommended Practice for Commissioning of Fire Protection and Life Safety Systems, and NFPA 4, Standard for Integrated Fire Protection and Life Safety System Testing. These were both part of NFPA 3 starting in 2013.

More on Systems

 
Battery Storage Technology Expanding Worldwide

Renewable generation and energy storage technology have evolved at a similar pace in recent years. Their mutually beneficial relationship is no mystery.


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Systems Efficiency Is the Key to Building Energy Optimization

A new report, "Going Beyond Zero: A Systems Efficiency Blueprint for Building Energy Optimization and Resilience," published in May by the Alliance to Save Energy (ASE), focuses on how to better capitalize on new technologies that allow "smarter interactions of components" within and among various b


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Energy Efficiency Could Level Demand In The Southeast


In the changing dynamic of energy resources, efficiency is playing a vital role. Even if political support for efficiency diminishes, its importance to the future of energy remains.


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California Proposal Would Double Funding Of Energy-Storage Incentives


California is already a national leader in energy storage. Now, a member of the California Public Utilities Commission (PUC), Clifford Rechtschaffen, has submitted a proposed decision that would double funding for the state’s Self Generation Incentive Program.


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Low-Voltage Cable Market Set To Grow


While low-voltage cable often refers to what is used to wire audiovisual and fire alarm equipment, it also describes lower voltage electric grid distribution cable, as contrasted with the high-voltage cable used on transmission lines.


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Figure 1: Voltage and current transients during switching
Both Sides Now: PQ Monitoring Systems


Engineers in a large electric utility’s power quality (PQ) department had installed PQ monitoring to determine the source of a system component’s failures. They needed to see the voltage and current waveforms before, during and after the cap banks were switched in and out.


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Taking The Fiber Wheel

Six years ago, with no experience as an internet service provider (ISP) or telecom service provider, Google Fiber generated an immense amount of excitement by announcing that the company was going to build a gigabit-speed fiber-to-the-home (FTTH) network for Kansas City, Mo., a city chosen from more


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