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. 

As projects become more complex, electrical contractors need high-tech management methods to ensure more efficient results. Here are just a few examples to help you get headed in the right direction. 5pm

The dark fiber providers that most people are familiar with are private companies that were started to offer fiber connectivity for a profit. Today, there is a major movement toward building fiber networks as a public-private partnership.

Phasor diagram and equivalent sinewave plots

When considering power quality disturbances or the quality of the electrical supply, phenomena such as rms variations (sags, swells and interruptions), harmonics, unbalance and flicker usually come to mind.

Data center infrastructure management (DCIM) software enables data center operators to manage assets and changes, plan capacity, and monitor power, environment and energy usage.

More on Systems

Card Access with All the 'Smarts'

In access control, the innovation never stops. In the cards themselves and the readers, technology has stepped up to provide the highest levels of security ever.

Fiber's Biggest Enemy

Your mother was right--dirt is bad. Cleanliness can be next to impossible on the jobsite, but when it comes to fiber optics, it's mandatory. The problem is simply that fiber itself is small, about the size of a human hair.

TIA Approves Category 6

After almost five years in the making, Category 6 is—believe it or not—now an official standard, having been approved and published.

Why Deregulation Failed--And What Comes Next

The government’s deregulation of five major industries—airlines, telecommunications, cable television, banking and electricity—has harmed customers far more than helped them, according to a study released by Consumers Union.

Renewable Energy--Untapped Resource

Federal energy policy now includes emphasis on increasing electric generation from renewable resources. These usually include bioenergy, hydrogen, ocean, wind, solar, geothermal and hydropower resources.

Wiring Transportation Hubs for Modern Communications

In 1996, Congress passed the Telecommunications Act to “provide for a pro-competitive, de-regulatory national policy framework designed to accelerate rapidly private sector deployment of advanced telecommunications and information technologies and services to all Americans ...” That’s all well and g

Troubleshooting Fiber

The fiber optic cable you just installed failed testing. What do you do next? How do you find the problem and fix it—fast? Fortunately, fiber optics is easy to install and experienced installers generally find that about 95 percent of all fibers they install will test good.