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. 

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.

We strive to protect building occupants, including our employees. Many years ago, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) formed to codify regulations in the area of employee protection.

More on Systems

Damaged dog-fence power source
It Does Strike Again, And Again

Lightning is the biggest cause of damage and destruction of electrical and electronic equipment in industrial facilities, commercial buildings and homes, as stated in the 2008 report by the U.S. National Lightning Safety Institute.

The Total Package

Historically, security system installations have only mandated acceptance testing as the last requirement for a project to be deemed completed.

The Electrical Dipstick

Energy costs and potential energy shortages are increasingly driving commercial building and industrial facility owners to find ways to use less energy for the same level of activity.

Automation Expectation

Residential end-user expectation is fueling automation expansion not only in the homes of the wealthy but also in middle class developments where residents expect to be able to manage the operation of their homes with their cell phone or tablet.

Giving The Homeowner Control

The advertisements bombard us constantly. On television, on websites, in your inbox, all with the same message: everyone else is using technology that integrates security systems with home automation and enables remote control of the whole house with smart devices. Why aren’t you doing this too?

Contracting By Proxy

McClure Electric, San Francisco, has been in business since 1966, but it wasn’t until the mid-1990s that it got involved in low-voltage work.

Stick 'em Up Using Epoxy

I am always amused when I hear, “No one uses heat-cured epoxy connectors anymore.” In fact, about 95 percent of all connectors, including every factory-made patchcord, uses heat-cured epoxy for its ease of use, low cost and high reliability.