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

In Front Of The Wave

In its paper, “Intelligent Efficiency: Innovations Reshaping the Energy Efficiency Market,” Greentech Media notes that efficiency is an untapped energy resource that is already embedded in every commercial building, manufacturing facility and corporate campus.

Into The Mainstream

All of those millions of miles of dark fiber are primarily expected to deliver broadband connections. The Internet continues to grow unabated, and bandwidth must be expanded to accommodate that growth. 

Beyond Home

Sometimes called the third wave of the Internet, the Internet of Things (IoT) is the next technology megatrend.

The 'Real' Answer

There is an old saying that liars figure and figures lie, which implies that the truth can be a challenge to discern from both people and data. At a recent standards-making conference, I encountered some examples of this concept that seemed worth sharing.

Don't Think Rip And Replace

For electrical contractors with a low-voltage or security division—or for any company involved in physical security and surveillance—keeping pace with new technology is one of the greatest challenges.

Finding A Signal

Last month, I wrote about how fiber was being used to expand bandwidth for cellular systems, connecting cell towers to the phone network and antennas on the tower to the base electronics. That helps our phone coverage when we’re driving or walking outside.

Go With The Flow

Workflow-management tools are designed to orchestrate everyday business processes. For example, a contractor may implement a process for submitting, reviewing and approving expense reports.