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

 
Going Solo: Preparing for single-mode fiber


For almost a year, I’ve been covering the expansion—explosion?—of optical fiber’s applications. Data speed is a factor in almost all of these networks; networks are getting progressively faster.


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2016 Fiber Update

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.



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A Calculated Introduction

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



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Can't Do Without

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.


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Ready To Respond: The need for emergency communications systems


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.



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What's In Store For Security in 2016?

The years leading up to 2016 were transitional for the security industry. As products and services continue to move to the cloud, the industry has been hard at work learning the morphing landscape and how to best approach the new wave of opportunity emerging from every front.


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A New Frontier Of Sales

Are electrical contractors getting what they need online from their distributors? The answer, as it happens so often, depends on whom you ask.



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