Star-Delta Motor Starting - Performance

By Steven McFadyen on 7/10/2014 3:51 PM

Many questions sent in to the site are in connection with motor starting and in particular star-delta.  For all but the simplest application, there is merit in performing a more detailed study.&... read more..


IEC 60287 Current Capacity of Cables - An Introduction

By Steven McFadyen on 1/31/2013 1:00 PM

IEC 60287 "Calculation of the continuous current rating of cables (100% load factor)" is the International Standard which defines the procedures and equations to be used in determining the ... read more..


Electromagnetic Fields - Exposure Limits

By Steven McFadyen on 6/28/2014 6:00 PM

Exposure to time varying magnetic fields, from power frequencies to the gigahertz range can have harmful consequences.  A lot of research has been conducted into identifying these effects and de... read more..


DC Component of Asymmetrical Faults

By Steven McFadyen on 1/9/2013 6:52 PM

The image (reproduced from IEC 60909) shows a typical fault in an ac system.  From the illustration it can seen that there is an initial dc component (id.c.).  This initial dc compo... read more..


Induction Motor Equivalent Circuit

By Steven McFadyen on 5/13/2014 1:19 PM

Induction motors are frequently used in both industrial and domestic applications.  Within the induction motor, an electrical current in the rotor is induced by a varying magnetic field in the s... read more..


Photovoltaic (PV) - Electrical Calculations

By Steven McFadyen on 7/11/2013 2:46 PM

Photovoltaic (PV) cells (sometimes called solar cells) convert solar energy into electrical energy.  Every year more and more PV systems are installed.  With this growing application, it's ... read more..


How D.C. to A.C. Inverters Work

By Steven McFadyen on 4/22/2014 1:19 PM

Traditionally generation of electricity has involved rotating machines to produce alternating sinusoidal voltage and current (a.c. systems). With the development of power electronics during the last ... read more..


The dc resistance of conductors

By Steven McFadyen on 1/5/2012 2:14 PM

This is the first of two posts on the resistance of conductors. In the next post I will look at the ac resistance, including skin effect and we deal with this. To get started, this post will look at the... read more..


How to Size Power Cable Duct

By Steven McFadyen on 11/24/2011 10:09 AM

Some colleagues had an issue earlier in the week on sizing conduits to be cast in concrete for some power cables . It became clear that none of us had a clear idea on an approved method. In the end w... read more..


How to Size Current Transformers

By Steven McFadyen on 11/7/2011 11:48 AM

The correct sizing of current transformers is required to ensure satisfactory operation of measuring instruments and protection relays. Several methods exist to size current transformers. This note will... read more..


Back to Basics - Ohm’s Law

By Steven McFadyen on 10/21/2011 2:02 PM

Electrical engineering has a multitude of laws and theorems. It is fair to say the Ohm's Law is one of the more widely known; it not the most known. Developed in 1827 by Georg Ohm the law defines the re... read more..


Alternating Current Circuits

By Steven McFadyen on 4/3/2012 1:29 PM

Alternating current (a.c.) is the backbone of modern electrical power distribution. In this article I’ll be pulling some of the more important concepts together. It is a work in progress and I’ll be add... read more..




Battery Cars A to Z

Battery powered cars are a hot topic and widely debated. The pros, cons, issues and time frames can be talked about endlessly. An article by the Telegraph...

Understanding Motor Duty Rating

One of the comments on my Motor Starting Series was asking for something on duty cycles. Here it is. As a purchaser of a motor, you have responsibility...

The ac resistance of conductors

In a previous article I looked at the dc resistance of conductors and in this article we turn our attention to ac resistance. If you have not read the...

Difference Between Live and Dead Tank Circuit Breakers

A quick post in connection with an email question: Live Tank - the circuit breaker the switching unit is located in an insulator bushing which is live...

Electric Motors

Collection of links to various places with useful motor information. I’ll try and return to the page every now and again to update it with any motor notes...

Low Voltage Fault Tables

The following tables provide quick order of magnitude fault levels for a a range of typical low voltage situations.

New Mail Chimp

We've been sending out Newsletters on a regular basis for a few weeks now. To do this we have been using Google's Feedburner service. While Feedburner...

Gas Insulated or Air Insulated Switchgear

Various arguments exist around SF6 Gas Insulated (GIS) and Air Insulated (AIS) medium voltage switchgear. Recently we had to change a GIS design to AI...

Differential protection, the good old days

This morning I was explaining how differential protection works to a junior engineer. To give him something to read I opened up the NPAG (Network Protection...

Control Theory

Control theory looks at how systems work and are controlled from a mathematical view.  This note gives a brief introduction to some of the concepts – more...

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