Photovoltaic (PV) - Utility Power Grid Interface

By Steven McFadyen on 4/4/2013 12:47 PM

Photovoltaic (PV) systems are typically more efficient when connected in parallel with a main power gird. During periods when the PV system generates energy this can be utilized and the grid energy u... read more..


Switchboard - Forms of Internal Separation

By Steven McFadyen on 1/29/2012 12:57 PM

IEC 61439 'Low-voltage switchgear and controlgear assemblies', specifies standard arrangements of switchboard (call forms of internal separation).

read more..


Fire Resistant and Fire Retardant Cables

By Steven McFadyen on 7/4/2013 1:31 PM

Fire resistant and fire retardant cable sheaths are design to resist combustion and limit the propagation of flames. Low smokes cables have a sheath designed to limit the amount of smoke and toxic ha... read more..


How to measure power supply quality

By Steven McFadyen on 2/14/2012 11:43 AM

If your are ever called out to troubleshoot something on your electrical system, one of the first things consider is the supply voltage. You want to ensure you have a good electrical supply before movin... read more..


IEC Document Designation

By Steven McFadyen on 5/9/2012 2:07 PM

Often document control is dictated by project requirements, for example a particular organisation may have an existing numbering system. Existing company or group/department document control systems may... read more..


Lighting Design - An Introduction

By Steven McFadyen on 4/12/2012 1:50 PM

From the earliest times, humans have found ways to create light. Pre-historic peoples used natural materials (moss, grass, etc.) soaked in animal fat and then ignited. Around 3000 to 4500 BC, oil lam... read more..


Low Voltage Circuit Breakers

By Steven McFadyen on 4/15/2012 1:55 PM

Circuit breakers are switching devices whose primary function is to isolate parts of an electrical distribution system in the even of abnormal conditions.  Abnormal conditions are generally caused ... read more..


Medium Voltage Switchgear Room Design Guide

By Steven McFadyen on 5/9/2012 2:12 PM

Many medium voltage (MV) indoor switchgear rooms  exist worldwide. The complexity of these rooms varies considerably depending on location, function and technology adopted by the owner. This articl... read more..


Low Voltage Switchroom Design Guide

By Steven McFadyen on 5/9/2012 2:10 PM

Low voltage (LV) switchrooms are common across all industries and one of the more common spatial requirements which need to be designed into a project. Main LV switchrooms w... read more..


Standard Cable & Wire Sizes

By Steven McFadyen on 4/9/2012 7:45 AM

IEC 60228 is the International Electrotechnical Commission's international standard on conductors of insulated cables. Among other things, it defines a set of standard wire cross-sections. In the United... read more..


Power Factor

By Steven McFadyen on 7/10/2012 11:43 AM

Power factor is the ratio between the real power (P in kW) and apparent power (S in kVA) drawn by an electrical load.

The reactive power (Q in kVAr) causes the real and apparent power to be ... read more..


Introduction to Lighting

By Steven McFadyen on 4/4/2012 1:32 PM

When looking at the design of a lighting scheme it is useful to have an understanding on the nature of light itself and some of the basic theory associated with this.  This article provides an over... read more..




Operational Amplifier

The fundamental component of any analogue computer is the operational amplifier, or op amp. An operational amplifier (often called an op-amp,) is a high...

International System of Units (SI System)

The International System of Units (abbreviated SI) is the world's most widely used system of units.  The system consists of a set of units and prefixes...

Alternating Current Circuits

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...

What are you reading!

Reading is a bit of a hobby of mine and I"ve done a few off-topic posts in the past on this. Rather than continue doing the occasional post I thought ...

Dielectric loss in cables

Dielectrics (insulating materials for example) when subjected to a varying electric field, will have some energy loss.   The varying electric field causes...

Low Voltage Switchroom Design Guide

Low voltage (LV) switchrooms are common across all industries and one of the more common spatial requirements which need to be designed into a project...

Variable Frequency Drive

Variable frequency drives are widely used to control the speed of ac motors.  This note looks at the mechanisms which enable drive units to control the...

Induction Motor Equivalent Circuit

Induction motors are frequently used in both industrial and domestic applications.  Within the induction motor, an electrical current in the rotor is induced...

How to Size Power Cable Duct

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...

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

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

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