Issue 96 May - June 2013

Please note: The issue content below is just a summary of the articles in the printed magazine.
The articles are not available on-line. Please refer to the printed magazine for the complete article.
Acti 9 revolutionises final distribution

After five generations of development, Schneider Electric has introduced a new modular low voltage power distribution system designed to eliminate safety risks during maintenance and operation. Now with protection all the way to final distribution circuits, electricians can enjoy fast and flexible installation work even on the most challenging projects and environments, says Schneider Electric's industrial control and protection product manager Paul Borawski.

"The new Acti 9 system is now the most flexible, co-ordinated, comprehensive and innovative range of LV modular RCDs, MCBs, surge arrestors, protection auxiliaries and control and monitoring devices on the market today."

Getting certification forms right

On the first of July the electrical industry heads into unchartered territory with electrical compliance certification forms no longer controlled by the Electrical Workers Registration Board. From this date electricians and organisations working under an employer's licence are free to design their own CoC forms or acquire them from an industry organisation, without having to gain the approval of the EWRB for their use.

This means the EWRB no longer has the sale of CoC forms as a revenue source. However, the board has opted to continue to provide a certification form as a free download after July 1 so electricians who have failed to sort out their own forms for certification will have a default option readily available and at no charge.

‘All-compatible’ industrial drives

Designed to be compatible with all types of processes, loads, automation systems, and business and user requirements, ABB's new ACS880 industrial variable speed drive series can tackle any motor-driven application in any industry, whatever the power range, says ABB's drives business manager John Keir.

"It's the biggest advance in drive design in a decade and sets a new benchmark. ABB's ACS880 is not only the most technologically-advanced drive on the market with direct torque motor control (DTC) but also has 'all-compatible' design to meet business and user needs."

Improving power quality

For owners and maintenance staff involved in manufacturing processes, poor power quality is becoming an increasing threat to maintaining production. The increased complexity of industrial processes means there are also increases in harmonic distortion, voltage transients, spikes, sags, swells and low power factor. Such compromised power can go un-noticed until electrical equipment suffers damage for what appears to be no apparent reason, forcing shutdowns and costly downtime.

However, with increased manufacturing complexity comes increased solutions to prevent problems and, as a result, power management systems are now becoming regarded as important components for industrial and critical infrastructure installations.

Plant closed by compliance failure

The recent shut-down of a solvent recycling plant in Christchurch by Labour Department (MBIE) inspectors serves as a further warning to industry not to take electrical regulation lightly and to follow standards mandated by the electricity regulations, and not to 'chapter shop' between different standards in trying to achieve compliance.

This warning has been issued by the head of hazardous area consulting company EnviroLight International Ltd, Garry House. EnviroLight International's engineers provided the design for the hazardous areas of a new site for this plant, determined the zoning of it and the methodology as to how hazardous area protection would be applied.

SPARC to light up Sydney

Lighting designers face today the biggest revolution seen in lighting as the LED tsunami engulfs almost every lighting application they are called upon to address.

Designers and specifiers are having to scramble to keep up with these far-reaching changes and learn about the new light sources and how to design with them.

For many reliant on traditional lighting and design approaches, the speed at which they are having to learn is being surpassed only by the rapidity of new product advances and their rapid obsolescence as more powerful LED chips are released.

Levelling the LED playing field

Trying to sort out good LEDs from the not so good is a growing challenge for lighting buyers and calls to recognise some standard measures to help customers compare the performance of the lamps and luminaires on offer continue to be made.

There are several luminaire and light source assessment schemes around the world which result in a labelling method aimed at advising buyers about parameters such as light quality, colour, luminous flux, longevity and energy efficiency. Some schemes are voluntary and some mandatory such as the European Union's (EU) energy label scheme. But some mandatory schemes are unfortunately driven by electricity conservation agendas and sacrifice lighting quality on the altar of energy efficiency.