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Switchgear March 18, 2024

Top 5 Plant Engineering content: March 11-17, 2024

Top 5 Plant Engineering content over the past week covered digital MV switchgears, successful warehouse plans, leveraging industrial data and more. Miss something? You can catch up here.

By Chris Vavra
Switchgear March 11, 2024

Top 5 Plant Engineering content: March 4-10, 2024

Top 5 Plant Engineering content over the past week covered digital MV switchgears, picking the right drive, better maintenance solutions and more. Miss something? You can catch up here.

By Chris Vavra
Switchgear March 5, 2024

Digital MV switchgears improve manufacturer efficiency, sustainability

Digital medium voltage (MV) switchgear adoption is growing in the U.S. and offers many potential benefits for manufacturers. See tips on how digital MV switchgear changes how power is being adopted and potential benefits and barriers.

By Muhammad Usman
Switchgear November 2, 2018

Controller – 1970-01-01

The 1ZC DIN rail-type temperature/process controller is designed for precise control of a single control loop with two independent outputs configurable as direct-acting, reverse-acting or alarm. A bidirectional RS-485 serial communications interface is standard and discrete LED displays illuminate whenever associated outputs are active and provide system status.

By Staff
Switchgear March 21, 2018

Full speed in washdown? Not so fast!

Variable frequency drives (VFDs) provide a better way to manage energy and water.

By Ron Crutchfield and Gary Jacott, Motion Industries
Switchgear July 24, 2014

Hole cutting tools

RUKO drill/tap combination bits provide uninterrupted hole drilling, thread tapping and deburring in one bit.

Switchgear April 23, 2013

Shale gas boom fuels rebound in growth for North American Smart Grid equipment market

After three years of decline, the combined North American market for distribution automation hardware and smart electricity meters will resume its expansion in 2015.

By IHS Inc.
Switchgear April 8, 2013

Rotary disconnect switches

Fused and non-fused rotary disconnect switches are available up to 1200A and include open and enclosed options for increased flexibility

Switchgear August 14, 2012

Tools can help identify, solve common motors, drives issues

Motor and drive applications can face problems such as blown fuses or tripped circuit breakers, and equipment can be damaged as a result of moisture, dirt, oil or grease, corrosion, lightning, mishandling, and any conditions beyond what the equipment was designed to handle.

By Hilton Hammond
Switchgear March 13, 2012

Buck-boost transformers

Buck-boost transformer designed to maximize and protect electrical equipment

By AutomationDirect
Switchgear August 8, 2011

Finding opportunities in risk ensures informed decision-making

While the word “project management” could be described by some as a bland term, in reality, it is a dynamic, creative process.

By Dan Vining, SSOE Group
Switchgear June 14, 2011

Find the right data to justify electrical system upgrades

41% of all respondents in a recent ARC Advisory Group survey cited “lost production” and “failure costs” as the primary justification for projects to upgrade electrical power systems.

By Craig Resnick, ARC Advisory Group
Switchgear February 10, 2011

Explosion proof LED light for low voltage applications

Magnalight adds a two foot low voltage, explosion proof LED light offering 50,000 hours on 12 or 24 volts

Switchgear December 9, 2010

New 3D TV technology coming in 2011, how will consumers respond?

In a recent Nielsen survey, 45% of survey respondents indicated the glasses were not comfortable. What if the low cost, light and comfortable glasses were available with your 3D TV?

By IMS Research
Switchgear November 12, 2010

GE exec says urgent ‘energy evolution’ is needed

The evolution of a smarter power grid in the United States and the resulting impact it could have on the economy and environment were highlighted in a recent address by Bob Gilligan at the Advanced Energy 2010 Conference.

Switchgear August 10, 2010

Recall ordered for counterfeit circuit breakers

Maimi Breaker requests recall in case brought by Square D over 43,000 phony breakers

Switchgear March 3, 2010

Three-phase power supplies with current limiting

These three-phase power supplies include constant current mode, which limits output current to typically 110% of rated current with a simultaneously lowered voltage output in an overload condition.

Switchgear January 6, 2010

Single, multi-point submetering systems

These submetering systems are engineered for retrofit and new construction with power-line communication capability, and offer the ability to divide energy charges or monitor usage with an easy-to-use, revenue grade energy/demand data logging meter.

Switchgear October 1, 2009

The Smart Grid: Getting smart about possibilities, challenges

U.S. power needs are handled via an electrical distribution system that was designed and built more than 50 years ago. Over the past 50 years, it’s been augmented repeatedly with additional power plants and power lines to be able to distribute electricity to the increasing number of end users. But this is both expensive and environmentally disturbing.

By Mark Feasel, Schneider Electric
Switchgear September 1, 2009

Counterfeit electrical products create workplace hazards

Manufacturers and trade associations have devoted much attention to the effects of counterfeit electrical products on consumers. At the same time, individuals who work in manufacturing facilities should be mindful of the dire consequences of using inferior goods marketed deceptively under brand names of reputable companies. Such items known to be counterfeited include control relays, circuit breakers, receptacles, ground fault circuit interrupters and conduit fittings.In many instances, counterfeit products appear to be genuine, but they are unable to meet minimum performance specifications.

Switchgear September 1, 2009

Reader Feedback – 2009-09-01

Counterfeit electrical products create workplace hazards Manufacturers and trade associations have devoted much attention to the effects of counterfeit electrical products on consumers. At the same time, individuals who work in manufacturing facilities should be mindful of the dire consequences of using inferior goods marketed deceptively under brand names of reputable companies.

Switchgear August 26, 2009

Electronic pressure switch

The PSW3000 is a high accuracy electronic pressure switch with 4 switching outputs plus a 0 to 10VDC or 4 to 20mADC analog output. Unit has an easy to read 4-digit display that shows reading plus set-point. A user scalable bar graph is also standard.

Switchgear July 9, 2009

Recession trips up circuit breaker market

Study finds market will decline as recovery lags

By PLE Staff
Switchgear June 1, 2009

Spotting electrical problems with IR thermography

There is perhaps no industry that requires zero room for error than nuclear power generation. Exelon Nuclear, part of Exelon Corp., one of the nation’s largest electric utilities, uses infrared thermography as a key component – along with other technologies such as vibration and lubrication analysis – in its extremely successful predictive maintenance program.

By Mike Ralph, Exelon Nuclear
Switchgear April 8, 2009

Terminal blocks provide safe disconnect in CT shorting applications

These test disconnect terminal blocks provide safe disconnect capability between measuring transducers and safety equipment in current transformer (CT) shorting applications.

By Plant Engineering Staff
Switchgear March 12, 2009

Transformer maintenance saves costs in emergencies

If your insurer demand proof of maintenance, having the right answer can be critical

By Plant Engineering Staff
Switchgear February 1, 2009

Looking beyond the symptoms for power quality problems, solutions

Sometimes, the reality of a situation is quite different from how it appears. The real problem may be cloaked by what appears to be symptoms of a completely different issue. Knowing how to look beyond the surface problems and having the tools to do so eliminates many headaches in the long run. This is particularly true when it comes to maintaining plant electrical systems.

By Jack Smith, Managing Editor
Switchgear January 22, 2009

Vented indoor enclosure

The T1FLO Type 1 vented indoor enclosure features an active cooling ventilation system with a factory-installed fan, a vent, a filter and a thermostat.

By Plant Engineering Staff
Switchgear December 1, 2008

Control switch, lock-out relays

The Series 24 serial control switch relay (SCSR) and serial lock-out relay (SLOR) facilitate remote control, monitoring or lock-out of circuit breakers while retaining local control through a manual trip/close handle.

By Plant Engineering Staff
Switchgear November 1, 2008

Lighting – 2008-11-01

Luminaire The McGraw-Edison Talon universally adaptable luminaire is UL-listed and CSA-certified for use in wet locations; it also meets IP65 requirements. It has a one-piece, heavy-wall, die-cast aluminum construction and offers a choice of 14 high-efficiency optical reflector systems for either horizontal or vertical lamp orientations. The unit comes standard with ballast and related electrical componentry hard-mounted to the housing.

By Plant Engineering Staff
Switchgear September 29, 2008

Branch circuit metering for critical applications

This branch circuit metering system monitors power distribution units and remote power panels – from the mains to the branches.

By Plant Engineering Staff
Switchgear August 15, 2008

Spring terminal block

The POWER CAGE CLAMP facilitate fast, maintenance-free connections. Conductors up to 4/0 AWG can be terminated with one turn of a hex wrench or with a screwdriver for 2 AWG. The two-conductor, feed-through block provides safe, secure connections for all conductors up to a limit of 200 A and 600 V. The unit further ensures personnel safety with a shock protector for unused conductor entries, hig...

By Plant Engineering Staff
Switchgear July 1, 2008

UPS maintenance bypass cabinet integrates three functions

This UPS bypass cabinet system enables IT and facility managers to integrate power transformation, power distribution and maintenance bypass into a single cabinet. This three-in-one cabinet complements a rack-based 60 kVA UPS parallel system, and is designed to allow the transfer of power to full system bypass to perform service, testing and maintenance on up to a full rack of UPS units without interrupting power to the critical load.

By Plant Engineering Staff
Switchgear June 15, 2008

Lamp ballasts

ROVR ballasts for one-lamp, 54-W T5 high-output fluorescent applications are suitable for use in warehouses, and one- and two-lamp fluorescent T8 ballasts support 17-, 25- or 32-W fluorescent T8 applications for general office settings and conference rooms.

By Plant Engineering Staff
Switchgear June 3, 2008

Thermally-protected electronic HID ballasts

Using closed-loop circuitry, these electronic HID ballasts help protect against recessed downlight luminaire overheating.

By Plant Engineering Staff
Switchgear May 6, 2008

Sola/Hevi-Duty changes name to SolaHD

The company formerly known as Sola/Hevi-Duty has changed its name to SolaHD.

By Plant Engineering Staff
Switchgear January 15, 2008

ElectronicHID ballasts

e-Vision® electronic HID ballasts include circuitry for self-heating thermal protectors for 70- and 100-W metal halide downlight applications. The ballasts feature an auto shut-off mechanism for lamps operating in a questionable thermal environment due to misapplication or failure of thermal protector heating elements.

By Plant Engineering Staff
Switchgear November 15, 2007

Talking back between our readers

When David Loucks of Eaton wrote an article on selective coordination, he didn't have to wait a month for a reaction from Plant Engineering readers. The reaction came the next day, via the Talkback feature at “In his article,” the reader wrote, “Mr. Loucks indicates that even when fault current falls within the instantaneous trip range of two circuit b...

By Plant Engineering Staff
Switchgear November 15, 2007

Mobile power center

The e-Cart 2 is a mobile, temporary power distribution center. It has an industrial, powder-coated steel frame and is equipped with either a three-phase or a single-phase NEMA 3R 480-V or 600-V, 60-Hz ventilated transformer. Also standard are a NEMA 3R load center with GFCI breakers installed, and a NEMA 3R fused primary disconnect, both sized per transformer.

By Plant Engineering Staff
Switchgear October 26, 2007

Surge suppressors

Suitable for use in harsh working environments, Safety Series surge suppressors provide surge and line noise protection with up to 3,600 joules of surge absorption.

By Staff
Switchgear October 26, 2007

Rotary switches

Series 101 snap-action rotary switches are designed to withstand shock and vibration. They feature double-wiping, low-resistance contacts that maintain their set positions inside fully enclosed decks and perform dc or ac switching. The switches are available with four-hole or single-hole mounting and have continuous ratings of 20 A at 600 V.

By Staff
Switchgear October 15, 2007

Mitigating transformers

Guard II harmonic mitigating transformers are designed to curb harmonic currents, reduce transformer heating and improve upstream power quality while maintaining the NEMA TP-1 standard for energy efficiency. They come in phase shifts of 0, 15, 30 and 45 degrees and meet CAS C22.2 #47, UL 1561, NEMA ST20 and IEEE C57.

By Staff
Switchgear August 17, 2007

Transformer cooler

The transformer cooler reduces the temperature of dielectric cooling oil and uses cardinal transformer oil pumps

By Staff
Switchgear August 10, 2007

Dow Corning lubrication specialist to discuss mechanical sticks

Gene Finner, applied engineering technical service specialist for Dow Corning Molykote lubricants, will discuss how to help eliminate mechanism seizures and slow trip times at Finepoint’s 14th Annual Circuit Breaker Test & Maintenance Training Conference, Oct. 1-5, at the Omni William Penn Hotel in Pittsburgh.

By Staff
Switchgear August 1, 2007

Electronic overload

Electronic overload protects motors by directly measuring motor current, enabling it to model a motor’s thermal condition. The overload device is designed to identify excessive current or ‘loss of phase’ more accurately than traditional bi-metallic overloads.

By Plant Engineering Staff
Switchgear July 25, 2007

High-voltage PCB connectors

The GMSTB(A) 2.5 HC(V) is a high-voltage header and plug with screw connection for wire-to-board applications.

By Plant Engineering Staff
Switchgear May 15, 2007

How to develop and keep top employees at Top Plants

The three winners of Plant Engineering’s 2006 Top Plant awards sat down for a panel discussion at the Manufacturing Summit on what makes a Top Plant click.

By Manufacturing Summit
Switchgear April 15, 2007

Capacitive proximity switches

A new line of capacitive proximity switches monitors the levels of bulk material in machines, installations and vehicles. Capable of monitoring through non-metallic dividing walls, the switches come enclosed in PPO or PTFE synthetic housings and 304 stainless-steel or nickel-plated brass metal housings and are potted in epoxy resin.

By Staff
Switchgear February 1, 2007

Wireless system detects open circuits

St. Louis-based circuit protection manufacturer Cooper Bussmann has expanded its fuse-making role to become another company to leverage the benefits of wireless technology. Announced on Feb. 13, the Cooper InVision system not only detects when a circuit protection device has opened, it also alerts maintenance personnel which device has operated; where it is located; the part number of the repla...

By Jack Smith
Switchgear February 1, 2007

Detent-action rotary switches

Series 24 switches have a maximum of eight positions and are designed with contacts enclosed in molded phenolic insulators to protect against contamination. Available with a choice of handle shapes, UL-recognized and CSA-certified, the switches are rated for 30 A continuous current from 125 Vdc to 600 Vac and have double-wiping, silver-plated contacts for low resistance.

By Staff
Switchgear December 5, 2006

Energy efficient LV transformer

Lean Power energy efficient low-voltage transformers reduce energy consumption and costs for end users, while also addressing the impending federal government mandate requiring that all transformers manufactured after Jan. 1, 2007, meet new standards for increased energy efficiency. Features include easy installation as well as a 3-inch clearance from ventilated openings instead of 6 inches, which reduces the distance from the wall to the front of the device by 3 inches.

By Plant Engineering Staff
Switchgear November 8, 2006

Include surge suppression in power protection designs

In reviewing the array of power protection options, those responsible often think in terms of products rather than holistic solutions. While that may seem like the easy approach up front — just buy a big uninterruptible power supply and be done with it — most users find that a bit more analysis in the beginning yields optimized equipment protection and better addresses the full spectrum of power problems. Of course a large, centralized UPS system from a quality vendor will provide excellent protection against the widest range of power disturbances for any connected equipment. This is especially true in data centers and other high-density computing or communications environments.

By Brad Amano, Market Segment Manager, MGE UPS Systems
Switchgear November 8, 2006

External disconnect enclosure for NFPA-70E compliance

SEQUESTR external disconnect enclosure is designed to help manufacturers comply with NFPA-70E and other regulations. It isolates the fused disconnect switch or circuit breaker from the main control panel while maintaining the door interlocking requirements of NFPA-79, IEC-60204 and SAE HS1738. With traditional disconnect enclosures, even when power is turned off, live power is still present on the line side of the switch, requiring anyone accessing the inside of the enclosure to wear PPE appropriate for the amount of potential incident energy present. Wearing bulky PPE while servicing electrical equipment decreases productivity by increasing service time.

By Plant Engineering Staff
Switchgear July 5, 2006

NEMA offers water-damaged electrical equipment brochure to flood damaged areas

In response to electrical hazards posed in the aftermath of flash flooding in the Mid-Atlantic and Northeastern states, NEMA, as a public service, offers complimentary copies of its brochure, “Guidelines for Handling Water Damaged Electrical Equipment,” to electrical distributors, contractors and inspectors in the flood damaged regions. The brochure is designed for use by suppliers, installers, inspectors and users of electrical products and includes advice on the safe handling of electrical equipment that has been exposed to water. It also outlines which items will require complete replacement or can be reconditioned by a trained professional. Equipment covered includes electrical distribution equipment, motor circuits, power equipment, transformers, wire, cable and flexible cords, wiring devices, GFCIs and surge protectors, lighting fixtures and ballasts, motors, electronic products including signaling, protection, communication systems, industrial controls and cable trays. The brochure has been incorporated into the Federal Emergency Management Agency's manual, “Principles and Practices for the Design and Construction of Flood Resistant Building Utility Systems,” which is intended for developers, architects, engineers, builders, code officials and homeowners. The NEMA brochure may be downloaded free of charge, click here .

By Plant Engineering Staff
Switchgear April 1, 2006

Ultrasonic switches

Contrinex, Inc. has introduced its new Series 1180/1181 and Series 1300 - 1303 ready-to-connect ultrasonic proximity switches, designed to be used wherever distances have to be measured in air. The targets can be in the solid, liquid, granular, or powder state. The material may be transparent or colored and of any shape, as well as having a polished or matt surface.

By Staff
Switchgear February 24, 2006

Power efficiency Webcast now in archive

PLANT ENGINEERING’s latest Webcast, “Improving electrical efficiency through power factor correction,” drew a huge crowd when it debuted Thursday afternoon. If you missed it, there’s still time to view the archive by going to The electrical power in a plant is made up of two components: real powerand reactive power. While real power performs useful work within your facility, reactive power does not.

By Plant Engineering Staff
Switchgear February 24, 2006

ABB finds “organic growth” in 2005

ABB's 2005 net income reached $735 million compared to a $35 million loss in 2004, with strong increases in orders, revenues and earnings. The company sees several areas of strengths looking to 2006."We have successfully moved into a phase of profitable organic growth," said Fred Kindle, ABB President and CEO. "Our market-leading positions led to a significant increase in orders and revenues, and further operational improvements contributed to a strong increase in (earnings).

By Plant Engineering Staff
Switchgear February 7, 2006

Plant Engineering Webcast: 06

PromotionYou are receiving this email as a subscriber to Plant Engineering's PlantMail. For customer supportor to unsubscribe from Plant Engineering promotions, please scroll to the bottom for instructions. February 23, 2006 at 1 pm. CST How efficient are you in powering your plant? Did you know that the electrical power your facility receives is made up of two components: real powerand reactive power.While real power performs useful work within your facility, reactive power does not.

By Plant Engineering Staff
Switchgear February 2, 2006

Electrical efficiency Webcast Feb. 23

PLANT ENGINEERING latest Webcast, “Improving electrical efficiency through power factor correction,” will be Thursday, Feb. 23 at 1 p.m. CST.

By Plant Engineering Staff
Switchgear January 3, 2006

Minimizing the effect of grounding transients on electronic equipment

Electronic systems in manufacturing such as PLCs, CNCs, industrial grade computers, electronic pressure and temperature controls, electronic transmitters, commercial servers and computers have advanced in speed and reduced in physical size. Electronic chip makers integrate more and more circuits on one chip, enabling software manufacturers to increase the density and complexity of programming. The result is higher operating speeds and lower tolerance to damaging electrical interference.

By Peter Beno, is Vice President of PVA Corp., as well as an engineer.
Switchgear December 13, 2005

Webcast: Improving Electrical Efficiency through Power Factor Correction

February 23, 2006 at 1 pm. CST Register now The total power your facility receives is made up of two components:real power and reactive power. While real power performs useful work within your facility, reactive power does not.

By Plant Engineering Staff
Switchgear November 7, 2005

NCQLP approves Advance University curriculum

Rosemont, IL-based ballast manufacturer Advance announced that the ballast training courses offered through its Advance University website have been officially accepted as an approved curriculum by the National Council on Qualifications for the Lighting Professions (NCQLP). Completion of the Advance University ballast training courses will qualify NCQLP members for Lighting Education Units (LEUs) within the organization's LC (Lighting Certified) Program. The NCQLP is a non-profit organization founded in 1991 to serve and protect the well-being of the public through effective and efficient lighting practice. Through a peer-review process, the NCQLP establishes the education, experience and examination requirements for baseline certification across the lighting professions. Advance University is an online ballast training program currently offered in three course levels, all of which have been approved for Lighting Education Units by the NCQLP.

By Plant Engineering Staff
Switchgear November 1, 2005

Auxiliary power unit combines products

Auxiliary Power Heavy-Duty Safety Switch combines a type 3-R safety switch, transformer and ground-fault interrupter receptacle in a single product. The unit provides an economical alternative to running a separate 120 V circuit for rooftop HVAC applications, in response to the NEC Section 210.63 requirements.

By Staff
Switchgear November 1, 2005

Reader Feedback – 2005-11-01

Federal bureaucracy can be difficult to navigate NAM president John Engler presents a thoughtful analysis of the relationship between the decline in R&D spending and the U.S. decline in high-tech exports. I am currently engaged in developing industrial manufacturing technologies in my own business, and spent several years prior as product/R&D manager for an innovative process equipment ...

By Staff
Switchgear September 13, 2005

Managing water-damaged equipment safely

News coverage this summer has been fraught with images of the destruction and, unfortunately, deaths due to hurricanes Dennis, Emily and Katrina. Sadly, this destructive triumvirate most likely will not be the only names we will hear before the hurricane season concludes in November. As of late August, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration was predicting 11 to 14 more tropical storms, including up to five major hurricanes. But hurricanes are not the only weather calamities that can cause water damage to electrical distribution and control equipment.

By Mike Rice is the director of Square D Services for Schneider Electric, based in Palatine, Ill.
Switchgear September 1, 2005

Circuit breakers – 2005-09-01

Siemens Energy & Automation's WL UL 489 family of insulated case circuit breakers available in three frame sizes, 800–5,000 A. The circuit breakers feature integrated racking handles, pull apart front-mounted terminal blocks and modular accessories. The breakers have Dynamic Arc-Flash Sentry technology and Extended Instantaneous Protection.

By Staff
Switchgear August 15, 2005

Transformer fluid to be discontinued

Cooper Power Systems has announced that it will discontinue sales of R-Temp fluid by December 31, 2005. The decision affects R-Temp transformers and fluid sales for retrofill. The company cited increased marketplace acceptance of its Envirotemp FR3 fluid, which has led to declining sales of R-Temp fluid, as the key reason for the decision. The company will sell the discontinued fluid until current inventory is depleted, estimated to be at year’s end.

By Jack Smith
Switchgear August 15, 2005

ABB to restructure transformer business

ABB announced that it will initiate restructuring activities within its North American transformer business unit. The efforts are part of a global effort to strategically realign the transformer business for profitability and service to its customers. Several North American operations will be affected by the changes. The Guelph, Canada facility will be closed.

By Jack Smith
Switchgear June 12, 2005

Switching power supply fundamentals

The efficiency of a switching mode power supply can be much higher than that of a linear power supply — especially near full load. Switching mode power supply efficiencies can exceed 85% as compared to 50%-60% for typical linear supplies.

By Jack Smith, Senior Editor, Plant Engineering Magazine
Switchgear June 1, 2005

Profits from power? Onsite generation pays big dividends

Ten years ago, when electricity supplies were abundant and prices stable, industrial plants had little reason to generate their own power. Today, the picture has changed. Energy prices have become more volatile — especially during peak usage. In some regions, supplies are subject to seasonal price swings and fluctuations in power quality.

By Michael A. Devine, Caterpillar Inc., Mossville, IL
Switchgear May 1, 2005

Instrumentation – 2005-05-01

Instrument measures multiple parameters HHF81 anemometer can measure airflow, humidity, temperature, and light. Built-in microprocessor allows the instrument to track maximum and minimum values along with current readings. Unit displays flow rate in knots, meters/second, kilometers/hour, MPH, and feet/minute.

By Staff
Switchgear November 10, 2004

Lighting – 2004-11-10

Fixture prevents light pollution FloodPak combines floodlight, cutoff, and semicutoff luminaire into one outdoor HID lighting fixture with six distributions that can be aimed above or below horizontal. Fixture mounts to splice box with an integral bubble level to ensure level mounting. Lighting is dark-sky compliant when mounted at 0 deg facing down and provides semicutoff optics when mounted at 22.5 deg facing down.

By Staff
Switchgear May 10, 2004

Basic electronics: What is inductance?

An inductor is a device that, when subjected to an increasing electrical current flow, generates a back voltage that opposes this current. Inductance quantifies how much energy an inductor can store. An inductor consists of at least one winding of wire, but it usually has more.

By Wendell S. Rice
Switchgear April 8, 2004

Understanding GFCIs

Advancements in electrical safety occur continuously. New products make the use of electricity safer every year. Some devices are ubiquitous but their function may not be fully appreciated. One of the most common devices in residential, commercial, and industrial safety is the ground fault circuit interrupter (GFCI).

By Mike Nager
Switchgear September 18, 2003

Enclosed drives provide superior voltage sag immunity

A new family of enclosed Square D adjustable speed drives with superior voltage sag immunity and unmatched communications capabilities has been introduced.

By Plant Engineering Staff
Switchgear March 15, 2003

Instruments and Controls – 2003-03-15

Continuous thermal monitor ExerTherm system uses small, inexpensive infrared sensors, which require no power, to thermally monitor switchgear components continually by placing sensors inside the switchgear enclosure. The signal is fed back through data acquisition cards to a remote PC. Exergen Corp.

By Staff
Switchgear November 15, 2002

Electrical – 2002-11-15

Code handbook "Code Compliance Handbook" has been updated, making it easy to understand the 2002 National Electrical Code and the 2002 Canadian Electrical Code as they relate to electrical fastening applications. Recommended installation techniques are detailed in easy-to-follow diagrams and descriptions. ERICO, Inc. Write 313 on PE card NECA and NEMA joint standard The National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA) has issued "Recommended Practice for Installing Metal Cable Trays (ANSI)." It is one of a series of National Electrical Installation Standards (NEIS) published by NECA, and the first to be produced in partnership with the National Electrical Manufacturers Association (NEMA). The standard describes installation and maintenance procedures for metal cable tray systems used to support power and communications cabling.

By Staff
Switchgear October 15, 2002

AC loop impedance testing

Electrical safety testing isn't just for the sake of bureaucratic compliance. It has practical implications that literally protect lives. Improvements in electronic instrumentation have gone a long way toward eliminating the perceived "nuisance factor" in such testing. A tragic instance of the failure to insure safety was reported in the IAEI News (International Association of Electrical Insp...

By Jeff Jowett, Senior Application Engineer, AVO International, Valley Forge, PA
Switchgear November 1, 2001

Avoid Unplanned Outages and Shutdowns with Infrared Thermography

For more than 30 years, utilities and large manufacturers worldwide have depended on infrared thermography to help manage equipment reliability, deliver uninterrupted power, and avoid costly failures and shutdowns. The value of an infrared predictive maintenance program is immense. Many users report immediate payback on their IR camera purchases.

By Flir Systems
Switchgear March 1, 2001

How the power distribution grid works

Electrical power travels from the power plant to the industrial plant through the power distribution grid. All commercial electrical generators of any size generate three-phase ac.

By Marshall Brain
Switchgear March 1, 2000

Chill out

Series R chiller Model RTWA has been enhanced over the previous reciprocating offering.

By Staff
Switchgear March 1, 2000

Transformers – 2000-03-01

A 6-p brochure details a line of low profile, high-power, and multipurpose international transformers. The literature provides performance features and specifications, and details UL, CSA, and VDE standards. Signal Transformer Co., Inc.

By Staff
Switchgear March 1, 2000

Power solutions

An 8-p capabilities brochure provides customers with distributed generation solutions.

By Staff
Switchgear February 1, 2000

AC drive saves pump and fan energy

Class 8839 Econo-flex fully enclosed ac drive is wall mounted and has a front removable fan assembly, which eliminates rear access and drive removal for maintenance.

By Staff
Switchgear February 1, 2000

Selecting efficient transformers

This book provides transformer purchasers with the knowledge and tools to help them decide what product size and efficiency ratings are best for them.

By Joseph L. Foszcz
Switchgear January 1, 2000

Isolate safety

Isolation Transformers Increase Safety of Electronic Systems addresses the need for adequate isolation between a power source and electronic equipment and the role isolation transformers play in increasing safety by providing high isolation in electronic circuitry. Signal Transformer Co., Inc., Insilco Technologies Group Circle 254.

By Staff
Switchgear January 1, 2000

Touch-sensitive, solid-state switches

A new family of touch-sensitive, solid-state switches is described in a 10-p brochure. The devices employ high-frequency switching technology and can be sealed behind glass to protect from chemical attack, operator abuse, vandalism, and hygienic washdown.

By Staff
Switchgear November 1, 1999

Low-voltage power circuit breakers are upgradeable

Masterpact low-voltage power circuit breakers with upgradeable micrologic trip units make it easy for users to operate, maintain, and upgrade their equipment.

By Staff
Switchgear October 1, 1999

Meter accurately measures energy use

Powerlogic Enercept is applied for basic metering and allocating energy costs. The integrated, three-phase power meter combines metering electronics and accurate industrial grade, split-core, current transformers in a single package.

By Staff
Switchgear September 1, 1999

Don’t let power sags stop your motors

A momentary voltage sag can cause contactor (motor starter) dropout, resulting in a stopped process or production line.

By Conrad St. Pierre
Switchgear September 1, 1999

Transformers – 1999-09-01

Select the Proper Transformer According to International Standards addresses the importance of understanding the various requirements established for all aspects and parts of an electronic product, including the power transformer.

By Staff
Switchgear July 1, 1999

Advantages of parallel pumping

It is generally true that the larger the fluid flow requirement, the more viable parallel pumping can be. However, parallel pumping can be successfully applied to both large and small systems (Fig. 1).

By William Hooper, CET
Switchgear June 1, 1999

Transformers – 1999-06-01

A 24-p product guide provides an overview of transformer, dielectric fluid, and voltage regulator products. The guide includes single and three-phase overhead, pad-mounted, and substation transformers. Sizes range to 10,000 kVA and voltages to 46 kV.

By Staff
Switchgear May 1, 1999

Switch customizes high/low readings

F7-MLK multilevel switch contains all the components needed to fabricate a one or two-station level switch for vertical pipe plug mounting.

By Staff
Switchgear April 1, 1999

Flat plate battery offers longer life

DXC battery for UPS and switchgear applications features a U-wrap separator that encircles the bottom of the positive plate while leaving the sides exposed.

By Staff
Switchgear April 1, 1999

Electrical training

Systems engineering workshops on 10 different electrical distribution topics are described in a 4-p brochure.

By Staff
Switchgear April 1, 1999


Cooper Power Systems, Transformer Products Div.Envirotran transformer

By Staff
Switchgear March 1, 1999

Finding the right gen-set

RCI series of radiator-cooled, industrial gen-sets can be customized to meet the users exact needs to produce from 5-21 kW of power using a 3 or 4 cylinder, water-cooled, diesel engine.

By Staff
Switchgear February 1, 1999

Monitors find problems

AC line monitors automatically display frequency, voltage, test an outlet's wiring, and record the number of voltage and frequency spikes and drops and minimum and maximum values.

By Staff
Switchgear December 1, 1998

Arc detection

An 8-p brochure presents a new system that monitors areas of electrical systems that are vulnerable to short circuits, such as switchgear, motor control centers, distribution boards, and transformer vaults.

By Staff
Switchgear November 1, 1998

Transformer offers improved safety and environmental benefits

Envirotran "Listed and Labeled" transformer is the first liquid-filled product that complies with the National Electric Code.

By Staff
Switchgear November 1, 1998

Multifunction meter reads and monitors

Power Series combines revenue meter, electric submeter, and power quality monitoring into a compact package.

By Staff
Switchgear November 1, 1998

Circuit breaker features highest ANSI ratings

Magnum DS low-voltage power circuit breaker has the industry's highest ANSI interruption and short-time rating, while being the smallest breaker on the market.

By Staff
Switchgear November 1, 1998

Switchgear offers added protection and safety

Model HVL/cc medium-voltage, metal-enclosed switchgear features 11-ga steel compartmentalized construction and interlocking features for added protection; and grounded metal barriers to segregate all live parts for additional safety.

By Staff
Switchgear October 1, 1998

Power conditioning

A wide variety of high-performance filters and surge suppressors is presented in a 20-p catalog.

By Staff
Switchgear September 1, 1998

Power circuit breakers

A 20-p brochure introduces a new generation of low voltage power circuit breakers. Features described include increased interruption and short time (withstand) ratings, smaller size, two structure widths, and unique 4-in. wireway.

By Staff
Switchgear September 1, 1998

Ballasts detect end of life

Electronic ballasts include end of life detection circuitry. Units are for 120 or 277-V operation of 36/39-W, 40-W, and 50-W long twin tube, and 55-W FT55/DL/RS lamps.

By Staff
Switchgear September 1, 1998

Power system safeguards equipment

FERRUPS UPS provides configurable power protection by conditioning power and protecting from blackouts, brownouts, noise, lightning, surges, spikes, and sags. Initially available in 2, 3, 4.5, 6, and 7.

By Staff
Switchgear September 1, 1998

Electrical components

A 32-p catalog features terminal blocks, power distribution blocks, quick connect blocks, disconnects, and other components. DIN rail mounted products offered include terminal blocks, circuit breakers, fuse holders, and options and accessories.

By Staff
Switchgear August 1, 1998

Transformer fluid

A 4-p brochure provides a brief comparative analysis of transformer alternatives with a discussion of efficiency, service life, reliability, fire properties, and environmental issues.

By Staff
Switchgear August 1, 1998

Power recorder provides permanent monitoring

Multipoint Power Recorder is a nine-channel monitoring instrument for permanent installation in switchgear, substations, utility, and industrial environments.

By Staff
Switchgear August 1, 1998

Power transformers

Dry power transformers with ratings up to 25 MVA at primary voltages up to 34.5 kV are the subject of a 52-p selection guide and catalog.

By Staff
Switchgear July 1, 1998

Transformers for any Hertz

Custom transformers from 50 Hz to 20 kHz meet specific input and output voltages, as well as power sizes.

By Staff
Switchgear April 1, 1998

Touch safe fuse

A 4-p brochure introduces a new line of cube-shaped, space saving, touch safe industrial power fuses. Photos show basic features, while a table compares fuse block sizes. Cooper Bussmann, Inc.

By Staff
Switchgear March 1, 1998

Plant Lighting: Pulse Start Technology Improves Metal Halide Performance

Important changes are occurring in metal halide lighting. New lamp-ballast systems have become available under the generic name pulse start. They offer significant improvements over previously available metal halide products.

By Sri Rahm

A Letter From The Editor

Since 1947, plant engineers, plant managers, maintenance supervisors and manufacturing leaders have turned to Plant Engineering for the information they needed to run their plants smarter, safer, faster and better. Plant Engineering's editors stay on top of the latest trends in manufacturing at every corner of the plant floor. The major content areas include electrical engineering, mechanical engineering, automation engineering and maintenance and management.

Amara Rozgus - Plant Engineering