Commercial Electrical Wiring 101

Commercial electrical wiring design usually differs from that of a residential building, mainly due to the nature of operations. In addition, the size of the facility and the number of machines that will be operated is important to consider. Buildings, companies and factories often possess a much greater need for electrical wiring that can handle heavy loads. The type of commercial electrical wiring needed will vary with the specific industry that is to be serviced. This ranges from simple wiring for small commercial spaces, to multifaceted  wiring in large factories that house complex machinery and computers. Regardless of size or

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Industrial Wiring

Large factories, refineries, and oil facilities are all industries that require special considerations for their electrical wiring. Heavy-duty applications and hazardous environments must use products built to resist corrosion. Chemicals, rain, snow, wind and other threats damage industrial wiring. As a result, good maintenance and repairs are imperative. Cable Trays for industrial wiring The backbone of many industrial wiring configurations is the cable tray. Most often made of aluminum, the cable tray appears like a ladder, with welded rungs that connect a pair of sidewalls. Cable trays feature factory-made holes at either end that allow quick connection by use of

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How do Smoke Detectors, Carbon Monoxide Detectors and Security Systems Work?

Every home has a fire detection system. This vital safety feature should be well understood. Smoke detectors, carbon monoxide detectors and security systems give homeowners peace-of-mind. Furthermore, when combined with a security system, these devices work together to form a complete home protection plan. Smoke Detectors Most homeowners are familiar with battery operated ceiling-mounted smoke detectors. There are two common varieties that work on different principles. A photoelectric detector uses a light source and a photosensitive receiver. When there is smoke in the air, the strength of the light beam that hits the receiver will diminish and trigger the alarm.

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How Do AC Motors and Variable Frequency Drives Work?

Electric motors power everything from tiny electronics to massive industrial pumps. Yet, they all work on the same basic principles. Though AC motors seem ordinary, there are complex activities going on behind the scenes. AC Motors The simplest types of motors are three-phase AC motors. They convert a rotating magnetic field into mechanical rotation. The basic parts of an AC motor are the stator, rotor, bearings, drive shaft, and frame. The supply power is connected to coils of wire that are wrapped around laminated iron cores in the stator; the stationary part of the motor. When the coils of wire

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What are Mechatronics and Electric Motor Controls?

Mechatronics, or mechatronic engineering combines mechanical and electrical engineering to design innovative products and systems. These systems must rely on mechanical and electrical components working together in harmony. The list includes DVD disc drives, anti-lock braking systems, manufacturing, electric motors and clothes dryers, among others. These devices require electronic controls and feedback systems to interact seamlessly with their mechanical design. Origins of Mechatronics The term mechatronics, originally coined in 1969 by Japanese engineer Tetsuro Mori, describes mechanical, electronic, computing, and control systems combined into a single field of study. The interactions between these disciplines allow machines to perform complex functions

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From the Power Plant to your Hair Dryer – The Basics of Residential House Wiring

A modern convenience often taken for granted, electric power, can be found everywhere. To route electricity from the power station to your wall outlet requires many steps. Residential house wiring includes a variety of wiring and control devices to ensure safe and reliable service. Generation Electric power is produced by a generator. In a power plant, massive generators turn using turbines, which themselves rotate by steam or by flowing water. A hydroelectric dam uses falling water to turn a turbine, while a coal or nuclear plant boils water. The steam it produces feeds in through a turbine. The generated power

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Building Automation and Control Systems

Modern buildings, commercial spaces, and even homes increasingly implement advanced building automation and control technology to improve energy efficiency, user comfort, and extend the life cycles of equipment. Building Automation Basics At the core of any building automation system, or BAS, remains a central computing hub. This is where software processes the variety of signals it receives from connected sensors, switches, and user inputs. In a typical home, a Wi-Fi network connects devices wirelessly. Further, it will often connect them to the internet, allowing remote access from any web-connected device. In a commercial setting, more advanced industry-standard communication protocols, such

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Fundamentals of Electricity

Electricity exists everywhere, from high voltage power lines to phones and computers. Understanding the basics of how it works remains essential to using it safely and efficiently. Electron Flow At its core, electricity consists of the movement of electrons through a substance. Some materials, like copper and aluminum, allow electrons to flow much more easily. Furthermore, materials like rubber and ceramic resist electron flow and are said to have high resistance. Resistance, measured in units of Ohms, describes how easily electrons move through a material. An analogy for electron flow involves thinking of a pipe with water flowing through it.

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Tips on Commercial Electrical Wiring

Commercial buildings require special considerations when it comes to electrical wiring. Most commercial buildings do not have the luxury of a wooden frame to run wires through, so other wiring methods must be used. Some of those are discussed below. Conduit A common method of electrical wiring in a commercial setting is by use of conduit. Conduits can be made of a variety of materials including steel, aluminum, or PVC depending on the application. For underground conduit runs or conduit embedded in concrete slabs, PVC conduit is used, as it will not rust or corrode. PVC conduit can also be

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An Explanation of Photovoltaics

Photovoltaics employ solar panels to create energy. Solar power remains a rapidly growing field in the renewable energy sector. It has the potential to completely power our world and drastically reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The Photovoltaic Effect Originally discovered by Alexandre-Edmond Becquerel in 1839, the photovoltaic effect takes advantage of the tendency of certain materials to release electrons when exposed to sunlight. When a positive back plate and negative front conductors are placed on either side of a photoelectric material, free electrons travel from the back plate to the front conductors, hence generating electric current. This current is then captured

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