ARC FLASH PROGRAMME – GLOBAL DATA CENTRES

We worked with a multinational data centre engineering team to develop an arc flash programme that has since been implemented on multiple client sites in Europe. By building the facilities electrical network in an advanced power modeling software, we performed arc flash analysis using the IEEE 1584 calculation method and short circuit analysis in accordance with IEC.

INDUSTRY SUCCESS

Estimated spend of

9

Euro by 2021

Accounts for

5

of the states power requirements

Over

46

Locations in Ireland

THE CHALLENGE

Being a US multinational operating out of Europe, one of the main challenges was to achieve compliance with EU health and safety requirements as well as meet the demands of the client’s global corporate standard, which was heavily linked to US electrical standards. To calculate the magnitude/severity of a potential arc flash hazard it is critical that the correct information be used during the modelling exercise. The hi-tech data centre electrical network had over 400 electrical panels with the number of electrical components to be assessed and modelled exceeding 1000 bus.

HOW WE HELPED

By developing a co-op between us and their engineering team, a full review of the electrical system was performed to validate the installed electrical equipment. Using SKM Power Tool software, our engineers simulated the electrical system before conducting extensive arc flash analysis. Arc flash analysis proved that there were a number of areas that required immediate action to mitigate against the high incident energy levels.

THE RESULT

By identifying the magnitude of the arc flash hazard, suitable arc flash mitigation was designed and applied to significantly reduce the severity of the potential hazard. While reviewing the site’s existing protection coordination for the purpose of arc flash mitigation, additional protection setting recommendations were made to enhance site reliability while achieving safer working conditions for electrical personnel.

THE CLIENT

This multinational technology company specialise in information technology and cloud computing. Headquartered in the US, the company operate data centres in a number of different countries.

“This project highlights the importance of power system modelling. Without knowing the magnitude of the arc flash hazard, it would have been impossible to design it out and reduce the risk. The analysis led to the design of simple and cost effective control measures that could ultimately prevent serious injury or fatality to the electrical operators on site.”

Barry NicholsonElectrical Projects Engineer

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