ARC FLASH MODELLING

Arc flash incidents can cause serious harm to electrical workers and damage valuable equipment on site. W have a staff of highly trained engineers who have experience in identifying arc flash hazards and risks in industrial and utility environments.

OUR EXPERTISE

We have been providing arc flash studies, arc flash training, electrical safety training, evaluations and solutions service to the industry since 2001. Our team of highly trained engineers are experienced in conducting Arc Flash hazard analysis, Arc Flash studies, Arc Flash mitigation solutions and specialised arc flash training. We work with all size facilities across many industries to introduce and maintain Arc Flash safety. Using proven software tools, our engineers calculate the prospective arc incident energy levels along electrical networks. Armed with this data, they assess the risks and identify the preventative and protective measures necessary to protect workers, electrical infrastructure and processes.

WHAT IS ARC FLASH?

An Arc Flash is an explosive release of energy caused by an electrical short circuit between 2 energised conductors or an energised conductor and earth. The sudden discharge of electrical energy causes a brilliant explosion of light and sound. The temperatures inside an Arc Flash incident can reach 19,000°C (sun’s surface temperature is 6000°C) causing conductors, especially copper, to terminate. The explosion causes shrapnel and vapourised conductors to escape the blast site at 1600km/hr. This amount of energy is sufficient to cause severe injury to anyone within the blast radius. Injuries range from burns, blindness, hearing loss, impact injury, psychological trauma and even death. Critically, most Arc Flash incidents happen when the electrical system is being worked on and “live” and thus Arc Flash presents a serious risk to the employees.

The energy in an arc flash incident does not necessarily depend on the system voltage because the lower the voltage, the more current there can be, and the higher current levels create the high amounts of energy that is dissipated in an arc flash incident.

WHAT IS AN ARC FLASH STUDY?

An arc flash study is carried out on you electrical network and is based around the standards IEEE 1584.  The purpose of the study is to identify the maximum incident energy and arc flash boundary at every point of the network. Understanding the magnitude of the hazard is a key starting point in preparing control measures to protect workers. Our experience and expertise with arc flash studies and related works is widely recognised in Ireland, the UK and internationally across multiple industries.

UNDERSTANDING THERMAL PERFORMANCE VALUE (ATPV)

The ATPV is measured in cal/cm2, and it’s defined as the maximum incident heat energy that a fabric can absorb and lessen the injury to a 2nd degree burn. If the worker is exposed to a potential incident heat energy level of less than 4.0 cal/cm2, the proper ATPV clothing system is 4 cal/cm2.

What Arc Hazards does ATPV clothing not protect?

  • Arc’s blinding flash
  • Sound levels that rupture the ear drums
  • Molten metal burns
  • Flying parts
  • Blast pressure wave that causes worker injuries

ARC FLASH AND THE LAW

Employers must ensure, so far as reasonably practicable, the safety, health and welfare at work of employees and any other persons who may be affected by their undertakings (Safety, Health & Welfare at Work Act 2005) . Notably, this general duty extends to the provision and maintenance of safe plant and systems of work, and also the provision of such information, instruction, training and supervision as is necessary. Arc Flash and other hazards associated with electricity at work must be managed in this context.

Employers must make a suitable and adequate assessment of the risks to health and safety associated with electricity and to put in place the necessary preventive and protective measures. Persons engaged in any work activity involving electricity, must be competent to prevent danger by having the appropriate technical knowledge, but also understanding of the hazards, risks and work precautions to be observed.

ADDITIONAL ARC FLASH ANALYSIS SERVICE INCLUDE:

  • Advice on Arc Flash Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)
  • Network Modelling of your facilities using advanced modelling tools for electrical networks
  • Load Flow Study to determine the best operation of your existing system and to plan for future expansion.
  • Short Circuit Calculations to protect personnel and equipment during system upgrade and design.
  • Protection Coordination grading the protection settings throughout the plant in such a way that disruption and interruption of production equipment and systems is minimised in the event of a short circuit or earth fault taking place.

"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

FEATURED CASE STUDY
Global Data Centres - Arc Flash Programme

Arc flash programme delivered successfully while working with a multinational data centre engineering team. The programme has been implemented on multiple client sites in Europe. By building the facilities electrical network in an advanced power modeling software, Premium Power performed arc flash analysis using the IEEE 1584 calculation method and short circuit analysis in accordance with IEC.

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NEED A SAFE, MORE RELIABLE AND COST
EFFECTIVE ELECTRICAL SYSTEM?

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