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3 Ways the New Alliance of Telecommunications Industry Solutions Guidelines Deter Copper Theft

Posted by Rohit Narayan on Oct 17, 2017 8:06:00 AM

Copper has been the most widely used material in telecommunication wiring due to its conductivity , relatively low cost and reliability and corrosion resistance in a wide range of soils. Though, with copper theft on the rise, the industry is looking for alternatives to both deter thieves and lessen the risk of hazards like facility downtime or personnel injury.

The Alliance of Telecommunications Industry Solutions (ATIS) has released an updated guideline on copper alternatives. This new guideline, ATIS-0600037: Testing Guidelines for Copper Theft Deterrents in the Telecom Industry, provides information and recommendations on the use of alternative materials in both above and below grade grounding systems.

Read below to learn key recommendations from the new ATIS guideline to help deter copper thieves at your telecommunication facility.

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Topics: Copper Theft

9 Top Resources for Electrical Engineers

Posted by Shadi Sumrain on Oct 3, 2017 8:05:00 AM

As an electrical engineer, you need to be informed.

At ERICO, our team strives to stay up on everything electrical engineering-related. Industry publications help us remain current on product advances and new industry standards, so we can best serve our customers and remain compliant.

What resources do you turn to in the electrical engineering field? While there are plenty out there to trust and know, check out the list below for 9 top resources electrical engineers need to bookmark.

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Topics: Engineering

What You Need to Know About Lightning Protection Systems

Posted by TJ Gaines on Sep 19, 2017 8:02:00 AM

Globally, there are approximately 40 to 50 flashes of lightning every second, or nearly one and a half billion annually. Not only is the amount of strikes alarming, but each strike can have between 100 million and 1 billion volts and consumes billions of watts.

Such voltage and frequency cause irreparable personal injury and property damage, as well as unexpected equipment downtime, costly replacements and breaks in the production schedule. Lightning strikes may never be part of the schedule, but creating a defense for your facility with a lightning protection system should be.

In this post, we provide a brief overview of who needs a lightning protection system and the steps required to reduce the risk posed by lightning.

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Topics: Lightning Protection

5 of the Most Common Electrical Grounding Mistakes You Can Make

Posted by Greg Martinjak on Sep 5, 2017 8:04:00 AM

Your facility, technology and other key assets are at risk to lightning strikes. While an effective air termination device and above ground lightning protection system is critical to effective protection, proper grounding can keep people and products out of harm’s way. 

Preventable mistakes in the electrical grounding system can leave it vulnerable to ground faults, side flashes and electronic noise, any of which could result in fire, damage to structures and personal injury. 

Below we outline 5 common mistakes made when designing and installing a grounding system.

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Topics: Grounding System

10 Questions to Consider to Assess Your Need for Lightning Protection

Posted by TJ Gaines on Aug 22, 2017 8:27:30 AM

Around the world, there are approximately 100 lightning strikes each second. Exactly where each will strike is indeterminable, and their occurrence is unpreventable. 

What is in our control, however, is the implementation of lightning protection systems where necessary. Effective systems capture lightning strikes and provide a dependable path for the energy to earth, dissipating it to prevent harm to structures or individuals.

Assess the known risks of lightning in your situation to help you recognize what level of lightning protection is needed to plan for an unexpected strike.

Although no strict rules can be given, it is possible to use broad guidelines to arrive at the degree of protection required. Below are 10 fundamental questions to help you assess your need for lightning protection.

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Topics: Lightning Protection

5 Products for Optimal Wind Turbine Lightning Protection

Posted by TJ Gaines on Aug 8, 2017 8:03:00 AM

Wind turbines provide us with renewable energy that relies on nature, rather than fossil fuels, to reap the benefits. Yet, due to the height of the structures and location, wind turbines can attract lightning that result in fires, downtime and damaged electronics. 

In order to fully gain the rewards of renewable energy produced by wind turbines, engineers must consider a lightning protection system to ward off hazards. Note that due to the height of a wind turbine, proper design and integrity of a grounding grid is imperative. 

A wind turbine grounding system must meet the following three factors to be considered effective:

  • Minimize the equipotential differences
  • Provide sufficient ground reference potential to assure proper functionality and to protect electrical equipment
  • Effectively dissipate lightning energy

Continue reading below to learn about five types of products that help facilitate optimal lightning protection for your wind turbines.

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Topics: Lightning Protection

How to Prevent Railway Copper Theft: A Costly Epidemic

Posted by Guillaume Rey on Jul 25, 2017 8:03:00 AM

Copper is highly sought after due to its high market value and versatile applications. As a result, CNBC declared copper theft to be “an epidemic” in 2013. Copper theft again became a problem at the end of 2016 when copper prices rose by 20%.

From abandoned houses to new construction sites, many locations are hotspots for theft of copper wire, cable electronics and other products.

In addition to those sites, railways are particularly vulnerable to copper theft. From New York to San Francisco to Seattle, reports show thousands of pounds of railway copper have been stripped from rails in the middle of the night.

Read on to learn why railways are especially susceptible, what the true costs of stolen copper are, and how railway designers and engineers can prevent such costly problems.

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Topics: Copper Theft

How Climate Change is Increasing Lightning & Ways to Protect Your Facility

Posted by TJ Gaines on Jul 11, 2017 8:01:00 AM

For years, climate change has been a hot topic for everyone from scientists to economists. As more data is collected on a warming climate, we begin to see dangerous changes in our earth like:

  • Rising sea levels
  • Increasing global temperatures
  • Warming oceans
  • Deteriorating ice sheets

One implication caused by climate change that is just beginning to grab attention is increased lightning strikes. Scientific-backed studies released in recent years, including one published in Scientific American, found that lightning strikes are predicted to increase by at least 12% for every one degree Celsius in temperature rise.

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Topics: Lightning Protection

How Grounding System Helped Gold Mine Overcome Rocky Soil Conditions

Posted by Martin Havelka on Jun 27, 2017 8:08:00 AM

The Peak Gold Mine, located in New South Wales, Australia, provided gold deposits and copper concentrate throughout the Asian Market from 1896 to 1920.

While the Peak Gold Mine concluded production long before the change of the millennium, production resurfaced at the mine in the mid 2000s, thanks to the discovery of additional gold.

Despite challenging ground conditions, miners at the Peak Gold Mine have uncovered 99,072 ounces of gold, along with 9,070 tons of copper, and have a predicted working life through 2020. 

So how was this massive amount of materials unearthed from a century-old mine? Continue reading to learn how ERICO Ground Enhancement Material (GEM) improved the grounding system and power quality at Peak Gold Mine.

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Topics: Case Study, Grounding System

The Basics of Isolated Down Conductors for Lightning Protection

Posted by TJ Gaines on Jun 13, 2017 8:08:00 AM

When it comes to the basics of lightning protection, two main systems are generally implemented: Isolated or non-isolated systems. 

Non-isolated systems are commonly used to protect metallic items on a structure from potential lightning hazards. A non-isolated system is made up of a network of air terminals, down conductors and grounding electrodes that are installed on the structure and in the earth.

In comparison, isolated systems use a similar network as listed above, but the system utilizes fewer components, which are designed to carry strikes on a specific path to the grounding system. 

When electrical engineers decide between an isolated or non-isolated lightning protection system, several factors must be taken into consideration. Read on to learn about the design and when to implement an isolated lightning protection system.

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Topics: Lightning Protection