Electrical Review - September 2017

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Informing the electrical industry for over 140 years

September 2017 Volume 250 | No 9 www.electricalreview.co.uk

A growing market

Test & measurement The last resort

Technology to market :RUOG¡V Ă€UVW digital distribution transfomer


04 NEWS A burning issue

10 GOSSAGE Gossage:gossip

12 UPS Achieving data centre type UPS protection for mid size server rooms


EDITOR: Elinore Mackay 020 8319 1807 elinorem@electricalreview.co.uk


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16 TECHNOLOGY TO MARKET World’s first distribtion transformer


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26 OMICRON No need for heavy weights


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4 | NEWS

A burning issue A story regarding a scalding incident that resulted in loss of life has recently resurfaced on national media. Sadly, a woman was severely scalded when using a shower in her hotel room and she subsequently died from her related injuries Regrettably, this is not an isolated incident and severe scalding incidents continue to occur on a regular basis. Data on hospital patient care activity –published every year by NHS England– shows that there were 718 admissions from contact with hot tap-water in the year 2015-16, up from 672 in the previous year. Despite similar numbers of admissions for the past seven years, the most worrying statistic is that almost half of these incidents affected children up to the age of 14. Unfortunately, it is young children who, along with the elderly, are the most vulnerable to severe injury because they have thinner and more sensitive skin. The severity of injury that contact with hot water can give should not be underestimated: water temperatures of 60 degrees can cause third-degree burns in only five seconds of contact with the skin of an adult. There is no doubt that temperature control is necessary to avoid catastrophic accidents like this one. The most effective way of achieving this is by using thermostatic mixing valves (TMVs). TMVs are located within or near the sink, bath or shower units and are designed to accurately control water temperature by mixing hot and cold water to produce the required blend and maintain it at the user-selected or pre-determined safe temperature. The control is carried out by a thermally sensitive mechanism within the valve, which also plays a crucial role in preventing scalds by avoiding sudden increases

Electrical Review | September 2017

in water temperature. This is achieved by shutting down the flow of hot water in instances where cold water pressure unexpectedly drops. The use of TMVs reduces the hot water discharge temperatures to between 37 – 46°C, therefore drastically reducing the chance of scalding. The importance of this safety feature has long been realised by the Department of Health (DH). The Health Technical Memorandum (HTM) 04-01 –Safe water in healthcare premises– was published in 2006 and requires the use of Type 3 TMVs in all UK care establishments (e.g. hospitals, nursing homes and care homes), in all areas where patients and visitors may have access to. Type 3 refers to TMVs with superior thermal performance, which are subjected to strict third-party testing to ensure the requirements of HTM 04-01 are met along with associated performance specification D08. This is carried out under the TMV3 certification scheme currently managed by Buildcert. Such stringent requirements clearly reflect the DH’s intent to provide the highest safety and protection levels possible from hot water in healthcare premises. Although general commercial facility

owners do not need to consider the greater vulnerability of hospital patients, they do need to ensure all necessary steps are taken to prevent people using their facility from being injured. This is known as the ‘duty of care’, which requires a risk assessment to be carried out to establish how susceptible people are to any dangers, such as scalding, existing within the building and initiating appropriate measures to minimise the risk within the building. Even if no specific recommendations or requirements have been identified in the risk assessment, suggested best practice is for TMVs to be installed in all buildings. Taking such positive action will help to minimise the risk of scalding to building users and help building owners meet their duty of care obligations. Beama encourages all hotel and wider commercial facility owners to review their duty of care and associated risk assessments to make sure that tragic events like this do not happen again. Further information, guidance and frequently asked questions about TMVs and related topics are available in the Water Safety and Hygiene group section at www.beama.org.uk.

6 | NEWS

BESA, ECA and SELECT poll finds many SMEs are not being paid within 30 days Almost two in three (63 per cent) engineering services firms were not paid within 30 days by public sector bodies during the second quarter of this year, according to new survey findings from the ECA, the Building Engineering Services Association (BESA), and SELECT. The figures represent a decline in prompt payment performance on the first quarter of the year, when 55 per cent of businesses were not paid within 30 days by public sector bodies such as local authorities and NHS trusts. In many cases, this directly contravenes government legislation on prompt public sector payment, known as the ‘Public Contracts Regulations 2015’. In addition, four in 10 firms (39 per cent) said over three per cent of their turnover is being held in retentions by firms up the supply chain (see Notes to Editors for more information). Despite the challenging payment climate, turnover among respondents remained strong, with over eight in 10 (81 per cent)

Electrical Review | September 2017

finding turnover increased or stayed the same in Q2, compared to Q1. Looking ahead to Q3, 87 per cent of businesses expect turnover to rise, or remain steady. ECA CEO Steve Bratt commented: “The engineering services sector continues to show resilience despite the ongoing challenges of late payment and cash retentions, and the increasing challenge of rising material and labour costs. “With public sector support – including prompt payment – our sector can deliver key infrastructure projects and provide skilled technical employment. This would support of government objectives for growth and delivering whole-life asset value to the UK economy.” BESA chief executive Paul McLaughlin said: “Despite the political turmoil created by Brexit, it is good to see that our sector remains stable and that contractors are reasonably optimistic about the future. Rising costs and extended payment periods continue to create challenges, but the fact that some building engineering firms have improved their profit margins is testament to their ability to manage risk. “It is, however, vital that the government continues to feed the pipeline of infrastructure work and that companies in our sector hold their nerve. Success will not be spectacular or short-term and it will definitely have to be hard won.” SELECT Managing Director Newell McGuiness added: “Late payment can have a devastating effect on engineering businesses, as well as to the wider economy. Cash flow is vital to ensure apprentice recruitment, employment and up-skilling training continues to grow. In our view, improving the velocity of cash is vital in improving our industry.” Despite business optimism, materials prices continue to rise, with seven in 10 businesses (68 per cent) reporting an increase. In addition, almost half of companies (47 per cent) said labour costs had risen. The sector-wide ‘Building Engineering Business Survey’, sponsored by Scolmore, received 318 responses from SELECT, BESA and ECA members during July. The trade bodies are currently working with construction industry stakeholders and government to secure a sector deal which will enhance the built environment, while supporting SMEs throughout the supply chain.

Diesel and petrol ban Martin Jones, business development manager for services & solutions at Rexel UK comments on the latest government announcement that Britain is set to ban all new diesel and petrol cars and vans from 2040 “With the announcement last week that the government is aiming to ban all new diesel and petrol cars from 2040, as well as reviewing the use of hybrid vehicles; the drive towards the use of electric vehicles will undoubtedly accelerate at a much faster pace than current levels. “Whilst vehicle manufacturers will obviously take the lead on enhancing their EV offerings, there is still much to be done across UK infrastructure to support the ever-growing use of EV vehicles. “Although at Rexel we have already seen many businesses beginning to invest in EV charging facilities, the current facilities available does not support an increased number of EV vehicles on the roads. As a result, it won’t be long before the government starts introducing measures requiring businesses to offer EV charging facilities. “With the pressure now on to meet this new government target, there is a real opportunity for consumer facing businesses, and indeed commercial operations, to stay ahead of the game and ensure they are prepared for the 2040 target. By taking a planned approach to EV, businesses can not only avoid having to make a ‘panic’ investment when any future legislation is put into place, but they can also reap rewards in the short term. “EV solutions also offer many benefits to businesses looking to attract customers, particularly those who are already seeking more sustainable options. As well as offering a point of differentiation in the eyes of end users, it can also offer a commercial opportunity for the business itself. “By being able to market themselves as ‘electric vehicle friendly’, a location will automatically become more attractive to the increasing number of drivers already using or planning to purchase an electric car. However, more importantly, the flexibility available within today’s charging points means that businesses can set or change the charging price to suit their own requirements, allowing them to secure a return on investment and even generate a profit, all within a period of time of their choosing.”

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8 | NEWS

Electrician highly commended in Britain’s Top Tradesperson contest An NICEIC registered electrician from Wigan narrowly missed out on the top prize in a contest to find the nations’ best tradesperson. Karl Mather, owner of KDM Electrical, was awarded highly commended during this year’s Britain’s Top Tradesperson competition as organised by Screwfix. He was one of eight tradespeople who made it through to the Grand Final at Wembley after more than 5,000 tradesfolk entered the highly competitive contest. He said: “I’m over to moon to have been highly commended in this competition. I was able to showcase the variety of electrical challenges I’ve achieved for my customers, but also how important it is for me to support those in need. I met a great bunch

of tradespeople at the final, who all really knew their stuff so I’m thrilled to have been given this award.” Karl impressed the judges with his wealth of knowledge and willingness to go above and beyond for his customers. Over the years Karl has supported those in need and regularly does a lot of selfless activities for charities. Screwfix’s Marketing Director, Graham Smith, added “Karl stood out with his ethos of going the extra mile and this was clearly shown through his high standard of work and going above and beyond to support individuals in need.” Karl hit the headlines earlier this year when he paid for and fitted a new heating system for an elderly couple who could not

afford to replace an old heater. Emma Clancy, CEO of NICEC added: “It is not surprising that Karl was highly recommended. He is a credit to the industry and his dedication and genuine care for his customers really make him a stand out tradesperson. I am proud to have him as a NICEIC registrant.”

Know your numbers and keep the silent killer at bay As many as 7 million people in the UK are living undiagnosed and therefore unaware that they are at risk of high blood pressure – often called the silent killer. In support of Know Your Numbers Week, ECIS, the employee benefits company for the construction industry, is urging workers to get their blood pressure checked and take any necessary action to reach and maintain a healthy blood pressure. There are many factors that can contribute to high blood pressure; not doing enough physical activity, being overweight or obese, having too much salt in your diet, regularly drinking too much alcohol as well as having a family history of high blood pressure. In the UK nearly 30% of adults

Electrical Review | September 2017

suffer from high blood pressure. Vicki Leslie, client relationship manager for ECIS, comments, “Whilst this isn’t a new problem, our modern lifestyles can make us more susceptible than ever to high blood pressure and the effects can be severe with sufferers up to 3 times more likely to develop heart disease or have a stroke2. As high blood pressure often has no symptoms, many people are simply unaware they have it. This highlights the importance of having your blood pressure measured by a nurse or doctor as part of a healthcheck, particularly if you are over 40. A blood pressure check is standard procedure in the Health Assessments ECIS offers as part of the employee

benefits schemes we run for trade bodies in the contracting sector. “The good news is that small lifestyle changes can go a long way to maintaining a healthy blood pressure level. Simple changes such as increasing mobility and exercise, reducing salt intake, cutting down on alcohol and eating a healthy, balanced diet can make a big difference to blood pressure levels. Knowing your numbers is the starting point from which you can take any action necessary to reduce your risk. Therefore this September we’re encouraging all construction workers to get their blood pressure checked and get in the know about any underlying health issues.”


GOSSAGE Christmas cheer

South of the wall

So farewell then to Vincent de Rivaz. Mr de Rivaz has been with the French state-backed energy giant Electricité de France for the past forty years. and has stood at the helm of the UK business since 2002. At first he was chief executive of the London Electricity Group before it merged with Seeboard and the Eastern Network to become EDF Energy in 2003. His appointment coincided with Prime Minister Tony Blair launching the first energy policy government White Paper for almost forty years, stating that there was little or no future for nuclear power. That policy altered 180 degrees, and by 2006 Blair was instead promising a vast new nuclear programme now estimated by energy finance expert professor Steve Thomas of Greenwich University to cost over £125bn. Subsequently de Rivaz has spent practically all of the ensuing period locked in negotiations over the Hinkley Point C new nuclear project, which received ostensible government approval in September last year. And may, or may not, be completed by 2024. Mr de Rivaz’s retirement will apparently start just before this Christmas. This is fortuitous. It was after all he who so famously promised Blair, and all the rest of us, that we would be able to be cooking our 2017 Christmas turkeys with electricity generated at Hinkley Point C. I understand that the de Rivaz family is planning a distinctly abstemious Christmas this year.

U S President Donald Trump is proposing a radical way to fund his proposed Mexican border wall: cover it in solar panels. Yes, this is the same Donald Trump who has spent years criticising renewable energy as uneconomic, and is pulling his country out of the Paris climate agreement. But it seems he now wants to add solar panels to his proposed barrier along the US–Mexico border in Texas. The president believes the panels would transform the wall, which he envisages would be 40 to 50ft high, into “beautiful structures”. But there are many areas along the border where it will be physically impossible to build a wall, with or without solar panels. Even if the government could do so, the wall’s configuration is not appropriate for a solar farm. There are no photovoltaic power stations - solar panel farms - that are arranged in a line. That is because it is inefficient to disperse panels like that. But the key point seems to be that, to be effective and face in a productive direction, all of the solar panels would have to be placed on the Mexican side of the border. And the Mexican government is entirely opposed to the entire project. Nonetheless Trump apparently has told congressmen from his Republican party that they should talk about his solarpanelled wall positively, “just as long as they say it was his idea.” To those who query whether, given how few people live close by the border, such a project could ever be costeffective, Trump may have an idea as to how any surplus electricity might be used. “I imagine that solar powered electric chairs would be popular in states that still have the death penalty.”

Third time lucky? Just to prove that all is not completely doom and gloom in the wonderful world of the Great God Atom, you may be interested to learn that the Bulgarian government is seeking private investors to revive the Belene nuclear power project. This had been cancelled, for the second time, in 2012. This led to the Bulgarian government ending up having to pay €620m in December 2016 to the Russian nuclear group Atomstroyexport (part of Rosatom) as compensation for having cancelled the €10bn project. But now the government is considering privatising the project. They are confident that – uniquely in Europe - the entire project can be built without state guarantees or mandatory long-term power purchase contracts. Apparently our old friends the China National Nuclear Corporation (CNNC) has expressed its interest in investing in the project. And the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC) has announced that it might consider financing Belene. Might this be a case of third time lucky? After all, construction of the Belene power plant was started all of thirty years ago, back in 1987 by the Communist government, but was stopped in 1991 under pressure from ecological movements, objections from neighbouring countries and a new, rather less profligate, nonCommunist government. Then the project was revived in 2002, and Atomstroyexport was selected in 2006 to build two 1,000 MW VVER-1000 reactors. However, the €10bn project failed to attract any external investors. It in turn was cancelled in 2012 due to financial constraints combined with American and European concerns over its energy dependence on Russia. This prompted Atomstroyexport to file a lawsuit against the Bulgarian Government claiming €1bn in damages. In June 2016, an international arbitration court ruled that Bulgaria should pay compensation of €620m for the nuclear equipment it ordered from the Russian company before cancelling the project. If at first you don’t succeed, try again?And again? And again?

Pity the poor Helms-man The Oxford academic Dieter Helm has until October 31 - precisely thirty working days - in which to produce and present his muchtrumpeted Report to Government on the costs of electricity. He is explicitly barred from making recommendations on any future tax changes ,or upon the status of individual projects like Hinkley Point C. All this hasn’t stopped the world and his brother from rushing in to tell him what to write. They are wasting everyone’s time. From past experience, I am confident Mr Helm will have established precisely what answers his paymasters are seeking before he started work. Electrical Review | September 2017

12 | UPS

Achieving data centre-type UPS protection for mid-sized server rooms While data centres and other large-scale applications unequivocally require UPS power protection, the same is also true for smaller applications such as mid-sized server rooms, communications centres or industrial control rooms. The scale of their ICT activities may be reduced, but the consequences of a disruption could be just as severe for the users involved. In this article, Alan Luscombe, director at Uninterruptible Power Supplies, a Kohler company, discusses how to bring data centretype UPS protection to server rooms and other smaller ICT installations


s most modern data centres contribute critically to their owners’ business continuity, it’s unsurprising that they rely on UPSs to assure clean, uninterrupted power at all times. Given the possible consequences of a power problem, these systems are usually implemented with the best available technology; typically including redundant units to maximise availability, together with online doubleconversion topology to fully protect the load from any power problems. In today’s drive for greener environments and cost savings, high efficiency is also essential. Additionally, these UPSs will have been sourced from suppliers proven to be effective maintenance and support partners, as uptime depends on these factors as much as on the equipment installed. But what about smaller ICT users like server rooms or communications centres? With business activity and installation size less than a data centre’s, their budget, manpower and space resources are correspondingly reduced. However, their need for protected power remains just as critical. Fewer people may be affected if a server room rather than a large data centre is compromised by power problems, but for those that are, the consequences may be just as severe. Fortunately, though, answers are available. It is possible to purchase UPS solutions, in terms of both hardware and support, that are scaled to midsized server room requirements while offering the same protection levels as available to their larger Electrical Review | September 2017

data centre counterparts. To understand how such marriages can be made, we can start by looking at the UPS requirements and constraints that characterise server rooms; some are the same as for data centres, but others differ. With this profile in mind, we can then review one solution that is currently available.

SCALING FOR SERVER ROOMS An essential and primary consideration should be the UPS’s topology. Server rooms, as data centres, should use dualconversion, online solutions, as these

Secure protection against main-borne disurbances alone secure full protection against all possible mains-borne disturbances as well as complete power blackouts. Dualconversion UPSs are so-called because of their two conversion stages; a rectifier for AC/DC, and an inverter for DC/AC. In online configurations, incoming utility power, when present, always passes through these two stages before reaching the load, which is connected to the inverter output. The UPS components continuously shield the load from mains-borne noise and transient voltage excursions, as well as providing a constantly well-regulated supply.

If the mains does fail, the inverter continues to support the load without interruption, by drawing power from the UPS battery. Flexibility in battery configuration is therefore desirable, to set up a battery autonomy to support a load of known size for a given time, or to provide a grace period either for a generator to start up, or for the load to be shut down safely. Offline systems, by contrast, connect the raw mains directly to the load during normal operation, exposing it to damage from any incoming voltage aberrations, as well as subjecting it to a short-duration but finite supply break during any transfer to the inverter output. As the UPS fulfils its role in providing protected power, its own availability is essential in server rooms, just as in larger data centre applications. Redundancy should be designed in wherever possible, as this significantly elevates availability. If single points of failure are eliminated, the UPS system can become resilient to component or even unit failures, providing uninterrupted and continued support for the load with its remaining capacity. Data centre UPS systems often have a modular design, where one or more modules – each a complete, self-contained UPS unit - are assembled into a 19” racking frame. Because each module adds incrementally to the overall capacity, N+1 redundancy can be achieved easily and cost-effectively. This modular approach yields two further benefits; scaling to meet changing demand becomes easy, and

14 | UPS

maintenance can be performed without interrupting power to the load, simply by swapping a module. These redundancy, scalability and maintainability benefits are just as desirable for server rooms, but such premises’ more limited size may preclude the space overhead of racking system cabinets. If so, a better alternative is to use free-standing units, provided they have a compact footprint and can be paralleled together.

A PRACTICAL SERVER ROOM UPS SOLUTION At this point, a profile of a UPS system with data centre-type capabilities, but scaled to server room constraints, begins to emerge. UPSL Ltd.’s PowerWAVE 5000/TP, as shown in Fig.1, gives a practical example of this profile. Physically, it is a low-weight threephase tower system, offering capacities from 10 kVA to 50 kVA. It achieves a power density of up to 100 kW/m2 from a footprint of just 0.4 m2 at 50 kVA; ratings

The UPS provides full load protection

that suit it well to a space-limited server room environment. The UPS provides full load protection through its dual conversion online topology, and high availability through using redundant critical circuits which duplicate all its internal critical components and circuitry, and eliminate single points of failure. Up to 20 units can be paralleled, to increase unit-level redundancy and allow easy scaling. Redundant units can also be maintained without interrupting power to the system. Each PowerWAVE 5000/TP UPS offers a choice of cabinet dimensions, allowing users to accommodate their ideal battery size. Autonomy can be further extended with additional battery cabinets, which match the UPSs in appearance. Maintenance-free VRLA or NiCad batteries can be used. Energy use and running costs are minimised as the transformerless UPS Electrical Review | September 2017

UPS Ltd.’s PowerWAVE 5000/TP, designed for mid-size server rooms, networks, telecommunication systems and industrial processes

achieves an efficiency of up to 95.5% over a wide load range. Further savings arise through ripple-free and optional temperature-controlled battery charging, which protects batteries and extends their life-time performance. The UPS also has electrical characteristics that enhance its desirability in server room environments. An input power factor of near unity reduces input cable and fuse sizes, while an outstandingly low THDi of <3% saves unnecessary over-sizing of gen-sets, cabling and circuit breakers. Input component lifetimes are extended, while interference with nearby equipment is eliminated. Users can ensure the PowerWAVE 5000/TP sustains its availability and performance levels through setting up an appropriate maintenance contract with the supplier. This can include both regular visits and an emergency callout plan with

a guaranteed response timeframe. Special arrangements can be made with UPS Ltd. for battery maintenance, and a remote monitoring service can also be included. Each contract can be tuned to a particular installation’s requirements, but, overall, cover to 24 hours a day, 365 days a year can be arranged.

CONCLUSION Server rooms, and similarly-sized applications such as communications centres and industrial control rooms, are smallerscale than data centres, yet they require the same level of power protection and security. Power quality and continuity, availability, efficiency, maintainability and scalability all remain as essential attributes of the UPSs they use. In this article, we have seen how a modern UPS system can meet all these requirements while being scaled to a server room type environment.


World’s first digital distribution transformer Reliability, performance and service life were central considerations when ABB launched the TXpert distribution transformer in March

The TXpert transformer has inbuilt local diagnostics and communication


he new transformer is the first of its kind as it integrates sensors to monitor lifetime performance. It will enable operators to improve their asset monitoring, avoid transformer failure, predict outages and initiate condition-based asset management. Power grids are undergoing an unprecedented transformation both on the supply and demand side. There are many new sources of energy including wind and solar photovoltaic distributed around the grid. In addition, new demand loads like data centres and electric vehicles call for a more flexible grid, driving the need for greater digitalization and automation.

Electrical Review | September 2017

In this context, intelligent products that can communicate will be essential component in the convergence of information and operational technologies. As a distribution transformer, the TXpert is ideally suited to applications such as residential and commercial utility supplies, integrating renewable power, or managing power distribution for oil, gas and chemical facilities or data centres.

SENSORS AND COMMUNICATION Performance data collected from the sensors is stored and analysed locally inside the transformer, offering insights on how it is operating. Operators such as utilities,

industries and data centre managers will then use this vital information to make key decisions on the operation and maintenance of their transformers. The data will also provide insights to support the management of the asset throughout its life, including activities such as optimising maintenance schedules and system performance, as well as planning asset replacement. Sensors embedded in the TXpert monitor for key performance indicators including ambient temperature, top-oil temperature, oil level, pressure, moisture, voltage and current, as well as the option of a hydrogen sensor. A local analytical unit provides operators with an estimate of the transformer lifetime and impact of Total Harmonic Distortion (THD). The unit can also be extended to feature additional algorithms. The unit stores the fully encrypted data for up to 20 years. In terms of communication, maintenance and operational staff can download data locally via an embedded Wi-Fi router. The internal Wi-Fi is capable of connecting to several communications mediums using standard protocols and best practices in cyber security. Operators can configure the transformer to connect with remote control centres via mobile telecoms network such as LTE or GSM, a private utility Wireless Mesh or a Wide Area Network (WAM). When wide area communications are enabled, real-time data is available to transmit network conditions. Being compatible with the IEC 61850 smart grid protocol, the TXpert is also designed to help operators future-proof their networks. “Distribution transformers are vital components in the electrical value chain. This latest innovation extends our digital portfolio and ABB Ability based offering, and reinforces our positon as the world’s


A transformer at Lynemouth Power Station was the UK’s first to feature ABB’s Transformer Intelligence

leading transformer manufacturer,” said Claudio Facchin, President of ABB’s Power Grids Division. “It also reiterates our Next Level strategic focus on enabling a stronger, smarter and greener grid.” The TXpert digital transformer is part of the ABB AbilityTM digital offering that uses cloud computing and connected devices to generate actionable data for a broad range of customers.

TRANSFORMER INTELLIGENCE TXpertTM is part of ABB’s Transformer IntelligenceTM portfolio. The sensor-based technology is designed to optimise and enhance the operation of power transformers from 11 kV all the way up to 400 kV. The ultimate objective of transformer intelligence is to enhance performance, reduce costs and extend lifetime. It includes state-of-the-art sensors, monitoring platforms and software tools and will Electrical Review | September 2017

be a catalyst for enhancing distribution transformer performance, improving predictability and increasing reliability. Two technologies form the basis of Transformer Intelligence. The first is

Distribution transformers are vital components CoreTec, a modular and expandable system that can be installed to any brand of transformer in new and retrofit applications and requires just a few sensors. It is straightforward to operate and a userfriendly web interface displays a large number of operational parameters.

The second is CoreSense sensors, which continually monitor hydrogen and moisture levels in transformer oil to act as an early warning system. The sensors are based on a thermal pump design that has no moving parts, therefore reducing the maintenance requirements. Combining CoreTec with the data from CoreSense and other sensors is designed to give operators of transformers confidence in the health of individual transformers and fleet and enable them to schedule maintenance only when required. Traditionally, transformer condition analysis requires techniques such as Dissolved Gas Analysis. While this is very effective for detecting fault conditions, oil sampling can only be done intermittently. By adopting Transformer Intelligence as a complementary technique to laboratory analysis, operators can develop deep knowledge of the condition of their assets.


EMC and functional safety One of the biggest problems faced by all electrical and electronic equipment is that of electromagnetic interference (EMI). However, what’s peculiar is that, despite the rising use of devices that are susceptible to EMI, until recently there have been no clear guidelines for EMC as regards functional safety. Here, Keith Armstrong, worldwide EMC specialist at EMC Standards, looks at how engineers can ensure that EMI will not cause excessive functional safety risks


ll electrical and electronic technologies emit electromagnetic (EM) disturbances that can interfere with the correct operation of radiocommunication equipment or other electronics. Modern technologies are particularly likely to cause such disturbances, worsening the EM environment that electronic devices are exposed to. EM disturbances can cause problems to electronic equipment, ranging from degraded functionality all the way to complete failure. The discipline of controlling the limits of EM emissions and the levels of immunity is known as electromagnetic compatibility (EMC). EMC is increasingly becoming more valuable in electrical and electronic engineering. As we continue to integrate more electronic technology into our lives and into our businesses, from computers and mobile phones to variable speed drives (VSDs) and programmable logic controllers (PLCs), we are also seeing a rapid increase in the use of electronics in safety-related applications. Engineers and their managers are all under pressure to make sure that the equipment and systems we use in our businesses do not expose people to excessive safety risks. Despite the fact that most of us understand the importance of protecting devices against electromagnetic interference (EMI), there is often confusion about exactly what constitutes good EMC from the point of view of ensuring that EMI does not cause excessive functional safety risks.

GOOD EMC VS EMC COMPLIANT Many people think that all that is necessary Electrical Review | September 2017

for good EMC is for equipment and systems to meet the EMC Directive and be CE marked. Unfortunately, neither the EMC Directive nor its harmonised EMC standards cover EMC-related functional safety, and this is clearly stated in the EMC Directive. Also, most of the safety standards that are harmonised under the Low Voltage Directive do not cover EMCrelated functional safety and some don’t even cover functional safety at all. The Machinery Safety Directive and its harmonised safety standards attempt to

Avoid excessive functional safety risks

cover the EMC issues for machine safety, but eventually fail by referencing the EMC Directive and its standards, which do not cover safety issues. Because of the lack of coverage of this increasingly important issue by existing EMC or safety standards, issues of EMC-related safety are falling short of a sufficient solution. Since the commercial pressures on manufacturers are such that they are unwilling to go further than what they perceive, often incorrectly, as being their minimum legal obligations, the resulting safety risks are uncontrolled. Although some IEC standards and technical reports have subsequently addressed these issues, they are not yet widely understood or used. They are also

not explicitly harmonised under any EU Directives and unlikely to be so for many years yet.

EM IN EFFECT As an example of an increasingly common EM disturbance, consider the possible proximity of mobile radiocommunications to a safety-related electronic system. The EMC Directive’s immunity standards require normal functional performance to be maintained when exposed to radio-frequency (RF) fields at either three volts per metre (V/m) for residential, commercial and light industrial environments or ten V/m for normal industrial environments. However, what do these V/m levels mean in real life for the proximity of mobile radio-communications? Let us imagine that an engineer is using a mobile phone in a residential area with poor reception. If this were to have two watts of RF power, then we might expect any safety-related electronic systems in the area to maintain functional performance if the engineer was between roughly 2.5m and 5m from the system. In a normal industrial environment, however, it would be necessary to maintain functionality between 0.8m and 1.6m. In this situation, if the engineer operated a connected PLC while using his mobile phone, he would obviously be much closer than 0.8m so the field strengths could exceed 10V/m and the equipment could suffer from degraded functionality. This could range from false data, such as ignoring a limit switch, to total failure of the operating system. To ensure functional safety from an EMC perspective, it is critical that engineers carry out an effective hazard and risk


assessment. This should consider what EM disturbances the apparatus may be exposed to, how the equipment’s own EM emissions impact other devices, what the health and safety implications of a disturbance are and the confidence that the design will not permit EMI to cause excessive safety risks over the entire lifecycle. EMI is set to be one of the biggest challenges that engineers will face in

Electrical Review | September 2017

the future as more devices come into widespread use and confusion over functional safety persists. While the IET’s 2013 guidance will be published in early 2017 as their important new Code of Practice on “Electromagnetic Resilience in support of functional safety”, engineers should not delay in learning more about this important issue. Information about EMC and the IET’s

2013 guidance can be accessed from the EMC/EMI risk management section of the EMC Standards website, alongside many helpful and informative articles and presentations. It is only by following the IET’s 2013 guidance (or modern guidance developed from it, such as the IET’s new Code of Practice) that engineers can ensure that equipment and systems are functionally safe as regards EMI.


No need for heavy weight protection testing systems


he dynamics of the anticipated future developments of protection relays is expected to take place more in the realm of software, so the time was ripe for presenting a new test set. There was ample potential for a raft of improvements and new features, and finally there was a gap to be filled in terms of mobility.

the closed case. The case offers enough storage space for the necessary accessories. An additional accessory soft bag can be pulled over the extendable handle and placed on the closed case. For particularly mobile applications, and those who like their transport aids to be as light as possible, a trolley, which can even be worn as a backpack, is available as an alternative.



Deliberate efforts were made to reduce the weight of the new CMC 430. The result is a multi-phase secondary test set weighing a mere 8.7kg – currently the lightest in the world. It is comfortable to carry, easy to use and accepted as cabin baggage by airlines. It supplies three current outputs, six binary/analog inputs and generally focuses on applications in the area of Inom = 1A (test current = 3 x 12.5 A). High accuracy is important when testing certain protection functions, such as detecting earth faults or the direction of faults near the installation location. Accuracy regarding amplitude, phase, frequency, and the derived variables power (P, Q, S) and energy (Wh, varh) is essential when calibrating meters, measuring transducers, and other measuring instruments. All the tests so far have shown that the CMC 430 is more accurate than all previous CMC models, at least with a defined load range. The internal system timing is provided by a quartz clock, with a maximum drift of only 4.6ppm (0.00046%) in 20 years. The frequency and phases of the analog variable outputs and the time stamp for recording binary and analog signals use this reference. This also applies to any possible external time base. This is necessary for synchronised testing or calibrating measuring instruments with a time reference, such as a PMU (phasor measurement unit). The accuracy of the simulated active and reactive power is crucial for calibrating power measuring transducers and meters. The test objects here are generally in the accuracy class range of 0.2 to 0.5%. The specified maximum error for active power accuracy (valid for one year after factory calibration) is 0.08% of the set value. Under favorable conditions (temperature, current path load > 0.3 Ω) this is typically considerably below this figure.

LEDs show the status of the voltage and current booster outputs, and the AUX DC auxiliary voltage output. In addition, the user can activate an acoustic signal to indicate the “Outputs active” and “Overload” statuses audibly as well as visually. The user is warned in advance of the impending output of a preset DC auxiliary voltage for 20 seconds both visually and audibly. These indicators give a better overview of the test progress.

IMPROVED STURDINESS AND HANDLING The new in-house housing design, with reinforced corner and edge protection and all connections and control elements mounted at the front, puts a desire expressed by many customers into practice. The unit can be used vertically, sideways or in the classic horizontal position (fig. 1). The shock-absorbing rubber corner elements protect the system against mechanical influences. The new multi-purpose carrying case makes working more enjoyable. The CMC 430 can be kept in its case during testing, can be lifted up and slightly inclined, or placed on the raised case lid. However, this case lid is best used as the place for the control notebook (fig. 2). The case offers enough storage space for the necessary accessories, with an additional soft bag for additional accessories pulled over the extendable handle and placed on Electrical Review | September 2017

SIX VOLTAGES The CMC 430 uses two complete triple voltages (6 x 150 V), with all the outputs having the same neutral “N”. This not only allows the neutral overvoltage from the open delta connection to be simulated as a 4th voltage, but also two complete voltage systems as well. Synchro-Check devices, synchronisers and integrated protection and control systems (for example, SEL 421) with six voltage inputs can therefore be tested without additional voltage amplifiers.

SIX FURTHER DEVELOPED ANALOG/BINARY INPUTS Six measuring inputs insulated from each other (CAT II-600V) with an additional 10 mV measuring range, improved measuring accuracy and higher sampling rates (10 and 40kHz) are further features of the CMC 430. The sampling values of the analog channels are linked with the data from the binary channels (electrical or GOOSE) and up to two SV streams, and continuously sent to the control computer. Calculations and signal visualisation are carried out using the EnerLyzer Live software. The powerful, hybrid measurement functions (analog, binary, GOOSE, and SV) make carrying another instrument unnecessary, which also reduces costs. For applications requiring more than six analog/binary inputs, the ISIO 200 (binary input/output module with IEC 61850 interface) can be connected to the device via an Ethernet connection (automatic configuration with the TU tool ISIO Connect). The measurement shunts C-shunt 1 or C-shunt 10 or a current probe (for example, CP 30) are necessary for recording currents. The CMC 430 is also fitted with four rapid expansion ports for connecting future accessories, such as an external low signal generator for simulating unconventional CTs/VTs.

DC AUXILIARY VOLTAGE WITH HIGH SHORT-TIME OUTPUT POWER For test objects with high short-time inrush currents in the DC supply, the auxiliary voltage output provides a power


of approximately 120W for a period of about two seconds (permanently available figure is 50W). This is enough to supply practically any protection device if the station supply is not available.

FREE CHOICE OF CONNECTION The CMC 430 controller can be connected by wire using an Ethernet cable or wirelessly over WiFi, although a wireless connection requires a special Mini USB WiFi adapter. This control method offers many advantages when the test set is in an exposed position or when checking wiring. A direct line of sight connection is necessary for a reliable longer-distance WiFi connection.

MEASUREMENTS WITH THE INSTRUMENT The CMC 430 is compatible with the known and legacy software packages from OMICRON like Test Universe 3.20, RelaySimTest or the CMControl P app. The measurement option EnerLyzer Live enhances the CMC 430 by adding powerful hybrid measuring, evaluation, and recording functions (fig. 3). The software integrates the measurement data from the analog and binary inputs and the virtual inputs (GOOSEs) and up to two data streams (sampled values as per IEC 61850-9-2). The data values are continually written to a circular buffer, which allows recordings of up to five minutes in length. The signals can be analysed even while the recording is in progress, and interesting parts can be saved as transient files (COMTRADE IEEE C 37.111-1999).

ABOUT THE AUTHOR Reinhard Kuntner is an experienced electrical engineer with a degree in Computer Science from the University of Innsbruck, Austria. He is the Product Manager for the CMC 430 at OMICRON and was part of the development team over the entire project duration.

ABOUT THE COMPANY OMICRON is an international company providing the electrical power industry with innovative testing and diagnostic solutions. The application of OMICRON products gives users the highest level of confidence when making condition assessments of primary and secondary equipment on their systems. www.omicronenergy.com



We take a look ahead to UK Construction Week, with a particular focus on the areas of interest to the electrical sector.


K Construction Week returns to Birmingham’s NEC on 10th-12th October, incorporating nine shows under one roof, including Energy 2017, HVAC 2017 and Smart Buildings 2017. Free to attend, it is the UK’s largest construction trade event, spanning three days, and is expected to attract around 30,000 trade visitors. An invaluable experience for every trade visitor, offering a wide-ranging programme, UK Construction Week works with industry leaders and organisations to address policy issues, develop skills and personal development, and seek out, recognise and reward talent and ability. More than 600 exhibitors will be showcasing the latest products, including world exclusives, dedicated seminar theatres will cover key industry talking points, and there will be ample opportunity to develop skills and recognise and award talent and ability. There is plenty of fun to be had as well, with a Beer & Ale Festival, Casino Night and Dodgeball Tournament all taking place on site.

Smart Buildings 2017 is the go-to event for the smart buildings industry for electricians, engineers, installers and much more. Amongst the broad spectrum of topics covered will be workplace technology, access and security controls, home entertainment systems, climate control, lighting and shading controls and the increasingly popular ‘Internet of Things’. Recognising the increasing influence of the smart buildings sector, a number of prominent organisations have announced their support for Smart Buildings 2017, including The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA), the Electrical Contractors’ Association (ECA) and the Building Controls Industry Association (BCIA).


Energy 2017 will explore the significant reduction of costs through energy saving ideas with the show tailored to meet the needs and requirements of engineers, installers, contractors and specifiers. Certas Energy, g2 Energy, nPower, Energy and Solisco are just a small selection of those who are exhibiting at Energy 2017. The Renewable Energy Association (REA) is one of the official content partners of Energy 2017 and will deliver a programme of insightful talks revolving around biomass, wind and solar at the specially designed REA theatre, sponsored by WElink.

HVAC 2017 is an event dedicated to heating, ventilation and air-conditioning and hosts a wide selection of the industry’s leading brands. It will focus on renewables, innovation and power solutions within the building environment and explore the reduction of costs through energy saving ideas. The show is tailored to meet the requirements of engineers, contractors, installers, architects and specifiers within the building engineering sector and is backed by industry leaders including BESA, FETA, CORGI, HEVAC, GSHPA and BCAS. Electrical Review | September 2017

UK Construction Week will bring the leading authorities together to deliver FREE CPD advice and guidance on key issues including: • Post Grenfell: Essential Guidance on Buildings Safety & Fire Prevention (A definitive update on building regulations) • Fire Prevention (Guidance on Sprinklers, Fire Doors, Dampening) • Flammable Building Materials (Cladding and other materials – latest advice) • Health & Safety (Do you know your responsibilities and how to avoid prosecution) • Improving Safety through Technology These CPD workshops are tailored for professionals responsible for building safety. Ensure you book your place early as spaces are limited. If you’d like to register your interest in the meantime, please do so by email: info@ukconstructionweek.com

WORLD PREMIERE OF THE SELF-DEPLOYING BUILDING BY TEN FOLD An exciting new innovation will be on display for the first time at UK Construction Week – the self-deploying building! Ten Fold Technology offers the tantalising possibility of fully relocatable, expanding buildings that arrive, self-unload and self-deploy in minutes using almost no power. These units are furnished and ready for immediate use and can fold away and move on as effortlessly as they arrive. Flexible and modular, they can provide almost any combination of space and facility.


PICK OF THE SEMINARS Television presenters George Clarke, Steph McGovern and Tom Dyckhoff will be kicking proceedings off across the three days on the UKCW Stage – and there will be plenty of talking points raised in the HVAC, Smart Buildings and Energy Hubs too:

What Will The UK’s Energy Policy Look Like Post Brexit? Speaker: Nina Skorupska, Renewable Energy Association Venue: REA Theatre Tuesday 10th October; 11:00 – 11.30

Learning from Real Life to Deliver Robust, Energy Efficient Building Services Controls Speaker: Sam Hunt, Senior Energy Consultant Venue: HVAC Hub Tuesday 10th October; 14.45 – 15.15

Connected Buildings – Disconnected People? Speaker: Steve Martin, Electrical Contractors’ Association Venue: Smart Buildings Hub Wednesday 11th October; 12:00 – 13:00

Impact Of Variable Flow And Temperature Control On Complex Heat Systems Speaker: Finian Parrick, Minibems Venue: Energy Hub Thursday 12th October; 11:45 – 12:15

Ground-source Heat Pump Boreholes – Infrastructure of National Value Speakers: Bean Beanland, BBH Energy Strategies, Vice Chairman of GSHPA and Robin Curtis, GeoScience Ltd, Chairman of GSHP’s Training and Standards Committee Venue: HVAC Hub Thursday 12th October; 14.15 – 14.45

The standard TF-64 model, which includes 729ft2 of clear space when open and 112ft2 of storage space when closed, will be deployed live at the show.

INDUSTRY AWARDS The first ever Smart Solutions Awards will be held at Smart Buildings 2017. Smart Solutions is a brand new online resource, developed by Voltimum, that aims to guide electrotechnical professionals along the journey towards adding smart home and building automation into their business repertoire. The awards will champion installers who have started this journey, and have demonstrated creativity and excellence on residential and light commercial projects already.

EVENING FUN A big success in 2016, the Beer and Ale Festival will offer more than 15 beers and a selection of hot food, as well as live music and entertainment. Also returning this year is the popular Casino Night, taking place at Genting International Casino at Resorts World Birmingham. Just a five-minute walk from the doors of Energy 2017, the Casino Night offers the perfect opportunity for you and your colleagues to enjoy a night relaxing and playing all the casino has to offer or just enjoy the entertainment and chance to network.


Effect of Co-working in Smart Buildings and Demands on Electrical Infrastructure

In association with CRASH Charity, UK Construction Week will be bringing the first ever UKCW Dodgeball Tournament to the show. Join in the fun as you dodge, catch and throw by entering your team of six players.

Speakers: Gary Marshall and Geoffrey Palmer, Sweco Venue: Smart Buildings Hub Thursday 12th October; 15:30 – 16:00

Register for your free ticket to UK Construction Week here: www.ukconstructionweek.com/register

Electrical Review | September 2017


Q&A EuroDoble is a forum where engineers and managers can exchange strategic approaches for managing European power networks, power stations and industrial sites. Electrical Review spoke to Dr. Alan Wilson of Doble Engineering Company to discuss what attendees can look forward to at EuroDoble 2017, which will be held on 22-25 October in Lisbon, Portugal. How long has EuroDoble been in existence? Since 1995, Doble has hosted EuroDoble in 13 countries across Europe, with this year’s event taking place in Lisbon, Portugal. In that time, we have welcomed over 2,500 electric power professionals from around the world collaborating on best practices for the manufacturing, engineering, production, maintenance and management of power equipment. Who benefits from attending EuroDoble? EuroDoble is ideal for maintenance engineers and asset managers directly involved in the care of transformers, generators, circuit breakers, cables, system protection and other related assets. The material discussed at EuroDoble is also beneficial for service providers and manufacturers who work with these engineers. We encourage our power industry colleagues to attend and learn from each other in this unique forum. You can attend for a fee of €750. Companies with a Doble Services Agreement that includes conference attendance may attend EuroDoble free of charge. What does EuroDoble’s programme consist of? The sessions of EuroDoble 2017 address four major themes: Managing the Ageing Asset Base, Impact of Renewables on Ageing Existing Systems, Data Management and Light Current Systems. Managing the ageing asset base is of Electrical Review | September 2017

utmost importance, as assets are ageing and any replacement strategy has to be integrated into work processes to ensure network performance. Reserve margins have declined significantly and there is a high reliance on irregular supply from renewables. Gaining defined outages for maintenance and replacements is

more difficult. This area is the theme for the first session at this year’s meeting. If network performance is to be preserved, having processes for identifying priorities is essential. Addressing the many ways utilities respond to environmental challenges, our “Impact of Renewables on Ageing Existing


Systems” session begins with describing changes introduced to address carbon emission targets such as the greater use of renewable fuel sources embedded within a smart or micro-grid. Our hosts in Lisbon, EDP Labelec, have a micro-grid village as part of a European initiative. Still, distribution fed generation leads to significant stresses on the existing, aged asset base. Presentations focus on issues encountered so far and future solutions for these problems. Data management is at the forefront of the conversation at this year’s EuroDoble meeting. Better organization and use of data enables effective assessment of the condition of assets and prevents failure. This topic is the highlight of our Keynote, which will discuss management of cybersecurity risks and government-related regulations designed to meet the evolving needs of the power grid. Protection testing will be explored in detail during tutorials and sessions dedicated to secondary systems and maintenance management for light current assets. There you will find topics covering power quality risks from harmonics and discussions on the production of transients produced by increased renewable content in power networks. Are there any standout workshops to look for this year? We have a number of workshops and special sessions, including a tutorial on the creation and use of asset health indices. In our cybersecurity portion of the agenda, we have a session that focuses on using the common information model or “CIM” for the management of asset data. There’s also a workshop for on-line diagnostics. What more should our readers know about EuroDoble? EuroDoble presents a unique opportunity for you to see the many methods others in the power industry are using to effectively improve operations and optimise asset performance. The programme is driven by feedback from our attendees and the needs of the power industry, and that is why we include: • Colloquium sessions with technical presentations followed by round table discussions Electrical Review | September 2017

• Protection technical presentations and tutorials • Tutorials focused on managing the life of aged assets, such as how to create asset health indices • A closed session for utility and industrial company attendees to share experiences related to plant performance, failures and malfunctions

• The EuroDoble Industry Expo, where you can network with peers and meet with power industry experts from around the globe We welcome you to join us this October in Lisbon, Portugal for EuroDoble 2017. You can learn more about the event and read the agenda at events.doble.com/ eurodoble.


The last resort Batteries in power stations and substations are often the last resort, providing power when other sources are unavailable. But it’s essential to monitor the condition of the batteries to ensure they’re ready to perform when called upon to do so. Discharge testing is widely accepted as the best way to do this, says Damon Mount of Megger.


tandby battery installations provide electricity to key elements of power generation, transmission and distribution systems when other power sources have failed. Batteries can provide power instantly, ensuring that critical systems continue to operate until emergency generators take over or the mains supply is restored. Batteries may even be required to support “black-start capability” for a power station, to enable it to restart after a national power cut without needing external power. Once power stations with blackstart capability have resumed operation, they can supply other power stations so that they can also restart. Black-start capability is therefore essential for the security of the country’s power supplies. As batteries play such an important role, it is essential for battery systems to be planned, installed and monitored in line with relevant standards, such as EN 50272-2. Electrical Review | September 2017

BATTERY CAPACITY A battery must be capable of continuously supplying electricity for a specified period of time. This ability is defined as the battery’s capacity and is expressed in amp hours (Ah). Manufacturers specify nominal battery capacity, but this doesn’t always correspond with reality. Over the working life of a battery, its capacity will decrease until it reaches the point where it is unable to supply power for the required length of time. Batteries store energy chemically, and the efficiency of the chemical processes deteriorates rapidly if the battery is poorly maintained. Furthermore, a battery is made up of a number of cells connected in series and a single defective cell can prevent the whole battery from working correctly. A battery installation is only as good as its weakest cell.


Alternatively, it can be configured for constant power delivery or constant load resistance throughout the test.

SIMULATING LOAD RESISTANCE Capacity tests most often require a constant discharge current. If the test set cannot provide a high enough discharge current, additional test sets or load units can often be connected. If a current clamp is used, the battery load can remain connected during the test with the test set adding extra load to keep the discharge current constant. A practical problem is that the battery voltage decreases continuously during the test, so the power delivered by the battery also decreases. When it is desirable for the power delivered to remain constant, the test set can be configured to continuously adjust the load resistance. The test set must also monitor battery voltage throughout the test to ensure that it does not fall below the specified endpoint voltage. If the end-point voltage is reached, the test must be terminated immediately as further discharge could damage the battery. At the end of the capacity test it is possible to say, with a high degree of confidence, whether the battery installation is capable of supplying power for a period long enough to meet the requirements of the application.

BATTERY VOLTAGE MONITORING As mentioned, a battery is only as good as its weakest cell but, until recently, it has been difficult to evaluate the condition of individual cells. Weak cells in the battery may just be

Electrical Review | September 2017

managing to do their job, but will soon need replacing. A new battery voltage monitoring system finds these cells by monitoring and recording the terminal voltage of each cell during the capacity test. If the curve recording the voltage of a cell shows unusual activity, the cell is identified and evaluated. The capacity test is stopped immediately if any cell reaches the point where it could potentially explode. The battery voltage monitoring system also quickly determines whether it is worth carrying out a lengthy capacity test; if cells show unusual activity at the beginning of a capacity test, there is no value in proceeding as the results will not be meaningful.

PROTECTING TEST PERSONNEL The battery voltage monitoring system has another important function: It protects test personnel because they do not need to enter the battery room while the capacity test is being performed. The cells in a battery have a high energy density and under certain conditions, they can fail catastrophically creating a serious hazard. And a cell about to explode may not give any advance warning. Without the battery voltage monitoring system, test personnel must enter the battery room during the test to check cell terminal voltages, thereby exposing themselves to the explosion hazard. The worst possible time to discover a battery problem is when it is called upon to provide support during a power failure. But, as has been explained, this nightmare scenario can be avoided by good battery management and regular testing. And with the latest test equipment, these tasks need not be onerous.


Understanding testing requirements Metrel is a manufacturer and supplier of electrical test and measurement instruments, and associated software/mobile applications. With over 60 years of experience, Metrel recognises and understands the testing requirements of electrical contractors and maintenance staff in today’s challenging environment, with development focus on technical capability, enhanced user interface, and practical time-saving features


or example the MI 3152 EurotestXC is an installation tester from the latest generation of Metrel’s multifunctional measuring instruments. The usual electrical test functions such as continuity, loop, insulation and RCD are managed by a bright new user interface based on large colour touch-screen display. With the provision of advanced integrated certification software, Metrel are providing a complete customer solution. The company also has a new industrial range of PAT Testers – recently launched – the MI3360 models. These are compact, using the same colour touch-screen principles pioneered on the installation testers. They are designed to be highly robust and reliable in the harsh

and arduous conditions found in the portable appliance testing industry. The new series of OmegaPAT XA brings 4 models, intended for professional use in the most demanding applications. All of them support user accounts, which means one device can be used by several electricians with traceable testing which is becoming more relevant in the industry as focus expands. Options include high current (25A), Flash Test for the Service and Plant-Hire industry, and a medical version dedicated to hospitals, surgeries and care homes. Other specific applications include welding equipment using the optional A1422 adaptor, and professional testing of today’s multitude of Portable RCD

protective devices. All instruments have an advanced interface that enables the execution of pre-defined and user-created AUTOSEQUENCE tests. All the instruments are specially designed for long-term testing and data storage with a user-accessible 8Gb microSD card, facilitating simple searching through the archive of devices and quick re-execution of periodic tests. Great emphasis was put on support for peripheral devices such as printers and barcode or QR code scanners and RFID readers (in Bluetooth and wired versions). On top of that, all instruments include the Metrel ES manager PC software in the box for professional certification and to help fulfil H&S record keeping obligations.



Growing market Marie Parry, Scolmore Group marketing director looks at the growing home automation market, what is driving growth and the opportunities for contractors


he latest market report from AMA Research on Home Automation – ‘Home Automation Market Report – UK 2017-2021’ describes the market for home automation products as a rapidly growing market that has benefitted from the spread of wireless and app based technologies. The market is currently considered to be in the initial growth stage, supported by a near tripling in growth 2012-2016 which is currently forecast to continue into the medium-term, with market value forecast to nearly double by 2021. Medium-term prospects for home automation remain positive. Recent growth of intelligent heating controls is likely to continue into the medium-term, with rapid innovation likely to be the key driver. Although home automation or smart home systems have been available in the UK for many years, it is in recent years that they have expanded from an upper market niche of luxury homes and specialist projects into a more mainstream market. This crossover to the mainstream is a key development that is changing the structure of the market with a large variety of entry level and lower cost home automation products having been made available at very competitive prices in the past 2-3 years, plus greater awareness among consumers of system benefits. The growth of home automation continues to be driven by the rapid advance in technology which is bringing intelligent automation systems to a growing number of homes and work places, allowing control of everything from lighting to communications and entertainment. No longer the preserve of the rich and famous, the smart home is becoming accessible to us all and consumers are looking to the technology as a means of enhancing their lives. They are looking at how they can add security and energy-saving features to their properties, whilst at the same time bringing a bit of luxury with automatic control. By intelligent controlling of the lighting and heating throughout a home, it is possible to make significant cost and energy savings. For instance, central heating systems, rather than heating the whole house, can be split into different zones so that rooms or areas are warmed as and when they are required. In the same way lighting systems can be controlled so that the right light output is delivered when and where it is needed. Technological advances driving the home automation market include the progress of wireless controls and ‘app’ or application programme-driven control interfaces, which emphasise userfriendliness. Remote control of the system has meant that the consumer is increasingly able to control all aspects of the connected home from within the home, whilst travelling, at work or even abroad, via smartphones, tablets and PCs. Take up of wireless routers/internet has also benefitted the home

Electrical Review | September 2017

automation market, with increasing numbers of suppliers offering wireless systems based around the home Wi-Fi network. Growth of wireless systems has also resulted in lower installation costs and less complexity of the installation. The offering of modular systems which enable future expansion has also driven growth. Security is another important area of concern for consumers.

PRODUCTS | 41 HELPING TO PREVENT VAN BREAK-INS With van break-ins and the theft of tools becoming an increasing problem for tradesmen, ESP is confident that two new additions to its Essentials range of security products will prove to be very popular and help provide some peace of mind. The VanCam HD 1080p and CanCam HD 1080p are battery-operated, high-resolution surveillance cameras which have an integral PIR detector, SD card recording and black infra-red illumination. The cameras will detect movement and instantly record high quality images and recordings with time and date stamping, in all conditions day and night. With 1080p Full HD video resolution and 8MP still image resolution, they will deliver superior quality footage and images that will be valuable in helping to identify criminal damage or theft.

ESP • 01527 515150 www.espuk.com

DIAGNOSE RCD PROBLEMS With a measurement resolution of 0.001 mA on its lowest range, combined with the capability of measuring currents up to 100 A on its highest range, the new Megger DCM305E is not only an ideal tool for diagnosing RCD and RCBO nuisance tripping problems, it is also an invaluable asset for general AC current measurement. The DCM305E is easy to use and has been designed to provide accurate results even in difficult conditions. It offers true RMS (TRMS) measurement, which means that readings are unaffected by distortion in the supply waveform, and has a built-in low-pass filter that greatly improves the stability of results on circuits where high levels of harmonics or electrical noise are present.

Megger • 01304 502101 www.megger.com



HARTING has added EtherCAT connectivity to its MICA® (Modular Industrial Computing Architecture) system: an open source platform for industrial applications. EtherCAT is a real-time Industrial Ethernet technology originally developed by Beckhoff Automation. The EtherCAT protocol which is disclosed in the IEC standard IEC61158 is suitable for hard and soft real-time requirements in automation technology, in test and measurement and many other applications. The main focus during the development of EtherCAT was on short cycle times (not greater than 100 μs), low jitter for accurate synchronisation (not greater than 1 μs) and low hardware costs.

Martindale Electric is pleased to announce the arrival of its latest range of comprehensive lock out kits, which have been designed to suit the needs of installers and maintenance teams working in a range of environments. The new kits starting with the LOKKITBASE and extending to the LOKKITPRO, enable circuits to be locked off once de-energised, ensuring safe maintenance schedule and compliance with the Electricity at Work Regulations. The new LOKKITBASE and LOKKIT2PLUS kits both include standard miniature circuit breaker (MCB) locking off devices and the miniature LOK10 and LOK11 for when access is limited and there is not enough space for a conventional lock. The kits include a PAD10R padlock with a unique key plus a marker pen and tags to ensure immediate and clear identification of circuits, work areas and personnel.

Harting • 01604 827500 www.harting.co.uk

Martindale Electric • 01923 441717 www.martindale-electric.co.uk

SMART POWER TRANSFORMER MAINTENANCE Omicron’s Primary Test ManagerTM (PTM) software was optimised for initial screening, diagnostic testing and condition assessment of power transformers with the release of software version 4.00. All common chemical, electri- cal and dielectric tests on power transformers are now supported by one software. SMART TESTING With proper testing and maintenance, the lifetime of a power transformer can be ex- tended by identifying and fixing defects before they can cause severe failures. A smart combination of an initial screening, e.g. by performing dissolved gas analysis (DGA) and power/dissipation factor tests, and focused diagnostic testing is often utilised to keep the lifecycle management process more cost efficient.

Omicron electronics • 01785 251000 www.omicronenergy.com

INTEGRATED LED DOWNLIGHT Scolmore continues to develop its Inceptor range of integrated lighting products and its latest version, Inceptor Omni, brings to market a new and improved fire-rated downlight that combines existing technology with a number of cutting edge features – all at a highly competitive price. Flexibility and ease of installation were the major considerations in the design of the Inceptor Omni and key features are an adjustable colour temperature switch allowing the selection of colour temperatures to suit the installation; interchangeable fixed and adjustable bezels; and an insulation support clip for use when insulation is present. It is this combination of features that Scolmore believes will position Inceptor Omni as unique in the marketplace.

Scolmore • 01827 63454 www.scolmore.com



Greater interest and purchase of home security systems and devices has been encouraged by the wider availability of smartphone app controlled devices that are now more affordable and enable greater monitoring and control of security devices – access, CCTV, motion and smoke, water detectors and other devices. CCTV cameras and alarm systems can now be easily programmed and connected to a smartphone or tablet, with alerts sent to a device if there is an issue, allowing access and viewing of the cameras positioned at the premises, from any location using Wi-Fi or 4G connection. Door entry systems are also benefitting from the latest technology. Wi-Fi door stations for example, allow you to

to fully embrace this new technology as it is deemed too complicated to install and they are therefore unwilling to upsell to customers. Homeowners may be concerned that they have to go with a system that will require them to cut into plastered walls for cabling. This isn’t always the case. By explaining how they can start small and simple, and build up to a more complicated system if required, contractors can reassure people and showcase a range of solutions suitable for different budgets and applications. The largest sector for home automation is now retro-fit, where wireless security and energy-saving features can be added to a home without having to alter the wiring or disrupt the décor. At

view and talk to visitors at your home whether you are on the premises or on the other side of the world. From a smart phone or tablet and using an app, property owners can easily see who is at the door or gate, engage in two-way communication and allow remote access if desired. Whilst the evolution of smart home automation will bring significant business opportunities for switched-on electrical contractors, there is reluctance on the part of some installers

Scolmore we have stripped our home automation offer right back to basics to offer a simple system that has at its core accessibility and simplicity, both for the installer and the end user. The advance in smart technology will continue to affect the way products are specified, installed and commissioned and maintained. Ultimately this is good news as it puts electrical contractors in a prime position to diversity their offerings and add further revenue streams to their business.

Electrical Review | September 2017