Your power system is what keeps your entire business running – literally. Without an effective and efficient power system, you could find yourself without electricity, bringing all your daily tasks to a screeching halt. Getting your system repaired could cost hundreds or even thousands of dollars and potentially create a safety hazard for you and your employees. One of the best ways to avoid these situations is fault analysis. But what is a fault analysis, and why do you need one? That’s what we’re here to tell you!
Types of Faults in a Power System
Faults in your power system are not created equal, and each comes with its own causes, risks, and repair procedures. When talking about faults in a power system, you could be referring to an open circuit fault or a short circuit fault.
Open circuit faults happen when one or more conductors within the power system fail. You might also hear these faults called “series faults,” since they happen in series as opposed to happening in parallel. Short circuit faults, on the other hand, happen when the electric current within the system is redirected to the ground instead of following the system like it should. Short circuit faults are more common than open circuit faults, and they’re what we’re mainly referring to within the rest of this article.
Either of these faults can be symmetrical or unsymmetrical. Symmetrical faults occur when all the phases within the fault are short-circuited to each other, so everything is balanced. Unsymmetrical faults, as the name suggests, are not balanced, meaning that only one or two phases are involved.
Causes of Power System Faults
Power system faults and their causes are incredibly varied. Sometimes, weather conditions can cause a fault if they interrupt your power supply. The most likely culprits in these cases include lightning strikes, heavy rain or snow, or strong and fast winds.
Faults can also be caused by a failure within the equipment, whether it be within a motor, generator, switch device, or another part of the mechanics. There could be a malfunction somewhere in the system, or the equipment and its components could simply be old.
Finally, it’s possible that ordinary human error could be the cause of a fault. If the power system is overloaded, if the mechanics of your system have been damaged, or if the internal cables haven’t been properly insulated, a short circuit fault could occur.
Short Circuit Risks
Short circuit can come with several risks for you and your business. Perhaps the most obvious consequence of a short circuit is the loss of power, which can negatively impact your bottom line for an extended period. Short circuits can also be dangerous for the people nearby and might result in injury.
Short circuits can also be incredibly costly to recover from. Not only will you need someone to restore your power, but they’ll also have to investigate the cause of the short circuit and determine how to fix it. You might have to replace part of your power system, which can get expensive fast. Preventative maintenance is much more affordable in the long run!
Importance of Fault Analysis
Fault analysis is one of the most vital tasks you can undertake for your business. First, it can help to keep you and your employees safe. If your equipment is left unchecked and a short circuit does occur, anyone in the immediate vicinity could be injured.
Second, you’ll be able to better protect your equipment. In the case of a short circuit, any equipment that gets damaged and needs to be repaired or replaced could wind up costing you hundreds or thousands of dollars. By having a fault analysis done you can learn about any potential problems before they manifest, saving you from having to repair or replace items after the fact.
Finally, a fault analysis provides an irreplaceable peace of mind. You’ll sleep better at night knowing that your business and its employees are safe and well taken care of. You can also rest easy knowing that you’re avoiding costly repairs and providing a top-quality workplace for both your workers and your customers.
How a Fault Analysis is Performed
When your electrical engineer performs a fault analysis, they’ll first gather some information and data about your power system. This process will help the engineer to understand the capacity of your system and how much power it’s capable of handling.
Once they’ve made the proper calculations, your engineer can analyze the results to make sure the power is being distributed evenly and safely throughout your system. They can also recommend steps you can take to help your power system handle your needs more easily, including any additional equipment that you might need to invest in.
Not only will your electrical engineer be able to determine the safety and effectiveness of your system, but they can also ensure that your equipment meets the standards that apply to businesses in your area. If your equipment or power system doesn’t meet the current regulations, they can advise you on ways to bring your system in line with the current industry requirements.
Who to Contact for a Short Circuit Fault Analysis
If you’re ready to have a fault analysis conducted in your workplace, you’re probably wondering who to turn to. You should always employ an experienced electrical engineer to help you with this task. Your ideal engineer will have years of experience in the industry, up to date on the latest regulations and standards for your area, and be ready and willing to answer any questions you might have.
MTA Electrical Engineers checks all these boxes. We take pride in offering affordable and convenient services like fault analyses, coordination studies, power system evaluations, and more. We are happy to serve a wide range of clients throughout Los Angeles, San Diego, Southern California, and the West Coast.
Contact us today to learn how we can help you!