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January-February 2006
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January-February 2006 CoverJanuary/February 2006


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Effect of Rooftop Exposure on Ambient Temperatures Inside Conduits

by Travis C. Lindsey

The interiors of conduits in sunlight, such as those containing conductors feeding air conditioning units on rooftops, become significantly hotter than the outside air (which is always measured in the shade). Data show that these temperature differentials can easily reach 70°F, even when the conductors are electrically unloaded. Remarkably, the differentials were found to be essentially independent of the outdoor temperature all through the range from 70°F to above 100°F. Read more

Perspectives on PV

* Back to the Grid, Designing PV Systems for Code Compliance

by John Wiles

In the September/October 2005 issue of IAEI News, the "Perspectives on PV” article discussed making the utility connection for utility-interactive PV systems. In some of the larger residential PV systems and in many commercial PV systems, the grid connection must be made on the supply side of the service disconnect to comply with the requirements of NEC 690.64. In designing PV systems for code compliance, knowledge of all of the various Code requirements is a must. This article will cover some of these requirements as they apply to a supply-side tap of the service-entrance conductors. PV systems employing supply-side connections should be inspected with these requirements in mind. Read more

Aluminum Building Wire Installation and Terminations

by Christel Hunter

Electricity is transmitted from the utility generating station to individual meters using almost exclusively aluminum wiring. In the U.S., utilities have used aluminum wire for over 100 years. It takes only one pound of aluminum to equal the current-carrying capacity of two pounds of copper. The lightweight conductors enable the utility to run transmission lines with half the number of supporting structures. The utility system is designed for aluminum conductors, and utility installers are familiar with installation techniques for the types of aluminum conductors used in utility applications. Read more

The Inspector’s Approval

by Michael Johnston

In some previous issues of IAEI News, articles about some of the many "hot spots” in the electrical inspection process were identified and detailed. There are a vast number of areas in the Code where the electrical inspector or building inspector has to operate out of his or her comfort zone. Qualifications of inspectors are very important. A couple of the most important characteristics or "traits of a good inspector” are knowing when to ask questions, and knowing what questions to ask. This article takes a closer look at the electrical inspector and the process of approving an electrical installation and the associated equipment. It’s a big responsibility for the inspector and the jurisdiction, but it is often taken for granted by both. Read more

Conduit Bodies and Their Use in Accordance With the NEC

by Tim McNeive

One of the most versatile components of an electrical raceway system is the conduit body. The National Electrical Code defines a conduit body as "A separate portion of a conduit or tubing system that provides access through a removable cover(s) to the interior of the system at a junction of two or more sections of the system or at a terminal point of the system. Boxes such as FS and FD or larger cast or sheet metal boxes are not classified as conduit bodies.” This definition, however, doesn’t fully describe all of the uses permitted for a conduit body in the NEC, as a conduit or cable fitting, a splice box, a device box, a junction box and a pull box. Read more

Ideas! Ideas! Ideas!

by Earl W. Roberts

All of us have ideas. Have you ever wondered how a new product idea is first conceived—is nurtured in somebody’s mind—and is refined into a finished new product for use? The vast majority of new products ideas die a sudden death in the minds of the originators. A very few survive for a while and are developed to a certain stage before fading away for one or more reasons. Read more

How Will Oil Prices Affect Your Investment Plans

by Jesse Abercrombie

Even before Hurricane Katrina caused its almost incomprehensible damage to the Gulf Coast, most of us shuddered when we had to fill our cars’ gas tanks. With prices at $3 a gallon in some parts of the country, and crude oil hitting $70 per barrel, we were already in uncharted territory. Then, Katrina temporarily knocked out about 12 percent of U.S. refining capacity, along with a significant part of the Gulf’s natural gas and oil production. So, as a driver, you probably shouldn’t expect too much relief at the pump any time soon. But how about as an investor? Do you need to adjust your investment strategy in response to high oil prices? Read more

2006 International President Wayne Lilly

by Wayne Lilly

Wayne Lilly began his career in the building construction business at the tender age of six. Like so many children he wanted to spend time with his dad. His dad was a carpenter, plumber, electrician, roofer and mason. Wayne’s first job was helping to carry rocks for a masonry sign. From there, he became hooked. For more than fifty years he has been in the construction business in one form or another. Read more



What Will Tomorrow Bring IAEI?

by James W. Carpenter

I am writing this just after the six annual section meetings and the annual International Board of Directors meeting have concluded. As I reflect back on the section meetings, I am reminded of the different styles of the meetings. Each section has its own unique style but the common thread among all of IAEI is still evident, Safety and Education. Read more

Canadian Code

Rule 36-110, High Voltage Clearances

by Leslie Stoch

Both the Canadian Electrical Code (CE Code) Part I and Part III provide requirements for minimum horizontal clearances between high voltage lines and buildings, and vertical clearances between high voltage lines and grade. This article discusses the different approach taken by each. Read more

Other Code

Basic Electricity – Part 10

by David Young

In part nine of this series, I discussed the development of the phasor diagram, a graphical representation of voltage or current magnitude in ac circuits at any instant in time. To better understand the uses of a phasor diagram, let’s take a look at the phasor diagrams of typical utility supply voltages. Before doing so, it is important to define a few terms. Read more

UL Question Corner

Do these conductors have to be routed in the same cable or raceway or can the signal wire be routed separately?

by Underwriters Laboratories

Many hard-wired smoke alarms illustrate the interconnection of smoke alarms in their installation instructions depicting 3 wires, hot, neutral and the signal wire and indicate the signal wire can be as small as 18 AWG. Do these conductors have to be routed in the same cable or raceway or can the signal wire be routed separately? Read more

Recent Issues

November-December 2005September-October 2005July-August 2005May-June 2005March-April 2005

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