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Copyright 2002 by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, Inc.All rights reserved. Published 23 September 2002. Printed in the United States of America.
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IEEE Std 1584
IEEE Guide for Performing Arc-Flash Hazard Calculations
Petroleum and Chemical Industry Committee
Industry Applications Society
This guide provides techniques for designers and facility operators to apply indetermining the arc-flash hazard distance and the incident energy to which employees could beexposed during their work on or near electrical equipment.
arc fault currents, arc-flash hazard, arc-flash hazard analysis, arc-flash hazardmarking, arc in enclosures, arc in open air, bolted fault currents,
electrical hazard, flash protectionboundary, incident energy, personal protective equipment, protective device coordination study,short-circuit study, working distances
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(This introduction is not part of IEEE Std 1584-2002, IEEE Guide for Performing Arc-Flash Hazard Calculations.)
A technical paper by Lee, The other electrical hazard: electric arc blast burns [B19] provided insight thatelectrical arc burns make up a substantial portion of the injuries from electrical malfunctions.
He identiedthat electrical arcing is the term applied to current passing through vapor of the arc terminal conductivemetal or carbon material. The extremely high temperatures of these arcs can cause fatal burns at up to about5 ft and major burns at up to about 10 ft distance from the arc. Additionally, electrical arcs expel droplets ofmolten terminal material that shower the immediate vicinity, similar to, but more extensive than that fromelectrical arc welding. These ndings started to ll a void created by early works that identied electricalshock as the major electrical hazard. Mr. Lees work also helped establish a relationship between time tohuman tissue cell death and temperature, as well as a curable skin burn time-temperature relationship.
Once forensic analysis of electrical incidents focused on the arc-ash hazard, experience over a period oftime indicated that Ralph Lees formulas for calculating the distance-energy relationship from source of arcdid not serve to reconcile the greater thermal effect on persons positioned in front of opened doors orremoved covers, from arcs inside electrical equipment enclosures.
A technical paper by Doughty, Neal, and Floyd, Predicting incident energy to better manage the electric archazard on 600 v power distribution systems [B4] presented the ndings from many structured tests usingboth arcs in open air and arcs in a cubic box. These three phase tests were performed at the 600 V ratingand are applicable for the range of 16 000 to 50 000 A short-circuit fault current. It was established that thecontribution of heat reected from surfaces near the arc intensies the heat directed toward the opening ofthe enclosure.
The focus of industry on electrical safety and recognition of arc-ash burns as having great signicancehighlighted the need for protecting employees from all arc-ash hazards. The limitations on applying theknown best available formulas for calculating the curable and incurable burn injuries have beenovercome. This guide does that with new, empirically derived models based on statistical analysis and curvetting of the overall test data available.
Conducting an arc-ash hazard analysis has been difcult. Not enough arc-ash incident energy testing hadbeen done from which to develop models that accurately represent all the real applications. The availablealgorithms are difcult for engineers in ofces to solve and near impossible for people in the eld to apply.This working group has overseen a signicant amount of testing and has developed new models of incidentenergy. The arc-ash hazard calculations included in this guide will enable quick and comprehensivesolutions for arcs in single- or three- phase electrical systems either of which may be in open air or in a box,regardless of the low or medium voltage available.
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