Ground Fault & Arc Fault Current Protection

Fault Current Protection

Electrical fault currents may be attributable to equipment or installation failure or even environmental conditions or human error, but in all cases they pose the risk of damage or injury.

The primary purpose of grounding electrical systems is to provide a level of protection against electric shock. Most electrical faults can be broken down into two categories, phase-to-phase faults and phase to ground faults. Studies have shown that 98% of all electrical faults are ground faults (Source: Woodham, Jack, P.E. “The Basics of Grounding Systems” May 1, 2003).

Faults such as short circuit conditions in a power system network can result in severe damage to the installation and to loss of supply. The results of an electrical fault can be devastating.

Under normal operating conditions, electrical installations carry normal voltages and currents which result in a safe operation of the installation. However, when a ground fault occurs it may cause excessively high currents to flow which could result in damage to equipment or devices. Earth fault detection and elimination of the fault (IE disconnection of the supply) can be achieved by suitable design and selection of an electrical safety device such as an RCCB or RCBO.

The risk of fire, explosion or electric shock can all be mitigated by the use of suitable RCD/GFCI or Arc Fault protection devices.

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