The causes of electrical incidents on infrastructure projects
One potential risk to these projects are short circuit events. This accidental conductive connection between two or more points of a circuit at different potentials can create tremendous magnetic forces. This results in a violent and catastrophic explosion damaging equipment and putting personnel at the plant at risk.
There are many ways for a short circuit fault to develop, and they can happen anywhere along the electrical distribution system. Short circuit faults occur when an abnormal connection between two nodes of an electric circuit is made.
During a short circuit fault, maximum electromechanical stress between conductors occurs at or before 0.005 second. Current levels in these events can range upwards of 200 kA. In the worst case of a 3-phase short, magnetic field induced repulsive forces between the cables can range upwards of 10,000 pounds. When a short circuit fault occurs, tremendous magnetic forces repel the power cables from each other resulting in violent forces that damage everything in their path. Typical circuit breakers and other protection devices trip and interrupt a fault between 0.06 to 0.1 second, leaving just enough time for substantial damage to occur.
Introducing Cable cleats as a solution
A cable cleat is “a device designed to secure cables when installed at intervals along the length of the cables.”
Cable cleats set projects up for success from the very beginning. They are assurance and insurance bundled together, an investment worth making to prevent project rework and, most importantly, ensure safety.
Reducing damage and avoiding rework
Cable cleats reduce damage and rework by performing their function within those first 0.005 second (i.e. at peak kA) before a circuit breaker trips and interrupts a fault, making them the best option for short circuit mitigation.
Without the use of a cable cleat system, there is no protection for the employees or equipment in a facility when the short circuit forces are at their peak prior to a circuit interrupter engaging. To avoid potentially severe damage to the facility and infrastructure, as well as personal injury, cable cleats are used to restraint cables during short circuit events.
Panduit’s extensive line of cable cleat solutions provides various options to fit the needs of the project and provide job productivity, reliability, and safety. Panduit recommends the following solutions: stainless steel locking strap cleat, stainless steel buckle strap cleat, stainless steel trefoil cleat, and aluminum and polymer cleats. These cable cleats are designed to perform in a wide range of harsh environments, reduce material cost, and reduce installation time.
An additional cost benefit that Panduit cable cleats offer is the ability to allow for future proofing by
preventing short circuit events from occurring and costly rework being needed.
Lab tests performed on Panduit cable cleats verify strength of cleats and provide a baseline rating, in addition to being validated at a third-party test facility to ensure they perform to specifications when needed. They are designed to perform in a wide range of harsh environments and can be installed twice as fast as other similar products while reducing material cost in half. Their simple and intuitive design leads to increased productivity, and they are compatible with a variety of ladder racks and cables.