Arc flash risks
Installation elements such as switchgears, cabling, and protection equipment had been in place for a very long time at a world-leading brewery’s main plant in the Netherlands,. The brewery’s installation manager was becoming concerned about short circuits, that can lead to arc flashes, and about protection device response times. The installation manager knew something had to be done to protect people and installations and ensure standards compliance.
A challenging project
“This was a very large, complex project, involving multiple buildings with their own transformers. What’s more, not all information was available owing to the installation’s age! Some parts were 60 years old and documentation was either missing or incomplete. We had to work out how to estimate parameters accurately without data. For example, we calculated cable lengths by studying architectural drawings.”
“We first assessed the main distributors and found out where we could ensure standards compliance quickly and easily. Our report clarified whether each protection device was accurately dimensioned and whether it would trip at the right moment. Nobody else was willing to take on this project, which involved quite a few challenges and demanded a great deal of highly specific expertise. The customer got the solutions and advice they needed within just a few months, and appreciated having reports that would allow them to discuss safety with management in detail.”
“For me it was really interesting to work on an installation of this size. What’s more, I got to see all of the processes involved in making beer – I never knew there were so many steps involve! I saw a lot of cool machinery that I had never seen before, such as compressors tanks and silos of a truly massive size. There was also an old part of the installation which remains unused but is still in place and it was really interesting to see all the legacy equipment from so many years ago!”