DITEK's New "Mix and Match" Versa-Module Surge Protection System

DTK VM2 Series Populated HousingsElectronic devices of all shapes and sizes require surge protection. However, placing multiple devices throughout a complex electrical system—such as a fire alarm or surveillance system—can make a complicated, messy installation.

To keep installations more efficient, DITEK has released the new Versa-Module 2 series surge protection system. Designed like the NETS series, the DTK-VM2 series enclosures offer greater capacity and a myriad of module combinations.

 Customizable surge protection
Representing the ultimate "build-your-own," customizable solution, the DTK-VM2 series makes surge protection easier for critical installations such as 24V Power over Ethernet systems, fueling equipment, point-of-sale devices, 4-20mA current loops, low voltage power circuits and RS485 data circuits.

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How to Calculate ROI for Surge Protection

2021 06 ROI 320The topic of electricity reliability and resiliency has emerged as a top-of-mind concern for many systems integrators and their end-user clients. While utilities, regulators, and policymakers struggle to protect the national grid, the average facility is more concerned about how to achieve optimal levels of electrical reliability and reduce future disruptions in power.

The reality is that the cost of power disruptions for most organizations continues to rise. In 2006, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory developed an end-user based framework that estimates the cost of power interruptions in the U.S. The last study released in 2018 shows that the total U.S. cost of sustained power interruptions is $44 billion per year (2015), which was 25% more than the $26 billion per year in 2002. The majority of the costs (70%) were suffered by commercial sector customers. The industrial sector accounted for 27% of the total cost.

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Protect PoE Devices from Power Surges and Other Disruptions

Outdoor PoE CamerasFirst introduced in 2003, Power over Ethernet (PoE) has made installing equipment in remote locations convenient and affordable. One single Ethernet cable can deliver both DC power and data to low power PoE-enabled equipment, including IP security cameras, network access points and switches, and building access controls.

PoE was originally developed for IP phone systems and delivered only 7W of power. Over time, the technology has improved and can now accommodate up to 90 watts / 57 volts. PoE eliminates the need for additional (and more dangerous) A/C power wire runs to end-point devices.

Outdoor PoE devices are exposed to weather-related surges

While most Ethernet cable is relegated for indoor use, more and more outdoor systems are utilizing PoE due to its ease of installation and operation. The downside is this exposes PoE devices to the risk of power surges or spikes caused by weather conditions, including lightning strikes and other disruptions.

Like any electronic system, PoE devices and their internal components operate within specific current and voltage ratings. Excess current or voltage can damage delicate internal components.

 

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Best Practices for Surge Protection

Best Practices for Surge ProtectionBest practices are important for processes that you need to work correctly. When it comes to the world of electrical and low-voltage contractors, best practices ensure that maximum efforts are taken to create a safe environment, which can mean the difference between life and death in some cases.

Most accidents involving electricity are the result of unsafe and improper work practices or improper installation and equipment. Best practices when installing surge protection may not be as simple as grounding, guarding, and insulation. When planning a surge protection strategy, the best place to begin is by assessing the incoming power connections. This is the primary entry point for power surges and spikes that originate from outside the building. Protecting the power connection also provides protection from internally generated power anomalies resulting from refrigeration equipment, air handling equipment and similar high current devices.  Be sure to consider any additional systems your facility might have including data, fire, security and communications.

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Electrical Product Safety Testing: A Mutual Trust

Electrical Product TestingElectrical product safety is one workplace compliance standard any organization, systems integrator or project manager takes seriously. Research statistics we see from IEEE and NFPA demonstrate just how dangerous electricity can be if work safety and health concerns are not enforced. The business impact resulting from careless electrical accident prevention ultimately causes downtime and costs both lives and revenue.

To help organizations understand and have the capacity to implement their own electrical safety protocols, The United States Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) requires that 38 different types of products, devices, assemblies, or systems used in the workplace be tested and certified by third-party organizations identified as Nationally Recognized Testing Laboratories (NRTLs). Since its establishment in 1970, OSHA’s goal has been to create safe workplaces.

 

 

 

 

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Fire Protection and Prevention Innovations

Fire Alarm PanelFire safety technology has certainly evolved over the last 125 years since the first automatic fire alarm system was patented and the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) was launched. While innovation in the fire industry can be slow and sometimes plodding, it seems that external forces more than technology advancement has driven the development of new solutions and products. With the spiderweb of varying state fire codes and regulations, evolving infrastructures and construction mandates featuring a growing emphasis on LEED compliant and green building certification programs, innovative fire protection technology has had to adapt to the growing complexities of the world.

Innovative Smart Technologies Emerge

As “smart” technologies expand across the Internet of Things (IoT) landscape, advanced smart devices are transforming the way security and fire safety professionals approach building design and fire suppression and prevention methods. Smart devices transcend the abilities of simple connected devices, which simply share data directly with other devices on the network. The smart devices take connectivity well beyond enabling them to run myriad sensors, microprocessors, APIs, software and storage options across an embedded operating system.

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What Causes Lightning: Distinguishing Facts from Myths

Lighting StikesThe properties and effects that characterize a lightning strike are truly remarkable. Lightning begins as a high-intensity electric impulse that initially grows in a gaseous environment while forming in the atmosphere and then evolves into a solid, more or less conductive medium when it strikes the ground. However, the fireworks that take place during this celestial trip from heaven to earth can be simultaneously wonderous and devastating. The visual effects of the lightning flash followed by the shockwave of thunder and the sheer thermal dynamics of the heat generated by the event also create residual electrodynamic and electrochemical side-effects that can disrupt power, create electrical surges in office and industrial devices and interrupt network communications.

A lightning strike is perhaps one of the most feared and yet wonderous natural occurrences. When you figure that a person’s odds of being struck by a lightning bolt are a minuscule one in 12,000, yet astraphobia is the third most common phobia in America, behind acrophobia (fear of heights) and zoophobia (fear of animals), it proves most people respect its savage potential. However, climate scientists are wary that with the earths rapid weather changes, the chances of being a lightning-strike victim could increase to one in 8,000 by the year 2100.

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Protecting LED Lighting from Power Outages

Surge Protection for LED Lighting

One of the most notorious public venue lighting failures occurred at the 2013 Super Bowl. A partial power outage in the New Orleans Superdome literally turned off the lights during the nighttime game, stopping play for 34 minutes. Fans were confused, the network broadcast was disrupted, and social media buzzed with conjecture. It was discovered several days later that a newly installed relay had tripped, resulting in the power outage, during which only emergency lighting functioned.

The incident created the potential for significant negative consequences. There could have been unrest or even violence between fans in the stands. Attendees, staff, vendors or team members could have been injured due to the dark conditions. Any of these incidents could have created huge potential legal liabilities for the City and the Stadium Commission.

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Differences in UPS Topology

UPS TopologyThe importance of implementing a UPS system to protect network, data information and video assets from power issues cannot be understated. Even short power outages can pose huge issues for organizations, with as little as a quarter-second incident shutting down network equipment for minutes to hours. That can cost a business big money. Some experts believe the U.S. economy loses between $200 billion and $570 billion a year due to power outages and other electrical disturbances.

So, what is a UPS and why is it a crucial element in your power landscape? The bottom line is simple; it provides backup power when utility power shuts down, and saves critical equipment and systems from losing data until generators come online, or power is restored. The UPS will also condition incoming power to help quell common sags and power surges that may damage systems.

However, there are varied options for users, and matching the power solution to the correct application may prove confusing. But an understanding of the different technology definitions and their applications can help both user and integrator make an informed decision. 

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It's Connected, But Is It Protected?

Network ConnectionsOpinions about the products offered in retail establish two of the most exciting trends in the Security industry today are: the growing integration of multiple systems to create greater awareness and value, and the quickly increasing range of connected devices that provide inputs to those systems. These developments represent a huge change in the accuracy and capabilities of our systems, and are supported by a wide range of technologies including wireless networking, new and improved smaller sensors of all kinds, the evolution of software analytics, and the Internet of Things (IoT).

While we welcome all of these great new capabilities and the benefits they provide, we should also remember that they all rely upon sensitive electronic circuits. Thus, as we increase our dependence on these systems, we also need to implement backups and protection to help ensure that they are working when they are needed most. The trend for increased networking and connectivity must also bring about a trend for increased power and network protection.

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