Case Studies Channel


9:30 AM–10:15 AM 
Medium Voltage Equipment Installation: What You Don't Know CAN Hurt You

Speakers: Mike Bryan, Hood Patterson & Dewar


Data centers continue to consume ever-increasing amounts of power. Facility capacities on the order of 50MW to over 150MW of power are becoming more commonplace. To address the resulting power distribution challenges, datacenter design engineers are turning to medium voltage power distribution. The traditional approach of using multiple, large conductors to distribute low voltage power throughout the facility has evolved into using medium voltage power distribution throughout large data centers. While this method allows for the flexibility of stepping down to low voltage as near to the load as possible, failure to follow proper installation and comprehensive NETA testing procedures can lead to immediate or premature failures.

In general, most electrical contractors do not have daily experience installing MV equipment, cables, and terminations.  The contractor is often unaware of medium voltage-related “gotchas” that do not exist at lower voltages. Inexperience with MV best practices from a testing standpoint and failure to follow manufacturer installation instructions are common causes of electrical events and unplanned outages.

Join Brandon Sedgwick as he presents MV installation-related problems, examples of failures, testing practices to prevent problems and evaluation techniques for existing facilities.

10:30 AM–11:15 AM
State of the Electrical Testing Sector in 2021

Speaker: Paul Seppanen, A-Rent Test Equipment


NETA Certified Technicians and NETA Accredited Companies set the standard in electrical testing.  But a much wider set of firms and personnel are also active in testing of electrical systems.  The presentation will update the study presented in 2020 which sized and trended the overall electrical testing sector in the US.  Types of firms considered will include NETA members, engineering firms with testing practices, electrical contractors, apparatus OEMs and remanufacturers, testing specialist firms not yet in NETA, utilities and other asset owners.  Trends considered will be overall technician population growth, segmentation amongst firms and the impact of on-going consolidation in the sector.

11:30 AM–12:15 PM
On-line Leak Repair - Oil, SF6 and Nitrogen Leaks

Speaker: Gary Brown, The COLT Group

Leaks develop at various locations on both new and aged equipment; in the past the repair options were limited to draining/de-pressurizing and re-gasketing, welding, applying epoxy or just wrapping with an absorbent material. Today these leaks can be repaired using a time-proven injection method that is completed while the leak is active and in many cases with the equipment in-service. No epoxies or welding – the sealant was specifically developed for use with electrical apparatuses, is flexible and easily removed. Over 16,000 leak repairs have been documented (since 2002) with this proven process. This presentation will explain the methodology with numerous “before and after” photographs and case histories.

2:15 PM–3:00 PM
Service Life Extension to Vacuum Interrupters: Case Studies Highlighting Technology and Techniques in Vacuum Interrupter Conditioning (VIC)

Speaker: Finley Ledbetter, Group CBS


There are millions of medium-voltage vacuum interrupters in the world that have either hit their original expected mortality date or are past the mid-life expectation of service life.

Previously, there were no practical methods for field conditioning of vacuum interrupters to change the mortality curve of the device. But with advances in servicing technology through the advent of vacuum interrupter conditioning (VIC) we now have methods that can convert free gas molecules inside the envelope to solids such as oxides or carbides.

This paper will explain the technology, highlight several recent case studies, show how it is applied in the field, and show how this all comes together to extend the service life of existing vacuum interrupters.

3:15 PM–4:00 PM
Driving Employee Engagement and Retention with Career Path Opportunities in the Electrical Testing Field

Speaker: Chris Campbell, CE Power Engineered Services

Significant career path advancement opportunities exist within the electrical testing field.  Having advanced his career from field service engineer to operations management, to sales management and now current President of CE Power Engineered Services, LLC, Chris will discuss how to prepare for and make the transition from the field to the office.  Chris will also discuss the importance of service companies having career paths to drive employee engagement and retention.  Growth of companies generates opportunities at all levels of any organization (big or small) and Chris will talk to the evolution of the organizational structure that is necessary to support business growth and how this growth creates opportunities within all levels of the organization.   Several of the common roles within electrical testing organizations will be discussed along with the necessary training to ensure success. 

4:15 PM–5:00 PM
Testing a Protection Relay as a "Black Box": System Testing Explained

Speaker: Will Knapek, OMICRON electronics Corp USA


Since the advent of the microprocessor protective relay or Intelligent Electronic Device (IED), the method of how to test has been debated.  The need for element testing of these devices is no longer a valid method for final commissioning and maintenance.  The microprocessor can do the math.  So, this opens up the testing methods to look at the IED as a black box.  This is done by applying a fault type and evaluating the IED’s response.

This paper focuses on different methods of performing a system test and treating the IED as a “black box”.  The settings are can be ignored and a focus on the response of the relay is of primary concern.  Several methods will be explained in this presentation.  Several common methods will be explained for a better understanding on how to perform a successful System Test.