IEEE 1584-2018 Guide for Performing Arc-Flash Hazard Calculations – Comparative Analysis with IEEE 1584-2002

23 May, 2019 | White paper

Joel Sourceaux, P.Eng.

Engineer, Power System Studies and Arc Flash Hazard Expert

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The IEEE 1584 Guide for Performing Arc-Flash Hazard Calculations provides equations for assessing the amount of thermal energy that a worker might receive from electrical equipment in the event of an arc flash. These equations have remained the same since the standard was first published in 2002. Based on the results of more than 1,800 tests, the 2018 edition of the guide provides formulas that are both more accurate and more complex and that take into account, in particular, the conductor configuration at the arc’s location as well as the dimensions of the equipment in which it occurs.

This analysis will explain the differences between the 2002 and 2018 versions of the IEEE 1584 standard and measure the impact on results established with the 2002 calculation equations. Special attention must be paid to the configuration of conductors for the equipment analyzed given its impact on incident energy results. Finally, the complexity of the model must reflect the industrial reality: the expert must select, among the proposed parameters, those most representative of, and/or disadvantageous to, the actual installations and the work to be carried out on these.