Thursday, October 16, 2014

Issue #23 - Short Circuit Current Calculations and Labeling

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For the person whose tasks is the specification, coordination or maintenance of an electrical system, the available short circuit fault current is a major consideration in the selection of circuit protective devices. Knowing the available fault current and applying available fault current labels on new equipment is also now mandated by National Electrical Code. A study must be done to identify the maximum amount of the available short circuit fault current. ARCAD's Short-Circuit-Analytic software performs available fault currents calculations in three-phase electric power systems you are working with. The program takes into consideration electrical parameters of the power supply as well as the power distribution system including utility, cables, bus ducts, transformers, generators, motors etc.

Once the fault current has been calculated, labels made giving the available short circuit fault current, should be applied to the equipment. That information, and the date it was determined, must be put on a label that is field applied to the equipment. The purpose of this requirement is to allow the short circuit current rating (SCCR) of the equipment to be easily compared with the maximum available fault current.

Short circuit current label can now be created for free on-line at ARCAD's website located at More information about short circuit current calculations and online short circuit label making tool is available on this page:


The arc flash study must be based on accurate, up-to-date information. A single-line diagram is the preferred method of documentation of a power system. It generally represents existing conditions and equipment nameplate data for the portion of the system within the scope of the arc flash study. This may require the person performing the study, or the facility's owner to:
  • Obtain any existing single-line drawings of the facility. ARCAD's short circuit calculations software program will create a simple diagram as data is entered.
  • Verify and update existing single-line diagram to existing conditions.
  • Verify and resolve any equipment labeling and naming issues.
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