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Feature Cable Management Staying efficient whilst retaining quality

Combining job efficiency with maintaining quality installations is a major challenge for today’s electricians, and clearly product specification has a key role to play in achieving this. With this in mind, Schneider Electric take a look at the latest developments in cable management


able management is probably not the first thing that springs to mind when talking about innovation within industry and in fact, it is often overlooked. However, advances within this sector over recent years have resulted in new products that can offer significant time saving benefits to installers.

Driving this innovation is the need for increased efficiency as a result of a turbulent economic climate that has put pressure on today’s electricians to be more cost effective and to meet tighter deadlines. In addition to this, pressure has mounted on electricians still further with increased legislation being introduced to raise safety stan- dards and improve overall installa- tion performance.

Responding to a need

As a consequence the electrical market has seen an abundance of new and emerging products which are quick and easy to install, thereby reducing the cost of labour as well as the risk of complications to ensure projects are kept on track.

The cable management sector clearly demonstrates this with the number of new products introduced to the market over the last few years - for both domes- tic and commercial applications. For example, in domestic and small commercial buildings, cable manage- ment systems are often fitted in areas that experience heavy usage and there- fore need to be extremely robust. For example, in a hospital, perimeter trunking systems can be exposed to a high level of human contact. Therefore, systems need to be designed in a way that can handle this type of environment. With this in mind, solutions such as the Ultimate range by Schneider Electric, have made it possible to spec- ify an anti-microbial version of the trunking, ideal for health applications. The Ultimate 60 range is designed with lids that are supplied loose for the top and bottom of the trunking body, along with pre-drilled fixing holes for a quick and easy install. In addition, its flexible bends provide increased func-


tionality and design in one, ensuring a compact and elegant install even with building irregularities.

Functionality is another point to consider and one of the major develop- ments in structured cabling technol- ogy has been the requirement for larger profiles with the ability to carry high volumes of Cat 6, Cat 6e and Cat 7 cables. The Schneider Electric Ultimate 60 and Ultimate 62 profiles are examples of this, both featuring a large cable capacity.

One clear advantage of using such a product is the protective film, which prevents damages during installation and reduces installation time and acci- dents that occur. Fully compliable with DDA requirements, the product is now available with a grey centre lid, to assist those with visual impairments.

Commercial installations Looking at larger commercially suited cable management solutions, one emerging product is busbar trunking which offers many benefits for the end user and electrician. Whilst previously steel cable tray remained the dominant option for more arduous environ- ments, busbar trunking is becoming the new product of choice.

An example of this is the Canalis KDP range from Schneider Electric which is compact in design and is easy to fit in a suspended ceiling or raised floor and enables access points to be available wherever they are required. A specific connector for lighting con- trol eliminates cabling errors and saves one hour assembly time per con- trol point, as well as making the instal-

Above: the latest developments in cable management have enabled the modern electrician to work smarter

lation upgradeable.

More so, the fixing can be adapted to the building’s structure and clipped onto a wire basket, cable tray or con- crete beam. The result is improved efficiency and reduced labour time and costs.

Below: combining speed, safety and durability, the Canalis KDP range by Schneider Electric is easy to fit, flexible and is compact in design

Canalis KDP also helps to raise safety standards as it is also designed to protect people and equipment. It contains no halogen, the busbar does not release any fumes or toxic gases in the event of a fire, and the IP55 protection guarantees that the busbar trunking is splash-proof and pro- tected from dust. It can therefore be installed in all types of buildings - from offices to cruise liners and farms. For the installer and customer, this offers not just a superior perfor- mance but peace of mind.

Summary As we all know, times are changing at a rapid pace. Electricians can no longer afford to use the same tried and tested electrical equipment but must stay on the pulse of emerging trends and take advantage of the latest technologies which can save electricians time and, in turn, money. In this way, they can work smarter not harder, whilst reaping the finan- cial rewards.

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Enter 241 FEBRUARY 2013 Electrical Engineering

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