Circuit breakers, fused switches and switchgear in the form of motor Control Centres (MCC) are necessary system items for the electrical control of electrical plant. The safe use of these devices and associated equipment requires correct initial selection, operation and maintenance. It is also necessary to have a detailed understanding of how these devices should be installed, the local substation and system ratings, and how the various breakers operate, in order to enable accurate troubleshooting and subsequent repair.

Safe Operation & Maintenance of Circuit Breakers and Switchgear will equip participants with new or refreshed skills to ensure that circuit breakers and switchgear are installed, operated safely and maintained in a fashion that ensures safe and stable operation. Also they will be able to identified faults and ensure the underlying causes are identified to reduce possible further failures.

The Goals

The objectives of this seminar are to present:

  • Understanding of the operational characteristics of circuit breakers and switchgear.
  • Understanding of troubleshooting procedures, as applied to circuit breakers and associated switchgear.
  • Improved capability in the use of test equipment.
  • Better understanding of failure modes and failure analysis as applied to fuses, circuit breakers and switchgear. In relation to air break, vacuum and SF6 devices.
  • Refreshed awareness of electrical safety concerns within substations and control centres
  • Ability to determine fault levels in substations

The Delegates

Safe Operation & Maintenance of Circuit Breakers and Switchgear is intended for:

  • Electrical Engineers
  • Electrical Supervisors
  • Senior Electrical Technicians engaged in the operation, maintenance and troubleshooting, of circuit breakers, interruptive devices and switchgear control centres. The systems to be discussed will mainly fall within the voltage range 0.4 - 33kV. System calculations will be undertaken for typical industrial type installations. System calculations will be undertaken for typical industrial type installations.

The Process

The conference  is conducted as modular lectures with encouragement for the participant to interact.

Case studies are included to illustrate typical system arrangements in the range of voltages from 400V up to 36kV. Delegates are requested to bring general details of their companies approach to substation design and type of equipment employed at the various voltage levels employed. Drawings and plant ratings are useful.

Questions are welcomed throughout the course and during break sessions.

The Benefits

  • Greater personal confidence in approaching working safely with power switchgear
  • Understanding "competence" and Health and Safety at work
  • Awareness of the fault level and fault currents within equipment
  • Detailed understanding of the various interrupting mediums, air, vacuum and SF6
  • Understanding protection, isolation and switching
  • Appreciating the differences between earthing and bonding
  • Understanding of the need to carry out appropriate maintenance, inspection, test and certification of installations, equipment and appliances in the range 0.4 - 36kV

Carefully selected examples and case studies will be used to illustrate the material being discussed and in particular, emphasis will be given to ensure that the material is appropriate to the organizations represented.

The Results

  • A better understanding of the operational characteristics of circuit breakers and switchgear.
  • A better understanding of troubleshooting procedures, as applied to circuit breakers and associated switchgear.
  • An improved capability in the use of test equipment.
  • A better understanding of failure modes and failure analysis as applied to fuses, circuit breakers and switchgear. In relation to air break, vacuum and SF6 devices.
  • A refreshed awareness of electrical safety concerns within substations and control centres.

The Core Competencies

  • Knowledge of types of switchgear and disconnectors
  • Understanding of electrical systems and their load and fault requirements
  • Overview of substation layouts and equipment from 0.4 - 36kV
  • Health and Safety and equipment fault voltages during earth fault conditions
  • Maintenance, inspection, testing and certification of switching plant
  • Understanding electrical hazards, safe working distances and permits to work
  • Recognition of unsafe situations
  • Safe earthing of equipment during maintenance, lock outs and labels

The conference Content

The Technology of Circuit Breakers and Switchgear

  • Typical substation arrangements and MCC's
  • Definitions and terminology
  • Fault level calculations
  • Motor and generator fault contributions
  • Low voltage equipment
  • Medium voltage equipment
  • High voltage equipment
  • Name plate ratings - interpretation
  • CT's and VT's
  • Basic protection requirements
  • Case studies

Operation of various types of interrupting equipment

  • Fuses - motor starting types
  • Fused switches
  • Moulded case type breakers
  • Air break switches
  • Vacuum contactors - fused
  • Vacuum circuit breakers
  • SF6 puffer, rotating arc devices
  • Special insulating requirements for 36kV
  • Solid and gaseous insulation - problems!

The Operation and Maintenance of Circuit Breakers and Switchgear

  • The Use of Test Equipment
  • Digital voltmeter (DVM)
  • Oscilloscopes
  • Megger
  • Frequency meter
  • Temperature probes/ IR pyrometers
  • Ammeters
  • Power meters
  • Load banks
  • Cable fault locators

Special Techniques

  • NEC check lists to ensure the correct installation
  • Troubleshooting of Electrical Equipment
  • Methods
  • Terminology
  • Principles
  • Special techniques
  • Case studies/ examples
  • Single line drawings
  • Group exercises and case studies

The Interpretation and Use of Drawings

  • Single-line electrical drawings
  • Control schematics
  • Basic generic wiring lists
  • Name plate information
  • Logic and standard symbols
  • Step and touch potential?

The Development of a Job Plan

  • Identification of the troubleshooting step-by-step sequence
  • Procedure preparation
  • Documentation
  • Follow-up
  • Safety considerations and training
  • Case studies

The Identification and Repair of Problems/ Failures

  • Common mode failures
  • Phase imbalance - lost phase
  • Phase sequence checkout
  • Contact pitting/arcing - why?
  • Load and fault rating
  • Electronic component failure
  • Fusing
  • Switches
  • Control circuits
  • Ground faults - cable and busbar faults
  • Case studies
  • A review of Safety Requirements
  • Area classifications
  • NEC electrical codes
  • Safety information


The adage that “knowledge” is power holds very true in this industry. In order to maximize results we are constantly updating and upgrading ourselves. This commitment to ongoing skills development is one of the reasons we are success, the belief that there is a “better way to do things” is what motivates us each and every day. By aligning with us you are going to benefit from our years of expertise in real world scenarios. Classroom learning is great but there is no substitute to real world experience which is what we are bringing to the table.


Billionaire investor Warren Buffett said “price is what you pay but quality is what you get” and that expression is very true. With use we understand that your time is very valuable and you only want the best and most current industry related knowledge which is what we bring to the table.  Instead of giving you massive amounts of inaccurate or outdated information you get precisely what you want, the most current knowledge so you can make truly informed decisions that will directly impact productivity and your bottom line. When results are what you are looking for then the choice is clear, we are your partners in success.


Technology has revolutionized the way knowledge is disseminated in throughout the world, what use to take months or even years to reach the masses can be done in a few hours ! In order to remain relevant and viable we need to embrace innovations. The challenge with innovation is knowing when to implement it and what type of return you can expect from it. Instead of risking your time and resources we have the answers for you, Since we are at the vanguard of the industry whenever there is a fruitful innovation we will be there providing you with the information needed to make the right decision.


We understand you may have unique need so we provide a tailored made (bespoke for our U.K. friends) approach that will address your questions in the most conducive manner possible.  Respect to us means putting your interests, your needs at the forefront of our mind. You will see how genuine we are and that you not just “some customer” you are our partner in success just as much as we are your partner in success. We firmly believe in the “golden rule”, treat others with graciousness, courtesy and respect.  Come experience the difference that quality and respect makes and you will truly be amazed.

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