Coordination Study

Pioneer Power Group performs coordination studies by preparing time current curves for each unique branch of a distribution system. By analyzing the tripping curves for each overcurrent protective device, Pioneer is able to recommend the best settings to:​

  1. Ensure outages are minimized during abnormal conditions such as faults and overloads within the distribution system
  2. Ensure equipment is properly protected
  3. Minimize arc-flash incident energy levels at key equipment locations

The recommended protective device settings are shown on each time current curve along with a single line diagram of the portion of the system applicable to the curve. All protective device settings are summarized in one, comprehensive settings table at the end of each report. This table is organized in a way that allows readers to quickly and easily identify settings that are required during start-up and commissioning.

Why Is a Coordination Study Needed?

Electrical coordination studies are performed to ensure the safety of the system, personnel, and property. These studies evaluate the protective devices and are essential to increase system reliability and continuity of service. Coordination studies are also important in determining proper protective device settings to ensure the system is protected and reduce arc flash hazards.

At Pioneer Power Group, we make coordination studies easy for our customers. Upon receiving a one-line diagram of the system, our engineers put together a data request form outlining all the information needed to complete the study. This data is used to build a comprehensive and accurate model of the system in SKM PowerTools. We analyze the protective device trip curves and fault currents to evaluate system coordination and recommend optimal breaker settings. With the results, we put together a formal report detailing our methods, results, analysis, and recommendations.

Power Distribution System Protection

If you own a business, office, or facility featuring electrical distribution systems, you need adequate measures to protect your infrastructure and personnel. Power distribution systems protection involves various studies, including:

You won’t need all these studies, but some, like coordination studies, are mandatory compliance requirements. The goal is to ensure all electrical systems function as intended and specific parts trip as expected during an electrical fault or overload to guarantee personal safety and electrical equipment protection.

Overcurrent Settings

Pioneer Power Group performs protective device coordination studies to ensure electrical equipment protection and system reliability, by optimizing protective device settings. Coordination is achieved by ensuring that protective devices trip in sequence as intended. This increases continuity of service and limits the occurrence of unnecessary nuisance trips within the distribution system. The increased reliability from our coordination studies will mitigate costly system breakdowns.

Our coordination studies are also instrumental in mitigating arc flash hazards. In our reports, we provide overcurrent settings and recommendations that will both ensure coordination and reduce arc flash hazards. In life-safety and critical systems, we can analyze selective coordination as required by the NEC. In systems that have multiple levels of breakers with ground fault settings, we analyze coordination and optimize these settings.

Addressing Nuisance Tripping

All electrical systems risk having breakers nuisance trip for reasons other than large faults. In our coordination studies, we account for all potential nuisance trip factors, such as transformer or motor starting inrush currents, when choosing protective device settings. In accordance with IEEE Standard 242-2001, our analysis also considers the potential fault currents seen in the system. Circuit breaker settings and cable ampacities are determined by plotting time current curves (TCC) of the given protective devices and comparing them against each other. Our reports include comprehensive analysis, all necessary breaker settings, TCC’s showing system coordination, and recommendations when coordination can be improved.

When to Call a Coordination Studies Company

Coordination studies are recommended and, in most jurisdictions, mandatory for businesses and firms that have power distribution systems. The primary role is to ensure power distribution system protection, thereby guaranteeing personnel safety. You can call a coordination studies company for new installations, system inspection, repair, or following a surge. Pioneer Power Group offers coordination studies and several other electrical system studies dedicated to commercial outlets that seek reliable power distribution system protection.

It is vital to work with experienced, licensed engineers who understand all the arc flash study requirements and facilitate safe on-site coordination studies. Electrical systems studies can get complicated, and a minor error, such as getting in the arc flash path, can result in serious, fatal injuries. Pioneer Power Group has extensive knowledge of power distribution systems. Call today to find out more about critical studies required for power distribution system safety and compliance with OSHA, NFPA 70E, IEEE, and NEC electrical codes.

"Late in the project I realized I could not energize my equipment without the coordination study's protective device settings. No one expected to complete that study in 2 weeks, but Pioneer Power Group coordinated closely with us, completed the study in less than 2 weeks, and allowed us to maintain our schedule and workflow."