IEEE I&CPS Color Book Update | Standards Michigan

IEEE I&CPS Color Book Update

The Industrial & Commercial Power Systems Department (I&CPS) has been charged by IEEE for developing the Color Book suite and is now re-configuring electrical and telecommunication concepts in the smaller, faster-moving 3000-series platform.


IEEE I&CPS Color Book Update

June 2, 2018
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“View of Malakoff Hauts de Seine” | Henri Rousseau, 1903

For over 50 years the IEEE Color Books have set the standard of care for electrical power system design, construction, operation and maintenance.  Reference to the Color Books usually show up in contracts that assert: “Conform to all applicable IEEE standards“.

While the Color Books are not written in the transitive language required of a “code” that can be incorporated by reference into public safety legislation[1] ; the Color Book committees have traditionally provided the most authoritative technical foundation for documents for the NFPA family of electrical safety documents.   The Color Books continue to be referenced into the National Electrical Code, for example; though that has been changing [2]; and the rate of that change will gather pace.  Competition from other trade associations that want to claim ownership of the regulatory landscape for the emergent #SmartCampus will make it so.

The IEEE committees are populated largely by electrical professionals; the NFPA committees are populated by a balance of subject matter experts  largely informed by the fire safety culture.  The leadership of electrical safety in the United States a fire safety organization is unique in the world.  In other nations that adopt derivatives of Technical Committee 64 of the International Electrical Code Commission the subject matter experts are largely electrical industry professionals.  The regulatory product of TC 64 is the IEC 60364 series of interdependent electrical safety documents are developed in relatively small, swiftly-moving modules and are referenced in Article 90 of the National Electrical Code.  This is important because IEEE — the largest professional association in the world — has been migrating toward the more global IEC standards development model which features a constellation of interdependent modules.

Now comes another in a series of formal announcements by the IEEE Standards Association that another legacy Color Book will be allowed to lapse so that it can be superceded by its replacement in the 3000-suite[3].

(Green Book) ANSI/IEEE 142-2007, Recommended Practice for Grounding of Industrial and Commercial Power Systems [4]

(Gold Book) ANSI/IEEE 493-2007, Recommended Practice for the Design of Reliable Industrial and Commercial Power Systems [5]

IEEE Standards association formally announced it in this week’s ANSI Standards Action | PDF Page 13.  Note that several other Color Books — notably the White Book ANSI/IEEE 602-2007, Recommended Practice for Electric Systems in Health Care Facilities — will also be allowed to lapse.

This means that design, construction, operations and maintenance documents that reference them as the standard of care will require an update. 

While all IEEE standards are on the agenda of our weekly Open Door teleconference every Wednesday, 11 AM EST, we typically refer issues of this nature to the IEEE Education and Healthcare Facilities Committee which meets online 4 times monthly in both European and American time zones.

Issue: [Various]

Category: Electrical, Telecommunications, Facility Asset Management, #SmartCampus, Public Safety

Colleagues: Mike Anthony, Robert G. Arno,  Neal Dowling,  Gary Fox, Karen Evangelista, Jim Harvey, Andrew Hernandez, Christel Hunter, Daleep Mohla, Sergio Panetta, Dev Paul, Robert Schuerger, Joe Weber

[1] The requirement to be a “code” carries specific requirements for public access which places a financial responsibility upon the consensus document developers.   ANSI accredited standards developers are accredited with consideration for conformity to ANSI due processes.  The accreditation applies to their entire family of documents; however not all documents qualify as an ANSI accredited document that can be referenced into public safety law.

[2] See: IEEE IAS Color Book Update by David Mills 2008

[3] Coordinating the development cycles of the IEEE 3000-series recommended practices with the NFPA 70 series-documents

[4] This document is heavily referenced in telecommunication, information and computer technology standards

[5] This document is referenced in Article 700 of the National Electrical Code, establishing formal reliability concepts for emergency power systems.

[6] European electrical safety concepts evolved around shock hazard because, a) user exposure to a higher outlet utilization voltage of 220-240V and b) recognition of the diverse configuration European utilization outlets owing to the diversity of national electrical equipment markets.

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