CDA’s Electrical Expert to Speak to Public Safety Communication Professionals at APCO about the Importance of Grounding and Bonding

April 23, 2014


Session Track to Offer Tips on Preventing Service Disruption and Equipment Breakdown at Communication Facilities

NEW YORK, NY— What is time worth to a television station going off the air or a 9-1-1 call center going offline? To the customer watching at home, being disconnected means an evening spent without his or her favorite TV sitcom, but to a person involved in an accident seeking emergency police or fire services, it could mean the matter of life and death.

David Brender, the National Program Manager for Electrical Applications at the Copper Development Association (CDA), has been selected to speak at the APCO 2014 Conference & Expo this summer to address issues like these and discuss the importance proper grounding and bonding has for communication facilities.  Brender’s session is taking place at 3 p.m., Aug. 4 at the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center in New Orleans.

In his hour-long presentation, Brender will share a variety of case histories related to communication facilities that were disrupted by lightning strikes or inadequate electrical grounding systems, and highlight how adapting the power quality infrastructure can benefit any facility that operates electronic equipment.

“Grounding and bonding electrical systems is paramount for any communication facility because it provides a low impedance path for transient overvoltages, such as lightning, to flow safely to earth,” said Brender.  “Without a secure system in place, service can be interrupted causing equipment to be affected, damaged or — even worse — fail, at a critical time.”

In order to be effective, the entire grounding system needs to be properly designed, using listed connectors and corrosion-resistant materials that meet or exceed the NEC parameters. For example, a lightning protection system must be well-grounded in order to work properly. Copper and its alloys are the most common materials because they provide superior reliability, corrosion resistance and avoid oxidation complications at connections.

“What I try and stress to folks who attend my session is that the cost of creating a proper grounding system is very inexpensive relative to the great number of benefits,” said Brender.  “The pay back can usually be met within six months or less.”

Brender, who has been giving presentations for CDA on grounding and bonding for more than 12 years, spoke recently at the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) Show in Las Vegas.

For more information about copper grounding systems or to access a variety of CDA’s electrical case studies, please visit CDA's Power Quality section.