Winter Newsletter


Welcome to the winter news letter from Fraser George and Associates. We hope you are all safe and well. Present circumstances are most difficult yet we all hope for progress and improving conditions on all fronts. Anyhow we hope you find the newsletter enlightening and interesting.

Cases involving electrical engineering circumstances dealt with by Fraser George and Associates

  • Electrical related fires
  • Flood damage and moisture ingress of electrical equipment
  • Standards of domestic and industrial electrical works, undertaken and alleged to conform to electrical standards (BS7671) and building regulations (Part P).
  • Protection devices in electrical system and the non-conformity of electrical systems in relation to electrical fires, electrical shocks and fatal electrocutions
  • Industrial automatic process control systems, design, installation, testing, commissioning and operation
  • Testing and compliance of electrical systems and electrical components to standard
  • Fundamental operation of electrical devices, explanation of fundamental phenomena

Electrical trivia – Good for pub quizes

  • Electricity travels at the speed of light, about 300,000 kilometres per second.
  • A spark of static electricity can measure up to 3,000 volts.
  • The average taser emits 50,000 volts.
  • A bolt of lightning can measure up to three million (3,000,000) volts (and lasts less than one second).
  • LED light bulbs use about one-sixth of the electricity that conventional bulbs do, and last about 40 times longer.
  • A typical microwave oven consumes more electricity powering its digital clock than it does heating food
  • Appliances also use electricity when they’re switched off. The average desktop computer idles at 80 watts, while the average laptop idles at 20 watts. A Sony PlayStation 3 uses about 200 watts, both when it’s active and when it’s idle.
  • Electricity causes muscle cells in your heart to contract, essentially making it beat. Electrocardiogram (ECG) machines measure the electricity going through the heart. As the heart beats in a healthy person, the ECG machine displays a line moving across the screen with regular spikes (as you’ve seen in a hundred movies and TV shows).
  • In some species of fish native to the Amazon River, certain muscle cells have evolved over millions of years into cells called electrocytes, which they use for echolocation, that is to detect obstacles and other animals in the dark.

Cases dealt with this quarter

This quarter the scope of instructions dealt with by Dr Brown of Fraser George has been wide.

Dr Brown reviewed the circumstances focussing on the malfunction of a domestic boiler found to be due to the use of incorrect cable and incorrect termination of the cores of the cable when connecting a ‘smart’ room thermostat to the boiler.

Further Dr Brown inspected and opined on an alleged poor, non-regulation installation of a domestic electrical system.

An investigation surrounding an explosion of a high voltage circuit breaker, a component within an electrical supply and distribution system for a large industrial plant, continues attract the attention of Dr Brown. The case has many facets to review,…health and safety, operational and maintenance procedures,…attributes of the circuit breaker,… attributes of electrical protection systems and devices, which should have operated and averted the explosion.

Electrical related fires Investigation of the causation of a fire thought to have ignited within a domestic appliance due a water leak consequential of long time accumulation of the effects of the water leak.

Electrical Fires – Why do electrical conductors, cables, wires generate heat?

In general, everyday life, we subconsciously accept and disregard the presence of electrical cables and wires, which proliferate around us.

We also neglect the naturally occurring circumstance that in use ‘all’ electrical conductors, cables, wires generate heat, yet what is the fundamental, physical phenomena that causes such heating?

The process by which the passage of an electric current through an electrical conductor produces heat,is referred to asJoule heating, or Ohmic heatingor resistive heating.

Joule heating is a fundamental/natural phenomena, and was first revealed by James Prescott Joule in December 1840, when publishing an abstract in the Proceedings of the Royal Society.

Joule heating is caused by interactions between the flowing fundamental particles of electrical current (electrons) and the body of the conductor (atomic ions), but how?

Given, an electrical voltage difference between two points of a conductor, this creates an electric field that accelerates the electrons through the electric field, giving them motion/movement (kinetic energy).

When the electrons collide with atomic ions in the conductor, the electrons are scattered; their direction of motion becomes random rather than aligned with the electric field, which constitutes thermal motion (Heat). Thus, energy from the electrical field is converted into thermal energy.

The latter is analogous and obvious, i.e. a ball rolling down a hill hits a stone, rock, hole or whatever and its direction of motion is randomly changed. As the ball rolls down the hill and at the instant of impact the ball forfeits some of its kinetic energy, which is converted to work!

Fraser George & Associates:

Just to remind, Fraser George & Associatesare the premier source of Expert Witness Services for the Legal Profession throughout the United Kingdom.

For further information do not hesitate to contact:

Eur Ing Dr Robert Brown, Company Executive Director:

Ms. Claire Morris, Company Secretary

Mrs Margaret Curran, Administration Assistant




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