IEEE 45 - Where it Stands and Where its Going
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IEEE 45 - Where it Stands and Where its Going


The IEEE 45 electrical practice is often applied to offshore GOM support vessels and drillships, especially those that are US-built. Outside the US and for non US-flag vessels operating outside GOM, electrical equipment vendors more frequently adhere to IEC standards (the European equivalent of IEEE) and the predominant electrical practice in the industry. ABS investigated the top most-asked questions they hear from offshore clients, engineers and vendors about applying IEEE 45 and the changes that the IEEE 45 committee is planning for the codes next revision, due out in 2001.

What is IEEE 45?
IEEE 45 is the recommended practice for electrical installation shipboard based on American practices. The scope of this standard covers oceangoing vessels and vessels for use on rivers, lakes, bays, etc. It is considered an alternative standard to the IEC 60092 series of standards, which are part of ABS Rules.

Can IEEE 45 be used in place of IEC standards to meet ABS Rule requirements?
Both IEEE 45 and IEC standards can be used to meet ABS Rules. Equipment, components and systems for which ABS has specific requirements may comply with an alternative standard such as IEEE 45, in lieu of the IEC-based requirements in the Rules. It is essential, however, that IEEE 45 or any other alternative standard proposed for use is determined by ABS to be no less effective than the Rules.

Can parts of IEEE 45 be coupled with parts of the IEC standards for meeting ABS Rule requirements?
When IEEE 45 is proposed as an alternative, all equipment must fully comply with the IEEE 45 standard. Coupling sections of several standards together can result in less effective electrical requirements, and thus, cannot be accepted as being in compliance with ABS Rules. An example of this is circuit breakers dual rated as IEC 947-2 and NEMA. In one case, the fault rating may be higher under the IEC system, but if the breaker is installed inside NEMA-type switchgear, the fault rating given with the NEMA rating must be followed.

Is IEEE 45 affected by ABS migration toward IEC standards?
Although ABS has been migrating towards IEC-based rules, it continues to recognize American equipment and practices. ABS is involved in the ongoing revision process of IEEE 45 to help ensure the standard is considered a recognized standard of electrical practice acceptable under the Rules.

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