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During the 2008 National Electrical Code (NEC)  cycle, Article 708, Critical Operations Power Systems (COPS), was introduced. As stated in the scope of Article 708, “the provisions of this article apply to the installation, operation, monitoring, control, and maintenance of the portions of the premises wiring system intended to supply, distribute, and control electricity to designated critical operations areas (DCOAs) in the event of disruption to elements of the normal system.” Refineries and some petrochemical facilities may be included in this scope because of the criticality of their continuous operation. The purpose of this article is to analyze the effects of the new requirements for hardened electrical systems on the design and engineering of these facilities. Key points include: 1) risk assessment of the system, 2) power distribution requirements, 3) power sources, and 4) documentation of the emergency operations plan, all based on NEC requirements  and the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) 1600-2010 Standard on Disaster/Emergency Management and Business Continuity Programs .
Date of Publication: Jan.-Feb. 2013