Interview with Geoff Cronshaw
You’ve worked in the electrotechnical industry for over 40 years. How long have you been the secretary to JPEL/64?
I have been the secretary to JPEL/64 approaching 14 years now and I have found it a very interesting role.
What does this work involve?
This is a busy role supporting JPEL/64 and involves the distribution of many International and European documents, planning and organizing meetings, preparing agendas, participating in the technical debates, taking and issuing minutes, preparing responses to IEC and CENELEC enquiries, and carrying out the many actions agreed at the meetings.
This past year seems to have been all about the DPC process for the 18th Edition of BS 7671. How much work did this involve for you?
This is an exceptionally busy time for JPEL/64. Not only has the Committee to carry on with its work of agreeing votes and comments on the many International and European documents but is also heavily involved in preparing the new national standard (the 18th Edition).
JPEL/64 and the Sub-Committees are busy at the moment considering all the comments received on the DPC and making a decision on each of the comments. The DPC then has to be revised to take into account all the agreed changes, which is a lengthy process.
You authored a few articles for Wiring Matters about the changes to Section 7. Of all the proposed changes to the 18th Edition, which most interest you?
I think the proposed Part 8 on Energy Efficiency is the most interesting. This is a completely new part. The worldwide need to reduce the consumption of energy means that we have to consider how electrical installations can provide the required level of service and safety for the lowest electrical consumption. Part 8 enables a client to specify the level of energy efficiency measures applied to an electrical installation. The new part covers several energy efficient areas, such as lighting, metering, cable losses, transformer losses, power-factor correction, and harmonics.
Which proposed changes might bring the most practical change to how electricians work?
Some of the simplest changes may have the most impact for the average electrician's work, such as the proposed change to Regulation 522.11.201 with a new Regulation 521.10.201. This requires cables to be adequately supported against premature collapse in the event of fire throughout the installation and not just escape routes. Also, the proposed changes to Regulation 411.3.3 concerning RCD protection for socket outlets.
What lies ahead in 2018? Will JPEL/64 be focused only on the 18th Edition, or will they also already be debating other changes that might come out at a much later point?
International and European Standards are continually being developed to keep pace with new and emerging technologies. There are a number of areas of IEC 60364 (the standard that BS 7671 is based on) which are under development. For example the area of solar photovoltaic (PV) power supply systems, and electric vehicle charging.
You’re also secretary of JPEL/18. What does this committee do?
JPEL/18 is the National Committee responsible for electrical installations of ships and of mobile and fixed offshore units. The Committee is actively involved in the area concerning high and low voltage shore connection systems with the aim to reduce the amount of pollution in the port area. DC distribution in marine electrical installations is another new area of development made possible by modern electronics. Many of the electrical loads on board a ship are DC and this is the reason for the development of DC architecture in marine electrical installations. The whole of the Electrical installations standards for Mobile and Offshore structures (IEC 61892) is currently being revised. Also there is considerable development work on subsea equipment.
What has been your highlight of 2017 so far?
I think the development work involved in preparing the 18th Edition which has involved scheduling all the latest international and European standards in the 60364 series for consideration by the National Committee in order to keep pace with new and emerging technologies.