In this age of technological development and evolution, one must reflect on the provision of protection to these advanced and sophisticated electrical/electronic devices. Owing to the complexity in the configuration of the equipment and the wiring, safety comes as the primary demand to avoid any electrical failure and any damages to life or property. The most concerning factor for any electrical installation or network is the properly designed earthing system which is a prerequisite for providing a low resistance path for efficient and satisfactory working of electrical appliances.

There are Two Types of Earthing/Grounding Practice – 

  • Conventional Pipe or Plate Earthing: Perforated GI/ copper Pipe or copper plate used as an electrode surrounded by salt – charcoal backfilling mix degrading the health of installation.
  • Maintenance Free Technique: Replacing the conventional technology, it consists of Copper bonded steel rods, carbon-based earth enhancement compound and exothermic weld joints remarkably increasing the life of the entire installation.

Due to lack of awareness, some still practice conventional grounding methodology employing copper or GI plates positioned amidst of salt and charcoal for conducting these fault currents to the ground. This technology gives a temporary solution to this problem as the conductor gets corroded and the backfill compound gets washed away within 2-3 years. But, this is less in practice now as it demands periodic maintenance and early replacement which was a tedious and hectic scenario.

Maintenance Free Earthing - Replacement to Conventional Grounding for Complete Protection from Electric Faults

This system consists of earth electrodes, i.e. copper bonded rods. These are a solid rod technology engineered to endure the most enviously damaging environments and earth enhancement compound as a backfill compound surrounding the rod. Copper bonded steel rod is a concoction of pure copper over steel, it is basically a well finished low carbon tensile steel rod with minimal coating of 250 microns of pure Electrolytic copper offering abridged corrosion which would also magnify the working life up to 40 to 50 years.

The process of installation of maintenance free earthing system is carried out with ease and is recommended as per IS 3043, IEEE 80 and NBC 2016. Recommended practice can be installed by digging a hole of appropriate size and positioning copper bonded rod exactly at the bottom. The conductivity of surrounding soil can be treated and improved by filling the earth pit with slurry of carbon-based ground enhancement material and water mix. Then connections within the installation and earth connection with the exposed and conducting metallic parts of devices are made using exothermic welding technique after which the installation is secured using a poly plastic earthing pit cover.