Designing the proper ELV systems – a challenge in today’s construction industry

Designing the proper ELV systems – a challenge in today’s construction industry

Contrary to what we used to have 20 years ago, it is now very hard to find a new structure where ELV solutions are not part of the core requirements for construction – whether the structure is a hotel, an airport, an office, or an industrial plant.

This is indeed a challenge for construction designers who are not well versed with the technology concepts of the ELV and all the fuzzy technical jargon that come with it.

ELV is an abbreviation for Extremely Low Voltage. This acronym falls short in explaining the exact content and is mostly misunderstood from an “electrical” perspective, rather than what it really represents.  ELV is actually a combination of data & telephony, safety & security, as well as automation technologies that are now an integral part of any modern structure in the 21st century.

While civil, electrical and sewage designs are considered to be integral disciplines of construction design and are normally done in-house by most EPC companies, design of ELV is more like a Pandora’s box to most experienced construction designers, and they prefer to have it totally handled by “someone else”!

When it comes to “ELV designers”, you can categorize them into 3 different groups:

  • The first group of ELV designers come from an “electrical” background: their work usually include some general block diagrams similar to one-line drawings one finds in electrical designs and totally lack the understanding of the diverse “technological” aspects of the different ELV systems.
  • The second group of ELV designers come from an “IT” background. Although this group understand the technological aspect of a proper ELV solution, they can’t communicate this very well in the language and the culture that is commonly known and used in the construction industry.
  • There is only a small group of ELV designers – the third group – who really master this new technology whose time has come. A combination of “electrical” and “IT/technological” knowhow necessary in order to properly design the ELV systems needed for this day and age.

  • Category:
  • ELV