skip to main content


This content will become publicly available on February 8, 2019

Title: A complete electrical shock hazard classification system and its application

Current electrical safety standards evolved to address the hazards of 60-Hz power that are faced primarily by electricians, linemen, and others performing facility and utility work. As a result, this leaves a substantial gap in the management of electrical hazards in Research and Development (R&D) and specialized high voltage and high power equipment. We find substantial use of direct current (dc) electrical energy, and the use of capacitors, inductors, batteries, and radiofrequency (RF) power. The electrical hazards of these forms of electricity and their systems are different than for 50/60 Hz power. This paper proposes a method of classifying all of the electrical shock hazards found in all types of R&D and utilization equipment. Examples of the variation of these hazards from NFPA 70E include (a) high voltage can be harmless, if the available current is sufficiently low, (b) low voltage can be harmful if the available current/power is high, (c) high voltage capacitor hazards are unique and include severe reflex action, affects on the heart, and tissue damage, and (d) arc flash hazard analysis for dc and capacitor systems are not provided in existing standards. This work has led to a comprehensive electrical hazard classification system that is basedmore » on various research conducted over the past 100 years, on analysis of such systems in R&D, and on decades of experience. Lastly, the new comprehensive electrical shock hazard classification system uses a combination of voltage, shock current available, fault current available, power, energy, and waveform to classify all forms of electrical hazards.« less
 [1] ;  [1] ;  [1]
  1. Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States)
Publication Date:
Report Number(s):
Journal ID: ISSN 0093-9994
Grant/Contract Number:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
IEEE Transactions on Industry Applications
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Name: IEEE Transactions on Industry Applications; Journal ID: ISSN 0093-9994
Research Org:
Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
Country of Publication:
United States
42 ENGINEERING; Occupational Safety and Training; electrical safety, electrical injury, electrical hazard classification, electrical safety standards, electrical shock
OSTI Identifier: