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ABB´s Arc Guard System can save lives

Every year thousands of people get hurt or even die worldwide in arc accidents and countless money in equipment is destroyed. Most of the built in protection systems aren’t enough to protect the switchboards in older installations.


Time is the key factor to minimize the risks and damage from an electrical arc.

ABB offers a safety solution called the TVOC-2 or the “Arc Guard System” that detects the light from the arc and then cuts the power using shunt release circuit breakers. This happens within 40 milliseconds from arc initiation and can save lives as well as equipment.   

 The latest version TVOC-2 has become the benchmark for reliability in the market being the only product achieving the functional safety SIL-2 certificate. The ABB TVOC-2 responds within 2 milliseconds from the time of detection of arc to sending a signal to the shunt trip!

Having SIL-2 certification qualifies for extremely high degree of reliability is crucial for a product designed to potentially save lives!

ABB has a long history of being in the forefront of arc protection solutions. The first version of the TVOC was launched in the mid 70’s and since then many major upgrades and improvements have been made to incorporate past experiences. 


TVOC-2 can be seen installed all over the world in a multitude of applications from marine, oil and gas, heavy industries, hospitals and shopping malls just to name a few.  


    About TVOC-2

The TVOC-2 can be equipped with maximum of 30 optical sensors so that one unit can cover multiple cabinets of switchboards. The optical cables are factory calibrated in set lengths up to a maximum of 60 meters. Outputs consist of 3 super-fast IGBTs used to trip the breaker shunt releases. In addition, there are 2 signal relays which can be connected to PLCs, to send a signal when the system trips. The HMI on the unit can be detached via a cable mounted on outside of the cabinet containing the TVOC-2. This HMI has full text display showing which sensor has tripped, which output was used and the time and date of the arc occurrence

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