the architect. The engineer is the one who designs and built with the help of science and math and builds structures, equipment, and processes. Primarily the role of the engineer is the functionality and safety of the building and to find out which materials to use and how to safely construct the building the architect has envisioned. Engineers’ main responsibility is to assure the design meets all fitting building codes specifically the electrical, heating, ventilation, air conditioning, and plumbing systems.
AT: To what extent you propose fixtures & lighting system with an architect?
AS: We first try our level best to comprehend the aesthetic look of building which architect wants, and preserve the same in proposing our lighting and other fixtures while following codes and standards. Lighting level needs to be calculated as per the spatial environment and considering the fact that it should be energy efficient and meet the client’s requirement and international standards.
AT: We have noticed whenever there is fire broke out in the buildings is due to
electrical faults. what are your comments on this?
AS: This is actually true that most of times fire held due to electrical faults but the second big reason is always smoking material like Lighted cigars, cigarettes, and other smoking materials can ignite fires if disposed of improperly. Most electrical fires are caused by faulty old outdated appliance cords, receptacles, and switches which can send heat onto combustible surfaces like floors, curtains, and rugs that can start a fire.
AT: What suggestions you would like to give for building safety and to avoid
fire breakout in the buildings?
AS: To avoid fire break out in the building there are numerous ways to control as far as Electricity is concerned. For instance, electrical appliances should not be plugged into the extension cord for any time interval instead should be plugged directly into the outlet. The extension wires or cords should only be used as a temporary measure. Also, you should have the appropriate type of outlets for your appliances, if you do not have then a proper electrical technician should be hired to install new ones. When circuits get overloaded breakers should be triggered by too much electricity, but outdated breaker boxes frequently have damaged connectors that do not work, resulting in the system to overload and lead an electrical fire. Another cause is outdated wiring which often causes electrical fires like If a building is over 20 years old or more, it may not have the wiring capacity to handle the amplified amounts of electrical appliances in today’s average load, such as computers, air conditioners, wide-screen televisions, microwaves, electric heaters, electric kettles, and many more appliances.
AT: What are the considerations for building safety in terms of engineering design and what important tips you would like to give designers and the public at large?
AS: In brief, I would say prevention to control ignition and fuel sources so that fires do no
start, communication should be strong; if ignition occurs we must inform abruptly to occupants. Escape plan must be clear and ensure that occupants of the building and surrounding areas are able to move safely. The fire should be contained to the smallest possible area, limiting the threat to life safety and the extent of property likely to be damaged and in the last ensuring that fire can be extinguished quickly and with minimal consequential damage.
AT: What would you suggest measures to be considered for reducing electrical loads in buildings?
AS: There can be numerous ways to reduce electricity consumption during the process of designing a building because it is not practical to expect the user to use power efficiently later. One simple and relatively effective way that can make a difference is by switching our electricity to Green Power. This means using power generated from clean renewable sources such as the sun, wind, water and waste power, rather than coal. Also by Daylight harvesting systems use daylight to offset the amount of electric lighting needed to properly light a space, in order to reduce energy consumption. This is accomplished using lighting control systems that are able to dim or switch electric lighting in response to changing daylight availability.
Using light colors and proper building insulation helps a lot to reduce energy consumption. Choosing pale colors for your walls, ceilings, and floors will actually reflect more light into space. Select a high-gloss paint for walls to reflect even more light. These steps will allow you to take advantage of natural daylight, as well as use lower-wattage light bulbs when you need to turn the lights on. Also, having a well-insulated home will reduce the amount of energy needed to heat or cool the area.
AT: Have you had a chance to work in other countries, what differences do you see in approach to electrical design?
AS: As an electrical consultant, our responsibilities are always limited when we work abroad. We have completed a few projects in Saudia Arabia, the United States of America, Australia, Afghanistan, Africa, and the United Arab Emirates. There are different approaches in different countries and different style of work. The Engineering standards and codes we are following in Pakistan are almost similar to them but in those countries, the legal authorities are working well as compared to ours in implementing it. They completely follow their Engineering code and standards, and go to the best quality material and adopt the latest technology and appreciate innovation in the system.
AT: Do you have a dream project – something you haven’t done yet in the context of electrical engineering?
AS: Alhamdullilah! till now, I have completed a lot of different types of MEP projects, including:
- ICT and Data Center works * Power Houses * Cooperate offices and High-rise towers
- Hospitals & Health-related buildings * Residential Projects * Industrial Projects
- Mixed Use Buildings * Shopping Malls * Super Markets and Retail outlets
- Energy Audits * Solar Power * Infrastructure Planning of Housing Schemes