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Introducing 5 Phase Electricity

Photo of Zyra - introducing 5phase electricity

Another weird modelling shot of Zyra with blue hair, this time introducing the idea of five phase electricity. As well as helping to plug various electricity companies this is also philosophically interesting. Five phase electricity has five live lines each 72 degrees out of phase with the preceding one. Power is usually taken across from opposite phases, so in the case of five phase it's 144 degrees of angular difference (rather than 120 degrees). Whereas with three phase, in which motor/generator diagrams look like triangles, with five phase the diagrams look like pentagrams and pentagons. These pentacle motor/generator wiring diagrams are not usually seen in electrical engineering as three phase is more usual. However, some magical diagrams look symbolically similar to 5phase wiring diagrams.

The picture was first seen on Issue104 of Zyra's site which was published just before Zyra set off for Belize. Also see Zyra Belize.

In the picture, the five phase socket is designed to give five live phases surrounding a central neutral, and with the safety earth connection provided by a concentric power ring around the outer of the power socket. Heatsink cooling fins around the power socket add to the style as well as keeping the connector cool.

Zyra's boots with six inch platform soles provide very good electrical insulation for high voltage versus ground, and are useful when reaching items that are high up, but nevertheless these are not standard safety wear and are unlikely to catch on in the electrical engineering business, even if some electrical engineers might be pleased if they did.

The picture was created as a composite from various photos taken using a Canon EOS350 digital camera which has been superseded by the Canon 5D and is the sort of thing which available from Digital Camera Shops

Although 3-phase electricity was commonplace industrially at the time of creating this page, for example refrigerated intermodal shipping containers typically came with a standard 3-phase marine quality plug, 5-phase was rare. It could catch-on though. When commissioning a generator, it's quite reasonable to have five phases at 72 degrees apart, with cables for five Live lines, a neutral, and safety earth.

(No picture? See Adjustment to Mozilla Browser)