Challenge/Solution Case Study:

Implementation Planning and Design of Arc Flash Remediation for a Primary Aluminum Producer


EFI Group’s analysis enabled a primary aluminum supplier to prioritize upgrades identified in an arc flash analysis. EFI Group identified areas with the highest priority mitigation needs, and then estimated the cost for mitigation and developed a plan for implementing improvements.


Initially, the client engaged a large electrical services firm to perform the arc flash analysis on their aluminum smelting plant. When the analysis was complete the client received a several hundred-page report, but no roadmap to resolve the issues identified.

EFI Group was asked to help design electrical system improvement and develop a comprehensive implementation plan and cost estimate for the electrical upgrade projects identified in the report.

The overarching project goals were to reduce all analyzed equipment to an Arc Flash Category of 2 or lower, while minimizing plant downtime and implementation cost. Project areas were located in all areas of the plant.


EFI Group worked with the client’s team, as well as with an EFI Group partner firm, to research each problem area identified in the analysis. This included a detailed analysis of over 100 potential problem areas. EFI Group’s research was focused on:

  1. Understanding and updating the original arc flash model.
  2. Understanding the severity and implications of each issue raised by the model.
  3. Determining mitigation options that would minimize cost and downtime.
  4. Developing implementation costs and timing


  • Supplemental Arc Flash Analysis addressing the fact that in the original study some areas were modeled incorrectly, and others were not included. EFI Group updated the Arc Flash model with new data and returned an updated report with Arc Flash Ratings.
  • Project summary that grouped problem areas into larger projects where possible. This reduced the overall number of upgrade actions and allowed the client’s engineering staff to focus on the highest-gain modifications first.
  • Equipment specifications in areas where new equipment was required.
  • Cost estimate for each project identified above.

Read more about EFI Group’s Core Competencies
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We hired EFI Group to help us figure out a project and scope it, and I felt confident they would keep a keen eye on it. They had to deliver quickly and they did it well. They are especially good at project management when you don’t have the resources to do it internally. Reliability is the word I would use to describe EFI Group.
— Coatings Industry Professional
EFI Group is timely. We’ve had a lot of situations when we’ve been in a time crunch and they’ve responded very quickly. They are detail oriented and efficient. They’re a good group of people who also have a lot of strength in pre-engineering — the thought process to get to preliminary design and making sure we’ve investigated all the potential asks of a project to ensure we didn’t miss anything. They have great attention to detail up front which is very important to any project because having that detail-oriented deep dive into the pre-engineering phase sets the stage for the success of the rest of the project, making the process smoother and making it much easier to keep the project on schedule and on budget.
— Mike Quigley, Engineering & Maintenance Manager, Food Industry
I’ve worked with EFI Group for a while, so I know they have a good, knowledgeable staff. We know we’re going to get the results from them we expect. From my interactions with all the different EFI team members I’ve worked with, I know they have knowledge across many industries. Equally, I never have to follow up with EFI Group and, in some cases, they keep me on track.
— Ryan Fredsall, General Manager, Pacer Minerals LLC
We view EFI Group as a team that can dimensionalize our capability to execute projects. We can articulate what it is we want to do and they can take that input and run with it without much intervention from us. They’re able to move a project along independently and only engage us when it’s time to bring us up to speed or get more input to drive a project to conclusion. That’s one of the reasons I view them as an excellent contractor.
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— Corporate Director, Project Management in Food & Flavors Industry
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