What is Ground Wire or Grounding Wire? Function, Use

What is Ground Wire?

The ground wire is a conducting path that is used to make a connection between the ground or earth and the electrical system. The ground wire is also known as grounding wire or earth wire or earthing wire. It is independent of the normal conducting wires in an electrical system.

We know that there are three main wires used in the electrical system - Phase(also known as Hot or Live), Neutral, and Earthing or Grounding. Phase and neutral are the main two wires that conduct current in normal conditions but the ground wire only conducts current during fault or accident.

Before 1960 there was not so much use of earthing systems but after 1960 it became very popular and essential for every electrical system.

Ground Wire or Earthing Wire or earth wire

Where Ground Wire is used? Applications

1. Power Generation

We know that electrical power is mostly generated through generators or alternators and the winding of the alternator is star-connected. In these power-generating stations, the neutral point of the alternator or star-connected transformers is connected to the ground using a grounding wire. Here, the neutral point is connected to the ground to keep the three-phase electrical in a balanced condition.

2. Electrical Protection System

Most of the electrical protection systems and devices use grounding wires for their operation. For example, the surge protector must be connected to the ground or earth otherwise it will not work. Because these devices measure voltage with respect to the ground and during the fault condition, they bypass the fault current to the earth through the ground wire. You will see that most of the protective systems in power distribution, commercial, and domestic systems use earthing and grounding wires.

3. Electrical Wirings

In all types of electrical wiring systems whether it is domestic wiring or commercial wiring, everywhere the grounding wire is used. It is used to connect all the equipment in this wiring system. In most of the cases, the ground wire uses pure green color or green with yellow stripes. Even the size of the ground of the system depends upon the system voltage, current, fault handling capacity, etc.

4. Electrical Appliances

The metallic body of the electrical appliances is generally connected to the ground. This is because to eliminate the equipment faults, electrical shocks, etc. For example, if there is no grounding connection, by chance the live conductor touched the metallic part of the equipment. In this case, there is a very high chance of electric shock. But if the metallic body is connected to the ground, all the fault current will bypass through the ground and the chances of electric shock will reduce.

Ground Wire Function

The main function of a ground wire is to conduct the faulty current from an electrical system to the ground. The size of the ground wire is also a very important factor. The size of the ground wire is generally determined according to the type, size, and capacity of the electrical system. You will see in our homes, a bare conductor is used as a grounding wire that is connected between the service panel and the earth. On the other hand, other devices in the house are connected using an insulated wire.

A grounding connection can be used as a single connection for multiple systems or individuals. In some cases, it is seen that only the earthing or grounding connection is not able to trip the circuit breaker during a fault. That is why in some electrical systems, the ground wire is also connected to the neutral in the service panel.

Also, you must know about an important term, which is impedance grounding. In this method, the electrical system is not directly connected to the earth some impedance is added in series using a series reactor, resistance, etc. This helps to reduce the unnecessary tripping of circuit breakers during a very low fault.

How to Check Ground Wire?

1. By visually you can check if there is any cut or damage to the wire.

2. By using Earth Tester Megger.

3. By checking the voltage between the phase and earthing port in the power socket. If there is no voltage showing means the earth wire is disconnected. If it shows the voltage, it ensures that the earth wire is in good condition.

4. By measuring the voltage between earth and neutral you can check if there is any leakage voltage.

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What is Ground Wire or Grounding Wire? Function, Use What is Ground Wire or Grounding Wire? Function, Use Reviewed by Author on September 05, 2022 Rating: 5
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