There is a lot of confusion surrounding the per unit system, and rightfully so. If you’ve never used it before, it is easy to become confused with all of the individual pieces that make the system work. To help clear things up, here is an in-depth break down on an example question that is similar to […]

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## What Do Successful Engineers that Pass the Electrical PE Exam have in Common?

One of the questions I get asked the most from students is: “Zach, how many Months do I need to study to pass the PE exam?” Each and every person has their own individual needs based on industry experience, math background, and test taking skills. This means that it is close to impossible to say exactly […]

## Qualitative Practice Problem – Power Supplies

Did you know, that the most common feedback about the NCEES Electrical Power PE Exam is that exam takers are often surprised at the high number of qualitative questions that appear on the exam? A qualitative question is a test question designed to test your application of theory to select the most appropriate answer and […]

## April 2017 PE Exam Results 2.0

This is part two of emails received from successful April 2017 Exam students after they took and passed the PE exam. If you haven’t seen the explanation from part one, you can read it here: April 2017 PE Exam Results – Happy Students! The purpose of this post is to motivate anyone gearing up to […]

## April 2017 PE Exam Results – Happy Students!

The results of the April 2017 PE Exam are starting to be released and students of Electrical PE Review have been contacting me so I can keep track of the results. I’m happy to report that the results so far have been overwhelmingly positive. I am still waiting to hear back from each […]

## Calculator Shortcuts and Tricks for Working with Units QUICKLY

Did you know that one of the most common reasons to get a question wrong even when you’ve done all the right steps is by making a mistake on the units? I bet that sounds familiar. Have you ever worked a problem that had all sorts of different units and you either entered it into […]

## Base Impedance – Do We Use Single Phase or Three Phase Values to Calculate?

Imagine you come across a three phase system with per unit impedances and you need to calculate the actual value in ohms: No sweat, right? You know that actual values are simply found by multiplying per unit values by their base values. So you start to calculate the base impedance value by writing […]

## Leading and Lagging Cheat Sheet! Printable Reference

The following two rules will fix 99% of any mistakes you might be tempted to make with leading vs lagging. The most common mistake is angle polarity: Is the angle positive or is it negative? Which angle do I make positive or negative? Repeat after me: “The complex power angle is always equal to the impedance […]

## Avoid These Three Phase Power Formula Mistakes!

I want to share with you the the most common mistakes that students make with three phase power formulas that lead them to getting robbed of correct answers on the PE exam, and remind you why specific notation is so important. My goal of this article is to get you out of the bad habit of […]

## Recommended References for the Electrical Power PE Exam

Quick note: in order to see each Amazon link below you will need to turn off any browser ad blocking extensions or add ons. There is always going to be a difference in opinion surrounding what the best references are for the Electrical Power PE Exam largely in part because different references work better for different […]

## TI-36X Pro: The Best Calculator for the Electrical Power PE Exam

The TI-36X Pro is hands down the best calculator for the Electrical Power PE Exam and the good news is that it is CHEAP! Let’s face it: You are going to have a hard time solving complex math problems without a good calculator in your arsenal which is why we reviewed six different calculators from the NCEES approved […]

## National Electrical Code (NEC) for the Power PE Exam

The National Electrical Code (NEC) is an important body of knowledge developed over a great period of time to prevent electrical related fires and to keep us safe from dangerous electrical exposure. Because our understanding of the safe use of electricity is constantly evolving, the National Electrical Code is updated and published every three years. Since the […]

## Confusing Impedances – What’s the difference?

The many “-tance” terms of Electrical Engineering There are many different types of impedance components and they all rhythm, making it hard to remember which one is which. Many even have the same units, which can lead to even further confusion. Don’t let the same “-tance” ending fool you. If you run into a question on […]

## Electrical PE Exam Qualitative Theory Question of the Week

Following the theme of preparing for qualitative theory and concept questions, which caught many students off guard during the 2016 October Electrical PE Exam, here is another example of how to combine several different formulas to derive a relationship that solves a qualitative question. Sample Question: True or False: The capacitance of a transmission […]

## Thoughts on the 2016 October Exam, and How to Solve Qualitative Theory Questions

The 2016 October NCEES Electrical PE Exam was described by test takers as strikingly heavy in qualitative theory based questions compared to what was expected. The large majority of practice material and sample exams focus mostly on quantitative math questions, and this caught many examinees off guard who over prepared for quantitative questions but under […]

## Complex Number How To’s: Math & Converting Vectors and Phasors

While not an individual exam topic, complex numbers and vector mathematics are a key fundamental skill that appears on numerous questions throughout the exam. You can expect to see them anytime complex impedances, apparent power, and phasors with a magnitude and angle appear. It helps to have a comfortable understanding of what complex numbers are […]

## Square Root 3 and Three Phase Power – Where Does it Come From

The square root of three. This is one of the top 5 most misunderstood and asked about topics in three phase power. Why and where do we use the square root of three (1.73) in our formulas when solving questions for the Electrical PE Exam, and just where exactly does it come from? Having a solid […]

## Calculator Tips and Tricks for the Electrical PE Exam

This is a quick and short how to guide to using calculators for complex number analysis, converting back and forth between rectangular and polar, and how to carry out complex math without making mistakes. Every calculator handles complex numbers a little differently and it is up to you to be familiar with how yours operates. […]