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In the next decade, a large percentage of municipalities throughout

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In the next decade, a large percentage of municipalities throughout  [#permalink]

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New post 11 Aug 2015, 03:16
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In the next decade, a large percentage of municipalities throughout the country will experience power failures if they do not modernize their electrical substations. The vast majority of substations in the country already handle currents between 60% and 80% of their maximum capacity, and currents are expected to rise, perhaps by as much as a factor of 3 in the next decade, because of population increase and the increased demand from both industry and electronics in individual homes.

Which of the following is an assumption of the above argument?

A) An electrical substation fails when the current it handles rises above its maximum capacity.
B) A modernized electric substation would be able to handle at least three times the amount of current as does a current substation.
C) Ten years from now, the average household will own a greater number of electronic devices than does the average household today.
D) Many electrical substations in operation today are old, and have several aged components that could break down, leading to power failures, even if current levels don't increase substantially.
E) The cost of modernizing the substations is small compared to the average profits of electrical power companies.

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Re: In the next decade, a large percentage of municipalities throughout  [#permalink]

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New post 13 Aug 2015, 08:06
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Hi anupama,

As per B the modernised substation would be able to handle atleast 3 times the current. means greater than or equal to 3.

As per the para we see that its predicted that the current consumption might increase PERHAPS by AS MUCH AS a factor of three.

That means that its possible that it can be less than or equal to 3. Given that it is not necessary that the modernized substations be capable of handling that much current only.

Hence if you negate B and see the argument does not fall apart.

Hope its clear?

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New post 13 Aug 2015, 01:28
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Only A makes sense.

As per A: The substation will fail if the current exceeded the maximum capacity.

negate A: The substation will not fail if the current exceeded the maximum capacity.

If the negated A were acceptable there wont be any requirement to possibly upgrade the system firstly. Hence the argument will fall apart.

Hence A is the correct answer.

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Re: In the next decade, a large percentage of municipalities throughout  [#permalink]

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New post 13 Aug 2015, 05:30
Could you please explain your thought process on this?
what is wrong with B
How A is correct?

I was stuck between A VS B
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Modernize their electrical substations  [#permalink]

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New post 12 Oct 2015, 11:52
In the next decade, a large percentage of municipalities throughout the country will experience power failures if they do not modernize their electrical substations. The vast majority of substations in the country already handle currents between 60% and 80% of their maximum capacity, and currents are expected to rise, perhaps by as much as a factor of 3 in the next decade, because of population increase and the increased demand from both industry and electronics in individual homes.

Which of the following is an assumption of the above argument?

(A) An electrical substation fails when the current it handles rises above its maximum capacity.

(B) A modernized electric substation would be able to handle at least three times the amount of current as does a current substation.

(C) Ten years from now, the average household will own a greater number of electronic devices than does the average household today.

(D) Many electrical substations in operation today are old, and have several aged components that could break down, leading to power failures, even if current levels don't increase substantially.

(E) The cost of modernizing the substations is small compared to the average profits of electrical power companies.
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Re: In the next decade, a large percentage of municipalities throughout  [#permalink]

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New post 13 Oct 2015, 15:02
tuanquang269 wrote:
In the next decade, a large percentage of municipalities throughout the country will experience power failures if they do not modernize their electrical substations. The vast majority of substations in the country already handle currents between 60% and 80% of their maximum capacity, and currents are expected to rise, perhaps by as much as a factor of 3 in the next decade, because of population increase and the increased demand from both industry and electronics in individual homes.

Which of the following is an assumption of the above argument?

(A) An electrical substation fails when the current it handles rises above its maximum capacity.

(B) A modernized electric substation would be able to handle at least three times the amount of current as does a current substation.

(C) Ten years from now, the average household will own a greater number of electronic devices than does the average household today.

(D) Many electrical substations in operation today are old, and have several aged components that could break down, leading to power failures, even if current levels don't increase substantially.

(E) The cost of modernizing the substations is small compared to the average profits of electrical power companies.

Topics merged. tuanquang269, please search for a question before starting a new thread.
Thanks,
Mike :-)
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Re: In the next decade, a large percentage of municipalities throughout  [#permalink]

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New post 03 Nov 2017, 14:03
Hi mikemcgarry

Can you please help in explaining A vs B.

Thanks in advance :)
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Re: In the next decade, a large percentage of municipalities throughout  [#permalink]

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New post 03 Nov 2017, 17:08
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Poorvasha wrote:
Hi mikemcgarry

Can you please help in explaining A vs B.

Thanks in advance :)

Dear Poorvasha,

I'm the author of this question and I'm happy to respond. :-)

Here's the prompt:
In the next decade, a large percentage of municipalities throughout the country will experience power failures if they do not modernize their electrical substations. The vast majority of substations in the country already handle currents between 60% and 80% of their maximum capacity, and currents are expected to rise, perhaps by as much as a factor of 3 in the next decade, because of population increase and the increased demand from both industry and electronics in individual homes.

Which of the following is an assumption of the above argument?


Notice that the conclusion is in the the first sentence, and the second sentence is pure evidence. Also, notice that the argument strictly is about what will happen if municipalities "do not modernize their electrical substations." That means, what happens if and when they do "modernize their electrical substations," is, strictly speaking, irrelevant to the argument. The argument is about what will cause the current substations to fail.

We will use the Negation Test.

A) An electrical substation fails when the current it handles rises above its maximum capacity.
Suppose the opposite is true: when current rises about the maximum capacity, the electrical substation are fine and can still function as normal. This would obliterate the arguments. Essentially, the "maximum capacity" ratings would be meaningless, because electrical substation would function and not fail even above these levels. This destroys the argument. Because negating this destroys the argument, this is an assumption.

B) A modernized electric substation would be able to handle at least three times the amount of current as does a current substation.
This is a very tempting wrong answer. Notice, first of all, the argument about what will cause the current substations to fail--that's the focus, the main problem. Also, notice that the argument says that the expect rise will be "perhaps by as much as a factor of 3 in the next decade"--in other words, it's not certain that the electrical current demands will go this high. Whether the modernized electric substations can handle things or fail has no bearing on the current problem--in other words, the current substations are very likely to fail, regardless of what the modernized electric substations can or can't do. Also, we don't know for sure exactly how high the current needs will go. Suppose the modernized electric substations can't handle 3 times the current level, but can handle up to, say, 2.5 times the current level. Well, if current levels rise to a maximum of 2.3 times the current level, then the modernized electric substations would be able to handle that. Thus, this choice can be negated and the argument still works, so this isn't a true assumption.

(A) is right and is the OA. (B) is a very tempting incorrect answer.

Does all this make sense?
Mike :-)
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In the next decade, a large percentage of municipalities throughout  [#permalink]

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New post 04 Nov 2017, 15:18
mikemcgarry wrote:
Poorvasha wrote:
Hi mikemcgarry

Can you please help in explaining A vs B.

Thanks in advance :)

Dear Poorvasha,

I'm the author of this question and I'm happy to respond. :-)

Here's the prompt:
In the next decade, a large percentage of municipalities throughout the country will experience power failures if they do not modernize their electrical substations. The vast majority of substations in the country already handle currents between 60% and 80% of their maximum capacity, and currents are expected to rise, perhaps by as much as a factor of 3 in the next decade, because of population increase and the increased demand from both industry and electronics in individual homes.

Which of the following is an assumption of the above argument?


Notice that the conclusion is in the the first sentence, and the second sentence is pure evidence. Also, notice that the argument strictly is about what will happen if municipalities "do not modernize their electrical substations." That means, what happens if and when they do "modernize their electrical substations," is, strictly speaking, irrelevant to the argument. The argument is about what will cause the current substations to fail.

We will use the Negation Test.

A) An electrical substation fails when the current it handles rises above its maximum capacity.
Suppose the opposite is true: when current rises about the maximum capacity, the electrical substation are fine and can still function as normal. This would obliterate the arguments. Essentially, the "maximum capacity" ratings would be meaningless, because electrical substation would function and not fail even above these levels. This destroys the argument. Because negating this destroys the argument, this is an assumption.

B) A modernized electric substation would be able to handle at least three times the amount of current as does a current substation.
This is a very tempting wrong answer. Notice, first of all, the argument about what will cause the current substations to fail--that's the focus, the main problem. Also, notice that the argument says that the expect rise will be "perhaps by as much as a factor of 3 in the next decade"--in other words, it's not certain that the electrical current demands will go this high. Whether the modernized electric substations can handle things or fail has no bearing on the current problem--in other words, the current substations are very likely to fail, regardless of what the modernized electric substations can or can't do. Also, we don't know for sure exactly how high the current needs will go. Suppose the modernized electric substations can't handle 3 times the current level, but can handle up to, say, 2.5 times the current level. Well, if current levels rise to a maximum of 2.3 times the current level, then the modernized electric substations would be able to handle that. Thus, this choice can be negated and the argument still works, so this isn't a true assumption.

(A) is right and is the OA. (B) is a very tempting incorrect answer.

Does all this make sense?
Mike :-)




Thank you Mike. This was very helpful. :). +1
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Re: In the next decade, a large percentage of municipalities throughout  [#permalink]

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New post 11 Aug 2018, 04:46

Official Explanation


For an assumption, we can use the Negation Test. The credited answer is (A). Suppose (A) is false. Suppose an electrical substation is perfectly capable of handling currents well above its "maximum" capacity (it's unclear what "maximum" would mean in this instance, but we'll overlook that). If electrical substations can handle much more current, then even if current demands increase by a factor of three, that won't be a problem at all. Negating this statement devastates the argument, so this statement must be an assumption.

The argument is about current substations and whether they will fail. Facts about what new modern substations can handle are outside of the scope of this argument. Choice (B) is incorrect.

All we know is that the overall "demand from both industry and electronics in individual homes" will increase. Does this mean more demand from each house, or simply more houses with the same level of demand? And even if each house has more demand, does that mean they have more electronic devices, or simply a small number, each of which demands an intense amount of electrical power? There is too much we don't know, so choice (C) is incorrect.

Choice (D) could strengthen the argument if it were true, but if we negate it, this doesn't destroy argument. It's possible that the current substations are not that old, and would not break down at current levels, but still would fail at increased levels of demand. Since we can negate (D) and the argument could still work, this means (D) is not an assumption. Choice (D) is incorrect.

Choice (E) brings in irrelevant information about cost: how much it would or wouldn't cost to modernize the substations in operation now doesn't affect how likely it is that they will fail. Choice (E) is incorrect.



FAQ: Why is answer choice (B) incorrect? The conclusion says that there will be power failures if municipalities don't modernize their electrical substations. If we negate choice B, the power failures will occur - so (B) seems like a necessary assumption.

Answer choice (B) can definitely be an attractive option. The passage does say that the amount of electric current in power grids might rise by a factor of three in ten years and does say that "a large percentage of municipalities throughout the country will experience power failures if they do not modernize their electrical substations." So it might look like the argument falls apart if modern substations can't handle three times as much power as existing substations.

However, it's important to pay very close attention to the exact phrasing of the argument. Note that the argument says that "currents are expected to rise, perhaps by as much as a factor of 3 in the next decade." So it's actually not completely certain that the amount of current in power grids will be that high in ten years. And as a result, it might not be necessary that modern substation be able to handle three times as much current as existing substations.

Also, note that the argument concludes that a large number of municipalities need to "modernize their electrical substations." This sounds like "build modern substations" but is actually slightly different. One could, for instance, "modernize" an existing substation by modifying it to handle twice as much power as it could previously and still see at least some sort of improvement. So we don't need to install completely new substations to successfully modernize substations.

Basically, then, there is a bit of "wiggle room" in the phrasing of the argument that makes B not an absolutely vital assumption. However, if A ("An electrical substation fails when the current it handles rises above its maximum capacity.") is false, the argument does fail to work. If electrical substation doesn't fail when it goes over capacity, then there's much less of a reason to improve substations to handle the increasing levels of electrical current. So this is by far the best option to pick for this question.
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Re: In the next decade, a large percentage of municipalities throughout  [#permalink]

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New post 12 Aug 2018, 01:01
I think A) can't be the assumption.
If we negate A we get: "An electrical substation doesn't fail when the current it handles rises above its maximum capacity."
so may be substation is able to handle 1.1 times its maximum capacity. But still, we would require the new modern substation because 1.1 times the maximum capacity wouldn't be sufficient to solve the crisis.
I believe that negation of A) doesn't really break the conclusion.
Can anyone help in providing flaw in my reasoning?
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New post 12 Aug 2018, 02:00
marvel3001

Above answers have already covered this part. just reiterating

Conclusion : a large percentage of municipalities throughout the country will experience power failures if they do not modernize their electrical substations.

Just by reading this part from premise one can say -- power failures if not modernize. Now this become a fact.

Suppose an electrical substation is perfectly capable of handling currents well above its "maximum" capacity (it's unclear what "maximum" would mean in this instance, but we'll overlook that). If electrical substations can handle much more current, then even if current demands increase by a factor of three, that won't be a problem at all. Negating this statement devastates the argument, so this statement must be an assumption.

A should be the best answer. Let me know if you have any doubt. I will be happy to help you.
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Re: In the next decade, a large percentage of municipalities throughout &nbs [#permalink] 12 Aug 2018, 02:00
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