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July 31, 2009 A Penton Media Publication Vol. VIII, No. 14




CONTENTS
Retrofit Vs. New Construction

NABE Survey Indicates Signs of Slow Recovery Ahead

Report Reveals U.S. Federal Support of Solar Installation Insufficient

NEMA Publishes Alternating Current High-Voltage Circuit Breaker Standard

NECA Announces National Award Winners for 2009

Health Care Renovation in California

Receptacles Upgrade in Utah

Business Brief

Millions Awarded to Six States and One Territory for Energy Programs

Vacancy Rates for Income-Producing Properties Rise

Defense Department Releases Report on Electrocution on U.S. Base in Iraq

IES 2009 Annual Conference

2009 NECA Convention and Trade Show

2009 PCIC Technical Conference


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    Editor's Note
    Retrofit Vs. New Construction
    With projects being cancelled or put on hold at an alarming rate, where do design and construction firms turn? How about the retrofit market? Has your firm recently transformed a building from one use to another, such as turning an indoor mall space into a police station; a factory with an assembly line into a warehouse space; or a small office building into a data center? For the September issue, we'd like to discuss what challenges this type of project presents and how it differs from new construction. If you have a conversion story you'd like to share, please contact Staff Writer Beck Ireland by phone at (913) 967-1806 or e-mail at beck.ireland@penton.com.


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    Around the Circuit
    NABE Survey Indicates Signs of Slow Recovery Ahead
    The July Industry Survey report from the National Association for Business Economics (NABE), Washington, D.C., reveals that companies are preparing for fewer job losses and decreases in capital budgets over the next six to 12 months. Of the 102 NABE members surveyed on business conditions in their firm or industry for second-quarter 2009 results and the near-term outlook, 45% reported that sales had hit their cyclical low in the first half of 2009 or earlier, while 41% put the trough in the second half of 2009. A little more than half of the respondents (56%) expect real GDP to fall by 2% or more this year, and only 6% expect any positive growth. The vast majority of NABE panelists expect their companies’ sales to begin rising in 2010. Only 14% expect that sales will reach their low point in 2010 or later.

    To read more on this story, visit EC&M's Web site.


    Report Reveals U.S. Federal Support of Solar Installation Insufficient
    The United States has become one of the more aggressive nations in promoting alternative energy technologies, according to a new report from Pike Research, Boulder, Colo., but at the federal level, tax credits and depreciation incentives are not currently enough to encourage sustainable demand growth. The report, "U.S. Solar Energy Demand Dynamics," which includes interviews with both end-users and manufacturers, concludes that for sustained growth in the United States, incentives must be increased at the federal level.

    To read more on this story, visit EC&M's Web site.


    NEMA Publishes Alternating Current High-Voltage Circuit Breaker Standard
    NEMA, Rossyln, Va., has published SG 4-2009, "Alternating Current High-Voltage Circuit Breakers." The standard, which NEMA published under license from IEEE, Piscataway, N.J., was revised by the High-Voltage Power Circuit Breaker Voting Classification of the Switchgear Section of NEMA.

    To read more on this story, visit EC&M's Web site.


    NECA Announces National Award Winners for 2009
    The National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA), Bethesda, Md., will present its 2009 National Awards at the 2009 NECA Convention and Trade Show in Seattle, which is scheduled for September 12-15.

    The following awards will be presented:

  • Coggeshall Award: Ben W. Nevers Sr.
  • Comstock Award: Dillard R. "Rod" Borden
  • James H. McGraw Award: Max L. Landon
  • NECA Association Executive Distinguished Service Award: Robert G. LaLumiere
  • NECA Industry Partner Award: National Electrical Distributors Association
  • To read more on this story, visit EC&M's Web site.


    Project Watch
    Health Care Renovation in California
    The University of California, Davis Medical Center, Sacramento, Calif., is seeking bids from subcontractors for electrical work involved in the renovation of an interventional radiology procedure room and adjacent control room to facilitate the installation of upgraded equipment. A non-mandatory prequalification conference will be conducted on August 4 at 10 a.m. PST. Questions or requests for clarification or interpretation of the prequalification documents must be submitted in writing and received no later than August 7 at 4 p.m. PST. Questions may be e-mailed to Debra Bangerter, project manager, Facilities Design & Construction, UC Davis Medical Center at (916) 734-7024. Prequalification documents are due August 14 at 5 p.m. PST.


    Receptacles Upgrade in Utah
    Grand County, Utah, is accepting sealed bids for an electrical receptacles upgrade on the South Stall Barns at the Old Spanish Trail Arena (OSTA), Moab, Utah. All sealed bids must be turned in to the clerk/auditor’s office by 5 p.m. on August 23. For more information, contact Terry DeLay, OSTA manager, at (435) 259-6226.


    Web Exclusives
    Business Brief
    Ascent Solar Technologies, Thornton, Colo., has achieved its initial target module-efficiency goal of 10% for its flexible copper, indium, gallium, selenide (CIGS) monolithically integrated modules. The U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE) National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) has independently verified that the modules measured as high as 10.4% in conversion efficiency.

    For more Business Briefs, visit the EC&M Web site.


    Millions Awarded to Six States and One Territory for Energy Programs
    U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Secretary Steven Chu recently announced more than $162 million in funding from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act to support energy-efficiency and renewable energy projects in Colorado, Delaware, Indiana, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, and Puerto Rico. Under DOE's State Energy Program, states and territories have proposed statewide plans that prioritize energy savings, create or retain jobs, increase the use of renewable energy, and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

    For more on the programs, visit the EC&M Web site.


    Vacancy Rates for Income-Producing Properties Rise
    According to recent data from New York-based real estate research company Reis Inc., the average lease rate at shopping centers (defined as open-air centers and big box centers as opposed to enclosed malls) in the top 77 U.S. markets declined in the April-June period for the fifth consecutive quarter.

    For more on the rise in these U.S. vacancy rates, visit the EC&M Web site.


    Eye on Safety
    Defense Department Releases Report on Electrocution on U.S. Base in Iraq
    In a report on the 2008 electrocution of Green Beret, Staff Sgt. Ryan D. Maseth, the U.S. Department of Defense's inspector general says military contractor KBR, Houston, failed to ground equipment during installation or report improperly grounded equipment during routine maintenance. The report also states that KBR did not have standard operating procedures for the technical inspection of facilities. However, it also says military commanders and important decision makers failed to ensure that renovations were properly performed and did not address the maintenance issue. According to the findings, “multiple systems and organizations” failed and exposed Sergeant Maseth to “unacceptable risk.” Sergeant Maseth, 24, was electrocuted while showering when he came in contact with water pipes that had become energized because of the failure of a water pump that had not been grounded.

    To download the full report, visit the Defense Department Office of Inspector General's Web site.


    Call for Papers
    IES 2009 Annual Conference
    The Illuminating Engineering Society (IES) is soliciting papers for its 2009 Annual Conference, "Realizing the Future -- Research to Application," which will take place from November 15-17 in Seattle. Suggested topics include early results of research work or studies, new technologies, novel lighting design solutions or product applications, and concepts for improving measurement or the evaluation of lighting systems. The deadline for submitting papers is August 24. For more information and to submit your proposal, visit the call for papers Web site.


    Shows & Events
    2009 NECA Convention and Trade Show
    The National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA) will present its 2009 Convention and Trade Show from September 12-15 in Seattle. Topics to be presented at the convention include changes to NFPA 70E 2009, proposed changes for 2011 NEC, paperless estimating, federal and state methods for green building, and a market outlook. For more information and to register, visit the convention Web site.


    2009 PCIC Technical Conference
    The Industry Applications Society (IAS) of IEEE has scheduled its 56th Petroleum and Chemical Industry Committee (PCIC) Technical Conference for September 14-16 in Anaheim, Calif. Technical sessions include "Energy Transfers Within Arcing Faults in Electrical Equipment," "Revisions to IEEE 1068: Standard for the Repair of AC Motors in the Process Industries," and "The Effects of System Voltage on Electric Machine Design." For more information and to register, visit the IEEE Web site.

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