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July 16, 2010 A Penton Media Publication Vol. IX, No. 13



CONTENTS
Testing and Certification for Solar Energy Equipment

Construction Employment Falls to 14-Year Low in June

Architecture Billings Index Falls Back After Three Months of Improving Conditions

SolarTech Releases Study and Recommendations for Public Domain Financial Analysis Tools

DOE and DOI Announce Site for Solar Energy Demonstration Projects in the Nevada Desert

Electrical Service Upgrade in California

Electrical Design Services in Alaska

Business Brief

DOE Announces Funding for R&D to Support U.S. Manufacturing of High-Efficiency Solid-State Lighting

Americans Prepared to Embrace New Energy Behaviors to Affect Change

CPSC Recalls Whitco Co. Stadium Light Poles

Call for Papers

2010 BICSI Fall Conference & Exhibition

Code Change Conferences Are Coming


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    Coming Up in EC&M
    Testing and Certification for Solar Energy Equipment
    The Solar America Board for Codes and Standards recently recommended the adoption of quality standards for all solar photovoltaic (PV) modules purchased in the United States. The aim of this initiative is to improve the quality and reliability of the PV technology in the U.S. marketplace. If you have purchased or installed PV modules that you believe were poor quality or have information about the recommended quality standards, send your comments for possible publication in the August issue of EC&M to Staff Writer Beck Ireland at beck.ireland@penton.com or call (913) 967-1806.


    ADVERTISEMENT
    AEMC®'s Clamp-On Ground-Resistance Testers Models 3711 and 3731
    AEMC® Instruments clamp-on ground-resistance testers measure ground rod and small system grid resistance without the use of auxiliary ground rods. Both meters measure ground resistance from 0.01Ω to 1200Ω without disconnecting the rod under test. They also measure ground leakage current from 1mA to 30Arms. The large jaw (1.25 in.) accommodates ground conductors up to 1000MCM. The Model 3731 includes both an alarm function and a memory function, which will store up to 99 field measurements. www.aemc.com


    Around the Circuit
    Construction Employment Falls to 14-Year Low in June
    Seasonally adjusted construction industry employment slipped in June to the lowest total since July 1996 while the industry’s unemployment rate remained at 20.1%, more than double the average for all workers, according to analysis of new federal figures by the Associated General Contractors of America (AGC)."The recession may have ended a year ago for most of the economy, but for construction, job losses and business closures continue every month," says Ken Simonson, chief economist for the construction trade association.

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


    Architecture Billings Index Falls Back After Three Months of Improving Conditions
    After three straight months of improving conditions, the Architecture Billings Index (ABI) fell nearly three points. As a leading economic indicator of construction activity, the ABI reflects the approximate nine- to 12-month lag time between architecture billings and construction spending. The American Institute of Architects (AIA), Washington, D.C., reported the May ABI rating was 45.8, down substantially from a reading of 48.4 the previous month. This score reflects a continued decline in demand for design services (any score above 50 indicates an increase in billings), and comes on the heels of the highest score since January 2008 when revenue at architecture firms headed into recession. The new projects inquiry index was 55.5.

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


    SolarTech Releases Study and Recommendations for Public Domain Financial Analysis Tools
    San Jose, Calif.-based SolarTech recently released a report on publicly available solar financial calculators. The report, "Solar PV Financial Calculators," was sponsored by SolarTech Finance Committee in partnership with Gary J. Sbona Honors Program at San Jose State University (SJSU) School of Business and a California Energy Commission PIER grant.

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


    DOE and DOI Announce Site for Solar Energy Demonstration Projects in the Nevada Desert
    U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Secretary Steven Chu, U.S. Department of Interior (DOI) Secretary Ken Salazar, and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid of Nevada recently announced the site of the new Solar Demonstration Zone to demonstrate cutting-edge solar energy technologies. The Solar Demonstration Zone will be located in the southwest corner of the Nevada Test Site, a former nuclear site, on lands owned by the DOI's Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and administered by DOE's National Nuclear Security Administration. Secretaries Chu and Salazar signed an interagency Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) that will enable the DOE to develop innovative solar energy projects at the Nevada Test Site. These projects will serve as proving grounds for new solar technologies, providing a critical link between DOE's advanced technology development and full-scale commercialization efforts.

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


    ADVERTISEMENT
    As the leading electrical integrator in the United States, Lectrus custom-engineers, builds, and integrates electrical power equipment into robust metal enclosures. We typically team with electrical OEM and generator partners to provide fully integrated, mobile power assemblies that save time, money, and space when compared to conventional site built structures. www.lectrus.com

    Project Watch
    Electrical Service Upgrade in California
    The University of California, Davis, is accepting sealed bids for a lump-sum contract for a tunnel cage wash replacement. Scope of work includes electrical service upgrade, HVAC system, and mechanical piping alterations. A mandatory pre-bid conference is scheduled for 11 a.m. PST on July 20. Sealed bids must be received on or before 11 a.m. PST on August 3. For further information, contact Heather Eckels at (530) 752-6115.


    Electrical Design Services in Alaska
    The Alaska Department of Transportation & Public Facilities (DOT&PF) is seeking design services for improvements to the Kodiak Airport on Kodiak Island, Ala. Bids must include plans, specifications, and estimates for all required design services, including electrical; utilities relocation design; bidding assistance; and post-construction field surveys. The contract may also include construction contract administration services for each project at this airport. The deadline for bids is 4 p.m. AKST on July 23. For more information, visit the DOT&PF website.


    Web Exclusives
    Business Brief
    Richmond, Va.-based Northside Truland recently announced the commencement of operations for the electrical contracting firm formed from the acquisition of Northside Electric Co. and Premier Electric by Truland Service Corp. The firm is being led by VPs Jeff Thornsbury, formerly of Truland Service Corp., and Chuck Guedri, formerly of Northside Electric.

    For more Business Briefs, visit the EC&M website.


    DOE Announces Funding for R&D to Support U.S. Manufacturing of High-Efficiency Solid-State Lighting
    As part of the ongoing effort to reduce national energy consumption through high-efficiency building technologies, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) recently announced the availability of up to $15 million in funding to advance research, development, and market adoption of Solid-State Lighting (SSL) technologies. The department will select two to eight projects that will help accelerate the adoption of high-quality light-emitting diode (LED) and organic LED (OLED) products, which have the potential to significantly reduce energy use and limit carbon emissions.

    To read more about DOE funding for SSL technology, visit the EC&M website.


    Americans Prepared to Embrace New Energy Behaviors to Affect Change
    In a recent national survey commissioned by General Electric and conducted by applied research and consulting firm StrategyOne, 79% of Americans said they would adjust their energy consumption habits and behaviors in the short term to effect change long term, possibly because most of them (72%) believe that how they generate and use energy today could actually harm the economic growth of the country. A full 63% noted they would work with their power company to influence change in consumption habits.

    For more results from this survey, visit the EC&M website.


    Eye on Safety
    CPSC Recalls Whitco Co. Stadium Light Poles
    The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) recently announced a recall of Fort Worth, Texas-based Whitco Co. stadium poles 70 ft tall or higher. This recall to inspect and repair involves Whitco Co. outdoor steel stadium light poles from about 70 ft to 135 ft that weigh from about 1 to 4 tons.

    For additional information, please contact CPSC's hotline at (800) 638-2772 or send an e-mail to info@cpsc.gov. CPSC is still interested in receiving incident or injury reports that are either directly related to this product recall or involve a different hazard with the same product. Visit the CPSC Web site to report an incident.

    For more information on stadium light pole failures and inspection techniques, read the February 2010 article, "The Harder They Fall," on the EC&M website.


    Call for Papers
    Call for Papers
    Interested in sharing your industry expertise? Speaking opportunities are still available on the Electric West 2011 conference program. The conference will take place February 22-24, 2011, at the Long Beach Convention Center in Long Beach, Calif. Contact Florence Torres, conference director, for more information on the event, or submit a proposal online by visiting the Electric West show site.


    Shows & Events
    2010 BICSI Fall Conference & Exhibition
    The 2010 BICSI Fall Conference & Exhibition is scheduled for September 12-16 in Las Vegas. Conference sessions include "40Gbps Over Twisted-Pair Cabling: Planning for a New Ethernet Application," "Data Centers in a Green World—A High Powered Paradox!," and "Leveraging Fiber Network Infrastructure for the Next Generation Network." For more information and to register, visit the BICSI website.


    Code Change Conferences Are Coming
    The 2011 NEC is coming. Will you be ready for the changes? By attending one of EC&M's Code Change Conferences, presented by NEC expert Mike Holt and sponsored by EC&M University, you'll learn everything you need to know about major NEC changes that will impact your work, whether you're an electrician, electrical engineer, electrical designer, plant/facility electrical maintenance person, or electrical inspector. Check out the following conferences for a location and time that's right for you.

    • Atlanta October 11-12, 2010, Crowne Plaza Atlanta Airport Hotel
    • St. Louis October 18-19, Sheraton Westport Hotel Lakeside Chalet
    • Chicago November 1-2, Hyatt Regency Rosemont
    • Seattle November 8-9, Hilton Seattle Airport & Conference Center
    • Philadelphia November 29-30, Hilton Philadelphia City Avenue
    • Boston December 6-7, Venue to be determined
    • Orlando December 13-14, Hyatt Regency Orlando Airport

    If you're a registered professional engineer and attend one of the 2011 NEC Code Change Conferences, you'll be granted professional development hours (PDHs), a requirement for re-licensing. The program is also certified as an approved provider of Code Update training by those states requiring continuing education hours for re-licensing of journeymen, master electricians, and electrical contractors.

    Register now to attend one of the these events. For more details on the conferences and a full program, visit EC&M's website.


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