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GET ECN ON THE GO ECN Online is regularly updated with breaking news stories from around the industry, the most innovative product releases, and the latest contracts happening within the sector. On top of this, there’s a wealth of useful information to be found on ECN Online, from backdated issues of the printed magazine, to whitepapers, events, competitions and videos.

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CONTENTS… Regulars


4 Editorial

24 Charity begins at home

Wrapping up 2017.

ECN talks to Tessa Ogle about the Electrical Industries Charity – where it came from, what it’s doing now to help those in need, and where it’s headed.

6 Industry News Keeping you informed on the very latest.

Special features: Tools & Workwear 36

Richard Rands, UK product manager – fastenings and fixings at HellermannTyton UK, explores how design engineers and consultants can facilitate improved safety, ease of installation, and greater design flexibility when specifying heavy duty fixings for harsh industrial environments.


David Clark, managing director of Snickers Workwear, part of the Hultafors Group UK, discusses the benefits of wearable, hightech fabrics for wellbeing and productivity on-site.

28 Heating up


Power tool technology is tougher, faster and more advanced than ever before thanks to powerful Li-ion battery technology combined with brushless motors, explains Simon Miller, brand and product manager for Hitachi Power Tools.


Graham Munro, technical support team leader of hole saw manufacturer, Starrett, explains how making the most of your hole saw can help you stand out from the crowd.


Jason Koffler from Critical Power Supplies explains why uninterruptible power supply systems are vital for all types of businesses.

Mark Atkinson of Mirrorstone Heating Panels explains the benefits of infrared heating panels over other types of conventional heating.

10 Contract News Who’s doing what.

14 Training Apprenticeships and training abound.

16 Key Issue Vicki Leslie, client relationship manager at ECIS, discusses the benefits to contractors of offering wellbeing-based benefits for employees.

30 Trip the light fantastic

18 Project Focus Dimplex explains how Portsmouth City Council has used modern heating solutions as part of a sustainable retrofit of social housing.

20 Competition Win £418 worth of contractor’s kit from Dimplex Quantum.

51 Company Showcase The very latest from industry innovators.

With utility bills rising amidst growing pressure to reduce carbon emissions, LED technology is growing in popularity. John Murphy, managing director at e3Light, outlines the key purchasing criteria and the importance of effective lighting control and energy monitoring.

33 Mind the gap Could the current UK skills gap be an opportunity in disguise for the trade industry? James Ellis, manager at QVS Direct, takes a look at the problems facing the sector.

UPS & Power Distribution 44

Leo Craig, general manager at Riello UPS, explains how uninterruptible power supply (UPS) can offer a cost-effective solution to the problems that might be seen in our smart industrial and manufacturing environments.


Is the UPS industry making the most of apprentices? Kevin Wilson, managing director of Constant Power Services, discusses the importance of seasoned tradespeople imparting their expertise to the next generation.

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s the end of the year swiftly approaches, I’m still amazed at how quickly 2017 has come and gone. The last few months as editor of ECN have shot by, and it has so far been a fantastic experience. I’ve had the pleasure to meet a wide variety of experts from within the industry, and have had the opportunity to witness a number of new products and innovations that are set to bring big changes to the sector – most recently at LuxLive, where I was introduced to a wealth of novel smart solutions and Li-Fi technology, which sees lighting as a means of wireless networking. January brings with it a fresh start, and one of the important topics we explore in this issue should be at the forefront of 2018 – the current skills gap and how training and apprenticeships could be used to

Kayleigh Hutchins, Editor

Stuart Mackenzie has been announced as the new president of the Electrical Industries Charity. Stewart Gregory will also join Stuart as the charity’s vice president.

resolve these problems. How can we make the most of not only the younger generation, but the skills that we already have aplenty in the industry? This issue also turns its focus to tools and workwear, where we look at how making the most of high-tech clothing and equipment can improve on-site efficiency. We also discuss how important the right power management and UPS solutions are to all kinds of businesses. I would wholeheartedly like to thank all of our advertisers, contributors, readers and anyone who has supported ECN over the last year and helped us to make the publication what it is. We’ve got big plans for 2018, and as we move into the new year, please don’t forget to keep sending me news, opinions, articles and any ideas you’d like to see in the magazine over the coming year. Finally, I’d like to wish you all a merry Christmas and a happy, healthy and successful New Year. See you in 2018!

The ECA has announced two new appointments to its executive team of directors. Andrew Eldred has joined as the new director of employment and skills, while Steve Martin has been promoted to director of technical. Power distribution specialist ide systems has appointed a new operations director, Wayne Woodhead. Wayne wants to encourage more businesses to make the shift to IoT-enabled smart powering of power distribution. Electrical services specialist J S Wright has appointed its first maintenance manager. Scott Holdsworth will head up a new maintenance department providing scheduled servicing and maintenance for all plant and systems installed by the company. Former distribution sales manager, Dan Walker, will take up the new role of general sales manager at Cliff Electronics, manufacturer of industrial and audio connectors, electrical test leads and reels. He will continue to manage the key relationships with the company’s global distribution partners and develop new international markets. Scolmore Group has announced two new appointments to its marketing team. Katie Plumstead joins the company as marketing assistant and will work with the marketing director to develop and implement marketing campaigns. Chris Mair joins the design division of the marketing department as graphics and motion designer


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INDUSTRY NEWS SCOLMORE TAKES PART IN DIY SOS Scolmore wiring accessories and lighting products have been used in the building of a new home for a veteran as part of the BBC show, DIY SOS. In the episode shown on Wednesday November 8, the DIY SOS team returned to Veterans Street in Manchester, where two years ago, with the help of Prince William and Prince Harry, they launched an ambitious project to transform a derelict street into a vibrant community for veterans and local people. On this occasion, the team built the final home for decorated former soldier and single dad Simon Flores, who lost a foot in a roadside bomb attack during a patrol in Iraq. “Scolmore Group was very proud to be able to play a small part in helping create a new home for Simon and his three young children, by supplying a selection of wiring accessories and lighting products to be fitted in the specially adapted home that will give the family the fresh start they need,” commented Scolmore Group marketing director, Marie Parry.



A new initiative from the Joint Industry Board (JIB) is to be launched to help ensure the health of 12,000 operatives across the electrical industry. From January 2018, JIB members can receive Occupational Health Assessment (OHA) funding for all employees covered by the JIB Benefits Scheme. Each eligible operative can receive a funded OHA every three years. To carry out the assessments, the JIB has partnered with four leading occupational health specialists – Clarity Healthcare, Express Medicals, RPS Group and Sarsen Health – to allow JIB members to select the most convenient provider and location. The assessments will cover 10 fitness for work and health aspects, such as respiratory function, hearing and blood pressure. For the employer, the assessment helps to provide an indication of what steps need to be taken on-site to improve the health and wellbeing of employees. For an individual, the assessment provides an early indicator of potential ill health so that corrective action can be taken. “The introduction of Occupational Health Assessment funding into the JIB Benefits Scheme is a major step for the industry. It will not only support JIB members in meeting their employment obligations, but also help them to protect the health and wellbeing of their staff – their most valuable resource,” said Steve Brawley, JIB chief executive. To find out more visit www.jib.


Specialist supplier AEI Cables has added a further service to its portfolio to more closely collaborate with building designers. The electrical software provided through Amtech means designers can adapt their specifications more easily for each specific project. Stuart Dover, commercial manager at AEI Cables, said, “We wanted to further understand the needs of the building designer, and to that end we’ve committed to more sophisticated software which will help them. “It means we can work closely with them to ensure our diverse range of products are used for maximum benefit for our customers worldwide.” The software allows designers – including consultants and contractors – to create and manage specification documents using a comprehensive library of the latest relevant technical guidance to provide a fully robust building construction specification. AEI Cables’ products are supplied with approvals from independent bodies including BASEC and LPCB covering design, manufacture and supply.

A report by SMS platform Textlocal, The State of SMS, has revealed how the utility sector is set to benefit from advances in mobile marketing as the number of active mobile phones in circulation tops 80 million for the first time. According to the whitepaper, the sector is expected to see a 47% increase in customers opting to receive text messages from their preferred suppliers by the end of 2020, presenting significant business opportunities. The whitepaper reveals that 37.2 million consumers have already opted to receive SMS and mobile communications from organisations. Within the utility sector, more than 11.9 million customers have opted in to receive texts on service updates, billing notices or notification of service issues, with this figure expected to rise to 17.5 million by 2020. Organisations texting their customers directly is steadily increasing and becoming more mainstream, with some of the most common reasons being; delivery updates (67%), order confirmations (64%) and personalised vouchers or offers (49%). This trend is expected to grow in the utility sector. The report says that 98% of branded or business-related texts are opened by mobile users, with 90% being read within three minutes of receiving them. The report goes on to explain that 23.5 million people will respond to a business text message in 2017, with the most popular uses including marketing offers or confirmation of delivery schedules. The whitepaper can be found at

GENERIC EMAIL ADDRESSES COULD LOSE BUSINESS, SAYS LEASEVAN LeaseVan is warning tradespeople that they could be missing out on valuable business by using a generic email address such as Hotmail or Gmail on their vans which could be putting potential customers off. Thousands of small British businesses are still using generic web-based email accounts on their liveried vans because they are unaware how easy it is to set up a web domain, says LeaseVan. The van leasing company has warned that the use of such generic email addresses on the sides and backs of vans can create a perception that the tradesman isn’t a serious business person. At worst, it could give the impression of a rogue trader who might not be around until the end of the job, said LeaseVan. According to the company, a recent survey found that 78% of people trusted company-branded emails more than free email addresses and two thirds, 67%, also said they were more likely to remember a company branded email. “No one needs to be driving around with a generic email address on their van in 2017. Yet many tradesmen wrongly believe setting up their own domain is costly and time consuming,” said LeaseVan’s Tim Alcock. “We want to bust that myth once and for all because the reality is it costs a few quid and they could be missing out on scores of jobs every month because some punters are put off by a Hotmail or Gmail address.”

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INDUSTRY NEWS RETENTIONS ‘MUST BE HELD IN TRUST’, SAY ECA AND BESA Any cash held as retentions by construction clients and major contractors ‘must be held in trust at the nearest opportunity’, the BESA and ECA have advised the government. This proposed ‘Australian-style’ system would mean cash being held cyclically, in a similar manner to deposits in the private housing rental market. Looking ahead, the two engineering services trade bodies want to see cash retentions completely phased out, in order to protect suppliers from poor retention practices. At present, large businesses retain the cash in their own bank accounts, for use in a manner of their choosing. The comments follow the release in October of an independent review of the current state-of-play on retentions by consultancy Pye Tait, and the announcement of a government consultation on the issue. In the government response, they recognise that “some payment practices prevalent in construction are a barrier to investment, productivity improvements and growth”. ECA director of business Paul Reeve and BESA director of commercial and legal Rob Driscoll jointly commented, “While the significant and unacceptable problems of cash retentions in construction have been identified by independent research, and even acknowledged by government, the government has chosen to consult once again on the extent of the problem and what to do about it. “The BESA and the ECA will continue to call on the government to ensure that all cash retentions are held in trust as soon as possible, and to phase them out entirely by the early 2020s. For the good of the economy, and the supply chain, we need a firm commitment to remove the retentions issue.” According to BESA and the ECA, some £10.5 billion of the overall construction sector turnover of £220 billion is held in retentions. An estimated £7.8 billion has been unpaid across the construction sector over the last three years. Some £40 million of retentions is lost by small firms each year due to upstream insolvencies. Banks do not consider unprotected retentions as security for lending purposes to SMEs. The ECA and the BESA will both be responding to the government consultation on retentions, which will run until 19 January 2018.

SCREWFIX WINNER SEES BUSINESS BOOM Lluis Dalmau has seen his business boom after winningth Screwfix’s Britain’s Top Tradesperson competition. The contest, organised by Screwfix, saw thousands of candidates enter. Lluis, owner of LCD Heating and Gas Services, took the crown to be named Britain’s best earlier this year. Lluis also won a new Toyota Hilux to help support his business and expand his clientele. “It is an absolute dream come true being crowned Britain’s Top Tradesperson by Screwfix. I was so shocked when they told me I had won,” said Lluis. “My business has always been my pride and joy, so to have been awarded this title means so much to me. Not only was it a dream come true, but since the competition, my customer base has grown more than I could ever imagine, thanks to Screwfix. The award has not only given me the recognition, but also the confidence to take my business to the next level. “I am so excited to receive this prize – not only will the vehicle be more reliable, but it will provide a professional impression when I arrive at a job.”

TRADE CHIMP APP OFFERS SUPPORT FOR SMALL BUSINESSES A new tech trades services company, Trade Chimp, is offering operational and administrative support to tradespeople and small trade businesses, including electrical contractors and electricians, with up to 10 staff. The Trade Chimp job management software package can be downloaded as an app on a smartphone, tablet, laptop or desktop. The software and app, designed by Arc Studios at Hull’s digital centre, C4DI, aims to reduce trade companies’ dependence on paper time sheets, diaries, and spreadsheets, and help deal with payroll and invoices. Trade Chimp also aims to empower tradespeople with access to data about their suppliers, jobs, and customers through a monthly business intelligence report. Trade Chimp is designed to be particularly suitable for businesses that pay their staff or contractors based on the time they have worked, usually by an hourly rate or fixed salary, although it can also work if businesses pay staff or contractors by fixed prices for agreed pieces of work. “Trade Chimp is, quite simply, all about helping tradespeople across the country to fully develop the potential of their businesses,” said Trade Chimp managing director, Sam Overment, a former electrical contractor. “Having run my own electrical contracting business, I know first-hand how much time and energy can go into quoting for work, sourcing suppliers and parts and tools, let alone completing the work.”

AICO LONDON’S FIRE SAFETY EVENT INFORMS SOCIAL LANDLORDS A recent Aico fire safety event in London has been attended by the capital’s social housing landlords. Held at the Kia Oval cricket stadium in London, the invitation-only event was attended by 75 people from London-based housing associations and local authorities. Visitors received a one-hour CPD presentation on the latest domestic fire safety standards and regulations, along with practical advice on alarm selection and siting within properties. The main presentation was followed by three further sessions, looking at Aico’s range of technology, including AudioLINK data extraction, RadioLINK+ and future innovations; how and why to wirelessly interconnect alarms to third party safety devices such as telecare/warden call devices, BS5839 Part 1 panel systems and sprinkler systems; and a presentation from Jim MacDonald, lead officer specialist services, communities/housing services at Fife Council on how the council has benefited from integrating its fire alarms with warden call devices in its sheltered accommodation and HMOs. These sessions were divided between the Oval’s conference room and two of Aico’s Mobile Training and Demonstration Units, which were on-site for the day.

DIRECTORS FINED FOR MISUSE OF NICEIC LOGO Two directors of a Welsh company that falsely claimed to be NICEIC registered have been fined more than £12,000. Jason Roberts and Carl Jenkins of Abertillery had used the NICEIC logo without permission. Both men had been directors of A Grace Electrics Ltd when they breached the Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading Regulations 2008 Act. They pleaded guilty to using the logo on a vehicle and an advertisement following a joint investigation by NICEIC and the Blaenau Gwent and Torfaen trading standards team. The firm had originally been members of NICEIC but had their registration cancelled after ignoring a consumer complaint. Jenkins also pleaded guilty to not using reasonable care or skill during their work, and for not issuing cancellation rights to their customers.

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INDUSTRY NEWS UPONOR GAINS CIBSE ACCREDITATION FOR WATER HYGIENE CPD Uponor, provider of hygienic drinking water delivery and plumbing infrastructure, has successfully achieved Chartered Institute of Building Services Engineers (CIBSE) accreditation for the company’s ‘Hygienic Water Supply Systems’ CPD presentation. Designed to highlight the importance of hygienic water supply systems and discuss the steps that should be taken to overcome the risk of Legionella, the CPD begins by defining wholesome tap water and highlighting the Legionella risk created by stagnant water in the system and inadequate water temperatures. The CPD discusses guidance and legislation, drawing attention to industry sources such as HSE, CIBSE, HTM04-01 and EN806 to aid engineers and installers on designing pipework networks to reduce risk, and for building operators and facilities managers on automated smart-flushing systems to ensure stagnant water cannot become a breeding ground for Legionella. The CIBSE-approved CPD discusses the pros and cons of tee, serial and loop plumbing network designs, highlighting the benefits of loop configurations in avoiding dead ends and dead legs on the network. It also discusses the importance of the pipe material in avoiding calcification and microfilms to ensure Legionella cannot collect on the internal surface of the pipe. Following CIBSE approval of the CPD, Uponor is planning a programme of more than 60 CPD events over the next year for building services engineers, architects and installers.

46% OF BRITS HAVE REDUCED ENERGY BILLS WITH SMART HEATING, SAYS REICHELT New research by electrical retailer reichelt elektronik, has revealed that UK adults who currently use smart home heating solutions have saved on their heating costs as a result. According to the research, only 8% of UK adults use complete smart home systems for their heating, but they have already seen the benefits of doing so. The research says that 47% have improved their comfort at home, 46% have reduced their heating costs, 23% have improved their wellbeing and 19% have been able to reduce mould in their home. Despite the benefits of either using smart systems or smart thermostats, the majority of participants (86%) are still not planning to make the switch to smart heating. The top three barriers cited for this include high costs for product and installation, not being sure if the investment is worthwhile and not having the appropriate equipment, compatible radiators or necessary IT equipment. The research indicates that the top factor that would persuade Brits to invest in smart heating is if they knew heating costs could be reduced. A secondary factor is improved comfort – being able to control heating from a distance for example, which is priority for 18-24 year olds. Additionally, 37% of Brits would like to see further promotion and investment from the government into smarter heating solutions.

BCIA 2018 AWARDS OPEN Entries are now open for the Building Controls Industry Association (BCIA) 2018 Awards. The BCIA 2018 Awards will celebrate industry achievements for the 12th consecutive year and will recognise innovation, product development, project delivery and excellent training in the sector. There are eight categories to enter. They include: Energy Management, Best Service and Maintenance Provider, Engineer of the Year; Technical Innovation of the Year – Products, Contribution to Training, Young Engineer of the Year and Technical Innovation of the Year – Projects, Independent Building Controls and BEMS Installer. Entries close on Friday 26 January 2018.

CRUCIAL SUPPORT FOR EMPLOYEES AND THEIR FAMILIES The Electrical Industries Charity has launched the Employee and Family Support Programme which aims to help employees and their families with challenging life situations in their time of need. According to the charity, many people are struggling with a wide range of issues in the electrical sector. This could be due to caring for a loved one, going through a relationship breakdown, having financial problems or dealing with mental health issues. Few of these people feel comfortable sharing their problems, however, and therefore continue to suffer on their own in silence, says the charity. The Electrical Industries Charity has launched the Employee and Family Support Programme to help people in the electrical and energy sectors to look forward to the future. The charity’s programme offers employees and their families support through its services, including a confidential helpline and free telephone counselling sessions, debt solutions, financial assistance and grants, legal advice and career advice. “In our industry, there are many people who are struggling with a wide range of challenging situations which are restricting them from having the fulfilling life they deserve,” said managing director, Tessa Ogle. “This is why we have launched our Employee and Family Support Programme to provide support and assist them in each step of the way towards creating a better future for themselves.”

IN BRIEF… Electrotechnical and engineering services trade body ECA has moved into a new ‘industry hub’ near Tower Bridge, London. Rotherwick House has been comprehensively renovated to deliver a collaborative and modern working environment for ECA and its industry partners. Manufacturer of power tools and life-science equipment, Hitachi Koki Co. has announced that the company will change its corporate name to Koki Holdings Co., effective June 1 2018, and will rebrand its full line of power tools known as HITACHI and/ or Hitachi Koki under the new HiKOKI. CamdenBoss, provider of interconnection and enclosures, has announced that its CFTBN range of fuse holders has become one of the first to meet the latest fire safety standard EN 60127-6 that came into force in October 2017. University of Kent students George Coley, Josh Katembela and Samuel Sherring won first place in the Project SHOUT competition, which aims to raise awareness of carbon monoxide (CO). Alongside winning £1,500 in prize money, George and his teammates had their film premiered at an event in London.

Average net circulation Ist January 2016 to 30th June 2016:

10,016 ECN charity of choice The editor and publishers do not necessarily agree with the views expressed by contributors nor do they accept responsibility for any errors in the transmission of the subject matter in this publication. In all matters the editor’s decision is final. Editorial contributions to ECN are welcomed, and the editor reserves the right to alter or abridge text prior to the publication. Published monthly by All Things Media Ltd., Suite 14, 6-8 Revenge Road, Lordswood, Kent ME5 8UD Tel: 01634 673163 Fax: 01634 673173 Overseas Subscription Rates: Europe £60.00; Rest of World £70.00 Copyright © 2017, All rights reserved Printed by Pensord, Tram Road, Pontilanfraith, Blackwood, NP12 2YA

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CONTRACT NEWS VEOLIA DELIVERS CARBON SAVINGS TO UNIVERSITY OF EAST ANGLIA Global resource management group, Veolia, through its subsidiary Veolia CHP UK Limited, is helping the University of East Anglia (UEA) to reduce carbon emissions through a new 10year combined heat and power contract. This will provide low carbon electricity and heat to the UEA and see two of the latest generation of Veolia combined heat and power (CHP) units installed to deliver secure energy supplies. The 4MWe CHP installation will help the university reduce campus carbon emissions by 35% by 2020, against a 1990 baseline and support their ‘Sustainable Ways’ vision where the efficient use of resources and self-generated energy support low carbon goals. Designed to produce around 30GWh of electricity a year and maximise heat efficiency, the CHP will cut annual

carbon emissions by a further 4,000 tonnes. The system is based around two of the latest generation of Veolia 2MWe units which will deliver low carbon heat and electricity to the 320-acre campus through the district heating and cooling network and electrical infrastructure. This maintains the energy supply for the buildings that support the academic and research activities for over 18,800 students and staff. This is the final part of a three-year project to update energy facilities at UEA. Along with new, more energy efficient boilers and pumps, thermal stores have been installed to capture excess heat from the CHPs and use it later in the day when needed. These tanks hold 200,000l of water, an efficient way to store the excess heat generated by the CHP engines.

ENERGY EFFICIENT LED STREET LIGHTS INSTALLED IN MANCHESTER Amey has begun work installing 56,000 new LED luminaires to street lights in a three-year contract for Manchester City Council. The project will see existing traditional discharge lamps replaced with the latest high technology LED lights which will deliver significant energy and carbon emission reductions whilst providing more robust in-light service and improved colour recognition qualities with significantly reduced maintenance activities and running costs. The LED lighting solutions are aimed to be over 60% more energy-efficient. The LED project will contribute to achieving the City Council’s legal Carbon Reduction Commitment (CRC) targets. Following completion of the LED rollout, over 7,000 tonnes of carbon emissions each year will be cut, and the council will benefit from energy running cost savings of over £2 million a year. The improved colour quality of the LED lights will offer greater comfort to pedestrians and road users of Manchester: improved visibility, colour recognition and will generally promote safer streets and the wellbeing of Manchester communities. The LED lighting will be complemented by a remote monitoring and control system with the ability for the city to better manage and control its infrastructure, allowing the council to take up smart city opportunities in the future. The lighting control system will provide flexibility for adaptive lighting techniques to optimise energy usage and to respond to specific circumstances and situations where varying light levels can assist public safety and disbursement and aid flow traffic changes in the event of emergencies.


J S WRIGHT SECURES £1.4M AFFORDABLE HOUSING SCHEME CONTRACT Building services provider J S Wright has secured a contract worth almost £1.4 million for a major new affordable housing development in South East London. The mechanical and electrical design and build specialist is to provide energy efficient heating and ventilation for all 66 homes at The Reach on Battery Road in West Thamesmead. The Peabody scheme being built on unused land at Thames Reach will comprise a mix of one, two and three-bedroom apartments, a communal garden, and a commercial unit. Developer Hill has commissioned J S Wright to design and install a communal heat network to provide energy efficient combined heat and power for the four to six-storey development. The network will incorporate a centralised energy centre and distribution pipework to all apartments, each of which will have radiators, and will be built to Fair Heat specification and in accordance with the principles of the Chartered Institution of Building Services Engineers (CIBSE) Heat Networks Code of Practice. J S Wright, as accredited CIBSE Heat Network consultants, will supply and fit heat interface units within each apartment to act as a bridge to deliver low pressure instant domestic hot water on demand as well as hot water to the radiators at low return temperatures. The company will also install a cold water booster set and tank room to boost cold water distribution to all the apartments, and a mechanical ventilation heat recovery system that will use the outgoing air from each property to heat incoming fresh air. The brief also includes installing sanitary ware and above-ground drainage, as well as building management controls including M-Bus wiring for metering each apartment’s energy use. J S Wright will start work on site in June 2018 with completion scheduled for February 2019.

Luceco has supplied specialist LED floodlighting to Bristol Fruit Market. Based in St. Phillips Marsh, buyers from local businesses have access to the finest fresh produce from around the globe. The installation was carried out by commercial and industrial electrical contractors, Quipex, based in Bristol. Luceco’s Tristan Brady said, “the client required enhanced lighting levels but looked to reduce running costs. We replaced old 2kW floods with environmentally friendly and energy efficient 1kW LED fittings.” Stadium from Luceco is a high output floodlight designed for large outside areas such as MUGA (multi use games areas) applications, sports grounds and logistic yards such as Bristol Fruit Market. Stadium 500W offers an energy efficient alternative to a 1,000W metal halide floodlight. Stadium 1,000W is the equivalent to a 2,000W metal halide flood, both providing 100% instant light output with no warm up time. Planning and lighting design are essential when using high output floodlights, particularly to prevent light pollution and ensure shadow free lighting. Bristol Fruit Market now enjoys cost effective, energy efficient and maintenance free LED lighting to help ensure the smooth operation of the market place.

10 | December 2017

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CONTRACT NEWS CONNECTED LIGHT DELIVERS EFFICIENCY AT BRISTOL SPORTS STORE Integral UK fulfilled an overall contractor role during the fit-out of a new sports store located at Bristol’s Ashton Gate Stadium, and engaged the services of Connected Light to supply specialist lighting products and service. The store, which is the home venue of Bristol City F.C. and Bristol Rugby, is open six days a week and at certain times around match events, and offers fans the opportunity to purchase a wide variety of shirts, souvenirs and other current sporting gear related to the aforementioned clubs, as well as Bristol City WFC, Bristol Flyers and Bristol Sport Racing. Working to a demanding schedule before the new store’s opening date, Connected Light and Integral UK managed to provide a contemporary LED-based lighting solution for each department and area. A stipulation for ‘efficiency and performance’ meant that LED was the only lighting type

that was ever in the frame, but the benefits of implementing these latest-generation systems also include long-term reductions in maintenance and support costs. Working in close conjunction with Integral UK, Connected Light drew from its contemporary range to ensure that the right fittings were provided to facilitate the lux levels required in different areas of the store. The end result is a sports outlet built for performance in every aspect of its technological infrastructure.

The feedback from the store operators and personnel has been “extremely positive,” said Connected Light director Matt Holway, with a response that the outlet is “bright and appealingly lit, and that through the selection of different LEDs it has been possible to give different parts of the store contrasting emphases. Collectively it all works really well, and that is due to the products and services we have provided, as well as the great collaboration with Integral UK.”

UNITRUNK HELPS CORAL REEF REFURB GO SWIMMINGLY Refurbishment of Bracknell Forest Council’s ‘Coral Reef’ Waterworld in Bracknell has been completed using both plastic-coated and stainless steel trunking from Unitrunk’s cable management range. The transformation project includes a complete remodelling of the existing centre along with a new pool roof and construction of a new flume tower with five flume rides. All the existing electrical services were stripped from the building and the cable management infrastructure was reinstalled throughout. The existing switch panel was retained and new mains cabling was installed in the undercroft above the pool area, using Unitrunk’s three-compartment plastic trunking to protect the cables from the humidity and chlorine in the pool area. The new cabling infrastructure had to be installed while the pool remained full of water and at operational temperature, despite not being in use, without causing any interruption to basement plant services. Unitrunk’s 100x50mm plastic trunking was also used at low level for small power in the ‘changing village’ and suspended from the vaulted ceiling in the pool area to contain the cabling for the lighting system. In the flume tower, Unitrunk’s two-compartment stainless steel trunking system was used as the main riser for power, pump, lighting and fire alarm cabling, while Unitrunk’s pre-galvanised cable tray with plastic coating was used for security and data cabling in the changing village and coral spa.

CP ELECTRONICS ENABLES COST REDUCTION IN HOSPITAL REFURB Lighting controls from CP Electronics are playing an important part in reducing the energyrelated expenditure for the NHS during a refurbishment of Liverpool Heart and Chest hospital’s outpatient unit. One of the main challenges of the project focused around the design of the outpatient’s department, which features three separate hallways intersecting to form a crossroads leading to the hospital waiting room. The difficulty was that lighting in each of the hallways was run on individual circuits. The consultant on the project wanted to address this by running them on the same circuit, since this would allow them to be switched on and off simultaneously, whichever entrance was used. Wireless PIR presence detectors from CP Electronics were recommended as a means of reducing the amount of wiring needed on the project. Only power supplies for the wireless PIR presence detectors were needed, resulting in a reduced installation time. Using wireless PIRs saved a minimum of 25% on total labour costs. Presence detectors help to avoid unnecessary energy consumption by activating the luminaires only as and when required. In addition, DALI dimmer switches and Vitesse Modular are being used in the reception to control the linear light fittings in the waiting area, which can be activated manually or configured to a specific pre-set scene. This means that users can activate the chosen scene without having to dim up and down. In either case, the plug and play design of the solutions specified proved decisive in ensuring a smoother installation, at a reduced cost.

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CONTRACT NEWS FLEXICON PROVIDES CABLE PROTECTION SOLUTION FOR UK’S LARGEST PRISON Flexicon worked with Precast Concrete Structures to deliver cable protection and containment within prefabricated concrete walls and ceilings during the construction of the new prison in Wrexham County Borough. HM Prison Berwyn, opened in February 2017, is the largest in the UK housing up to 2,106 category C prisoners in almost 1,500 cells. The Design for Manufacture and Assembly Project saw the walls and ceiling for each prison cell constructed off-site complete with fully contained services and then delivered for assembly.

“Providing a precast concrete wall or ceiling that can be simply slotted into place and then connected to all services involves a lot of planning and co-ordination throughout the supply chain,” said Paul Smith, technical manager for precast concrete structures. “For the electrical services we specified flexible conduit rather than rigid stainless steel because it is easier to fit it through the rebar steel cage, particularly when some of the conduit runs could be 3.5m long.” He continued, “Each conduit terminates into a junction box, which is also contained within the structure of the

wall. Both ends are then sealed before the concrete is poured to form the structure. The complete sections were then delivered to site for assembly. Precast Concrete Structures used Flexicon’s FPP flexible conduit, which being resistant to acid and alkaline environments is ideal for applications buried in concrete. The FPA fittings used are tamper proof requiring a tool to remove them, have a high tensile strength, an IP rating of IP66 and are fast and easy to fit with a one-piece construction making it less likely that parts will be dropped or lost on-site.”



Nualight, together with resellers Cross Group, have helped one of the UK’s leading fresh produce providers, Total Produce, to update their lighting and reduce their energy costs, creating a bright, safe and comfortable working environment. Total Produce trades out of 21 locations across the UK in addition to over 100 international facilities. Joe Conway, of the Cross Group, outlined the project, “This recent project in Spalding consists of an LED upgrade in the extension to the existing depot and LED throughout the new refrigerated process and storage areas.” “There was an ideal Nualight solution for each area. Titan and Arc 2 met all the criteria, providing superior light performance and potential lighting energy savings of up to 60% in the existing areas, which were previously utilising fluorescent fittings. In the new areas, the Arc 2 and Titan products were supplied with on-board sensors and controls to harvest future savings.” Conor Keown, Total Produce head of facilities management, added, “At Total Produce we are committed to reducing our environmental footprint and this initiative is part of that effort. The LED lighting will save on energy costs and so far, the installation is meeting expectations. In addition, the enhanced light level provides a bright and safer working environment.”

GB Electrical, a family owned business specialising in electrical installation and repair work, has taken delivery of 38 Volkswagen commercial vehicles. The mix of Crafter, Caddy and Transporter vans will support GB Electrical’s contract win with CarillionAmey which works together with the Ministry of Defence (MOD) to maintain service family accommodation for the Armed Forces. The contract has recently been revised to include additional areas in the UK. Established in 1991 and with its headquarters in Hereford, GB Electrical primarily installs electric vehicle charging points across the country while also undertaking building construction and general property maintenance services in both domestic and commercial properties. The new bespoke fleet of vans have been kitted out with racking to maximise internal space and will be used by the engineering team to transport equipment and install charging points nationwide. The size and reliability of the vans will support the team at GB Electrical to carry out their contract with CarillionAmey effectively and assist in the repair and maintenance of over 4,900 homes for service families.

PHILIPS LIGHTING LIGHTS UP CITADEL OF NAMUR Philips Lighting has announced the illumination of the historic Citadel of Namur in Belgium. Originally built in 937 and rebuilt several times, the Citadel of Namur has since the Middle Ages held a strategic defensive position for the city in its role as the capital of Wallonia in Belgium. Nowadays the City of Namur wants to engage its citizens as well as tourists by providing an illuminated ‘Citadel by Night’. The architectural lighting project is part of a city beautification plan for the City of Namur, illuminating the historic citadel and emphasising the overall beauty of the area. The new lighting system also respects the fauna and flora of the – more than 80 hectares large – historical monument as the lights may easily be dimmed remotely and controlled using the cloud-based Philips ActiveSite lighting management system. The new system also supports the city’s sustainability and economic goals by providing energy efficiency up to 75% compared to conventional lighting while at the same time attracting tourists, many of which are expected to stay overnight in the city to enjoy the landmark at the night skyline. The Philips Color Kinetics system allows the City of Namur to host spectacular dynamic light shows. The newly illuminated citadel was inaugurated on October 13 2017 with a light show to highlight the history of the citadel and its significance as a European monument.

12 | December 2017

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SF0100 100A Fused Switch 63A, 80A, & 100A gG fuses AMD3 compliant Conduit knockouts top & bottom 25mm² tails clamp Padlockable Designed & assembled in the UK

CP (Electric) Ltd | Unit 1, Block 8 | Moorfield Industrial Estate | Kilmarnock KA2 0BA t: 01563 533554 | e: |

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MCCANN COMMITS TO ‘EARN AND LEARN’ BY JOINING THE 5% CLUB Nottingham-based civil and electrical engineering firm McCann has joined The 5% Club, an industry-led initiative focused on driving momentum into the recruitment of apprentices, graduates and sponsored students. The 5% Club is a movement of more than 250 employers providing ‘earn and learn’ opportunities to develop the skills and talents people need to become more employable and create meaningful careers. Companies joining The 5% Club commit to raising the number of apprentices, sponsored students and graduates on formal programmes to 5% of their total workforce within five years. Members are also asked to publicly report their progress in their Annual Report. Existing members range from SMEs to FTSEs and cover a number of diverse industries, from engineering through to the legal sector. McCann has joined The 5% Club to highlight its commitment to offering apprenticeships within the civil and electrical engineering industry. The business currently employs 195 full-time members of staff – eight of which are studying for an apprenticeship at varying levels. Another apprentice will be joining the company in mid-November taking the total tally up to nine. “McCann is firmly committed to the betterment of our country through the improvement of young workers,” said John McCann, managing director at McCann. “We believe that The 5% Club wholly embodies our own corporate beliefs and responsibilities towards reducing youth unemployment and skill shortages.”

Schneider Electric, specialist in energy management and automation, has announced that it is supporting the 2018 SPARKS UK Electrical Apprentice of the Year Competition as the Platinum Sponsor. Launched in 2010 by SNG Publishing, the competition gives students the opportunity to be recognised for their hard work and skills. The competition brings together lecturers, employers, industry leaders and manufacturers to support the next generation of electricians and encourage them in their career development. There will be seven regional heats held across England, Wales and Northern Ireland to assess students on both practical and technical merits, with the first taking place in January at Newcastle College, Burnley College, Petroc College and Gower College, and the remainder in February at Stephenson College, West Herts College and Belfast Metropolitan College. The closing date for entries for the 2018 competition is December 1 2017. The winner of each heat, and the apprentice with the highest overall regional score in the competition, will go forward to the grand finale to compete for the title. The final will be held at the 3M Customer Innovation Centre in Bracknell on April 11-12, 2018. The winner of the competition will receive a prize worth £1,500 for both them and their college. The runner up and their college will receive £500, and there are smaller prizes available during each of the regional heats.

SCREWFIX PARTNERS WITH THE WELSH GOVERNMENT TO ENCOURAGE APPRENTISHIPS A new guide has been launched by Screwfix to help tradespeople in Wales learn more about how easy it is to hire an apprentice. The booklet, entitled Your Guide to Hiring an Apprentice, was developed with the Welsh Government who are supporting Screwfix in the venture. The guide was released by Screwfix in conjunction with the Minister for Skills and Science in response to research revealing that tradespeople want an increase in the availability of skilled workers through the encouragement of apprenticeships, plus more information about how to take on apprentices. The free information source is designed to expose many of the myths surrounding apprenticeships. As a pocket-sized guide, it includes everything those in the trade need to know in bitesize chunks – from the benefits of taking on an apprentice, to where to go first and the help available. Screwfix released the guide in response to feedback from its trade customers. Many of the plumbers, electricians, builders, carpenters and other tradespeople questioned by the Screwfix poll have little or no experience of taking on apprentices, with only 34% saying they have ever employed an apprentice. The free booklet is available in Screwfix stores across Wales.

TRAINING COMMENCES AT CONSTRUCTION WALES INNOVATION CENTRE Around 1,200 people have received training from the new Construction Wales Innovation Centre (CWIC) – before the hub has even been built at the SA1 waterfront site. CWIC is already delivering training and courses including the scaffolding

management course at Coleg Cambria and the heritage plastering course at Coleg y Cymoedd, taught for the first time in Wales. To date, the partnership – which includes Coleg Sir Gâr, Coleg Ceredigion, Coleg Cambria and Coleg y Cymoedd – has also delivered over 170 events. CWIC’s activities have supported 305 Welsh employers through its engagement with Welsh construction industry professionals, operatives and related staff. The Construction Industry Training Board (CITB) and a consortium led by the University of Wales Trinity Saint David are working in partnership to

deliver facilities and training for individuals and construction companies. The centre is due to open in autumn 2018 and will see a minimum of 1,100 students trained at the SA1 hub each year. Situated in phase one of the University of Wales Trinity Saint David’s new £300 million SA1 Swansea Waterfront development, the building is being constructed by Kier. It will cover 1,000 square metres of floor space, providing a ConstructZone, classrooms, dedicated IT suites and conference facilities. A dedicated scaffolding training facility will also be sited close by.

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23/01/2017 16:45


FEELING THE BENEFIT Vicki Leslie, client relationship manager at ECIS, discusses the benefits of offering wellbeing-based benefits for employees.


he definition of an employee benefit can be pretty broad – it could easily be described as the annual Christmas knees up with the bill footed by the boss, the company van or car, or a good pension scheme. All are designed to engender feelings of goodwill and loyalty as well as provide some tangible reward over and above the pay-packet. But there is growing recognition of the far reaching benefits of schemes that specifically support employee health and wellbeing. As a nation we are becoming increasingly health conscious – a whole host of awareness campaigns as well as a TV schedule rammed with health focused programmes attest to this – and while millennials are spending more on taking care of themselves mentally and physically than any previous generation, many older people are realising it’s not too late to get fit. Most of us will spend around a third of our life at work. In the electrical contracting sector, where the day job can often spill over into evenings and weekends, it might well be longer. With so much time in our lives given over to our jobs it makes sound business sense to encourage and promote good health amongst the workforce. In fact, firms have a duty to protect the health and safety of their staff as part of their ‘Corporate Social Responsibilities’ (CSR). Awareness of this responsibility is growing, aided by initiatives such as the Health and Safety Executive’s (HSE) Go Home Healthy campaign.1 Providing employee benefits to support health and wellbeing shouldn’t be seen as a tick box exercise. Far from it. By providing health and wellbeing programmes to support the needs of the workforce and their families, with access to private medical insurance, direct access to telephone assessments and other benefits such as dental and cash plans, contractors also support the health of their business. For a start, if you look after your staff you are more likely to engender loyalty and attract good quality people to your business when you need them – a key consideration in a competitive labour market as we are experiencing right now. In fact a survey by our parent – the ECA – found that by engaging with their CSR, many electrotechnical firms see improvements in staff retention and recruitment.2

Also, securing new business can be supported if you can demonstrate a dedicated focus on health and safety, as evidence of CSR is becoming a key factor in procurement. Finally but perhaps most importantly, it’s been shown that healthy staff can have a positive impact on productivity and in turn, profitability.3 The provision of employee benefits to support health and wellbeing is particularly important in sectors where the job can be physically and/or mentally demanding, putting stress on body and mind. We know from our claims data that conditions related to cancer, muscles, bones and joints and mental health are the main reasons for health insurance claims. According to the latest figures from the Office of National Statistics (ONS), 137.3 million working days were lost due to sickness or injury in the UK last year, which is the equivalent of 4.3 days per worker.4 Although this is one of the lowest rates on record, it demonstrates just how largescale the problem of workplace

“137.3 million working days were lost due to sickness or injury in the UK last year, which is the equivalent of 4.3 days per worker.”

absence is and the impact this has on business productivity. As our claims data suggests, complaints relating to muscles, bones and joint conditions are one of the main causes of workplace absence. According to Public Health England (PHE), 9.5 million days were lost due to muscles, bones and joint complaints due to work in 2014/2015, with construction one of the sectors most impacted.5 However, early intervention services through employee benefits packages which enable staff to get direct access to treatment without needing a doctor’s referral are shown to reduce sickness absence and can make a huge difference to the employee and the business, speeding access to appropriate treatment and getting them back to fitness and work. Indeed, we know early intervention can cut absence by 17%.6 Direct access services available as part of employee benefit schemes enable employers and their workers to act fast on injuries, early signs of cancer and mental health problems. For example, by going through a direct access service, such as the scheme offered by ECIS, employers should see a 30% reduction in workers who require surgery for muscle, bone or jointrelated injuries.7 The benefits of providing employee benefits to support staff wellbeing more than outweigh the associated costs. With schemes now available specifically for workers in the electrical contracting sector, direct, through trade associations or union membership, providing access to these services for staff has never been easier, or more important.


 ealth and Safety Executive, Go Home Healthy campaign: www.hse. H


 CA, Over 1 in 2 firms say CSR boosts staff retention: www.eca. E


 ociety of Occupational Medicine, Occupational health: the value S of preposition:


 ffice of National Statistics, Sickness and absence O in the labour market: sicknessabsenceinthelabourmarketmar2017


Public Health England, Musculoskeletal health in the workplace: a toolkit for employers: business_in_the_community_musculoskeletal_toolkit.pdf


 he Centre for Economics and Business Research, The Benefits T of Early Intervention, 2015


 upa: with-muscle-bone-and-joint-pain

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#48 #6 REASON

Continuous product innovation; we’re always ahead of the game.

In UK housing we have more consumer units than anyone else.

#20 #7

We don’t just know consumer units. We invented them.

You ask, we build. With a custom fabrication facility we’re experts in build to order.

#41 120 years. That’s a whole lot of know-how.

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16/10/2017 16:27


FIGHTING FUEL POVERTY Dimplex explains how Portsmouth City Council has used modern heating solutions as part of a sustainable retrofit of social housing.


ince 2014, Wilmcote House in Portsmouth – owned and managed by Portsmouth City Council (PCC) – has been undergoing major refurbishment as part of the EuroPHit project, retrofitting the building in accordance with Passivhaus principles to ensure ultra-low energy emissions. Built in the late 1960s using a prefabricated, reinforced concrete

panel system, the building was rapidly becoming a poster child for the problems associated with the period’s social housing. Despite being an important part of the local Somerstown community, the building was difficult to maintain and energy inefficient. With just 25mm of insulation and ageing electric heating, residents were finding it prohibitively expensive to stay warm, with many struggling to avoid fuel poverty. Today, it is on track to become a shining example for sustainable retrofit.

Built in the 1960s, Wilmcote House is an essential provider of affordable living for the local community

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PROJECT FOCUS Community centred An essential provider of affordable living for the local community, Wilmcote house consists of 107 primarily three bedroom maisonettes, within three linked blocks. Block A is now approaching completion, while work on Blocks B and C is advancing rapidly. To improve the building to meet EnerPHit standards requires the addition of effective insulation and ventilation, as well as the provision of cost effective heating to alleviate fuel poverty in the residences. Amy Lewis, graduate building surveyor, planned maintenance, Portsmouth City Council explains, “The aim of the whole project is to reduce the heating demand of the properties and to increase the life of the building itself.” With the structural characteristics of the building preventing the use of gas heating, electric was the only option for heating in the homes – some had storage heaters, others convector heaters and not all homes had a heater in every room. “It was very dependent upon each individual property as to what actual heating they had,” says Amy. “The main aim was to reduce the heating demand required and also for the residents to be able to heat their property to a suitable temperature. A lot of them could not do that before.” With the structural and insulation work completed, work then extends within the maisonettes as they are handed back to Portsmouth City Council’s planned maintenance team. It had originally been specified to replace all the heaters in each property with Duo Heat radiators from Dimplex. However, due to the increased amount of insulation and the air tightness that is being put into the building, the council’s team determined that it was not necessary to replace every heater. “We actually only needed to replace one electric heater in a single room, installing a Dimplex Q-Rad into the lounge only,” says Amy. “The intent is then to wait until we see what is actually required to heat the property efficiently.” Modern, cost-effective heating solutions can be used to alleviate fuel poverty

Staying efficient Q-Rad is the latest generation of direct acting electric heater and an ideal replacement for conventional convector heaters or electric radiators. Q-Rad is able to heat up more quickly and, by combining a highly accurate electronic thermostat with the latest technology, is able to react more responsively giving residents far greater control over their heating. Q-Rad’s ‘Eco-Start’ functionality lets the heater decide when to turn on to ensure target temperature is achieved at the selected time. It is then able to monitor the effect of its actions on a room’s temperature, calculating precisely how long it takes to get to the desired temperature and when to turn off. It will even reduce output to prevent heat loss by detecting when a window or door is left open. This all helps to minimise the energy used while maximising warmth and comfort for the lowest possible cost. The installation of the Q-Rads within Block A of Wilmcote House is complete, and through the installation of new external wall insulation cladding and other energy efficient features – including individual

mechanical ventilation with heat recover (MVHR) systems bringing cool air into the properties – residents of all 107 units will finally see improvement to their living spaces along with a significant decrease in their energy bills.

Home comforts Until Blocks B and C are completed each dwelling will, in the interim, retain any existing storage heaters or convector heaters in rooms other than the lounge. These have been left for the time being as the team establishes what is actually required before finalising the necessary heating installations. With the improved efficiency of the Q-Rad, some of the residents are already requesting that the remaining old heating be removed from their properties. “The project is not yet complete,” says Amy. “But generally we are finding that the cost of heating is reduced and that there is a significant reduction in electricity bills.” Chris Stammers, head of insight for Glen Dimplex Heating & Ventilation, which includes the Dimplex brand adds, “The

“The aim of the project is to reduce the heating demand of the properties and to increase the life of the building itself.”

benefits achieved so far are great news for Wilmcote House and a strong indication of the potential success of this approach to retrofitting ageing and failing buildings, improving the homes of residents for many years to come. “Modern electric heating appliances like the Dimplex Q-Rad system are easier to control, cheaper to run and far more intelligent than those that they are intended to replace. With the arrival of Lot 20 of the EU’s Energy Efficiency directive from January 2018, which is set to raise the standard of products available on the market, there has never been a better time for social housing providers to consider electric heating upgrades. “This project has gone some way to demonstrate the potential of modern, directacting electric heating appliances, making the most of Q-Rad’s intelligent features to drive down the cost of heating for residents. We’re delighted with the results and especially pleased to hear the positive early feedback from both the housing association and their residents.” Dimplex,

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implex’s innovative off-peak Quantum heating system offers controllability, comfort and lower running costs – three of the main things domestic customers look for from their electric heating system, according to research. With Quantum, users can tap into low-cost, offpeak energy to deliver heat only when it’s needed, throughout the day and night. The Quantum iQ controller uses a sophisticated self-learning algorithm to take just the right amount of heat to match the user’s lifestyle and climate conditions, intuitively and precisely.

Courtesy of

Crucially, it also offers significant running cost savings when compared to conventional electric storage heating or direct acting electric radiators. In fact, replacing a manual static storage system with the Dimplex Quantum system can deliver annual running cost savings of up to £418. With these savings, the extra up-front cost could be repaid in just over two years. Dimplex is offering a unique prize bundle worth £418 for one lucky ECN reader – so you can deliver savings to your customer and be a winner yourself. The prize package includes a Dimplex twin turbo ceramic workshop heater, portable LED work light, cordless combi-drill, Snickers workwear jacket, electrician’s toolkit and a tool pouch. For more information about how Dimplex Quantum can benefit your business and your customers, visit

October competition The winner of an Apple iPhone courtesy of Phoebe LED/Crompton Lamps was Steven Kelsey of S Kelsey Electrical.

Closing date To be in with a chance of winning, simply answer the following questions: 2. Which of these benefits do customers NOT look for from their heating system, according to research? a) Comfort b) Controllability c) Complexity

1. What are the potential savings when replacing a manual static storage heating system with Dimplex Quantum? a) £218 b) £318 c) £418

3. How soon could the extra upfront cost of Dimplex Quantum be repaid? a) Two years b) Five years c) Eight years

All entries must be returned by 31st December 2017. No correspondence will be entered into. The editor’s decision is final. The name of the winner will be published in the February issue of ECN. * Prize is not exchangeable.

To enter, please complete the form below and fax to 01634 673173, or post to: ECN Competition, All Things Media Ltd, Suite 14, 6-8 Revenge Road, Lordswood, Kent, ME5 8UD.

The answers to December’s competition are: 1............................................. 2. ............................................... 3. ................................................

Personal Details Name .................................................................................................................................

Have you previously registered for your free monthly copy of ECN? What is the main activity of your business?


How many people read your copy of ECN? 1



Electrical contractor



3 4 5

Public utilities


Facilities management




Trade association




Other (please specify)



6 7



No Which of the following areas are you interested in? Circuit protection and switchgear


Are you a member of any of the following trade bodies?

1 2

Test equipment







Cable management








Fire detection & emergency lighting




Heating and ventilation





Wiring accessories



Network infrastructures


Other (please specify)

How many full time employees work for your company? 1-5 21-50

Competition.indd 20

6-10 51+



Other (please specify)


Job Title............................................................................................................................. Company Name ................................................................................................................ Address ............................................................................................................................. ..................................................................................... Postcode ...................................... Tel ......................................................... Mobile ................................................................ E-mail................................................................................................................................

Important Notice For audit purposes we need to update our database. Complete this form stating any changes and make sure you fill in the analysis tick boxes. Please do not forget to sign and date your form to ensure you receive your magazine every month.

Signature ....................................................................... Date ............................................


22/11/2017 12:17


Revolutionary prewired junction box Designed to dramatically speed up installation time - wire all 4 connections in 7 seconds!

! e l b a l i a v A ow

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Prewired - clearly labelled cable entry points for error free wiring.

Maintenance Free

Dramatic time saving on site.

Compact - fits through a 32mm diameter hole in ceiling.

Revolutionary push fit design - no screws, clips or clamps.

Designed and manufactured in Britain.

01183 840025 Untitled-3 1




Tracking = 277

Company 22/11/2017 10:24


LEARNING TOOLS Engex explains how teaming up with the lecturers at Epping Forest College and CEF Chingford gave new students an introduction to using the right tools for the job.


The open day at Epping Forest College is set to be the first of many

n September, Engex worked closely with the technical management and senior lecturers at Epping Forest College and CEF Chingford to hold what will hopefully be their first open day at the college. Engex, represented by Paul Brock and Jarred Bain, alongside Jason Ghartey and Colin Hailstone of CEF Chingford, played host to approximately 150 level one, two and three students, as well as some apprentices who also study at the college. Engex demonstrated a wide range of hand tools used by electricians, as well as some of their accessory ranges such as fibreglass step ladders, cable rod access kits, tool cases, tool pouches, screw trade tubs and warning signs and labels. Kevan Carruthers and a team of lecturers at the college run a successful range of technical courses, including construction, electrical and plumbing. Each course can have a number of students enrolled, which could pose a real danger if they were left to their own arrangements for tools. The team of lecturers offers their students the opportunity to use hand tools that are VDE approved right from day one of their courses. This means that the students get used to using the right tool to carry out the task at hand, and the lecturers can be confident that the students are protected as far as their electrical safety is concerned. The college even goes as far as to arrange a full tool kit, which the students can purchase at a price within their budget. For the second year in succession, Engex has supplied the college with over 200 tool kits, required for the intake of first year or level one students. The idea of holding an Engex open day is to help get the students familiar with the range of tools. “Such an open day for the students is not just an attempt to get the students to purchase more tools but to get the students more aware of tools that are VDE rated, as well as recognise the types of tools the students should be using,” says Kevan.

Students at the college have been trained to use a wide range of Engex tools

The lecturers in the electrical department – Richard Mathews, Gareth Wyatt, David Percival, David James and Roger Small – compiled a brief questionnaire that each student at the open day had to answer, which helped to engage students, as well as prompting many questions for the Engex team. The students were interested in some of the features offered by the Engex range, asking questions about the low force, high energy tools, as well as the ergonomic

design of the tools. A few of the third year students posed the questions, “What is important about EN131 as far as step ladders are concerned?” and “Why do they need inspection tags?” Engex’s Paul Brock was on hand to answer these queries and explained how important the independent testing for 10Kv insulation and 150Kg weight rating is. He also highlighted the importance of protection to the user and site safety, as well as working at height regulations. Lecturers Gareth Wyatt and Richard Mathews were impressed with the range of Engex hand tools and tool cases, stating that, “It is important for the students at every level to have good quality tools at sensible prices,” and that “It is important for the students to have a good quality tool case to carry their tools around. The Engex rucksack style tool case allows the students to carry their tools as well as any books and binders at the same time.” The team of lecturers and Paul Brock of Engex are now discussing further collaboration on more technical subjects which will also be of benefit to the students at the college. The lecturers have also discussed new developments of the Engex tool range with Jarred Bain. Both Colin and Jason of CEF Chingford mentioned that using the bespoke tool kit service offered by Engex not only gives them a competitive edge, but also gives them confidence knowing that they are supported by the Engex brand. Colin is looking forward to a long and enjoyable collaboration with Kevan Carruthers and his team at Epping Forest College. For further information, visit

22 | December 2017

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15/11/2017 09:34


STEPPING TOWARD CHANGE Tessa Ogle highlights how the Electrical Industries Charity’s support programmes are changing the lives of people in the electrical sector and encourages the industry to show support.


n our sector, there are over 130,000 people, including pensioners, young apprentices, and employees and their families, who are currently dealing with ongoing struggles such as mental health problems, autism, financial struggles or caring for a loved one, and are in need of our support. Each year, the Electrical Industries Charity helps hundreds of people towards building a better quality of life through its employee assistance programme, of which the practical participation, pensioner, apprentice and employee and family support programmes are part. The charity’s programmes offer support services including will writing assistance, legal advice, debt advice, support for carers, financial assistance and grants, career development and transition assistance, apprentice scholarships and a bursary scheme. The charity also offers free private and confidential telephone counselling sessions, telephone advice for people with autism and a parent-to-parent emotional support network. Although employee assistance programmes are widespread among our sector, many people tend to believe that they are only aimed at those who are working for large organisations and therefore very often do not reach out for help in their time of need and end up suffering in silence. Suffering in silence does not make problems go away and very often makes matters worse, which could lead to bigger

Scott’s story

issues including mental health problems. It is therefore important to reach out for help when life’s problems get on top of you. With the Electrical Industries Charity, this is not the case, because all of the charity’s programmes are aimed at everyone who is working or has worked in the electrical, electronics and energyrelated sectors. Therefore, no matter if you are working in a small business, on your own or as part of the big organisation, you are just as important as anyone else. Through its employee assistance programme over the past year, the charity has worked in partnership with a number of different businesses and brought awareness of the wide range of problems affecting people in our sector and provided practical support to our colleagues and their families in their time of need. Electrical Industries Charity,

“Each year, the Electrical Industries Charity helps hundreds of people towards building a better quality of life through its employee assistance programme.”

One recent case where the charity provided vital support through its employee assistance programme is Scott’s story. At the age of 15, Scott left school, due to many years of bullying and missed education. He is now well on the way to completing his apprenticeship, and all of his work is welldocumented. However, he has yet to pass his final written exam, and it is now that his difficulties have come to light. After years of ongoing bullying at school for being ‘stupid’ Scott almost quit his apprenticeship, thinking that his dyslexia was an intelligence issue. His employer was keen to help him through this final stage of his apprenticeship and he approached the Electrical Industries Charity to get more support for Scott. The charity worked with JTL to facilitate Scott’s first ever assessment for dyslexia and found a specialist tutor to help him on a one-to-one basis. Scott will now be supported right through his exam, and on to a successful journey as a fully qualified electrician.

Danny’s story Another example is Danny’s story, which highlights how the right level of support for someone who is suffering in silence could help to change their way of life. Danny was a qualified electrician and for many years had his own successful business. Unfortunately, it started to lose money rapidly which caused a decline in his physical and mental health and not long after losing his business, his marriage also broke down. Danny suffered a complete mental breakdown, and when he was released from the hospital, he was put on a high level of medication which left him unable to work due to the residual anxiety and depression. Danny was renting a two-bedroom house so that he could have his daughter stay with him on alternate weekends. However, his housing benefit discretionary extra payment was stopped, which left him with a £400 per month shortfall. It was at this point that Danny contacted the charity which immediately offered him one-to-one counselling. The charity also provided financial support for his rent and through its partnership with NAPIT helped him to register with a work scheme – covering his registration fees and providing him with all of the necessary tools that were needed to help him to continue with his career as a successful electrician. Danny was able to access support when he needed it and is now on the road to recovery, but there are others like Danny who still need our help.

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TAKING ON A CHALLENGE FOR A CAUSE The employee assistance programme is not the only way the charity helps people in our industry. In February, we embarked on our first Challenge for a Cause and raised an astonishing amount for the Hendrie family by climbing the tallest free-standing mountain in the world – Mount Kilimanjaro. After the incredible success of our first campaign, we have launched our second Challenge for a Cause with the aim to create a brighter future for the Dickinson family. Caz Dickinson, a mother, grandmother and a loving wife, spent 15 years working for a large electrical wholesaler until her life changed in the blink of an eye. In January 2009, Caz collapsed in her home, hit her head on the bathroom floor and was rushed to the hospital where she was diagnosed with a Grade 4 brain haemorrhage. Since her collapse, she has faced numerous major operations and has been left with severe, irreversible brain damage.

Over the years, Caz’s husband Mick has helped her through her struggles and kept her positive while supporting their three daughters. Throughout this time, the family struggled to get financial aid, and after being made redundant from his job, Mick was left without any income to cover the mortgage, hospital visits and other expenses. This resulted in them losing their family home in October 2013. Despite the challenging situation, Mick found another job and a rented property which would accommodate his wife upon her return from the hospital. In November 2015, he was given the option to take voluntary redundancy, which gave him an opportunity to bring Caz home and become her full-time carer. Through our Challenge for a Cause, we are set to take on many challenges in the next two years such as Arctic Adventure, Raise the Roof Campaign, and the Great Wall of China Trek with the aim to raise £250,000. This amount will allow us to

purchase a long-lasting family home for the Dickinson family and help Caz with her development. So far, we have raised £38,000 of our £250,000 target, but we are still in need of your support for this extraordinary cause. Scott’s, Danny’s and Caz’s stories are just a few examples out of thousands that outline the need for support services for our industry colleagues. With its support programmes, the charity has helped many people over the past year to improve their quality of life, but there are many others who need our support. You can help the charity to assist thousands of people in our industry by simply joining one of the programmes, showing your support for our Challenge for a Cause or by entering the charity’s powerLottery for as little as £1. There are many ways where you can get involved in helping us to change the future of many more people in the upcoming year.

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CHARITY BEGINS AT HOME ECN talks to Tessa Ogle, managing director of the Electrical Industries Charity, about the origins of the charity, how she became involved, and the ways in which the industry can help those in need.

What were the origins of the Electrical Industries Charity? It all started in 1904, when 10 industry leaders met in the Holborn office of Walter Davenport of the Bottle Exchange. It might seem an unlikely place for the foundation of an organisation that was to grow into a great Electrical Industries Charity. All 10 men were pioneers of the burgeoning electrical industry. During their meeting in 1904, they had discussed what might happen to ‘those who had spent their lives in establishing the electrical industry and had been unable to secure sufficient monetary recompense to support them if accident, infirmity, misfortune, or old age limited their activities or curtailed their means’. At the time, charities were in their infancy and state pensions, unemployment benefit, and a national health service were just a dream. But these far-sighted, publicspirited men decided to do something about providing for industry colleagues who had fallen on hard times and put in £10 as a token of their intent. The men who made up the committee were Robert Kayne Gray, Hugo Hirst (GEC), Justus Eck, chairman (Union Electric Co), H Berry (NEMA), FH Nalder (Nalder Bros & Thompson), E Gustav Byng (GEC), R A Lundberg (A P Lundberg & Sons, G Sutton (Henley Telegraph Works) and two other outstanding individuals whose names are not recorded. At the time, it was agreed among all of the men to set up an electrical charity, to be called The Electrical Trades Benevolent Institution which is now the Electrical Industries Charity. In 1905, the institution was founded and the first donation of £650 was recorded in April the same year. Who is the charity designed to help? The Electrical Industries Charity is an industry charity for industry people which helps anyone who is working or had worked in electrical and energy-related sectors. The charity brings industries together to help their own by providing financial relief and practical support services to people and their immediate families who have worked or are working in electrical and energy-related sectors – representing 1.3 million people.

“When people have fallen on the worst of times, we are there as the backup for the industry.”

In what ways can people donate to the charity? There are many ways for people to get involved. They can fundraise individually with various fundraising events, such as running the London marathon for us. Other ways to contribute include: • Participate in a challenge for a local event or pick any event and start a fundraising page and start raising money for us. • Attend our regional fundraising events which provide a steady income to our charity of around 25% of revenue. •M  ake corporate donations to support the charity. • Play powerLottery, which is our most important income stream. Just like the National Lottery helps to fund the British Olympic team, the powerLottery helps to fund financial grants within the industry and supports our services. It is fundamental to what we do and we encourage everyone in the industry to sign up for only £1 per month to help support the industry. powerLottery is only run to support the industry and the charity’s only annuity style fundraising mechanism. Why is it important that the industry gets involved? When people have fallen on the worst of times, we are there as the backup for the industry. It is incredibly important to remember the fundamentals of why the charity was originally set out, which was to support people within the industry who suffer significant hardship. I truly hope that you never have to ask us, but if you do it’s nice to know that there are funds available should you need financial assistance and support services that may not be available to you anywhere else. What was your background before joining the EIC? I worked for Parsons Brinckerhoff (a Balfour Beatty company) for 11 years, heading up the oil and gas division from the southern part of the world. I’ve worked across power mining and the heavy chemical industries.

such a shame that everyone waits until the end of their career to give back, as I saw a big gap in the sector for talented and commercially driven people. So, I made a decision to take five years out at the peak of my career to give back to an industry that has given me so much. It was the best decision I’ve made. My aim is to leave the industry in a better place than when I started. I’m hoping to shine some light on some big issues affecting our industry, such as high suicide and divorce rates. Then I’ll likely return to the commercial sector. What new initiatives does the EIC have planned for the future? We have teamed up with Mates in Mind to roll out mental health awareness training to the industry. We offer free counselling services to anyone in the industry and their immediate family members. We are hoping to reach people in the industry earlier, before their problems are harder to solve. With one-in-three of our applicants citing mental health issues, we know early intervention is key. I’ve created an emerging professionals board (people with less than 10 years’ experience) to spread the mental health awareness campaign to ensure we get a fresh perspective from the industry. They will also rotate through our trustee board, encouraging diversity at all levels of our industry. What initiative, current or future, are you most excited about? Our major fundraising for a cause case will see the charity work with the industry to build a fit-forpurpose house for the Caz Dickinson appeal. It is kind of like a DIY SOS project.

What drew you to the charity? I was working on an aid project in Cambodia building houses for families affected with HIV/AIDS and I thought it was

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FRIDAY NIGHT FEVER Friday November 10 saw the 2017 powerBall charity event. Here, the Electrical Industries Charity outlines the history of the powerBall, and recaps the night’s highlights.


t all started in 1905 when 10 leaders of the manufacturing industry met in the Holborn Office and decided to create the electrical charity, to be called The Electrical Trades Benevolent Institution (ETBI), with the aim to do something for industry colleagues who had fallen on hard times. In 1908, the first inaugural Festival Dinner took place and the first ETBI table collection raised £627 from around 100 people. The first corporate donation of £250 was received in 1909 from BEAMA, followed by donations from well-known manufacturers and distributors. Since the very first inaugural dinner, powerBall continues to bring hundreds of industry professionals together under one roof to celebrate the successful year in the electrical sector. This year’s event lived up to its reputation. powerBall 2017 brought together hundreds of individuals for the most colourful dance extravaganza of the year and raised thousands of pounds for those who are in desperate need of support from the industry. This year’s Friday Night Fever themed event brought New York City to the UK, where guests had a chance to re-live their

disco days with a blistering soundtrack of hits including Night Fever, More Than A Woman, If I Can’t Have You and Stayin’ Alive. Guests on the night also witnessed the phenomenal performance of a Saturday Night Fever tribute show choreographed by Nikki Trow. Hundreds of guests danced the night away to the brand new band Madhen and DJ Laura and enjoyed excellent entertainment from the UK’s leading impressionist and entertainer, Mike Osman. Those who attended also had a chance to get involved in the charity’s Raise the Roof ‘One brick at a time’ campaign. Raise the Roof aims to raise £250,000 to purchase a house for the Dickinson family and work with industry partners to carry out any renovation work which is required to safeguard the future of Caz Dickinson and her family. Dozens of people donated £25 each to the Electrical Industries Charity. The donation allows them to buy a personalised brick which will go towards building a house for Caz and her family. A personalised brick allowed guests to put their name on this special project and their donation will serve as a long-lasting tribute. If you have not had a chance to be part of this special cause and would like to,

“powerBall 2017 brought together hundreds of individuals for the most colourful dance extravaganza of the year”

you can still make your donations for the Raise the Roof campaign by visiting the charity’s official website. If you are a UK Income or Capital Gains taxpayer, don’t forget to add Gift Aid to your donation. Gift Aid will allow the charity to reclaim £0.25p for each pound you donate, which means that for each brick worth £25 the charity will be able to claim £6.25 in Gift Aid at no additional cost to you. The Electrical Industries Trading Company in support of the charity would like to thank everyone who attended and has shown their support for this special event. Without you, the charity would not be able to help those who are in need of our support. powerBall will be back for another unforgettable night on Friday November 9 2018 at the Grosvenor House Hotel, London with even bigger and better entertainment than ever before.

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23/11/2017 11:31



HEATING UP Mark Atkinson of Mirrorstone Heating Panels explains the benefits of infrared heating panels over other types of conventional heating.


nfrared (IR) heating panels represent a new and innovative way for people to heat their rooms and spaces, and it’s one that’s going to save us all a whole heap of money when our homes and businesses are converted from the old-school convection heating systems we’ve used for such a long time. With any new form of technology, there’s always some initial scepticism and doubt in people’s minds, usually about how safe it is or what it can do that the old model can’t. Infrared heating is a classic example of this, and misconceptions have arisen because the technology behind it is so radically and fundamentally different from anything that’s gone before. Unlike the traditional convection radiators that are so prevalent today, infrared panels heat the objects in a room and not the air around them. This ‘radiant heat’ is a far more pragmatic and efficient method of heating a space and one that can save the user up to 60% on their heating bills when they switch from convection to IR.

However, because infrared works so differently, some people are slightly reluctant to trust its safety, preferring instead to stick with their existing electric heating system, even though it costs so much more to run and maintain. This ‘better the devil you know’ attitude simply doesn’t take into account the infrared panel’s intrinsic safety features, especially given that the electromagnetic (EM) waves it radiates are very similar to those generated by the sun. But, unlike the sun’s rays, infrared waves contain no harmful ultra violet (UV) light component. Thus, infrared heat has all the benefits and none of the negative aspects of sunlight, making it a completely safe and natural alternative to wasteful convection. But how can heating solid objects be so much more cost-effective and energyefficient than heating ‘thin’ air?

Air raising It may be surprising to learn that the air in a room has a far greater molecular mass than its solid objects. This means

a conventional heater has to work harder and for longer than an IR panel to maintain a consistent room temperature. So, long after the IR panel has been switched off having done its job, the old convector heater will be labouring to reheat the perpetually fluctuating body of air. The convector heater has to consume a lot more electricity in order to carry out this gargantuan and never-ending task, and this increased workload is starkly reflected when the user’s electricity bill drops onto the doormat. It’s a well-known fact that convection currents of rising and falling, warmed and cooling air produce atmospheric moisture. Indeed, you’ll have seen it for yourself in the droplets of water that condense and cascade down windows on a cold day, which causes mould and mildew growth if left unchecked. By contrast, infrared panels produce a dry, constant form of heat that aggressively dissuades mould growth and creates a comfortable and much healthier living environment as a result.

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Metway Addressable Lighting Control System

Looking good Infrared heating panels are incredibly versatile and can be installed very easily on virtually any flat surface. Indeed, with no specialist knowledge whatsoever, anyone can install an infrared panel heater on a wall or a ceiling, where it will be a great alternative to a storage heater which invariably sits low on a wall, occupying valuable room space. Having a 22mm thick infrared panel high up on your wall or ceiling is very much akin to hanging a picture, especially when you consider that it’s possible to have a custom image printed directly onto its surface. Not only is this a great way to save space and disguise heating with an attractive image, it’s also yet another superb safety feature because it effectively places the heater out of reach of inquisitive fingers and vulnerable skin.

Simply does it Like traditional electric heaters, infrared panels do become quite hot to the touch when they’re switched on. This is nothing new – after all, we’ve been using electric wall heaters for many years, so we’re already very much accustomed to steering clear of them when they’re in operation. However, the polyethylene terephthalate (PET) surface of an IR panel will never burn the skin if it’s accidentally touched, due to the efficient way the material dissipates its heat energy.

Infrared panel heaters are the last word in simplicity, consisting of just a few components and, more importantly, none that move. Their simple construction means there’s very little that can possibly go wrong with them throughout their 30-year lifespan, which is in stark contrast to the regular and expensive repairs and services that a gas or electric central heating boiler will require. Costing between £50 and £80 for each annual service, a conventional boiler will run to between £1,500 and £1,800 in servicing costs over the course of 30 years, and that’s without factoring in replacements and parts. Energy savings and costs aside, all of Mirrorstone’s IR panel heaters are manufactured using 100% recyclable materials, which means they’re a great deal cleaner and greener to run than any other form of heating that’s on the market today. Mirrorstone IR heating panels come in all shapes and sizes, from the aforementioned custom printed models to classic white IR panels that can be concealed discreetly in a suspended ceiling, disguised as a regular ceiling tile. Mirrored infrared panel heaters are ideal for the bathroom because they’ll never steam up, while glass panels will help create the minimalist look that’s definitely de rigueur right now. Mirrorstone Infrared Heating,


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22/11/2017 12:18



TRIP THE LIGHT FANTASTIC With utility bills rising amidst growing pressure to reduce carbon emissions, light emitting diode (LED) technology is growing in popularity. John Murphy, managing director at e3Light, outlines the key purchasing criteria and the importance of effective lighting control and energy monitoring.


ccording to the Carbon Trust, lighting accounts for one sixth of the UK’s total electricity usage. Meanwhile, the government has defined targets for carbon reduction – at least 34% by 2020 and a minimum of 80% by 2050 when compared to 1990 levels – meaning that users of domestic and commercial buildings need to drastically reduce their energy consumption.

Not surprisingly, it has experienced a phenomenal level of growth. According to LEDinside, by the end of 2016 the global LED lighting market was worth around $29.6 billion and is set to rise to $33.1 billion by the end of 2017. Furthermore, it accounts for 23% of all lighting in Europe, which is the highest across the world – the second and third highest regions are North America and China. It is also helping to drive the value of the UK lighting market as a whole, with AMA Research reporting a 13% annual increase between 2014-2015 and an estimated worth of £2 billion.

Solution provider LED technology is already playing a vital role in helping to achieve this objective. It has created a massive change in the way that people approach lighting by providing an energy efficient technology that has extremely long life, low carbon emissions and excellent light quality.

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LED LIGHTING The speed of innovation and technological advancement witnessed in the industry is remarkable. Leading manufacturers have been quick to devise a wide range of innovative energy efficient lighting solutions, which means that an ever-increasing number of vertical sectors can now take advantage of it.

Cost-effective Despite its clear benefits, LED lighting still suffers from a reputation for being expensive, but the fact is that prices have declined to a point where it is now the most economical choice for almost every application. While early adopters sought features such as improved energy efficiency, reliable operation in cold environments and enhanced controllability, the current wave of adoption is just as focused on the value of ongoing operational savings that can be factored against a modest increase in upfront cost. In order to maximise its potential, the entire value chain has had to engage in a process of re-education on the basics of light generation and application. Put simply, not all LED lighting solutions are the same and in order to get the maximum possible return on investment (ROI) from this technology, it is important to be able to differentiate what’s on offer and make the right purchasing decisions. When it comes to LED lighting, the old adage ‘you get what you pay for’ couldn’t be more appropriate, and the pitfalls of selecting a poor quality product must be avoided at all costs. Premature product failure, poor lumen output, low lm/W and inefficient design are just some of the factors that can compromise a lighting scheme. In addition, the knock-on effect of having to replace products can quickly have a negative effect on any ROI.

Choose life LED lighting has an incredibly long life, with manufacturers claiming product lifetimes of between 50,000-100,000 hours. However, a mean time between failure (MTBF) rate that is below the industry average of 0.2% failures every 1,000 hours can only be achieved through purchasing products from a reputable manufacturer and making sure that the installation is carried out to the highest possible standards. When specifying a product, a chosen manufacturer should always be asked to provide full photometric and electrical data, as well as conformance certificates. Although this information can be useful in terms of calculating ROI, it is important to establish whether the tests were carried out in-house or by a reputable third party testing organisation – results from the latter are always preferable. It is also advisable to check the detail behind warranties to make sure that they provide back-up in the event that anything goes wrong. The abuse of warranties is a real problem at the moment and the common sense approach is to research products available from tried and tested brands that have been around for some time, so in the unlikely event that a product fails they will be there to support you. Also, be wary of warranty terms that just don’t make sense – for example, if a manufacturer is offering a lifetime


guarantee of 50,000 hours for a product there must be at least a five-year warranty, as there are 8,760 hours in a year.

Get yourself connected A particularly dynamic aspect of modern lighting technology is its role in our increasingly connected world. According to Cisco, some 50 billion devices will be connected by 2020, so it is clear that the future holds a new level of interactivity that will become an integral part of our everyday lives. The digital generation wants to control everything at the touch of a button and in smart homes and intelligent buildings the possibilities of connected lighting are really beginning to gain traction. Smart connected lighting can deliver massive operational and installation cost savings and it means that systems are becoming much quicker and easier to install, and faster and richer in configuration. Great strides have been made in lighting control and it has been found to contribute to additional energy savings of 10-30% when LED luminaires are integrated with sensors to determine when and where lighting is used within a space. Lights can be programmed to come on only if the movement of a person is detected and a control system can then monitor light levels and make use of daylight harvesting, which uses daylight to offset the amount of electric lighting needed to properly light an area. Zone-by-zone or even luminaire-byluminaire control is achievable, resulting in considerable energy savings. It is also possible to create scenes that enhance the characteristics of a room and highlight key features, while also setting an appropriate lighting level for certain times of the day, or when a room is being used for specific type of events. Furthermore, solutions are also available that enable more effective and precise energy management. Although building energy management systems (BEMS) have been utilised in commercial and industrial environments for many years, it is also now possible for homeowners to identify any devices that are currently being used and control them remotely. A smartphone app can provide a notification about items that are currently consuming electricity and enables them to be switched on or off.

Look ahead On a wider level, lighting technology is fundamental to the development of what is being termed Li-Fi. Allowing data to be sent at high speeds using visible light communication (VLC) rather than radio waves, a 2015 pilot study found that it can deliver internet access 100 times faster than traditional Wi-Fi – offering speeds of up to 1Gb/s. All it requires is a light source such as a standard LED luminaire, an internet connection and a photo detector. Interestingly, Li-Fi allows for greater security on local networks as light cannot pass through walls, which also means there is less interference between devices. Organic LED (OLED) lighting is also becoming more widespread. It works by passing electricity through one or

“One of the most exciting aspects of this technology is that its full potential is far from being realised.”

more extremely thin layers of organic semiconductor material composed of hydrocarbon chains, rather than heavy metals. As opposed to an array of individual bulbs, these light emitting films produce brighter light while using less energy than existing LED technologies. Several companies now offer OLED lighting panels and designers, architects and consumers are increasingly using them in a variety of contexts due to their excellent colour rendering index (CRI), flexibility and product lifetime. Although they are around 20% more energy efficient than standard LEDs, they are more expensive, so it is likely to be a few years before they become mainstream.

LED lighting has undergone a period of innovation to promote energy efficiency and enhanced controllability

Exciting times With industry analysts predicting an unstoppable rise for LED lighting over the next decade, it is one most innovative areas of modern technology and is on the radars of everyone from multinational corporations to homeowners. One of the most exciting aspects of this technology is that its full potential is far from being realised and the current rapid rate of adoption will only continue. e3Light,

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22/11/2017 10:24



MIND THE GAP Could the current UK skills gap be an opportunity in disguise for the trade industry? James Ellis, manager at QVS Direct, takes a look at the problems facing the sector.


he various issues regarding the UK skills gap have been rumbling around for some time now, and it doesn’t seem to be getting much better. There’s still a dearth of skilled workers in a wide range of industries, including engineering, healthcare, arts and entertainment, various scientific areas – and, of course, the trades. The Federation of Master Builders’ State of Trade Survey 2017 made for pretty dour reading in regards to the skills gap, with 40% of construction SMEs finding skills shortages at their highest since 2013. A separate study found that 43% of vacancies in skilled trades are because of the current skills shortage, with 13% including electricians.

The first is that companies are spending longer trying to find the right people, with the cost of using recruitment agencies and hiring temporary staff to fill in the gaps costing approximately £1.7 billion. Secondly, they’re also having to pay above market rate for workers, offering inflated salaries just so they can get the right people in; many are having to rely

on training people up, which comes at a further cost. Large companies are also now required to contribute towards the cost of apprenticeships. The apprenticeship levy requires companies whose pay bill exceeds £3 million to pay 0.5% of the amount of their pay bill to help fund apprenticeship schemes.

The current skills shortage is setting business back around £2 billion a year

The effect on businesses So what is the actual effect of the skills gap on UK businesses? According to the Open University, the skills shortage is currently costing businesses around £2 billion a year. This is for a couple of reasons.

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Could the lack of skilled tradespeople in the UK be an opportunity for employers?


“The skills shortage is currently costing business around £2 billion a year. ”

The Brexit effect



– Wires can be easily verified before trimming


– Conductors do not need to be pre-trimmed to a specific length


– 3 prong contacts into every wire for more conductive contact points

Regardless of your views regarding Brexit, it’s difficult to argue that it’s currently creating great uncertainty throughout just about every industry in the UK – and that includes having an effect on the skills gap as well. Due to employment uncertainty, many people are choosing to remain in their current jobs rather than look elsewhere, and this is reducing the number of available skilled workers. However, it’s the longer term effects that are potentially even more troublesome. A key part of leaving the EU is the ability for the UK to have more stringent controls over people entering the country. Will skilled foreign workers stay away? Or worse, will they be forced to leave? They could even choose to leave of their own accord. We simply don’t know at this stage what effect Brexit will have on businesses and its workers, but that lack of clarity certainly isn’t helpful for anyone.

The opportunity for UK workers The lack of skilled tradespeople in the UK, while a headache for employers, could be viewed as the exact opposite for those thinking of getting into the industry. Those who want to train in any of the trades have a fantastic opportunity to take advantage of those employers crying out for skilled workers. There’s never been more help and resources available for those wanting to get on the trade employment ladder, whether that’s through online courses or apprenticeships. It’s been shown over recent years that going to university doesn’t necessarily guarantee a secure, well-paid job like it used to, and that there are many other ways to train up and earn a living.


– Cutting blade will last for over 2,000 cuts



Please call us on 01925 444 446 or email

For those interested in becoming an electrician, guides like the the one offered by electrical wholesalers QVS Direct offer a wealth of information, while the National Careers Service is also an invaluable resource. There is also a need to recruit more people to assess apprentices, which is another that opportunity that needs to be addressed or risk the prospect of apprentices not receiving the training and leadership they require.

Is it enough? So while the opportunities are there for workers, and with apprenticeships at an all-time high according to the CITB, is this enough to address the skills gap, or does more need to be done? Apprenticeships are largely only open to young people, and while it’s imperative that young people are given as many opportunities and as much help as possible, if the skills gap is to be addressed, there needs to be opportunities for older workers as well. For those who don’t get financial help, going back into education is expensive, and for many who have a family to support or other responsibilities, it’s simply unrealistic. Should apprenticeships be opened up to all ages? Or perhaps there should be funding for companies to train up their current employees rather than have to struggle to find workers with the right skills? Maybe neither is the answer, but unless someone comes up with something soon, the skills gap will become a chasm down which UK industry is in danger of falling. In the meantime, if you’re considering trying to get into the electrical industry, now could be one of the best opportunities you’re going to get. QVS Direct,

34 | December 2017

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HEAVY DUTY Richard Rands, UK product manager – fastenings and fixings at HellermannTyton UK, explores how design engineers and consultants can facilitate improved safety, ease of installation, and greater design flexibility when specifying heavy duty fixings for harsh industrial environments.


esearch has shown that that the industrial sector uses more delivered energy than any other, accounting for approximately 54% of the world’s total delivered energy. With a rapidly growing population, underpinned by increased rates of urbanisation and industrialisation, the energy requirements of industries such as oil and gas, chemical processing and food manufacturing are changing, presenting design engineers with a new set of challenges and opportunities. As these applications demand more power than ever before, power infrastructures and therefore cabling implications must be taken into consideration and measures need to be in place to ensure these run safely and efficiently. Vast quantities of electricity pass through these kinds of cables, which can reach very large diameters. Given the amount of energy involved and the weights of the cables, just one loose cable has the potential to cause significant damage,

posing a potentially catastrophic and unacceptable risk to safety. In light of this, the need for robust cable management solutions to secure heavy duty cables becomes clear. With a number of potential options to choose from, it’s fair to say that decisions are often made on the basis of cost rather than suitability. Every environment is different and the best solution must be identified based on the typical operating conditions and unique cable management requirements that are likely to be encountered. This approach should ensure that the need for durability is met, while allowing for a smoother, more streamlined installation process.

Current solutions When it comes to securing and retaining large-scale industrial electrical cables, the cable cleat has historically been the go-to option for specifiers on the basis of it being a solid, robust fixing solution. By bolting them into position, cleats ensure that cables remain firmly in place. That being said, they are not always the best option for

this function. When it comes to installation, the presence of bolts means that they need to be tightened manually. Not only does the scope for human error open up the risk of installation faults, it also makes the installation process longer, reducing the overall efficiency of a project. In order to accommodate the strength and durability requirements common in these kinds of environments, cable cleats need to be quite bulky. Where space is a concern, it is essential to get the same level of durability and support but with a less imposing ergonomic footprint, highlighting the need for more suitable alternatives. One such alternative is stainless steel cable ties, which are more versatile than cable cleats and more likely to deliver consistent performance over time compared with alternative plastic-based materials, especially when exposed to challenging operating conditions. This is critical when cables need to remain firmly secured. Stainless steel cable ties also remove the need for manual torque tensioning which is required when bolting cable cleats into position.

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Durability Under extreme conditions, protecting applications should be the absolute priority and solutions must be able to handle potentially significant levels of force being exerted on cables in the event of a short circuit. Cable ties must therefore demonstrate excellent strength and shock characteristics to remain fastened to the cable tray without allowing themselves or the cables to be damaged in any way. The importance of testing in order to replicate the application conditions cannot be overstated.

Heat resistance The choice of material for cable fixings is extremely important and should reflect the properties of the intended operating environment. When it comes to evaluating these application conditions, it is important to look at the heat resistance characteristics of the material on offer. A polyamide 6.6 (PA66) cable tie, for instance, is only able to withstand temperatures of between -40ºC and 85ºC due to its physical properties, making it unsuitable for an industrial setting where extreme temperatures are not uncommon. In this instance, the heat resistance properties of stainless steel lend themselves particularly well to temperature extremes of anywhere between -80°C to 538°C. Most typical industrial applications are unlikely to

reach temperatures this high while the lower temperature threshold means that the material will continue to perform in colder applications, such as oil and gas exploration. It is also worth mentioning that extensive testing under extreme conditions can give a good indication of how the material will respond to heat and whether or not it is a suitable choice.


Corrosion In demanding applications, materials should be able to carry out their purpose without showing any signs of strain or corrosion which may undermine performance. Corrosion can come from a variety of sources, whether from chemicals in processing applications or from other sources such as salt spray in external applications, for example shipbuilding and offshore, which can have a corrosive effect over time. While other materials offer good resistance to most acids, alkalis and oils, few can compete with stainless steel, which offers outstanding levels of chemical and corrosion resistance. Once again, opting for materials which have successfully passed rigorous corrosion and chemical resistance tests is the best way to mitigate any potential risk. At this point, it is also worth mentioning that specifiers need to be aware of the UV-resistance as there is a likelihood this may hinder application performance if the correct material is not chosen.


“Stainless steel cable ties are more versatile than cable cleats and more likely to deliver consistent performance over time.”

By taking the above factors into consideration, this should help ensure the reliable performance of cable management solutions in a range of demanding industrial environments. That said, the need for durability must be balanced against the need for ease of installation. With cable cleats, these are geared more towards manual installation, which somewhat limits their efficiency compared to other solutions available on the market. In response to these requirements, HellermannTyton launched the HDT16, an ergonomically-designed tool which enables quick and safe installation of heavy duty MBT-series and AMT-series stainless steel cable ties up to 16mm wide. HellermannTyton’s on-site metal plate embossing printers have been specially designed for harsh industrial applications, ensuring that identification can take place in hazardous environments, where the surface of the cable tie and the marker may otherwise be subject to wear. This helps to ensure that text remains visible even with the presence of dirt, grease and paint. To streamline the installation process, specifiers are advised to reduce the risk of human error by selecting cable ties which can be quickly applied using specialist tools. In doing so, this can save time on installation while giving the reassurance that cables are secure. HellermannTyton,

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23/11/2017 11:28



SMARTLY DRESSED David Clark, managing director of Snickers Workwear, part of the Hultafors Group UK, discusses the benefits of wearable, high-tech fabrics for wellbeing and productivity on-site.


ith Google and Levi’s joint initiative Project Jacquard being typical of how ‘smart clothes’ are driving the development of the wearable technology industry, we’re now seeing weird and wonderful performance enhancing initiatives like yoga pants, powered sports bras, smart bikinis and even smart socks, compression shirts and posture-tracking shorts. It’s certainly a long way from boiler suits and jock straps, but indicative of how high-tech fabrics and wearable technology are becoming the norm in performance clothing. As Snickers Workwear leads the way with the trial of its Tracker-1 device and the KneeGuard system, wearable technology is here to stay in the working lives of professional tradesmen and women.

In fact, the results of a recent survey by research organisation Office Genie show the extent to which people are mindful of the role that wearable technology plays at work. And, while the benefits to personal wellbeing are now widely accepted, a key question remains, “Are wearables the answer to productivity?”

Get productive In the survey of over 1,000 employees, more than one-third (36%) of employee respondents cite increased productivity as a benefit of using wearable technology in the workplace. Additionally, 43% of respondents indicate employee wellness as a benefit of using wearable technology in the workplace, while 41% also cite health benefits. Furthermore, 69% of respondents aged 18-24 years old believe that wearable technology is beneficial in the workplace.

We have shown that wearable technology is certainly a major factor in helping to ensure personal wellbeing on-site. Our research and development goes on to show that the integration of wearables and hightech fabrics in working clothes does have a major influence on productivity.

Best performance As any athlete will tell you, when it comes to clothing, performance and comfort are closely linked. In fact, an athlete’s performance can improve by up to 26% through the use of the advanced 37.5 Technology fabric. The name 37.5 comes from the ideal relative humidity of the microclimate close to the skin – and the average person’s ideal core body temperature.  It’s a technology that cools when it’s warm, but warms when it’s cold. 37.5’s developers discovered that embedding activated carbon in fabrics speeds up the conversion of liquid to

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Workwear. The more comfortable our users are, the more productive they are likely to be, reducing the risk of mistakes and accidents. This technology suits our workwear perfectly with its superior absorption capabilities. We tested several similar technologies available on the market, but none of them were as responsive as 37.5.

Tried and tested

Can wearable technology be key to increasing productivity?

Snickers Workwear did both lab tests and live user tests on 37.5 before including the technology in its product range. We have had very positive feedback from users, highlighting the improved comfort of the fabric. This technology fits nicely into our strategy of offering the best workwear on the market, aimed at improving the user’s efficiency, comfort and productivity. It has unique features, and it feels great to be the first workwear manufacturer to launch it in the UK. Interweaving 37.5 Technology fabric into the latest LITEWork and ALLROUND garments means that you can wear clothes that excel at ventilation and moisture transportation to keep you working comfortably wherever you are on-site.

vapour, cooling you down when it is hot and warming you up when it is cold. Unlike conventional moisture-management fabrics, 37.5 Technology is all about preventing sweating in the first place. The problem with fabrics that absorb moisture is that they solve the problem after it has arisen. You sweat, and then they start to work. That’s too late. A fabric that knows what your body needs in advance is the solution. 37.5 Technology started in outdoor clothing, expanded into lifestyle and sportswear, and now it’s embedded into Snickers

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23/11/2017 09:59



BATTERY POWERED Power tool technology is tougher, faster and more advanced than ever before thanks to powerful Li-ion battery technology combined with brushless motors, explains Simon Miller, brand and product manager for Hitachi Power Tools.


hen powerful Lithium-ion (Li-ion) battery technology is combined with the benefits of brushless motors in cordless power tool ranges, electricians get more flexibility and choice out of their tools than ever before. Manufacturers are leading the way in providing this combination, providing tougher, faster and more advanced power tools with quick charging times and super-efficient motors. Hitachi, for instance, launched its 6.0Ah battery range, which has a 20% longer runtime than the equivalent 5.0Ah versions. These powerful batteries charge in just 38

minutes, giving electricians with two batteries in their kit an almost permanent power supply with the flexibility of cordless tools. Importantly, these batteries are lightweight too, reducing fatigue on any high volume drilling work electrical contractors may face. These modern 6.0Ah batteries have a long life, with up to 1,500 charge cycles expected. They also feature a multiplex protection circuit that prevents overload, overcharge and overdischarge, safeguarding the technology and also adding to a longer life expectancy, saving money for contractors in the long run. The best manufacturers make their batteries compatible with all of their 18V tools, meaning the tradesperson does not have to buy full replacements to take advantage of the extra power on offer.

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Image courtesy of Matt Lofthouse

Efficient thinking Alongside the introduction of 6.0Ah batteries, power tool manufacturers are turning their attention to developing extremely efficient electric motors to increase the performance of their products. Brushless motor technology on cordless and mains powered tools are improving efficiency, increasing safety and providing a longer life. This in turn drives user costs down for tradespeople such as electrical contractors. Traditional tools use brushed motors where the carbon brushes are in constant contact with the commutator during use. Strong and powerful the motors may be, but the design means friction between the brushes and the commutator is unavoidable during use. The result over time is a slight drop in speed, thermal energy losses and the production of sparks and heat. This friction will also of course mean that the brushes will need to be replaced as they wear out over time with use. Brushless motors can also be more powerful, as there is space to make the copper windings on the outside of the motor larger and there is none of the friction energy loss during use that brushed motors inevitably suffer from. The result is a more powerful, efficient and longer lasting power tool. A brushless motor can increase working time by up to 40% when used on those longer high-volume drilling jobs. Due to the more compact design compared to brushed motors, incorporating the brushless motor permits a reduction in size and weight of tools for easier handling. Not only that, the Hitachi brushless motor has large field effect transistors (FETs) and highly durable electronic circuits for superior durability. Brushless motors also improve dust proofing, which is important for installers as it gives the power tools a longer service life, saving time and money, not just in respect of cleaning the power tools, but replacing them too.

Safety first

"Brushless motor technology on cordless and mains powered tools are improving efficiency, increasing safety and providing a longer life."

There is another important advantage of brushless motors – increased operator safety and overload protection. Brushless motors don’t generate the same heat as there are no carbon brushes and they can’t be burnt out. They also offer better protection on kick-back control when operating. Some manufacturers also have power cut out technology, which keeps the operator safe too. Perhaps the area where the introduction of brushless technology has had most impact is in the cordless power tool sector. There’s nothing more frustrating than a power tool failing mid-job simply because it needs to be charged. With the huge improvement in efficiency this is no longer a pressing consideration. Brushless motors work particularly well in big cordless grinders and hammer drills because these tend to be overworked by users. Using brushless motors means the end user has more confidence in the battery, as they are not overworked.

The right tools For example, the WH18DBDL2 cordless impact driver hammering mechanism has three strikers making three impacts per rotation instead of the usual two, reducing vibration and improving user comfort. Its brushless motor with maximum tightening torque of 207Nm (hard) and four-mode speed selection means the impact driver is suitable for a variety of jobs from delicate to heavy duty work. The tool is designed with the centre of gravity positioned at the middle finger of the grip hand, making it well balanced and decreasing user fatigue. It also comes with an electric brake, three mode LED worklight and soft grip handle as standard. The rear fan cools the motor and hammer case for more durability and

the dust-protective cooling windows and plastic coating on some important inner parts means the product conforms to IP56 protection class ratings (dust and water resistance) for electrical equipment. The tools are backed up with added peace of mind thanks to a three-year warranty, subject to the tool being registered online within four weeks of purchase. When brushless motor technology is combined with powerful 6.0Ah Li-ion batteries, it leads to lower servicing and running costs for installers as well as improved safety and increased runtime in cordless tools.

Brushless motors can result in more efficient and longer lasting power tools

Hitachi Power Tools,

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SAW SPOT Graham Munro, technical support team leader of hole saw manufacturer, Starrett, explains how making the most of your hole saw can help you stand out from the crowd.


he number of electricians operating in the UK is on the rise. According to, in 2013 there were 234,000 electricians and electrical fitters across the country. By the end of 2016, there were 268,000. That’s a lot of competition. As a contractor, you don’t need me to tell you how important it is to leave customers with a good impression. Completing a job to a high standard and on time means more than just repeat business, it means referrals and positive brand recognition. Everything from keeping the work area clean and tidy to making sure your pricing is fair contributes to this.

However, in such a competitive landscape, you really have to make sure everything is efficient and effective. You may not think that your hole saw is ineffective, but if you’re not using the right hole saw for the right application you’re wasting time and money and risking making a mess of the job.

Don’t be just another brick in the wall Whether you’re running cables for a construction project, or a customer has chosen exposed brick work to fit their decor, cutting brick can be a nightmare. In a construction setting where the brick will be covered, the aesthetics may not seem that important, but weakening the structural integrity of the brick by cracking it will make you unpopular with site managers. On the opposite side, the visual appearance cannot be compromised if the brick work is on show.

"If you’re not using the right hole saw for the right application you’re wasting time and money."

You need to select a hole saw that is tough enough for the job and that will leave you with a clean surface finish on the entry and exit hole.

Have a night on the tiles After delivering the perfect finish when cutting through the brickwork, you might be ready to celebrate with a party. And, as we all know, all the best parties end up in the kitchen. However, that presents a completely new challenge for you and your hole saw. Ceramic tiles are fragile. Cutting small diameter holes to run cables in floor or wall tiles without damaging them is a headache. There are two things that can help to improve the process. The first is to choose a diamond edge tile drill. The uniform coating of synthetic diamond grit, bonded to a durable steel platform will produce a clean, uniform cut through tile. These blades cut quickly without relying on applying excess pressure.

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TOOLS & WORKWEAR However, using the best hole saw isn’t always enough to protect the integrity of the tile. That’s why we always recommend the use of a tile drill water bottle and diamond tile drill guide. The water bottle is designed to easily drop a small amount of liquid onto the tile and blade, to stop the tile drill getting too hot. A drill guide will eliminate hole saw ‘walking’ to prevent damage to work surfaces. Equipped with rubber feet, there is no risk to the tile and it will remain in place while you cut.

Don’t get plastered on the job With battery operated power tools, you should select a complete hole saw assembly that includes arbor, pilot drill and ejector spring for ease of use and to keep you efficient on the move. The Bi-Metal Cordless Smooth cut from Starrett, for example, is a complete hole saw and arbor assembly that has a safety stop at the base of the hole saw to prevent saw travel beyond the hole saw depth. Selecting something like the smooth cut also means you’re working with a blade that has a heat resistant high speed steel edge with alloy backing and eight teeth per inch (TPI). This means you can easily cut through thin stainless and mild sheet steel.


No need to ‘arbor any bad feeling Now, I know what you’re thinking. All of these hole saw changes are just a waste of time. Perhaps it’s better to just wing it and save the hassle. However, there is an answer to this problem too. Selecting an arbor that supports fast, tool-free changes between different diameters and types of hole saw, without adjustment of the drill chuck, makes working with the correct blade painless. Something like Starrett’s Ulti-Mate range, which includes arbors with pilot drills and hole saw adapters, ensures a quick change from one saw to the next. While we’re talking about being efficient, another simple thing that will help your hole saw help you is a core ejector. Simple but effective, a core ejector does what it says on the tin and ejects the core from a hole saw after completion of a cut. By not having to waste time battling to remove a core that has become wedged in a hole saw, you’re not losing time on a job and you’re eliminating the risk of personal injury or damage to the hole saw. Kitting your saw out with accessories like a core ejector add those little extra touches that really make your power tools earn their keep and help you impress clients. For example, you should also consider using a debris collector.

No need to mask risk areas prior to sawing, no debris spread during cutting and no clean up afterwards. Come to think of it, there’s no good reason why you aren’t you already using one. Every little thing you change about the way you use your hole saw will make a massive difference to your efficiency on-site and the quality of your work. When you’re up against so much competition, you can’t afford to not pay attention to the small details.

When it comes to saving time and improving performance onsite, using the right equipment can make all the difference


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23/11/2017 10:01



POWERING THE SMART REVOLUTION Leo Craig, general manager at Riello UPS, explains how uninterruptible power supply (UPS) can offer a cost-effective solution to the problems that might be seen in our smart industrial and manufacturing environments.


owering the industrial and manufacturing sector has always been challenging. The effects of poor power quality have caused problems in the past, such as issues in process control PLCs crashing and causing extensive damage to expensive production equipment and tools, all of which can result in instances of downtime. Downtime can come at a significant cost for manufacturers, with some statistics showing that just one

unplanned event can cost in the region of £1.6 million. These problems are still present – more so perhaps with the restricted capacity of the National Grid and the introduction of renewables into the mix – which means more grid switching to manage supply and demand.

Manufacturing digitalisation The prevalence of voltage sags and surges and voltage spikes along with microbreaks in the power because of grid switching are arguably more challenging with the introduction of Industry 4.0 (the fourth

industrial revolution) as data centres and IT infrastructure converge with traditional manufacturing processes to create smart industry and factories. Power protection in the manufacturing world is, therefore, every bit as critical as in the data centre world. The impact on the manufacturing business can be extremely costly if the right power protection is not in place. When most business managers think about power protection, they automatically think of power cuts, but the National Grid is actually pretty reliable and power failures only tend to occur when factors, such as extreme weather, come into play.

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While a single event may not cause any noticeable damage, it’s the cumulative bombardment of voltage spikes and voltage fluctuations that will eventually lead to early failure of the equipment. Also, just a simple dip or micro break in the voltage can cause certain production runs to be ruined. In the pharmaceutical industry, for example, when producing a batch of a very expensive drug, in the manufacture of technical glass or in the production of semiconductors, a small dip in the voltage will cause an imperfection in the finished product, making it unusable and could even result in the batch being discarded altogether. Even in steel or brick production, if there is a micro break in the power that causes the furnace controllers to shut down, the process has to be stopped. The material being processed will be scrapped and the whole process started again, which can take days and be very costly.

The role of the UPS

Powering industry However, the impact of voltage spike and high frequency noise, combined with voltage sags and surges can have an unforeseen impact on computers, servers and sensitive manufacturing equipment and manufacturing processes. A common issue is infantile failure of equipment, where the equipment basically fails well before its expected end of life. This is often caused – but not attributed to – poor power quality, with mains spikes continuously hitting sensitive semiconductors and processors.

So, can the uninterruptible power supply (UPS) offer a cost-effective solution to the problems we may see in our smart industrial and manufacturing environments? The answer is yes, but not necessarily in a traditional way. The main issue with UPSs is that they contain sealed lead acid batteries which store power. In the event of a power failure, the batteries kick in so that the UPS continues to supply power for 10 minutes (or more) to affect a controlled shutdown. Perfect for the data centre environment, but because the batteries must be maintained at 20°C, they should not be sited just anywhere. This often causes issues in a manufacturing facility.

“Power protection in the manufacturing world is every bit as critical as in the data centre world.”


however, be avoided by selecting an online UPS device. These products operate as a voltage conditioner and run without batteries, meaning that they can operate in temperatures up to 40°C. Other benefits of online UPS units are that they take up less space and are a lot lighter, and more cost effective since they do not require a rack full of lead acid batteries. A UPS without batteries gives the same high-level protection against poor mains quality with the exception of a full power outage and can be installed in harsher environments with higher operating temperatures. This makes the UPS without batteries a far more cost-effective voltage conditioning solution to the more traditional methods of electro mechanical auto voltage regulators (AVR) or dynamic voltage regulators (DVR) So, if your production facility or process needs clean, stable power and you are not worried about total power failure, the UPS as a voltage conditioner will give very fast-acting (virtually instantaneous) voltage stabilisation (no sags or surges), it will correct frequency and wave shape faults, protect against voltage spikes and high frequency noise, and cover micro breaks of typically 20mSec and up to 40mSecs in some cases. Finally, the UPS can even be used as a frequency converter from 50hz to 60Hz or vice versa. Riello UPS,

Online UPS benefits More importantly, the problems that manufacturing processes really want to protect against – micro breaks, spikes, sags and surges in voltage – are now known to cause early equipment failure or imperfections in production. This can,

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PASSING THE TORCH Is the UPS industry making the most of apprentices? Kevin Wilson, managing director of Constant Power Services, discusses the importance of seasoned tradespeople imparting their expertise to the next generation.


pprenticeships are not a new thing, but it feels somewhat an untapped area or at least one that doesn’t seem to receive the attention it should. The subject was highlighted only recently by the government with the plans to introduce an apprenticeship levy, which at present affects businesses which have a payroll of over three million – but what if you don’t have this? What if you have never considered an apprenticeship programme within your workplace? How has the baton of knowledge been passed from generation to generation within companies and why do we need to look at opening doors for the young to carry out apprenticeship programmes? Apprenticeships are the gateway to a lifelong career that enables the skills and knowledge to be retained

and new blood to bring new ideas and viewpoints to the work place. Something new can be learned everyday if you are open to the prospect of learning; today, according to the Department of Education, there were over 600,000 students aged 18+ taking and achieving A-levels. This is a huge potential new resource to train to become the next big thing and gives employers one of the most desired results. A pool of talent which will have some direct hands-on experience of the work place, with up-to-date skills gained from experienced employees rather than a list of exam results which although show academic understanding of a subject, don’t always show the person in a working environment. We should also consider that knowledge can be built up over time, and within a company we can find that one person or maybe more (if you are lucky) that have acquired a fantastic knowledge of the

service or product you offer. This isn’t to say just a technical knowledge but a best use, a history of installations and customers with great, good or bad experiences. This person becomes the ‘guru’ whereby all staff young and old seek wisdom and insight into problems that they themselves have not faced but others have and have come out of the other side, problem fixed and another lesson learned.

How can the UPS industry make the most of highly skilled staff?

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UPS & POWER DISTRIBUTION Within Constant Power Services, we have a large percentage of staff who have worked for the company for over 10 years and furthermore several who have exceeded over 15 years. During that time, the UPS industry has seen the product change from just being a method of ensuring business continuity – an insurance policy if you will – to units that are highly efficient, green and energy saving products that have the interface to provide data and useful information to a business, and also ensure the continuity and stability of a business. Our staff, my colleagues, hold a wealth of product and installation knowledge which simply cannot be ignored. This knowledge cannot be bought or even passed on in a training session, as it is only information that comes to light periodically and not documented anywhere, only in the vast and expanding library of the brains and memories of those that have worked for some considerable time either within your organisation or within the industry with which you do business. A book or a training manual can tell you how things should work in a perfect world, however the complexities of a UPS and various site conditions can cause problems and it is important to remember that not every install is the same. Although the same rules and regulations apply with regards to health and safety, risk and methods of install, electrical installations from one contractor to another can vary significantly according to the knowledge

or training of that person, learning how to deal with these irregularities can only come through experience. These gurus of the workplace hold within their minds years of project configurations, installations – good and bad – and not to mention product developments, enhancements and so on, along with the reason for the changes. Some of these changes or developments may well have originated from a job or a project they were involved in that didn’t go exactly to plan and an adjustment needed to be made in the production of the product in order for other installations to run smoothly. Insights gathered from the field are invaluable, and companies listen with interest to the feedback obtained. Within the UPS industry, competition and alternative products are readily available with varying specifications, but the difference Constant Power Services can offer is not just to supply a product but a solution, project management and years of knowledge regarding installs and project work. So why do we not consider taking an apprentice, someone willing to learn and to absorb all the information from the guru within the workplace? Having constant interaction and consultation alongside a planned and specified course will only enhance the learning experience. Not to mention the fact that the resource that has been available for years will now be more involved and will pass on years of experience and knowledge in a natural, non-classroom environment.

“The complexities of a UPS and various site conditions can cause problems and it is important to remember that not every install is the same.”

Learning whilst working helps to create a lifelong desire and the want to continue to learn, acquire new skills and knowledge, with many individuals continuing to study and take courses throughout their career. Our own company has experience of staff undertaking adult learning to gain more knowledge, and has found over 20% of our staff are currently undertaking additional qualifications. Within the electrical industry and specifically the UPS industry, we have many skill sets and qualifications that can be undertaken whilst working. Further information regarding apprenticeship programmes can be obtained via the www. website and through local colleges and universities.


Learning on-thejob can prove an invaluable way of skilling up employees

Constant Power Services Ltd,

Metrel, providing affordable Power Quality & Energy Management solutions Measuring and analysing power quality has never been more important. Understanding the interactions between end use equipment and electrical distribution systems, external electromagnetic interferences, resonant states between electrical circuits and other related factors, all call for a need to be analysed in order that harmful consequences can be omitted or prevented. When any electrical system fails to meet its purpose, it’s time to investigate the problem, find the cause and initiate corrective action. Metrel’s range of power quality analysers, MI 2892, MI 2885, MI 2883 provide: • Voltage & Power quality analysis to EN 50160 • Compliance with power quality standard IEC 61000-4-30 Class A/S • Long term analysis • Harmonic distortion • Predictive maintenance • Waveform recording (MI 2892 / MI 2885) • Inrush current (MI 2892 / MI 2885) • Transients (MI 2892) All units are provided with/without flexible current clamps and Metrel’s powerful PowerView3 software, for downloading, view, analysis of recorded data real-time scope and EN 50160 compliant report creation. Whatever the requirement, Metrel provide a complete range of digital power quality analysers for 1 – 2 – and 3 – phase electrical supply systems Editorial_PQA_Metrel_2016.indd 1

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WHY UPS MATTERS Jason Koffler from Critical Power Supplies explains why uninterruptible power supply systems are vital for all types of businesses.


ith today’s 24/7 operations, businesses need a consistent power supply on a daily basis. What if they aren’t getting the power supply they need? Many businesses now rely on constant production, whether it’s providing online services or hosting, or fast paced logistics and manufacturing. Any power failure in a single step can cause cost intensive downtime, losing sales, business and increasing costs. Just-in-time supply chains are even more at risk – just a tiny hiccup can affect production dramatically. For the manufacturing industry, it’s not just those with 24/7 operations that benefit from uninterruptible power supplies. The large machinery used in most industrial processes is also more susceptible to power problems, causing transients, harmonics, brownouts, and electrical distortions. With this in mind, it’s critical that businesses protect themselves from any interruptions in their power supply, which is where finding the right UPS becomes so important. A uninterruptible power supply (UPS) is a system that provides emergency power when the input power source or mains power fails. This differs from an emergency power system or standby generator as the devices provide near-instantaneous protection from input power interruptions. UPS solutions not only even out voltage and frequency issues, but also provide an excellent way of buying time so that businesses can react to a power event. Although the battery runtime of some uninterruptible power sources are varied and can be relatively short (up to several hours), this normally gives organisations sufficient time to start a standby power source or properly shut down equipment. Should there be a dip in supply or even a power surge, a UPS gives businesses time to prepare to shut down applications, start a generator or enable machines to get to a safe stage in their process. Without this essential contingency, manufacturing processes and IT hardware could be significantly damaged. This can result in what would be a potential small bill from the cost of a UPS, to suddenly becoming an expensive mission critical issue. With the advent of high efficiency solutions, a UPS can save a business the investment cost and, when chosen from the Technology List, can be off set against profit.

Individual UPS needs

“Unplanned downtime can cost from well over £15,000 to several millions depending on the size of the organisation.”

Depending on the type of business – whether data centre, commercial practice or manufacturer – UPS needs can vary dramatically. For example, there are significant differences between industrial UPS soutions and those found in commercial, computer or data processing environments. Anticipated design life is one. Industrial plant machinery and systems are designed to last for 15-20 years, whereas in comparison technology advances mean computer systems become quickly obsolete. Industrial UPSs also need to cope with environmental conditions associated with heavy-duty territories or potentially harmful dust, dirt or chemicals. Initially more expensive to buy and install, industrial UPSs have considerably lower lifetime costs and total cost of ownership than standard commercial systems. A generator may also be needed. There are many reliable power generators that are available in the marketplace, all suiting different types of businesses, operating differently in different environments including their efficiency and how synchronised they are with other power protection equipment. For example, one of the great features of a combined generator and UPS-enabled critical power path is a reduced threeto-five minutes UPS battery set and the generator fuel tank sized from eight hours to days. Adding a generator to a critical

power path installs an extra valuable layer of resiliency in your power design. Even if a business already has a UPS, it needs to ensure in-life management and regular maintenance to keep the system working efficiently. Leaving the system too long without maintenance or upgrades can seriously affect its capability to deal with interruptions in power supply. Maintenance contracts to enable better working systems, such as a regular maintenance service, ensures that the longer life of the system provides a welcome peace of mind for the customer. Critical Power Supplies offers a wide range of products, including an extensive off-the-shelf stock of critical parts, spares and ancillary products. With customers ranging from corporates to end-users, we work with M&E consultants, quantity surveyors, electrical contractors, right the way through to distributors and resellers. All of our power solutions are backed by an extensive service network, providing 24/7 support and monitoring. Given that the average unplanned downtime can cost from well over £15,000 to several millions depending on the size of the organisation, UPS solutions are a necessary addition to a business. They will recover the upfront cost and provide essential peace of mind that is hard to put a value on.

UPS solutions can prove vital to a whole host of businesses

Critical Power Supplies,

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Critical POWER Supplies

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ARE YOU FEELING LUCKY TODAY? The powerLottery is the Electrical Industries Charity number one fundraising stream. Every £1 pledge is an entry into the monthly prize draw, this is a fun way to support the charity. By signing up to play today you are helping us to support your industry community with a hand-up in times of need.


#POWEROF1 The Lottery is promoted by the Promoter and conducted for the benefit of the Electrical Industries Charity Limited, Company Number 02726030, Registered Office 36 Tanner Street, London SE1 3LD and the Electrical Industries Charity Limited, Company Number SC038811, Registered Office 36 Tanner Street, London SE1 3LD. The Electrical Industries Charity Lottery (“the Lottery”) will be operated as a subscription based Society Lottery under the Gambling Act 2005 as amended (“the Act”) and is licensed by the Gambling Commission (Reference 20387).

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LIGHT UP YOUR WORLD WITH CP (ELECTRIC) LED LIGHTING CP (Electric) has released the first products in its LED lighting portfolio, consisting of torches and work lights. The LED torches are small and compact yet robust and powerful, with a choice of two light outputs on each unit, LED and COB with a maximum of 80 lumens from the LPEN and 180 lumens from the LTORCH. Both versions have a magnetic base and hook to allow for hands-free use whilst the LTORCH can be angled 180 degrees. Both units are supplied complete with batteries and ready to use. The portable, rechargeable work lights in 10W and 20W versions are IP65 rated and can be rotated and angled on their base. Powered by COB chips (900 and 1,800 lumens) with 120-degree beam angle and up to four-hour working time. These powerful LED lights are an ideal addition to any electrician’s pocket, toolbox or van. For further information visit

FULHAM LAUNCHES NEW LED 25W UNIVERSAL MAINS DIMMABLE DRIVER Fulham Europe has launched a new LED 25W universal mains dimmable driver. The driver has been cleverly designed to auto-detect and work reliably with TRIAC, leading edge and trailing edge dimmers, potentiometers and 0-10V dimming controls. It is fully software controlled to analyse the behaviour of all dimmers and is able to dim as low as 12mA. As part of the Fulham LumoSeries family of drivers, the new dimmable driver features the lowest inrush current in the industry, meaning that more drivers and luminaires can be operated on a single circuit. With dimensions of just 110 x 52 x 23.5mm, the lightweight plastic cased LED dimmable driver features surge protection, and a low ripple design for flickerfree lighting. It has a very wide output voltage and current, making it suitable for a wide range of LED luminaires. It is suitable for COB arrays through to LED strips. For further information visit


FLUKE 279 FC TRMS THERMAL MULTIMETER LIMITED TIME SPECIAL OFFER Until December 31 2017, Fluke is reducing the recommended price of its 279 FC TRMS thermal multimeter from £839 to £669. The 279 FC TRMS is the first test tool to integrate a full-featured true-RMS (TRMS) digital multimeter (DMM) with a thermal camera in one device to speed troubleshooting. It is also a member of the Fluke Connect family of wireless test tools. The Fluke 279 FC allows technicians to quickly and safely check for hot spots in fuses, wires, insulators, connectors, splices and switches with the imager, and then troubleshoot and analyse issues with the DMM. The 279 FC TRMS features 15 electrical measurement functions including AC/DC voltage, resistance, continuity, capacitance, diode test, min/max and frequency. The CAT III 1,000V, CAT IV 600V safety rated thermal multimeter has a rechargeable lithium ion battery that lasts up to a full work day (10+ hours) under normal conditions. For further information visit

MERIDIAN LED LANTERNS AND HALF LANTERNS BY C.E.D. The extensive Meridian LED range by C.E.D. includes both lanterns and half lanterns suitable for commercial and domestic environments. Full lanterns are available in a black or white finish and supplied with or without PIRs. Fitted with 14-piece SMD chips, a 7W warm white colour rendition delivers 500 lumens with a beam angle of 120 degrees. With the exception of a white PIR option, there is an identical half lantern range with the same high level of technical specifications. In addition, there are two further black half lanterns fitted with opal diffusers – an 8W standard version and a 9W PIR option, both with cool white colour rendition and the same 120-degree beam angle. This full range of polycarbonate lanterns is IP44 rated, CE approved and RoSH compliant. Each lantern has been designed to deliver a life of 30,000 hours and is backed with a full twoyear guarantee. For further information visit

ESP EXPANDS POPULAR WI-FI DOOR STATION RANGE ESP’s latest launch sees an addition to its Wi-Fi door station product with a new version in a matte black finish. The Wi-Fi door station allows customers to view and talk to visitors at their home whether they are on the premises or on the other side of the world. From a smart phone or tablet and using the free ESP app, property owners can easily see who is at the door or gate, engage in two-way communication and allow remote access if desired. The Wi-Fi door station comes in a kit form containing everything required for the installer to quickly and simply get the system up and running, including the Wi-Fi door station, power supply, 10DB Wi-Fi antenna, micro SD card (pre-installed) and LAN terminal. The HD camera provides high definition colour image, while the external 10db Wi-Fi antenna provides a method of strong Wi-Fi connection. For further information visit

LEWDEN PALAZZOLI CABLE GROMMETS NOW AVAILABLE NATIONWIDE Lewden Palazzoli cable grommets are now available for the company’s Amendment 3 compliant metal consumer units. The grommets create a seal around the cable that maintains IP4X ingress protection and are manufactured using tough thermoplastic (TPE-A) and glow wire tested to 960°C. Grommets are available in packs of 10 in two sizes, small 25x40mm (ref CUGR-4025) and large 50x50mm (ref CUGR-5050). Lewden’s QFS range of metal consumer units have been designed to be aesthetically pleasing and unobtrusive. The QFS range includes six enclosure modular sizes – 4, 8, 10, 12, 16, and 21 – with terminal bars clearly marked and positioned at the top of the base. The QFS range has a maximum of 19 usable ways in a variety of layouts that include populated RCBO, +MCB, RCCB, dual flexi main switch, split load board and empty enclosures for housing modular components or to allow on-site design and assembly of one-offs. For further information visit

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WIELAND DESIGN CABLING FOR FORTH ROAD BRIDGE Wieland Electric were approached by the main electrical contractors on the £1.4 billion refurbishment of the Forth Road Bridge crossing over the Firth of Forth in Scotland for the design and supply of a cabling solution for the lighting system across the bridge. Working closely with the installers, Wieland designed and created a system to channel power and control cabling for the decorative lighting across the bridge. Using products from its RST range, Wieland provided its RST Classic for power to the new Thorn luminaires installed over the bridge and RST Mini for the DMX control of nearly 3,000 fittings over the bridge. Having worked with many projects using DMX technology, Wieland was able to design the system so that the power and DMX supplies could not be cross matched. Wieland’s structured wiring solution has significantly reduced logistical constraints and costs, whilst reducing the project’s on-site health and safety risks. For further information visit

ZUMBOTEL GROUP PROVIDES DOUBLE ACT FOR UNIVERSITY TECHNOLOGY CENTRE Thorn Lighting and Zumtobel Lighting, both part of the Zumbotel Group, have supplied a range of fittings to the new, £6.8 million state-of-the-art Lincoln Science and Innovation Park Boole Technology Centre. Thorn and Zumtobel were chosen for the project for their ability to supply ‘fit for purpose’ luminaires for every area of the building, in addition to a full design service. The client’s brief called for modern and highly efficient architectural LED products internally and externally in order to promote the building as a highly efficient and sustainable working space. To ensure that the final scheme achieved all of the requirements, Thorn and Zumtobel came up with a scheme that used luminaires designed to ensure required illuminance levels are maintained, whilst equal emphasis was given to the total cost of ownership of the lighting installation through selection of luminaires with efficient optics, combined with efficient light sources that offer a long life and extended maintenance cycles. For further information visit


EUROPA COMPONENTS LAUNCHES MERSEN SURGE PROTECTION DEVICES Europa Components is proud to announce its launch of Mersen Surge Trap modular, din rail mountable, surge protection devices – available in Type 1&2, Type 2 and Type 2&3 pluggable versions (single phase Type 2&3 is monobloc non-pluggable). These form the core of the Mersen range and are available for both TT/TN and TN earthing systems. Replacement cartridges are also stocked. All pluggable products have reversible chassis for top or bottom cable entry, mechanically coded cartridges to avoid cartridge replacement errors and, in addition, feature visual and remote end-of-life indicators (single phase Type 2&3 monobloc features visual indicators only). Technical specifications include 12.5kA per phase lightning impulse current, with a maximum discharge current of 50kA per phase. With CE approval and meeting IEC/EN 61643-11 standards, Mersen SPDs are ideally suited to domestic and commercial sectors. For further information visit

ERA EVERYWHERE MAKES ONLINE ORDERING A BREEZE Home security specialist ERA is celebrating the launch of a new online ordering site, providing exclusive access to over 8,000 home security products, as well as the company’s Fab & Fix range of door and window ironmongery. ERA has developed the new system to make ordering more efficient, allowing customers to place orders with them at any time of the day, wherever they are in the world. “With next-day delivery and 24/7 access, the ERA Everywhere online ordering site allows customers to place an order at the click of a button. From a personalised dashboard, account holders can manage their trade account online and access essential information, including recent invoices and delivery details,” says marketing manager, Tania Tams. To apply for an online trade account with ERA, visit the account forms page of the ERA Everywhere website and fill in the online registration form. For further information visit

Electrical contractors can now achieve presence detection for ranges up to 15m after CP Electronics, the leading manufacturer of lighting controls, developed a new range of ceiling-mounted, mid-range passive infrared (PIR) detectors. Drawing on the success of CP’s acclaimed series of ceiling mounted PIR presence detectors, the company’s EBDMR features a domed lens which allows for greater detection. This design feature is particularly effective when the product is installed within open plan spaces. For many applications, where there are only two or three luminaires, one single EBDMR detector may cover the entire room. The EBDMR range has been designed in a variety of RAL colours, versatile enough to cover a range of different applications. They have been manufactured by CP to have a built-in light level lux sensor, which ensures the lighting remains switched off when sufficient levels of natural light are detected. For further information visit

AIRFLOW LAUNCHES DIGITAL HOT WIRE ANEMOMETER Airflow Developments has introduced its new digital hot wire anemometer, the AL-BD1. The versatile tool is the ideal solution to measure airflow in restricted areas within industrial and commercial environments due to its slim sensor with extendable handle. It can be used for a variety of industries including electric power, steel and petrochemical. The AL-BD1 is an easy-to-use, multifunctional digital hot wire anemometer that can measure standard air velocity, temperature and flow as well as maximum and minimum wind velocity and maximum and average wind speed. Once measurements have been recorded, the interface ensures quick conversion of readings’ measurement unit. The device also has a datahold function that allows the user to keep current readings. The AL-BD1 can store up to 350 records and has a USB port, enabling it to connect with any compatible device where further data can be saved/exported. For further information visit

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MT CABLE CATCHERS MAKE SITE WORK SAFER Innovative cable catchers are the latest product launched by market-leading cable management manufacturer Marshall-Tufflex. Cable catchers are designed to lift trailing cables off the floor and remove site trip hazards during the construction and installation stages of a new build or retrofit project, allowing electrical contractors to work safely and in-line with Health and Safety Executive recommendations. The product comes in two variants: • Cable Catcher Hanger holds up to nine 110V arctic cables with a maximum load of 5kg. Hang from scaffolding, cable trays and ceiling grids, space every two metres. • Cable Catcher Patch is designed for finished surfaces and holds up to six 110V arctic cables with a maximum load of 1kg. Fix with damage-free adhesive backing on to dry, dust-free finished surfaces. Space every two metres. Pull adhesive tape tab to remove. Marshall-Tufflex prides itself on supplying high quality, high performance trunking solutions that are quick and easy for electrical contractors to install.


LIGHT EFFICIENT DESIGN SETS PRICE PERFORMANCE STANDARD FOR RETROFIT LED LAMPS Light Efficient Design UK Limited high quality retrofit LED corn lamps are more efficient than ever. Compared to a typical 100W imported corn lamp, Light Efficient Design’s equivalent product uses just 65W to produce similar lumens for a cost lower price. In addition to delivering superior energy efficiency and an unbeatable 90 pence per 100 lumens, Light Efficient Design’s product boasts a host of other as-standard features and benefits including five-year warranty and an enhanced light quality with 4,000k rather than 6,000K colour temperature (CT). The product’s enclosed LED design and integral maglev cooling fan ensures a guaranteed minimum 50,000 hour/five-year lifetime and tested and approved for use in enclosed fittings without danger of overheating. The product is also fully CE/ROHS tested and LM79 LM80 data compliant to provide users genuine photometry. Samples are available from UK stock as part of the 60-day trial programme. For further information visit

For further information visit

SNICKERS BODY-MAPPING CLIMATE CONTROL WORKWEAR IDEAL FOR WINTER A change of season means a change of focus on what you wear on-site, so Snickers FLEXIWork, RUFFWork, LITEWork and ALLROUND workwear ensures you keep your cool when the heat is on or warm and comfortable when the temperature drops. Interweaving 37.5 technology fabric into Snickers’ working clothes means that there’s a wide choice of waterproof and windproof jackets, mid-layer fleeces and stretch hoodies. Plus base-layer undergarments, gloves and headgear that excel at ventilation and moisture transportation to keep you working comfortably wherever you are on-site. So, to make sure you get the right protection, flexibility, durability and ventilation, check out the newest workwear in the latest Snickers autumn brochure for precisely the right garments to fit your workday. For further information visit www. or call the Snickers Helpline on 01484 854788

NEW LIMITED EDITION MULTIFUNCTION KITS FROM MARTINDALE Now available from Martindale Electric is its latest promotional range of multifunction kits, including all the essential equipment to securely verify the safety of electrical installations. The special edition kits, which are available with either ET4000 or ET4500 rechargeable multifunction testers, include a free Martindale VT25 voltage and continuity tester and a Martindale LOKKITBASE. The kits fit in the Test and Go carry case. Martindale multifunction testers simplify 17th Edition testing by having the latest Zs loop impedance values built-in together with red and green LED indicators for instant pass/fail results. The VT25 is a compact two-pole tester for measuring AC/DC voltages from 12V to 690V. Capabilities include continuity and phase rotation testing plus single pole voltage detection. The VT25 conforms to the latest safety standards and includes removable probe caps for GS38 compliance. Included in the offer is the six piece LOKKIT BASE, which includes three different Martindale MCB locks, which cater for most standard MCBs. For more information visit

FREE FLUKE CLAMP METER WITH A FLUKE INSULATION TESTER Until December 31 2017, Fluke is offering a FLK-1507/323 KIT which comprises a compact, rugged and easy-to-use Fluke 1507 insulation tester with a free, rugged trueRMS 323 clamp meter. The Fluke 1507 insulation tester, with its multiple test voltages, is ideal for a wide range of electrical installation, troubleshooting, commissioning, and preventative maintenance applications. The Fluke 323 true-RMS clamp meter is the ideal general troubleshooting tool for commercial and residential electricians and is designed to verify the presence of load current, AC voltage, and continuity of circuits, switches, fuses and contacts. The Fluke 1507 insulation tester features automatic ‘one-button’ calculation of polarisation index and dielectric absorption ratio, and also has a compare (pass/fail) function designed to ease repetitive testing. The Fluke 1507 provides insulation resistance testing up to 10GOhms, with five output voltages ranging from 50V to 1,000V. It also offers a continuity test function at 200mA for rapid circuit testing. For further information visit

KLEIN TOOLS BAGS INDUSTRY AWARD FOR BRANCH MARKETING CAMPAIGN Klein Tools has scooped the title of Marketing Initiative of the Year 2017 at this year’s Electrical Industry Awards, for its Buy Today, Win Today campaign. Klein Tools was shortlisted in two categories at the awards – including Trade Tool of the Year for its Pro Tool Bag with Light. Klein Tools’ winning marketing campaign, Buy Today, Win Today, was devised by its European distributor partner Super Rod. Launched in October 2016, the campaign centred around the giveaway of Klein Tools’ prizes to every CEF customer spending over £50 on its products. The campaign created an uplift in Klein Tools sales for participating branches, and gave customers an instant reward for buying Klein Tools. The Buy Today, Win Today campaign was supported by traditional advertising, social media and digital marketing, plus in-store promotional materials for participating branches. For further information visit

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CUTTING-EDGE INTEGRATED LED DOWNLIGHT BY SCOLMORE Scolmore’s Inceptor Omni fire-rated downlight combines existing technology with cutting edge features and a highly competitive price. Inceptor Omni’s key features are an adjustable colour temperature switch, allowing the selection of colour temperatures to suit the installation; interchangeable fixed and adjustable bezels; and an insulation support clip for use when insulation is present. Colour temperature switch – a built-in, three position switch allows for instant change of the colour temperature. In utilising the latest chip on board (COB) LED lighting technology, and using a faceted front lens, Scolmore has modified the single point of light to give a dichroic effect, resulting in a halogen type illumination. Bezel options – each Inceptor Omni has the option for a fixed or adjustable bezel. A simple twist and lock feature means the bezel can be quickly and easily replaced. Insulation support clip – the removable insulation support clip fixes directly onto the Omni. For further information visit

CUTTING-EDGE LIGHTING – THE BRAND NEW FLIGHT BY NATIONAL LIGHTING National Lighting has extended its Flight range with the addition of a brand new daylight harvesting LED panel, which automatically adjusts the light output to achieve a target LUX level by sensing the amount of natural light in the room. A must-have fitting for property developers and business owners, the Flight guarantees an optimum light level at all times, at a fraction of the cost. It can be easily adjusted from 100 LUX to 450 LUX (in 50 LUX steps) by using DIP switches on installation. Cleverly designed, this dimmable fitting uses edge-lit technology and has an ultra slim profile that makes it suitable for T-bar ceilings. The Flight provides a great, automated control of lights that ticks all the right boxes – efficiency, energy saving and sustainability. For further information visit

STAINLESS STEEL FLEXIBLE CONDUIT OFFERS LOW FIRE HAZARD PERFORMANCE Flexicon’s new FSS stainless steel, annularly corrugated, flexible conduit system is ideal for applications and markets requiring highly flame retardant performance, due to its all-metallic construction, with high levels of ingress protection and superior corrosion performance. The new range has an IP rating of IP68, offers high-impact and compression strength of 1,000kg/100mm and a high tensile or pull off strength of 100kg. Other features include an operating temperature range of between -100oC to 400oC, UV light resistance, oil resistance, anti-static properties and EMC screening. For rail applications, it meets EN 45545-2 HL3, the highest hazard rating for a reaction to fire and is also compliant with the US National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) standard 130 for Fixed Guideway Transit and Passenger Rail Systems. The FSS conduit is available in diameters from 20mm up to 50mm with a range of connection and termination options. For further information visit

WIELAND MAKE A CONNECTION TO LINKEDIN Wieland Electric has supplied a wide range of its popular gst electrical connectors for the new €85 million LinkedIn international headquarters development in Wilton Place, Dublin. The electrical system for the project was designed and locally supplied by Core Electrical Ltd. The new building utilises a fully pluggable modular wiring solution that integrates all the building’s general services power, lighting, DALI protocol and solar shading building control. Wieland’s plug and play systems also power the flexible underfloor to desk power distribution, which was provided by Core as well. The result is a safe, unobtrusive and functional power solution to the 1,250 workstations that has also achieved up to 70% savings in labour. Wieland worked closely with Core Electrical to deliver the specified solution on time and at optimised costs, exceeding the client’s requirements. All fittings were supplied fully tested and ready to connect to allow for easy installation. For further information visit

CELLS – VERSATILE URBAN CHIC LIGHTING BY REGGIANI Reggiani CELLS is inspired by the cellular eye structure of a dragonfly. Engineered to offer the broadest range of design options and uses in single or multiple inter-connected modules, from rugged bulkhead (IK10) to bespoke, architectural installations, indoors or out (IP66). Recessed or surface-mounted on ceilings and/or walls, CELLS can be individually assembled to achieve the ideal lighting solution. Light distribution can be narrow, medium or wide, with an output of up to 2,300 lumens, a choice of colour temperature of either 3,000K or 4,000K and an impressive CRI of >80. The base unit will take a standard electrical conduit and can also be used as a junction box. It comes in raw aluminium but offers optional finishes in white, grey or graphite with a clear or opalescent diffuser allowing further control of the final light output and distribution. Control system options include simple on/off operation, DALI, Dim1-10V, Phasecut and Bluetooth.

TRIDONIC LAUNCHES LLE AC MODULES OFFERING COMPLETE PACKAGE FOR LUMINAIRE UPGRADES Tridonic has announced the launch of its LLE AC G1 modules, the first economic single-component solution tailored to linear luminaires. The slim construction, integrated electronics and availability in different lengths open up a wide range of designs for elegant low-profile luminaires. This solution offers a simple upgrade option for conventional T5/T8 fluorescent luminaires. With Tridonic’s AC range for linear lighting, the driver is already integrated on the board and the module is self-cooling. Therefore it is ideal for quick and direct installation in the luminaire – either for upgrading from T5/T8 to LEDs or for replacing existing LED modules. For upgrading two-lamp luminaires, the range includes modules with a particularly high lumen output of up to 7,500 lumens. There is also choice of high-quality covers for a wide range of lighting tasks – shelf lighting for example. The ACL Linear diffuser cover provides homogeneous distribution of light. For further information visit

For further information visit

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KNOWLEDGE IS POWER TechTalks are handy, informative seminars aimed at anyone operating within the electrical industry. Our presenters deliver a number of technical seminars throughout the day to keep you up-to-date and ahead of the competition. TOPICS INCLUDE: BS 7671 – The 18th Edition

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Exceptional lighting control solutions for any space



Mid Range PIRs

Long Range PIRs



High Bay PIRs

Batten Mount PIRs

Flush Mount Microwave

Surface Mount Microwave





CP Electronics offers building-wide control As a leader in energy saving lighting controls since 1970, CP Electronics engineer and manufacture cutting-edge presence detectors for a wide range of applications. From small offices and corridors, to warehouses and sports stadiums, we offer a variety of passive infrared (PIR) and microwave presence detectors that are designed to reduce the amount of time lighting is left on unnecessarily. Controlling any light source, any building, any space.

16500 Detector Untitled-3 1 range advert - ECN.indd 1

Contact us today or visit T: +44 (0)333 900 0671 or

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ECN December 2017  
ECN December 2017  

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