ECN February 2020

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The revolutionary new junction box for lighting

VOLUME 40 NO. 02 • FEBRUARY 2020




22 COMPETITION Win a VIP day at the Superbikes, courtesy of Hager



LEARN HOME AUTOMATION INSTALLATION IN A DAY As more Brits than ever embrace smart home technology, an understanding of its potential is growing – with 66% of respondents to a recent Legrand survey admitting to owning at least one smart device. For many electrical contractors, home automation opens up a new business opportunity, and yet there is a belief that it is difficult to install and requires a vast amount of programming knowledge. In fact, for a system such as Legrand’s MyHOME_Up, it takes qualified electrical contractors just one day to learn and doesn’t require specialist equipment as configuration is done via an app on a smartphone. Unlike smart gadgets that you plug-in and connect via Wi-Fi, home automation technology operates via a dedicated signal cable. This means the control of the home automation functions is not completely reliant on a wireless internet connection or other external influences because the system is centralised in the home. Users can interact with the technology via an app on a smartphone if they desire with peace of mind that the smart functionality will not be interrupted. Hardwired into a property, the technology is ideally suited to new build or renovation projects. For more details about Legrand’s free MyHOME_Up training and information on how to book, please visit: Legrand UK & Ireland,


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CONTENTS… Regulars 4 E ditor’s Comment

16 K ey Issue

The net zero target is offering fresh opportunities for contractors.

7 N ews Reaction to the new PRS safety standards, news on electrical waste collections, hot water guidance, and more.

10 C ontract News Fire alarms for Fife Council properties, a prestigious lighting project in the UAE, and more.

Bureau Veritas is calling on the industry to embrace appendix 17 of the 18th Edition – with the guidance helping to usher in a new ‘greener era’.

18 Project Focus Tridonic partner, Littledown, has played a key role in the provision and installation of the lighting control for The Fitzwilliam Museum.

20 C omment Having addressed the confusing subject of video resolutions, Phil Hansen of Connected Distribution now looks at how to move this around the house.

14 T raining Details of the latest NICEIC TechTalks, a skills partnership with a Cheshire-based college, and more.

22 C ompetition

60 C ompany Showcase

Win a VIP day at the Superbikes, courtesy of Hager.

Sponsored content from around the sector.


Smart Lighting & Lighting Control

Wiring Accessories

Parry looks at developments 25 Minarie the lighting sector and explains

arie Parry of Scolmore Group 42 Mlooks at how feedback from

how installers can benefit from the smart lighting revolution. aima Shafi explains how smarter, 29 Ssafer and brighter LED lighting technology is changing car parks across the UK. len Krise looks at the key drivers in 32 Gsmart lighting and lighting control and analyses how the technology has advanced in recent years. Brown provides a snapshot 34 Aofnouk the expected trends and drivers within the smart lighting sector for the coming year.

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olutions from Tamlite Lighting 36 Shave been implemented at The Maple Leaf Centre, a mental health outpatient unit in the West Midlands. teve Apsey looks at how the 38 Slighting industry is changing for electrical contractors who fit newer products, and explains why training makes all the difference. EG Lighting Controls will be 40 Bdemonstrating its range of KNX Generation Six presence detectors in Frankfurt next month.

electrical contractors is helping to shape the company’s wiring accessories portfolio. rett Smyth discusses the 45 Bbenefits of switching from terminal strips to lever or pushin connectors when installing electrical distribution networks. mma Segelov looks at the wiring 48 Edevice trends to watch for in 2020. im Harris discusses why it is 50 Timportant to achieve a quality

UPS & Power Distribution adège Petit looks at why the 52 Ndecarbonised future of energy will involve more electric and digital solutions. hile electricity will always be a 55 Wsource of danger, there are ways to improve safety and minimise the risk of fires breaking out, as Dave Enefer discusses. lex Emms discusses the 58 Acircumstances under which UPS scalability can contribute to availability and uptime.

crimp connection.

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Wholesalers & Distributors



elcome to the February issue of ECN. Despite the ongoing drive to enhance environmental awareness and reach the net zero target by 2050, recent findings from the ECA paint a rather worrying picture. Its recent freedom of information request shows that almost half of local authorities in England do not know their own carbon footprint, with 93 out of 214 local authorities (43%) saying that they don’t measure all energy use in relation to their built assets, which include housing, facilities, offices and other councilowned buildings. Worse still, 47% of councils say they do not have a plan in place for reducing the carbon emissions resulting from their built assets. In response, the ECA’s Luke Osborne noted, “Unless there is an imminent step change in their approach, it is inconceivable that councils are

going to become carbon neutral in less than 30 years. There is a lot of rhetoric out there, but very few action plans.” More positively, 166 councils (78%) say they are planning towards net zero operation by 2050, and there’s no doubt that the electrical contracting industry will play a critical role in helping to achieve this; a notion that’s reflected throughout this month’s issue. With a specific focus on lowering energy usage and driving efficiency, our articles hone in on the fresh opportunities emerging for electrical contractors. We’re celebrating our 40th anniversary of ECN this year, and the festivities will continue in next month’s issue where we’ll be featuring extensive company profiles of the sector’s leading players. We’ll be looking back at how the industry, and ECN itself, have evolved since we launched in 1980, and we’d love to hear your own perspectives on how things have progressed. To be involved, email Kelly Byne at kelly@ for more information. Enjoy the issue!

EDITOR: SIMON ROWLEY T: 01634 673163 E:

Published monthly by All Things Media Ltd., Suite 14, 6-8 Revenge Road, Lordswood, Kent ME5 8UD. Tel: 01634 673163 Fax: 01634 673173


Software & Apps

Simon Rowley, Editor

Test Equipment

March Issue Advertising deadline: February 24 Editorial deadline: February 20


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. Overseas Subscription Rates: Europe £60.00; Rest of World £70.00. Copyright © 2020, All rights reserved. Printed by Micropress, Reydon Business Park Fountain Way, Reydon, Southwold, IP18 6SZ.

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TIME TO MAKE A SWITCH Save time with interchangeable, on site switching solutions

Compatible with the Minigrid range Simple, single screw installation of the modules on the plate allows

contractors to devise and install customised switching solutions on site.

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Compatible with NUVO and ÂŽ



Welcome Simplicity Home automation simplified. A single app allows the installer to configure the system and the homeowner to customise scenes.





Door entry

The home automation (r)evolution

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INDUSTRY NEWS INDUSTRY REACTS TO PRS SAFETY CHECK REGULATIONS In January, The Electrical Safety Standards in the Private Rented Sector (England) Regulations 2020 were announced. These will enforce mandatory electrical safety checks in the private rented sector – news which has been welcomed across the industry. Mike Smith, ECA Technical Director, says, “We greatly welcome this new commitment to mandatory electrical safety checks, which comes into effect on April 1, 2020. This new legal duty will help to protect millions in rented accommodation across England by requiring electrical inspection and testing by a competent person, at least every five years. “The dangers posed by electricity, in terms of both fire and electric shock, need to be taken seriously and they should be properly managed. When the new regulations are introduced this spring, tenants will be able to hold landlords to account for the safety of the electrical installations in their property. The regulations will also encourage landlords

to look after the electrical safety of their assets in the knowledge that it’s a legal requirement on every private landlord. “We will also be looking for this new regulatory approach to apply to the social housing sector in the near future, and for wider application in the UK.” Martyn Allen, Technical Director at Electrical Safety First, comments: “This commitment by the Government to bring mandatory electrical safety checks into force is a success for millions of renters and their landlords in England. “It is long overdue for the dangers posed by electricity in the home to be taken as seriously as that of gas, so this legislation provides essential protection for millions. But, while we welcome this crucial step in protecting tenants, electrical safety should not be a ‘tenure lottery’. Electrical Safety First would like to see this regulation extended to the social housing sector in the very near future.” John O’Neill, Technical Director at NICEIC & ELECSA, adds, “I am pleased

OVIA SEEKS TO FILL GAP IN THE LIGHTING MARKET Electrical solutions provider, Scolmore Group, has officially launched a dedicated, independent lighting company named OVIA. Leading industry expert, Mike Collins, is heading up the business, while a highly experienced sales team is currently taking the new OVIA offering out to customers across the UK. Collins explains, “Our aim is to provide contractors with a broad range of lighting products that are quick and easy to install and will save them time and money on any given project. We believe that we have a winning formula with this new OVIA range. We already have a reputation for quality and reliability and we believe we are hitting the market at the right time to fill a gap for a broad spectrum of entry level lighting products that are highly competitively priced, offer a range of unique features and benefits, and are unmatched by competitors.” The premium products within the OVIA lighting range will come under the Inceptor brand, which contractors will already be familiar with. A dedicated website and a comprehensive 196-page downloadable product catalogue are available to provide customers with quick and easy access to everything they need to know about the OVIA collection. OVIA,

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that the new Government has taken action in this important area. We look forward to working with landlords to ensure they understand the benefits of using registered electrical contractors to undertake the testing and inspections that will be vital to

keep tenants safe. We remain committed to working with industry partners and other stakeholders, to raise standards both in the PRS and across the industry generally.” ECA,

‘INVESTORS IN PEOPLE’ ACCOLADE FOR RIELLO Riello UPS has been recognised for the work it does to support its staff by a flagship people management programme. The Wrexham-based business has achieved Investors in People ‘We invest in people’ standard accreditation after successfully passing an assessment covering topics such as leadership, trust and company values. As part of the assessment process, several members of the Riello UPS team met with representatives from Investors in People to discuss job satisfaction, work-life balance and the opportunity to develop new skills. The rigorous evaluation praised Riello UPS for its strong commitment to developing high-performing teams and providing opportunities for learning and training, along with how the company structures staff roles and delivers continuous improvement. The Investors in People scheme was launched in 1991 as a government-backed project to make work better and help businesses ensure staff are at the centre of their growth and development. Riello UPS,

HOT WATER GUIDANCE AIMS TO EASE COMPLIANCE In an effort to improve hot water provision in the healthcare sector, a new guide has been launched that outlines the most important technology to look out for when complying with Health Technical Memorandum (HTM) 04-01. Created by Heatrae Sadia, Taking the pain out of hot water in healthcare highlights the key considerations for NHS management, care home professionals, facilities managers and estate managers on how to ensure safety for patients, visitors and staff via hot water technology. Healthcare professionals have a number of water provision issues to consider, including the rise of Legionnaire’s disease, keeping energy bills and maintenance to a minimum by investing in new and improved equipment, and preventing ‘never events’ from happening – including serious incidents such as scalding. HTM 04-01 addresses all of these technicalities, covering design, installation, commissioning and operational management, paying close attention to the risk of waterborne pathogens such as legionella. However, its commitment to covering every aspect of healthcare provision in minute detail makes HTM 04-01 a challenging and sometimes inaccessible document. Simon Russell, National Sales Manager at Heatrae Sadia, says, “With many technicalities to be aware of, there is an increasing need for simple and compliant

solutions. We’ve aimed to develop content that ticks all the boxes in an easy and understandable format, saving invaluable time for busy healthcare professionals.” To access the guide, visit www.heatraesadia. com/healthcare Heatrae Sadia,

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INDUSTRY NEWS NEW APPRENTICES FOR ELLIS Cable cleat manufacturer, Ellis Patents, has signalled its commitment to developing young careers in Ryedale by taking on two apprentices to work in key areas of the business. The Rillington-based company, which has distributors in 39 countries and actively exports to more than 40, has appointed Adam Shaw (17) as an apprentice machinist and Jade Greenwell (19) as an apprentice general office assistant. Adam, who comes from Haxby in York, is working towards becoming a Level 2 qualified welder and a Level 3 machinist; while Jade, who lives in Rillington and is following her mother, father and uncle in building her career at Ellis, is working towards both Level 2 and Level 3 business administration qualifications. Richard Shaw, managing director of Ellis Patents, says, “We take great pride in developing careers for young, local people and our intention with Adam and Jade is to give them the very best start to their working lives, and we do hope that once finished and qualified they will choose to stay and grow with us.” Ellis Patents,

RECOLIGHT WELCOMES ELECTRICAL WASTE COLLECTIONS Defra has now confirmed that, from the end of 2020, most retailers will be required to provide in-store WEEE takeback. The new requirement will apply to all retailers and wholesalers with annual sales of electrical items above £100,000. Online retailers without physical retail premises, and retailers with sales below the cut off, can avoid the need to provide in-store WEEE takeback by joining the Distributor Takeback Scheme. Commenting on the news, Recolight CEO, Nigel Harvey, says, “For several years, the UK’s recycling rates for waste electricals and lamps have stalled. It is well established that to increase rates, consumers must have access to convenient drop off points. But until now, an opt-out meant that virtually all retailers could avoid their legal obligation to provide in-store collection. The removal of that opt out at the end of this year should do much to increase WEEE and lamp collections.” He adds, “The legal obligation to collect only applies where a customer buys a similar product to that being returned. However, the challenge of enforcing this strictly probably means many will simply offer the service to all customers. “This change means that, from next year, any retailer selling lamps will be required to provide a waste lamp takeback service. That is good news. And although the requirement will also apply to electrical wholesalers, most of them already offer Recolight’s waste lamp takeback service.” Announcing the decision, the Government’s spokesperson notes, “This decision has been taken in the context of new approaches being required to meet the more ambitious and challenging collection targets in 2020 and beyond.” Recolight,



More than 600 new products are included in the 140th Screwfix catalogue, which is available online, through the 24/7 contact centre and at Screwfix’s 650 plus stores. The new catalogue offers power tools, workwear and electrical and lighting. Matt Compton, Trading Director at Screwfix, says, “Our latest catalogue has more than 17,000 products and over 600 new products to give our customers what they need, when they need it. Our trade-rated badge ensures our customers can be confident they’re getting the best every time.” The new catalogue includes DeWalt’s 18V XR Brushless Combi Drill for £99.99 - the first ever DeWalt Brushless Combi under £100. With a 2.0Ah Li-Ion battery and a TSTAK box, it has 15 torque settings and a second battery is available for half price when bought with the drill at just £19.99. For more on all of the new products, pick up a catalogue today.

MPACT Group has appointed Harry Grandison as it’s new Senior Fabric Estimating Manager. Based in Loanhead, he will work with and enhance the MPACT supply chain.


LED Eco Lights has appointed Andy Edwards as its Business Development Director. He joins with experience in engineering, construction and facilities management.

TESP LIGHTS UP THE IMAGINATION The whole electrical industry is being called upon to share knowledge, insights and the reality of roles across the sector to inspire the next generation, in a new campaign from The Electrotechnical Skills Partnership (TESP). Under the launch banner of ‘Light Up Their Imaginations’, the campaign will feature a series of messages aimed at electricians and electrical contracting firms, to encourage them to get on board with a wide choice of activities to promote electrical careers through face-to-face involvement with schools and colleges. Ranging from simply giving an hour for a careers talk, mentoring or workplace visits, to setting work-based projects and supporting careers events, the opportunities to get involved are varied and can fit around the time that can be spared. From apprentice electricians to business owners and all roles in between, the campaign is seeking people across all sizes and types of organisation, to highlight the variety of occupations available and the diverse progression that can be achieved once an electrical apprenticeship is completed. TESP is also asking electricians to consider helping to teach and assess apprentices, to aid the assessor and tutor shortage also affecting the industry. The full range of opportunities is detailed on TESP’s dedicated website for the campaign.

Centiel UK has promoted Louis McGarry to Sales and Marketing Director, while naming Andrew Skelton as the new Operations Director. Skelton will be responsible for the delivery and deployment of Centiel’s UPS solutions. Pierre Benoit has been appointed as Interim CEO of Rexel UK while the business appoints a new permanent CEO, following the departure of John Hogan. Global fire and life safety company, Advanced, has appointed Matt Jones as its Business Manager to support the growth of its emergency lighting business.


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CONTRACT NEWS BMS UPGRADE FOR NOTTINGHAM UNIVERSITY Schneider Electric’s EcoStruxure Building solution is helping to oversee the building management at Nottingham University, optimising every operation in the process. The system plays a pivotal role in reducing energy consumption and expenditure, while also enabling departments to drive greater cost savings through a better understanding of energy through a single platform. As a result, the university is seeing a 5% reduction to energy consumption and a 3% reduction on overall energy costs in areas where EcoStruxure has been deployed. The inherent usability and transparency of the new system has also driven other operational savings. Maintenance costs have been reduced by 25%, while workplace safety and comfort costs have also dropped by 25%. The greatest benefits, however, are best seen outside of pure operational efficiency. In line with the university’s goal to slash its CO2 footprint, the Schneider Electric

EcoStruxure solution has enabled it to improve its control of renewable technology by 75% and drastically reduce emissions. Occupant comfort has also been vastly upgraded – overall control of the building is up 70%, while temperature control is at 50%. Overall, with all the improvements made to the system, the project will have effectively paid for itself within seven to 10 years.

Andy Nolan, Sustainability Director at the University of Nottingham, says, “The EcoStruxure architecture has helped us revolutionise how we manage the estate. It has improved every aspect of operations, from on-site energy efficiency, cybersecurity to comfort optimisation. We are already looking to expand our usage into EcoStruxure Building Advisor.” Schneider Electric,



When North West Boroughs Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust’s Hollins Park site, located in Warrington, experienced a problem with a changeover switch that would not return to mains from a generator, they called upon their incumbent maintenance partner, Quartzelec – an independent engineering service provider – to diagnose and resolve the issue. Hollins Park has had an operational maintenance and emergency response (OMER) service agreement with Quartzelec since 2008. The recently renewed contract covers multiple HV assets; however, on responding to the call-out, the Quartzelec team identified the issue was related to an LV changeover switch – slightly out of scope. Not wanting to leave the customer with an ongoing problem and increasing delay by having to identify and call out alternative engineers, the Quartzelec team had the knowledge, experience and necessary safety certification to undertake the required work. Following a brief consultation with the on-site team and the Burtonwood Group – a generator controls company – regarding the control wiring, the necessary repair to close the base switches was implemented and the system was once again operational. Peter Holland, Estates and Facilities Management for North West Boroughs Healthcare, comments, “When this particular changeover switch unexpectedly and completely failed, preventing the restart of the generator, we were left in need of urgent external support. The Trust runs regular on load generator tests and undertakes regular generator and switchgear servicing, but finding this fault proved problematic. “Initial thinking suggested it was a high voltage issue, so Quartzelec was contacted and they attended without delay; working with Burtonwood Generator & Switchgear Services to resolve the issue. Quartzelec found the problem was with the ‘out-of-scope’ changeover switch and the team went the extra mile to fix the problem without hesitation, providing excellent customer service beyond what was expected.”

Fife Council has engaged in a rolling programme to upgrade its 32,000 properties with Aico 3000 series alarms. Fife Council has been installing alarms to the LD2 category of protection for many years, so changes in Scottish legislation, introduced early in 2019 – which raises the minimum level of fire safety – did not affect the council. Jim Macdonald, Fife Council Compliance Manager, explains, “We have been installing alarms to LD2 for a number of years, as the safety of our tenants is paramount. We take into account social and health issues when conducting risk assessments. We still have a number of smokers who continue to smoke in their bedrooms, despite the health and safety warnings we are all familiar with. In these instances, we go beyond LD2 by putting alarms in bedrooms; LD2 Plus, if you like! “You can’t put a cost on someone’s life, but you can put a cost on the potential damage and the resulting costs, and that cost can be over £1 million. That’s a direct cost to the Council. If we can avoid just one fire by fitting the best level of protection possible, we have actually saved money and, more importantly, protected lives. Using the 3000 Series alarms provides us with the best possible protection and helps us future proof our fire alarm systems.” Fife Council is fitting Aico’s latest 3000 Series throughout its properties, including the Ei3024 multi-sensor and the Ei3028 heat/carbon monoxide alarm. The Ei3024 features optical and heat sensors which constantly monitor and analyse smoke and heat levels, providing the best response to all fire types and reduced false alarms. Aico,


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CONTRACT NEWS ZUMTOBEL CREATES WELL-LIT STAGE FOR TRESPASS When outdoor clothing retailer, Trespass, was looking for a lighting partner to help develop the lighting in its new stores, Zumtobel Group – with its lighting brands Thorn and Zumtobel Lighting – provided the perfect solutions for the project. The brief was to give the shop floor a theatre-like feel, and to create a stage for the merchandise, whilst improving the brightness to welcome shoppers into the store. In order to achieve the required 750 lux on the shop floor, 1,000 lux on the perimeter shop floor and 1,500 lux on the window displays, the lighting design team at Zumtobel had to mix beam angles and colour temperatures.

Glare and the correct mounting height were also issues that had to be overcome. Tecton C in triangles were chosen to illuminate the main shop floor, and Tecton C in black with Onico spotlights have been implemented around the perimeter of the shop floor. Several designs were originally created, but the final decision was to use Tecton C in black with Onico spotlights to achieve the desired results with the benefit of fast, simple installation and low energy consumption; thus reducing costs. Tecton is a continuous-row lighting solution that has an 11-pole current conducting section built into its trunking,

which means that the system comes ready equipped to meet tomorrow’s needs. Onico spotlights, with a high lumen package and narrow beam optics, ensure that the lighting is punched directly onto the displays and cash desk, while Thorn’s

Chalice recessed LED downlights and Poppack battens with integrated LED technology have been used to light the back of house area. Zumtobel,



The recent refurbishment and upgrade of a 32-bedroom sheltered housing complex at 82 Montrose Terrace in Edinburgh included the installation of new lighting and emergency exit signs to cover the communal areas and stairways of all six floors of the building. Products from Scolmore and ESP were selected for this retrofit project, with Scolmore’s popular Inceptor EVO bulkhead providing the lighting solution, and ESP’s Duceri 2W LED maintained exit signs installed to provide the safe lighting of all exits. It was important to the Trust that its chosen manufacturer worked closely with them to minimise disruption and provide support with the design. Scolmore also attended contractor meetings throughout the duration of the scheme to ensure that the supply chain remained intact and seamless, to ensure a smooth delivery of the project within the tight timescales required. A total of 20 Duceri 2W LED emergency exit signs were installed, chosen for their high performance, independent testing and ease of installation. The fitting features an SMD 3528 LED lamp, with 5500K colour temperature and offers a viewing distance of 24m. They offer three hours emergency duration and have been tested to meet BS EN 60598-2-22 standards. At least 120 EVO Bulkhead products were fitted. These were the 17W LED utility bulkheads with three-hour emergency and microwave sensor option. The EVO bulkheads offer a range of features and benefits that make them quick and easy to install.

Contractor, Roc Electrical, recently specified Univolt’s maxi-trunking as part of the firm’s M&E works on the latest phase of Quintain’s Wembley Park development, ‘EO5’. Forming part of the development’s 85-acre project which sees the transformation of an abandoned industrial area into a public facing mixed use space, EO5 includes the construction of three tower blocks ranging between 10 and 21 storeys high, and encompassing 458 apartments. Roc Electrical will be delivering much of the mechanical and electrical installation, using in excess of 500 lengths of Univolt’s 150 x 100 maxi trunking. The products will be installed in all apartments supporting the feed to the consumer unit and data cabinet via the riser cupboards. Unique features at the development include a ‘Mad Hatter’s tea party’, dog garden, urban croquet and a sky lounge with the longest sofa in the UK. The sky lounge, which wraps around a courtyard on the 16th floor is accessible by a slide, and there are also rentable rooftop caravans with a hot tub. Steve Davis, National Business Development Manager at Dietzel-Univolt comments, “This is a massive project that, once completed, will become the largest single site of Build to Rent homes in the UK. It also marks an incredibly important regeneration scheme that will ultimately transform the area. We’re incredibly pleased to have been specified as part of the scheme, recognising our products meet the standards expected of a high spec development in terms of both aesthetics and performance.” Works are planned for completion in spring 2021.


VENTOLA SHINES A LIGHT ON THE QATARI ROYAL PALACE Leicester-based lighting specialist, Ventola Projects, has just completed a highprofile project in the United Arab Emirates – at the Sheikh Abdullah Palace in Doha, no less. Business in the UAE has been booming for Mick Ventola and his team since they supplied and installed lighting to the Royal Palace of Sheikh Al Thani back in 2016. Secured via Ventola’s Egyptian distributor, this latest project brief was to provide an all-in-one lighting effect within the palace’s leisure facility, using white lighting, UV and colour change to create just the right mood and atmosphere. Mick Ventola and his experienced team chose to use the VAvR lighting system, along with LED48RG-UV-W fixtures and CS16 LED spotlights – a combination which provided just the right effect to complement the luxurious surroundings, whilst adding a touch of fun and excitement. The entire installation was completed to a tight deadline of just 10 days. The project was not only speedy, but it also utilised the latest eco-friendly technology to keep energy usage to a minimum. Even on an ongoing basis, the system installed will be around 60% cheaper to operate than conventional lighting, requires no mains power and has minimal maintenance associated with its upkeep. Founder and Managing Director, Mick Ventola, comments, “There’s always a bit of nervousness when you are working for the Qatari Royal Family on something quite so prestigious, but the whole job went so smoothly, with no challenges, which is a credit to the team. The client was very impressed.”


Ventola Projects,

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When you look closer at Legrand, you’ll see there’s more to us than you realised. For instance, you may not know we have specialist teams with a thorough understanding of your industry. Or 50 mobile engineers ready to help with commissioning, maintenance and post-build challenges. All so we can deliver the exact levels of support you deserve.

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TRAINING NITAL TO SHARE EXPERTISE AT ENGINEERING EXPO Northamptonshire Industrial Training Association Limited (NITAL), a national apprenticeship and training provider that has been supporting business for half a century, will be sharing its expertise and knowledge at the East Midlands Engineering Expo in April. Established in 1969, NITAL has trained thousands of individuals across a range of engineering, manufacturing and business disciplines through both apprenticeships and bespoke training programmes. Neil Withey, CEO at NITAL, comments, “Everybody within the NITAL organisation strives to ensure that all persons undertaking a training and development programme are given the necessary guidance and support to achieve their full potential. That is why we are playing a part at this event, which is key to highlighting and showcasing the very best of what the UK has to offer.” The East Midlands Engineering Expo 2020 will be held at the Kettering Conference Centre on April 15, 2020. It will showcase some of the best businesses within the industries, and seeks to help build and maintain long-term business relationships bringing together clients, contractors, consultants and many more across the country. To register, and for more information, visit NITAL,

IDEAL SUPPORTS FUTURE SKILLS VIA COLLEGE PARTNERSHIP Ideal Industries, a global specialist in electrical accessories, tools and testing equipment, has developed a partnership with Warrington & Vale Royal College as part of a planned outreach programme with the further education sector across the UK. Keen to invest in helping to embed a culture of best practice, safety and installation consistency in the next generation of electrical sector professionals, Ideal Industries has donated a large supply of its In-Sure push-in and lever wire connectors to the college. The connectors will enable students to train and take exams with this simple-to-use, faster and more consistent alternative to connector strips. The college will also benefit from a number of safe isolation kits and testing equipment donated by Ideal Industries. Product donations are just part of Ideal Industries’ college outreach programme, however; the company’s team will also provide a series of talks and demonstrations for students, and engagement with both students and staff will feed into the company’s new product development programme. Brett Smyth, Ideal Industries’ General Manager for the UK and Europe, explains, “We’re keen to work with young electricians and their teachers to close the gap between education and the workplace, and ensure we help them meet the challenges of the profession both now and in the future. Ideal Industries,


ECITB COMMITS £90M TO SUPPORT THE FUTURE OF INDUSTRY TRAINING The Engineering Construction Industry Training Board (ECITB) has unveiled a new £90 million skills investment plan to meet the current and future skills needs of the engineering construction industry. The new three-year business plan published in January by the Government-sponsored skills body follows the decision by employers in October to back an increase in the industrial training levy necessary to fund a major expansion in training and skills. Industry’s response to the ECITB’s Leading Industry Learning 2020-2022 strategy and the proposal to raise the levy was overwhelmingly positive. Employers representing almost 90% of the levy paid, voted in favour of the plans, demonstrating the strong commitment the industry has in training and developing its people at what is a critical time for the sector. The new business plan sets out the ECITB’s priorities for the next three years, which centre on addressing the major challenges facing the engineering construction industry. This includes the need to deliver £600 billion-worth of major infrastructure projects over the next decade, replace an ageing workforce and support the transition to a net zero carbon economy. The ECITB’s business plan also pledges £70 million in training grants for employers, including: £25m to address critical skills gaps and shortages; £15m to train new entrants coming into the industry, including apprentices and workers from other sectors; £5m towards assuring competence; £25m to train existing staff and new entrants in emerging and future skills, such as advanced digital skills and Industry 4.0 technologies; and £0.5m for diversity and inclusion training to help the industry foster more diverse and inclusive workplaces.

With five shows still to go, NICEIC and Elecsa’s latest TechTalk series has already been attended by a record number of electricians. Over 1,700 contractors have registered to attend the 15 regional shows happening across England, Wales and Northern Ireland. The NICEIC and Elecsa team are now gearing themselves up for the final five locations of the series. Darren Staniforth, Group Senior Technical Presenter for NICEIC and Elecsa, says, “We’ve had a great response to the series so far. This is solely down to the willingness of our contractors, who want to expand their knowledge and progress in this forever changing industry. Our TechTalks are a great opportunity for our contractors to talk to us directly and discuss the latest developments in the industry and find out first-hand issues they want us to look at.” This year’s TechTalk series are now CPD accredited, meaning attendees can use information from the day as part of their ongoing professional development. Topics on the agenda include: BS 5839 part 6; OLEV registration and EV update; EICR coding, in line with the 18th Edition of the Wiring Regulations; a technical Q&A; and much more. Tickets cost just £25 and can be booked online at events or by calling 0333 015 6626. The remaining dates and locations are: Fontwell (February 12), Maidstone (February 13), Wolverhampton (February 26), Leicester (February 27) and Llandudno (March 5). NICEIC,


14 | February 2020

Training.indd 14

24/01/2020 16:33


ONE SMALL STEP FOR YOU, ONE GIANT LEAP FOR ELECTRICAL SAFETY. Now you can provide additional protection against electrical fires without any extra effort. Single module AFDDs with integral RCBO meet all of the requirements of the 18th Edition, fit in the smallest of spaces and bring the highest level of protection against electrical fires.

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KEY ISSUE A new, greener era will be critical in meeting the UK’s environmental targets, Bureau Veritas believes

THE 18TH EDITION GOES GREEN As the first set of wiring regulations to focus on energy efficiency, Bureau Veritas is calling on the industry to embrace appendix 17 of the 18th Edition of the Wiring Regulations – with the guidance helping to usher in a new ‘greener era’.


arlier this year, the UK became the first nation to enshrine into law the net zero target, committing to reducing greenhouse gas emissions by “at least” 100% below 1990 levels in 2050. To meet these obligations, drastic action will be needed in the way buildings use energy, says electrical safety expert Bureau Veritas – encouraging businesses to adopt key energy efficiency measures raised in the 18th Edition of the Wiring Regulations.

The impact of Appendix 17 This includes appendix 17 of the Wiring Regulations, which came into force in January 2019. Appendix 17 offers expert guidance on lessening the environmental impact of electrical installations through measures such as replacing traditional standard filament, halogen and fluorescent lights with super-efficient LEDs and using smart controls as one of the easiest ways to cut energy costs. Also, as noted in appendix 17, on-site renewable energy sources and other local production sources such as solar PV and wind energy production don’t themselves increase the efficiency ‘use’ of the electrical energy; however, they

16 | February 2020

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do reduce the overall public electricity network losses which can be considered an indirect energy efficiency measure. According to Bureau Veritas, appendix 17 is set to rise in prominence in the coming years, playing a fundamental part of the next major amendment to BS 7671 – which is expected in 2022.

Ushering in a greener era Michael Kenyon, Technical Manager at Bureau Veritas, says: “Given the escalating calls to take action on sustainability and drastically reduce our energy consumption, it’s no surprise that appendix 17 is lighting the way for a new greener era for improving energy efficiency in buildings. “Although at present, many of the suggested changes are just recommendations rather than mandatory requirements, we’d encourage businesses to take heed now and ensure that each and every installation is completed as safely and sustainably as possible. “Not only will this help organisations to stay ahead of regulatory compliance – we expect much of the appendix 17 guidance to become mandatory in the next major update – but it will also cut operating costs while going a long way in helping our society meet the UK’s net zero pledge.”

Improving energy efficiency “One such measure that can be adopted to improve energy efficiency is power factor correction, which can achieve significantly reduced consumption and CO2 emissions.”

One such measure that can be adopted to improve energy efficiency is power factor correction, which can achieve significantly reduced consumption and CO2 emissions, along with lower electricity bills. However, the focus on energy efficiency is also likely to widen its scope to address other challenges such as unclean distorted electrical supplies, states Bureau Veritas. Kenyon adds, “It’s likely that as appendix 17 develops into part 8 in the next significant amendment, there could be greater guidance on where electronic equipment creates an unclean distorted electrical supply (harmonic distortion) and can damage equipment by creating heat/overload. “As an industry, we still have a huge job to do in terms of not just meeting carbon reduction commitments but ensuring a sustainable infrastructure; which Part 8 will hopefully help to more adequately address. Indeed, it may mean more change for a number of sectors to get to grips with, but it is an important step forward; not only in tackling climate change, but also in creating new opportunities for electrical contractors.” Bureau Veritas offers a range of testing and certification services to support customers in managing compliance around electrical safety in general for new and existing installations or for specific areas, such as electric vehicle charging points. Bureau Veritas UK,

24/01/2020 16:34

18th Edition Solutions CIRCUIT PROTECTION TEL: 01563 533 554 SALES@CPELECTRIC.CO.UK

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CONSERVING THE COLLECTIONS Tridonic partner, Littledown, has played a key role in the provision and installation of the lighting control for the recently completed refurbishment of Gallery Three at the Fitzwilliam Museum.


pened in 1848, The Fitzwilliam Museum in Cambridge is the lead partner of the collections of the University of Cambridge Museums (UCM) and Botanic Garden. It houses a world-renowned collection of over half a million works of art, masterpiece paintings and historical artefacts. Littledown had already been involved in the refurbishment of the museum’s main entrance, so was pleased to be involved in this next stage. The initial brief for the lighting in the gallery was to illuminate the gallery evenly, whilst providing the flexibility to control the ambiance of the gallery by the lighting.

Specific requirements Steve Reid, Managing Director at Littledown, worked closely with Precision Lighting and Lighting Designer, Matthew Nourse, to devise a lighting solution which could accommodate these specific requirements. He explains, “There were four elements of the lighting which required consideration: •  Lower level, to illuminate the art objects. This was split into two options – the main track in the recesses, and the spotlights on the bulkheads.

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•  Mezzanine level, which may in future have objects, but none that are immediately planned. Therefore, the lighting would be dedicated to the ancient frieze. •  Barrel ceiling, with the best architectural features of the space, including the ceiling mouldings and illuminated to show the finer detail. •  And finally, the upper level where the statues stand between the window elements – the idea being to highlight each individual sculpture.” In addition, each of the lighting levels had to be individually controlled, and all must have the capability of dimming using a DALI system (this is an upgrade on the control system currently in most other areas of the museum). Colour rendering and light levels were also a key consideration for the curators. Reid continues, “This was a challenging project for us to work on. Not only did we only have a very short window for the installation, but the linear lighting that we were installing around the pelmets totalled 60 metres in length and is over 10 metres above floor level.” Tridonic’s support and its ability to meet the tight deadlines for manufacture was vital to the success of the project, while the reliability of the components supplied also offered peace of mind.

Artwork in the right light “The gallery’s entire lighting solution is fully controllable, and each individual fitting can be programmed to provide the optimum LUX levels for the artwork.”

The LED linear lighting, which uses Tridonic control gear, was installed using specially designed, easy to mount brackets. The main components were LCA 50W drivers, LLE boards and LED covers, all of which have the Tridonic five-year guarantee. The drivers, meanwhile, have a nominal lifetime of 100,000 hours. The gallery’s entire lighting solution is fully controllable, and each individual fitting can be programmed to provide the optimum LUX levels for the artwork that is being illuminated. The standard lighting is a warm white with a colour temperature of 3000K, which matches the colour temperature in the recently refurbished entrance hall. By removing the old fluorescent fittings, not only has the lighting improved, with no flicker, but the museum is also anticipating making a significant energy saving and reducing the possible effects of UV on the artefacts. In addition to the illustrious artworks, the plasterwork on the ceiling – which is considered one of the most astonishing museum interiors anywhere – has been cleaned, freshened up and painted in parts, and the new lighting enables visitors to have a far better view of all the detail. For further details on the museum, visit  Tridonic,

24/01/2020 16:34













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VIDEO DISTRIBUTION (Part Two) Having addressed the confusing subject of video resolutions, frame rates, colour bit depths, colour space and bandwidth requirements in last month’s issue, Phil Hansen of Connected Distribution now looks at how to move this around the house.


here are various ways of distributing video, and the chosen method is largely determined by the number of sources (e.g. Sky boxes, Apple TVs, Blu-ray players etc.) and the number and type of displays being used. We’ll take a look at each one in turn and weigh up the pros and cons of each system.

HDMI By far the simplest way to get video from A to B is to use a HDMI cable. HDMI is largely very reliable when doing simple installations, being designed to transmit high quality video and audio over relatively short distances. A simple installation, using one TV and a number of sources, can be quite easily serviced via HDMI. The vast majority of TVs have multiple HDMI inputs to permit the connection of a number of different sources. So, for a simple one TV install, this is an obvious way to approach it. There are two main iterations of HDMI – 1.4 and 2.0 – and each has its own specifications that dictate what it can and cannot do. By far the most common today is 2.0, and this is what you are most likely to be using. The change from 1.4 to 2.0 was all about bandwidth – something we talked about last time. HDMI 2.0 works with 4K video at 50 and 60 frames per second (1.4 would do 4K, but only at 24fps). You can also get 10-bit and 12-bit colour down the newer cable and HDR and 4:4:4 colour space – but, and here’s the catch, only three of them at any one time. So that means 60fps, 12-bit HDR and 4:2:2 or 60fps, 8-bit colour and 4:4:4.

HDMI 2.0 will also allow you to send Dolby Atmos, multi-channel, high resolution audio from the source to the TV. HDMI’s biggest drawback is the distance over which it can transmit the signal. With a good quality HDMI cable, around five metres is going to be around the maximum distance you can get the highest quality signal to travel without data loss. It is also possible to use a HDMI video matrix to send multiple sources to multiple screens, but these will be distance limited depending upon the quality of signal required.

HDBase-T To the rescue comes HDBase-T, a system that allows you to move uncompressed 4K video and high resolution, multi-channel audio over long distances. It does this by converting the signal using a small box called a transmit balun into data that can be passed along standard Category cable (Cat5e and above). It is possible to extend a signal up to approximately 100m. Connecting up is very simple – a short HDMI cable goes from the source to a transmit balun. A Cat data cable then runs to another small box called a receive balun, from which a short HDMI cable connects to the TV or projector. The whole process is seamless and overcomes the major drawback of HDMI. But, as the maximum data rate of Cat cable is 10.2Gbit/s instead of the necessary 18Gbps from the HDMI 2.0 specification, HDBaseT 2.0 only supports uncompressed 4K at 30fps with 4:4:4 colour coding, or 4K at 60fps with 4:2:0 colour coding. However, using a compression technique called CSC (colour space conversion) or the similar DSC (display stream compression), it’s possible for 4K/60 4:4:4 to be sent up to 100m. You can also use a HDBase-T video matrix. This allows multiple sources to be connected to multiple displays. The matrix has the transmit baluns built into it, and is connected to the receive baluns, situated by the displays using Cat cable. There is another way of moving audio and video around, and that is video over IP.

“HDBase-T is a system that allows you to move uncompressed 4K video and high resolution, multichannel audio over long distances.”

Whereas with HDBase-T you need a transmit balun, video matrix (if switching sources and displays) and a receive balun, with Video over IP there is no need to use a dedicated matrix, with its fixed number of inputs and outputs. You still need a transmit and receive, but these are called encoders and decoders and they connect into a standard IP switch – just like the ones used for computer networks. That means you can use an almost limitless number of encoders (for many sources) and send the signal to an almost limitless number of decoders (for many screens) – limited only by the size of the IP switch, and these can be daisy chained to add more and increase the distance. This makes it ideally suited to very large installations and commercial jobs such as sports bars, hotels, airports and shopping centres.

Tune in next time, when we’ll take a look at audio solutions.

Connected Distribution,

Video over IP On the face of it, this is very similar to HDBase-T, in that it uses Category cable to move the data around. Where it differs is in the equipment used, its scalability and the distances possible.

20 | February 2020

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urge protection devices (SPDs) are important when it comes to protecting people and equipment. Hager has introduced new commercial surge protection device (SPD) kits for the company’s three-phase distribution boards. Benefits include: •D irect integration within panelboards and TPN boards so that the surge protection kits can be fitted within the distribution board and not in a separate enclosure. • Aids compliance with section 534 of the 18th Edition of the Wiring Regulations, meaning that the Hager SPD kits are applicable for all common UK earthing arrangements, such as TNC-S (PEM), TN and TT. •T he removal of a need for secondary upstream protection devices to help speed up installation times. •F ully tested so that the Hager Type 1 SPD works effectively with Hager Type 2 SPD in a downstream TPN board. •T he introduction of solid copper earth links in all SPD kits.

To celebrate the launch of the all-new SPD kits, Hager is offering one lucky reader two VIP tickets to a round of your choice for the 2020 British Superbike Season. This includes full hospitality on race day with the PBM team and exclusive access to a PBM riders Q&A on race day.

December Competition The winner of the EZVIZ outdoor floodlight camera, courtesy of EZVIZ, is Tony Porter of Lyons Electrical.

Closing date


For your chance to win, simply answer the following questions correctly: 1. Hager SPD kits have been tested to aid compliance with which section within the 18th Edition? a) 520 b) 129 c) 534

2. S PDs are important because they protect…?

3. H ager’s SPD devices are applicable for which earthing arrangements?

a) People and equipment b) People only c) Equipment only

a) All common arrangements, such as TNC-S (PEM), TN and TT b) Just TT c) Just TN

All entries must be returned by February 29, 2019. The editor’s decision is final. For the full terms and conditions, please visit competition-terms. The name of the winner will be published in the April 2020 issue of ECN. *Prize 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. Alternatively, you can email your answers and contact details to:

The answers to February’s competition are:

Contact Preferences YES, I would like to receive the ECN newsletter YES, I would like to subscribe to ECN magazine


YES, I would like to share my data with Hager

Personal Details Name....................................................................................................................................... Company Name...................................................................................................................... Address...................................................................................................................................

2. . .........................................................................


................................................................................ Postcode................................................. Tel................................................................ Mobile ................................................................

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o f n i e r o m r o f r e l a s e l o k h u . w o r c . u e o r y i w k c Ask i u q . w w w t i s i or v Prewired - clearly labelled cable entry points for error free wiring.

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24/01/2020 14:19



A smartphone app can enable homeowners to take control of their lighting across the home

SMART TECHNOLOGY — A GUIDING LIGHT FORWARD Marie Parry, Group Marketing Director at Scolmore Group, looks at the developments in the lighting sector and explains how installers can benefit from the smart lighting revolution.


here it used to be considered a luxury and accessible only to the well off, smart lighting is now becoming more widely accessible thanks to the advancements in technology; which means that smart devices are now being utilised in all areas of life, and app-based control is a standard part of our everyday lives. The way we use lighting is changing. Digital technology is now crossing over with lighting, and the smart lighting revolution

Smart Lighting & Lighting Control – Scolmore.indd 25

is seeing fittings being turned into smart devices – and these can then be used to monitor and control our environments. With consumers switched on to the benefits of smart control, installers have the opportunity to introduce a professional, easy-to-install smart lighting system that offers excellent functionality; whilst at the same time affordable. As well as offering the means to control the lighting for aesthetic reasons – for example, creating a dimmed setting for a reading area in the home – smart lighting is also about the ability to reduce energy usage and providing the means for cost-savings, as well as cutting a property’s carbon footprint.

Click Smart Box Scolmore’s Click Smart Box is one example of how easily lighting and appliances can be controlled from a smartphone or tablet via an app. Designed with simplicity in mind, a system like this can be easily integrated into a new or existing installation and just requires broadband connection. The Click Smart Box simply plugs into the broadband router via an Ethernet port and the app downloaded. Set-up is designed to be straightforward, with the app guide taking you through the process, enabling you to

February 2020 | 25

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Retrofit opportunities for contractors

The Click Smart Box simply plugs into the broadband router via an Ethernet port

Smart lighting is also about the ability to reduce energy usage and providing the means for costsavings

customise a home automation system to suit a client’s particular requirements. Such a system makes it quick, easy and relatively inexpensive to adapt and update a home to provide extra security, energy saving, comfort and control. Installation is simple and flexible, with no additional cables or wall cutting needed. Receivers can be installed behind light fittings or into suitable installation boxes and can be utilised with existing wiring. Comprising three basic components – Click Smart Box, RF receivers and a smartphone – the system is high end, professional and competitively priced, and has been designed with installers in mind. It can add functionality to already installed receivers, or it can be installed from scratch on a brand-new build, enabling automation via phone for the whole family or team. Critical information is stored within the Smart Box, rather than the phone itself, making it easy if a phone needs to be upgraded or other users added – and ensuring that the settings aren’t affected in the process. With all the settings stored on the Smart Box, there is no need to programme and install all the elements onto each individual phone.

Control across the home Multiple users can use the system to control their home or building premises. The smart box and applications enable up to 40 receivers to be controlled by up to eight paired phones/tablets. Up to 40 receivers can be assigned to one Smart Box and up to 40 rooms/locations can be added. This makes the system suitable for a range of installations from small to large. Receivers can be controlled on an individual basis, and up to 20 receivers can be controlled with a single press using the ‘scene’ setup.

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With up to eight smart devices being able to control the receivers through one smart box, and up to six smart boxes controlled through one application, the flexibility to customise this system is clear to see. For a large installation, for example, multiple smart boxes can be used, all controlled by the same phone and app – up to 240 receivers from six smart boxes. With the app downloaded, it will take you through the various set up stages – adding and naming rooms; adding each element (an element is the individually controlled receiver e.g. for on/off, dimmer or shutters) and finally, scene setting. This brings the required, separate elements into one group to create a scene – e.g. for film watching, listening to music or creating ambience in a bar or restaurant. There is also the ability to set schedules, which means that various elements can be created and activated at particular times to suit. An example would be to set a schedule to mimic home occupancy when the occupants are away from home for added security.

There are huge opportunities for smart lighting in the retrofit segment, as many of the lighting systems in current buildings are not energy efficient. According to the International Energy Agency (IEA), there is huge potential for improved energy efficiency in buildings. It says that up to 82% of energy efficiency measures remain untapped in buildings today; up to half of this energy efficiency potential can be realised through improved control of the building and the integration of systems that work together. With only around 20% of the UK’s commercial buildings at present ‘smart’ buildings, and with energy efficiency and sustainability increasingly becoming a business consideration for many directors and senior managers, this market is expected to grow significantly over the next decade, providing business opportunities for wholesalers and contractors alike. Demand for smart technology will undoubtedly continue to increase, and installers are in a prime position to help drive this growth by drawing attention to the energy-saving, convenience and efficiency properties of smart lighting to their clients.

How to choose the right products

Installers have the opportunity to introduce a professional, easyto-install smart lighting system that offers excellent functionality

There is a raft of products and solutions coming onto the market with the continued growth in this sector, and contractors will need to determine which of the wide range of products and services deliver the most value to the end user. When looking at overall project costs, it may be tempting to specify lower cost products, but as reliability reduces so will profit margins, as the need to return to sort out problems becomes an issue. With such a rapid advance in developments in the lighting sector, it can be difficult for contractors and their customers to keep up to date with the latest products and solutions and they may look to wholesalers to help them decide on the choice of products for a particular project. By working with manufacturers to stay abreast of the latest developments and to help improve their understanding of the latest products and solutions available, wholesalers can save contractors some of the time and effort required to source materials that meet the job specifications. Scolmore is one such manufacturer committed to driving awareness and education in the industry, offering a range of training opportunities designed to keep wholesalers and contractors up to date with the latest in new product development, technological advances and changes in legislation. Training sessions take place at our purposedesigned showroom at our head offices in Staffordshire.  Scolmore,

28/01/2020 12:03



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The outdated fluorescent and metal halide luminaires in car parks at Ashford, Ebbsfleet, St Pancras (pictured here) and Stratford were recently upgraded to LEDs

A GREENER PLACE TO PARK Saima Shafi, Sales and Marketing Director of Goodlight, explains how smarter, safer and brighter LED lighting technology is changing car parks across the UK.


Appropriate lighting for car parks

uring the dark winter months, lighting becomes even more of a pressing issue for car park managers. Many will be considering steps they can take to provide safer and more welcoming parking spaces without increased maintenance and energy costs. Here, well-controlled LED lighting can be an asset.

A shot of Goodlight’s LED lighting installation at Ashford International

Smart Lighting & Lighting Control – Goodlight.indd 29

In 2004, the British Parking Association launched the Safer Parking Scheme. This awarded a ‘Park Mark’ to facilities which met specific criteria for deterring criminal activity and vehicle theft. One of the four award criteria listed is ‘Appropriate Lighting.’ As of 2016, one in four car parks had been deemed worthy of the award; an impressive figure that assures car park users that facilities have been designed and managed with care. However, it also suggests that more could be done to make both public and private car parks safer facilities. Whether for stores, businesses or offices, the unique features of LED lighting including its energy-efficiency, illumination and reliability, are perfectly suited to meet the specific needs of car parks. Our LED lighting products have recently been rolled out across a number of largescale international train station car park projects, introducing many benefits to these spaces. The outdated fluorescent and metal halide luminaires in car parks at Ashford, Ebbsfleet, St Pancras and Stratford were upgraded to LEDs in a recent project. The upgrade included

over 3,000 LED luminaires. Improved illumination was provided to over 8,000 spaces in total, and the car park operators achieved up to 80% energy savings. Another of our exciting projects saw the replacement of over 1,000 individual lights with long-life LED lamps in the stairwells and car parks of a Grade II listed Bristol eco apartment complex. The installed LED lamps have a 50,000-hour life span, effectively eliminating the need for regular replacement. Furthermore, in an ongoing roll-out project for a national supermarket chain, LED lamps and luminaires provided energy efficient, low maintenance LED lighting into over 100 existing car parks and store canopies. Thanks to the new car park LED lighting installations, all the projects saw improvements in cost efficiency, carbon footprint and management.

A visible improvement Car parks require bright lighting that not only illuminates the space adequately for it to be shared safely by drivers and pedestrians, but also enables security cameras to spot antisocial behaviour. LED lights offer an even spread of light without shadowing or glare that delivers the required brightness.

February 2020 | 29

27/01/2020 09:18


SMART LIGHTING & LIGHTING CONTROL LED lamps and luminaires rated at 50,000 hours last three times longer than typical fluorescent lights, giving further savings to site operators

“Car parks require bright lighting that not only illuminates the space adequately for it to be shared safely by drivers and pedestrians, but also enables security cameras to spot anti-social behaviour.” Goodlight G5 IP65 LED Downlights in Sainsbury’s car parks

In the case of the international train station car parks project, the newly installed LED lights form a 360 degree beam angle, they are retrofittable and can upgrade existing lighting with limited inconvenience to car park owners and users. In providing new LED lighting for the supermarket chain’s car park, the retrofittable LED lights avoided the need to relocate columns or alter existing buildings nearby. In the case of outdoor car parks, LED lighting can respond swiftly through wireless control systems to different environmental changes such as weather conditions and light levels, all vital to keep the facility safe and well-lit at all times.

delivering ‘reactive’ lighting maintenance solutions fast and effectively. Many of these systems can be coupled with infrared cameras to allow for security management too – something facilities managers will also find helpful. It should also be noted that wireless lighting control systems are easier to install than wired-in systems, providing minimal inconvenience to car park owners and users. Not only does LED technology simplify maintenance, but it also lowers the associated maintenance costs. Automated LED lighting control systems reduce the need for surveys and site visits, especially with self-test features which alert facilities managers to faults as soon as they occur. In addition, the LED lights themselves have a seriously impressive lifespan, and quality LED lighting manufacturers now offer a five-year guarantee on their products. In fact, LED lamps and luminaires rated at 50,000 hours last three times longer than typical fluorescent lights, giving further savings to site operators. Overall, automated wireless LED lighting control systems give the flexibility that car park managers need to operate their sites effectively and substantially decrease their maintenance costs.

Energy costs Whilst the benefits of installing LED lighting are clear, stretched capital budgets unfortunately hold many car park operators back from embracing the technology. However, the installation of LED technology can be funded through the savings made each year on energy bills each month via a tax-efficient leasepurchase scheme. For example, a car park which implemented LED lighting and controls under such a scheme could expect to save 87% on their energy bills and pay back their installation costs in under two years. In the case of the recent station car parks project, the new lighting provided up to 80% energy savings, upgrading to LED lighting alone. Furthermore, as consumers become more attuned to their carbon footprints, a ‘greener place to park’ is something that parking providers could potentially use as a selling-point to promote their facilities against competitors. With significant benefits to car park users and managers, and a straightforward path both to implement and fund the transition, LED lighting in car parks will eventually become the norm. Goodlight,

Controlled solutions The benefits of such a tightly controlled lighting system extend beyond swift responses to the external environment. These systems can also be wireless and of great benefit to facilities managers, who need to respond to lighting problems in car parks quickly to avoid damaged vehicles or injured pedestrians. Issues can be identified through automated wireless LED lighting control systems which cater for ‘active’ maintenance support, in addition to

30 | February 2020

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A look at an LED installation at the car park at Ebbsfleet International

27/01/2020 09:18

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28/01/2020 12:17



LIGHTING THE WAY Here, Glen Krise, Managing Director at Megaman, looks at the key drivers in smart lighting and lighting control and analyses how the technology has advanced in recent years.


Megaman is seeing significant growth in the use of integrated LED fixtures

ighting has long evolved beyond being merely a functional requirement of designing and constructing a building. Decades of ongoing development has delivered a wide range of lighting options to meet the needs of different applications. Now, advances in controls and smart technology are further broadening the scope of what can be achieved. One of the biggest drivers behind the transformation of the lighting industry is an improved understanding of the vital role that lighting has to offer. In offices, the implementation of the correct lighting has been shown to improve staff productivity; while in educational environments, it can help with learning and concentration. As a result of this improved understanding, building owners are increasingly open to investing in high quality systems that add value for the building users and occupants. We are already seeing significant growth in the use of integrated LED fixtures, as these products increasingly take the place of older models with replaceable lamps. With the improved lifespan of newer LEDs (often up to 50,000 hours) over other lamp types and previous incarnations of the LED, users are beginning to see lamps less as a throwaway item and more as an investment that will last. As such, investment in integrated fixtures is now seen as a viable and long-lasting lighting option. Smart and connected lighting is another area where investment in the correct systems has been shown to help improve both the building’s performance and the occupant experience. The desire, or even need, to improve the energy efficiency of a building is a key contributing factor in the growth of smart lighting. This is especially true for commercial buildings where the over-lighting of unoccupied areas is often a significant source of wasted energy. In these circumstances, occupancy sensors can be used to detect when individuals are present and automate the

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activation of lighting and even other electrical appliances. When the area is not being used, the lights can be set to dim or switch off completely until the sensors detect the presence of a person. This is particularly useful for areas where the usage pattern is unpredictable, such as meeting rooms within offices. Similarly, for college and university buildings, these can be used for independent study rooms, which may be used intermittently but could be occupied at irregular hours, such as early in the morning or late at night, depending on the needs of the students. Integrating daylight sensors is a further way to reduce lighting costs and is commonly used in large offices, retail environments and leisure facilities. The sensors automatically adjust the lighting levels in accordance with the amount of natural light present. The automatic attenuation of light brightness when there is sufficient natural light can save up to 60% of a building’s annual energy costs. Not only does this help reduce energy usage, but it also creates a better environment for occupants as the lighting output is always at the most appropriate level. Furthermore, developments in the technology have meant that retrofitting a connected system into an existing building is now much easier. There are systems available, such as Megaman’s Ingenium ZB, that allow the dimming and mains switch modules to be easily wired behind pre-existing light switches to enable the control of a whole lighting system without changing any existing bulbs or fixtures. Alternatively, for smaller scale applications there is also the option of using smart bulbs that fit into existing sockets. Another factor that is driving the growth in smart lighting is the expansion of the Internet of Things (IoT) and smart technology in other areas such as security, access control and heating and ventilation. Smart and connected systems achieve

Megaman’s Ingenium ZB allows the dimming and mains switch modules to be easily wired behind pre-existing light switches to enable the control of a whole lighting system

“Users are beginning to see LED lamps less as a throwaway item and more as an investment that will last.”

the greatest value when a number of separate systems can be incorporated. For example, being able to utilise occupancy sensors to not only optimise the lighting but also other areas of energy usage, such as heating and cooling, can help reduce wasted energy further. Door sensors can also be used to provide notifications of doors being opened outside of predefined hours. However, this integration is only possible where products have been designed with wider compatibility. Realising the importance of this, leading manufacturers of smart and connected products in a range of different sectors are engineering systems that are compatible with several protocols and all major smart automation systems to help ensure seamless integration. Finally, despite the advances that have already been made in smart lighting systems, there is still vast potential for the technology to provide even greater value for building owners and occupants. For example, it is highly likely that we will see lighting products that use artificial intelligence come in to use in the future that will learn and react to users’ habits and routines without the need for programming. This has already been seen in the heating sector where smart thermostats are available that learn the homeowner’s schedule and preferred temperatures by monitoring the initial adjustments that are made. Lighting is one of the building systems where automation and connected technology can make a significant impact with a relatively modest investment, especially in terms of improving energy efficiency. The level of integration can be tailored to meet the needs of customers and expanded over time if needed. Megaman,

24/01/2020 16:37

Smart Lighting Control & Audio Solutions • Wiring Accessories • Circuit Protection


Easy Listening... ON THE BOOKSHELF


Hamilton’s NEW Wi-Fi Audio Range player


Installing audio shouldn’t be difficult. With Hamilton’s new wireless audio range it couldn’t be easier! Just connect power to your chosen device, download the Hamilton Player App, go to Wi-Fi settings, select your device and stream away…you’re done! Designed to a very high spec, the range comprises: • Wireless streaming 2x 50W amplifier plus 80W ceiling speakers • Wireless 20W multi-room active speaker • Wireless audio receiver for existing hi-fi system A perfectly pitched solution for the home, restaurants/bars and shops.


Ask for more information at your local wholesaler. SEE US AT LIGHT+BUILDING 2020 8-13th MARCH, MESSE FRANKFURT. HALL 11.1, STAND C03. +44 (0)1747 860088

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13/01/2020 14/01/2020 14:20 14:34



The rising integration of smart lighting in commercial sectors offers exciting prospects for the next decade

UK LEADS THE SMART LIGHTING CHARGE Anouk Brown, a member of the strategic team at National Lighting, provides a snapshot of the expected trends and drivers within the smart lighting sector for the coming year.


020 marks the turn of a decade in which our industry has seen unrivalled growth in LED lighting sales, with smart lighting being one of the most disruptive technologies over the past five years. Across Europe, North America and the rest of the world, market trends such as smart homes, smart cities and smart wireless controls saw a staggering 17.6% increase in product development. This allowed for the smart lighting industry to rank as the fastest growing market in the Asia-Pacific with an annual growth rate of 21.4%, quickly followed by Europe, which now has a 35% market share in the smart lighting industry. The rising integration of smart lighting in commercial, infrastructural, automobile and industrial sectors and the continued development of novel smart features bring us a promising prospect for the next decade. So, what can we expect?

Hardware is key Holding a current 80% market share, hardware is and will remain leading in the smart lighting component landscape in 2020. Though we don’t always welcome EU regulations, recent government initiatives under the Eco-Design Law promote the use of energy-efficient lamps and encourage the development of smart hardware components and thus product sales throughout the continent.

The IKON Pro CCT – National Lighting’s recessed LED decking kit range

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The hardware behind LED smart bulbs and matching smart lighting solutions is exactly what fits the energy efficiency bill. A trend which will see an increase in large scale city development initiatives and investments, while further accelerating the adoption of smart lighting in urban areas – which are estimated to be 60% of the world’s energy consumers (19% on lighting alone).

Costs and application The high cost of smart lighting solutions, compared to traditional lighting alternatives, has been a major constraint in smart lighting market growth. However, market trends show that smart technologies are becoming more easily available and more trusted by the end user. This means we are already starting to see an increase in both industry interest and providers. This will form the basis for the development of more approachably priced smart lighting, allowing for a larger customer base to access the market.

Wired to wireless Wired technology represents about 70% of the smart lighting industry today. The continued growth of the wired smart lighting market is attributed to the increasing adoption of wired communication technology in the outdoor and commercial lighting spaces. The robust nature of wired technology, along with high reliability and control over the lighting solutions, makes it ideal for such lighting applications. The largescale adoption of the PLC technology in outdoor lighting applications and DALI in indoor lighting applications also helps the market to grow. As for wireless, we’re expecting a 21% growth between 2020 and 2025 in this sector, driven by the growing adoption of wireless connectivity for lighting applications. Wireless technology also offers multiple benefits as compared to the traditional wired technology, including

flexibility, cost-efficiency, ease of install, and usability conveniences and security enhancements which will greatly increase its popularity in the commercial and residential lighting space.

“The high cost of smart lighting solutions, compared to traditional lighting alternatives, has been a major constraint in smart lighting market growth.”

New applications Indoor smart lighting and smart bulbs is where the smart industry once started, but we have come a long way since then. Smart indoor lighting currently dominates 75% of all smart lighting applications. There is, however, a fastgrowing market demand for outdoor smart lighting in both residential and commercial sectors. From light-field sensing to using sunlight to optimise light output, outdoor smart lighting has been predicted to grow by 15% to 20% in the UK alone by 2025.

UK leading the way Though the APAC region is predicted to be the fastest growing market in smart lighting between 2020 and 2025 – with an estimated 200 million smart homes to be built in China alone during this period – the UK remains a major industry driver in Europe, having seen a 44% market growth in the lighting industry over the past decade with an additional annual growth of 5% predicted year on year until 2022. The UK smart lighting industry offers increased scope for growth, as smart technology continues to advance, and users are becoming accustomed to no longer treating lamps as throwaway products. As prices fall and the awareness of smart lighting benefits increase throughout the market, the UK smart lighting industry can buy into a longer product lifecycle of bulbs and luminaires. Where customer views shift away from seeing lighting as necessity goods, we can start to sell them as integrated lifestyle products, supporting the UK luminaire sector and its long-term sustainability. National Lighting,

24/01/2020 16:37

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Vision Smart offers the latest connected emergency lighting network, allowing scheduled self-testing to be carried out. Wireless networks are fully connected with no additional cabling required, making the installation process easier. Tamlite is BAFE certified, providing compliant emergency lighting designs, backed up with ICEL accreditation for the manufacture and testing of quality luminaires.

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17/01/2020 10:39:11 24/01/2020 14:21



LIGHT AT THE END OF THE TUNNEL The Maple Leaf Centre, a mental health outpatient unit based in the West Midlands, recently re-opened its facility and made a conscious effort to focus on the all-important lighting levels. Here’s a look at how and why solutions from Tamlite Lighting were the perfect choice.


irmingham and Solihull Mental Health NHS Foundation Trust provides a comprehensive mental healthcare service for residents of Birmingham and Solihull, along with a range of specialist mental health services to communities across the West Midlands and beyond. Up until 2014, The Maple Leaf Centre (previously known as the John Black Hospital) had been a key inpatient unit for adults who were suffering with their mental health. However, the unit was closed and remained empty for five years, before the NHS refurbished the building and re-opened it as an outpatient facility in September 2019. The refurbishment involved opening up the space and allowing in more natural light, which has been determined to provide significant benefits for building occupants, as well as benefitting the wellbeing of staff. To accentuate this, Tamlite Lighting was specified to deliver an upgraded lighting solution, replacing the existing unsuitable system. Key to the solution was the connected nature of the lighting. This gave the Maple Leaf Centre control of its lighting throughout the site, allowing staff to make changes and monitor their lighting remotely. Also critical was the connected emergency lighting system, which is vital for the monitoring of emergency luminaires to determine their status, as well as scheduled automatic system tests, which are required by law every month and annually.

Delivering wellbeing The most notable enhancement to the centre is in the reception space, where visitors first enter the building. Walls have been painted in pastel colours, delivering a vibrant (but not overwhelming) sense of colour throughout, which has been enhanced by the lighting upgrade.

Over 300 luminaires were installed in this project, and almost half are emergency fittings

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For elderly patients with mental health concerns, colour is a critical aspect of giving a sense of spatial awareness and comfort. The Alzheimer’s Society recommends that furniture and walls should have visibly different colours, in order to help patients’ depth perception. Tamlite’s MODLED LG luminaires in the reception space have a high colour rendering index, displaying colours on the walls and furniture at their most natural. Through the use of low glare luminaires and daylight harvesting, illumination levels are kept at a consistent level throughout the day. This consistency is key to ensuring that patients are not dazzled or affected by shadowing throughout the centre due to the uniformity of light. John Scott, Capital Developments Manager, comments, “We consulted patients to gather their thoughts on what would make the reception area more comfortable, and we then worked with the architects and Tamlite to develop a space that suited the patients.” In addition to patients, the building will hold over 100 members of staff throughout offices and clinic rooms. Promoting staff wellbeing is crucial to ensure that they are comfortable and focused throughout the entire working day, improving productivity and ensuring the best care for patients. Linear lighting systems were installed throughout the bright, open plan offices, providing uniform light distribution in accordance with BS EN 12464, in order to minimise the risk of glare, eye strain and improve staff wellbeing.

Emergency lighting Over 300 luminaires were installed in this project, and almost half are emergency fittings – demonstrating the commitment to safety at the Maple Leaf Centre. Emergency lighting is particularly important in care homes and for those who may be suffering from mental illness, as clear direction is needed on how to exit the building in the event of an emergency. In addition to emergency signage at every exit throughout the building, nonemergency luminaires such as the Delta bulkhead, in escape routes, were specified with emergency variants. The emergency lighting system has been brought together via Tamlite’s e-Connect system. This self-test network allows for the automatic testing, monitoring and reporting of emergency luminaires. This removes the need for manual tests, provides live status reports and allows for time-scheduled tests. The requirement for the testing of emergency luminaires is outlined in BS 5266.

Through the use of low glare luminaires and daylight harvesting, illumination levels are kept at a consistent level throughout the day

Tamlite’s luminaires in the reception space have a high colour rendering index, displaying colours on the walls and furniture at their most natural

Scott notes, “The self-test system allows for significant cost-savings on testing and maintenance, as well as savings on the time required to conduct the monthly and annual tests.”

Efficiency is key The new Tamlite Lighting system was installed in conjunction with CEF Stourbridge. This partnership meant that the project was completed on time and in full. Scott explains, “The quality of the fittings was crucial, particularly to ensure that we reduce our energy costs. It was also vital that the fittings had a five-year warranty, to provide confidence going forward. We were also pleased with the delivery and project management, meaning it all came together efficiently.” All Tamlite Sales Engineers are LIA certified, and its technical design team has over 100 combined years of experience in lighting design. Tamlite Lighting,

29/01/2020 10:15











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020 8253 9750 24/01/2020 14:22



TRAIN YOUR WAY TO THE TOP Steve Apsey, Hamilton Litestat’s Technical Support and Training Manager – Smart Controls, looks at how the industry is changing for electrical contractors who fit newer products, and explains why training makes all the difference.


emand for smart lighting control is increasing at an unprecedented rate, and smart technology is ever-present in all areas of our lives – both work and play. For electrical contractors, the requirement to fit hardware – switch plates and touchscreen controllers – remains, but customers expect the ability to control lighting with their smart devices too. For installers to keep up with demand and exploit the business opportunities that smart controls present, training is a must.

projects require the integration of smart lighting control with other services, such as security and alarm systems, entry access, audio systems, and even blind/shade control. It’s important that manufacturers have the appropriate technical support in place to assist with installations where immediate on-site assistance is required. We pride ourselves in having a highly experienced technical helpdesk and aftersales support team that can advise an installer while on-site. The team can often talk a contractor through a complex project over the phone, or forward detailed wiring diagrams over email while instructing them verbally on the phone.

Back to school

Young blood

For installers wishing to extend their knowledge of smart technologies and diversify their business, Hamilton provides classroom-based training sessions at its dedicated training centre in Mere, Wiltshire. Installers get a detailed introduction to smart lighting control, along with tuition on how to complete a full system installation without the need for programming. At individual workstations, trainees are taught to select the right system component for a project and install Hamilton’s plug-and-play, programmingfree, four-channel lighting control solution. Following this, they are shown how to configure the system for lighting, audio or both.

At individual workstations, trainees at Hamilton’s training days are taught to select the right system component for a project

Reward worth the risk With a maturing industry workforce, training can be a daunting prospect. It can initially seem complicated and a lot of hassle, but the reward is worth the risk. Smart control products are now extremely reliable and easy to install. They’re supported by comprehensive and easily accessible technical guidance, which minimises risk and allows installers to focus on delivering the significant financial rewards that make it all worthwhile. Besides, Hamilton’s introductory training sessions are just that: we want installers that have never worked with smart controls before to go away with new knowledge and confidence. We believe it’s really important to get oneon-one attention during training and that’s something that we can offer in the classroom environment; we feel it’s best suited to giving installers a handson experience and making them feel completely at ease with the product, whatever their level or capability.

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For those wanting more There’s also a second stage to the free training courses that illustrates how the system can be used for more complex projects and functions that need to be programmed with a laptop. These features include: ‘welcome’ scene recall, global whole-house control from a single button, panic feature, fire alarm, intruder option, scene adjust, colour change sequencing, auto scene scroll, timed channels and blind control, to name a few. As a result, Hamilton’s smart control solutions are well suited to projects that do not warrant large-scale and expensive systems, but where the customer could benefit from a mid-range solution that is cost-effective, reliable and easy to install. As a CEDIA Continuing Education Unit (CEU) provider, Hamilton’s training course is endorsed by CEDIA and contributes four CEUs towards its training requirements. CEDIA stipulates that certified professionals must obtain at least 30 CEUs within three years.

Don’t be scared to ask However, classroom training does need to be supplemented by on-site training and support when needed, as no two projects are ever the same and you cannot provide training for every eventuality. Many

Hamilton’s smart control solutions are suitable for projects where the customer could benefit from a solution that is costeffective, reliable and easy to install

Unfortunately, we are seeing a skills shortage and fewer young installers are joining the industry. It’s a huge shame, as they have grown up with smart controls and are in a fortunate position to understand the demands a customer may have from such technology. The industry needs young, technically-minded people who can offer creative thinking and problem solving to support customer requirements. But university places have become easier to secure and graduate scheme wages are more attractive than apprenticeships, so few of these candidates are filtering through to the industry. And many that start apprenticeships don’t complete the fouryear training course. To attract new talent, the industry must rebrand itself. It needs to address the current perception of it being a low-paid industry job and update that into it being a challenging, flexible and fulfilling well-paid career.

Qualified and trainee alike Going back to school, under any circumstances, can be a daunting first step for many. A much more appealing approach for both the experienced and young installer is a CDP training session. This one-hour session plus questions can be run at Hamilton’s training centre or at the installer’s premises. Accredited by CPD UK and the BiiD, it provides easy-to-digest details on the latest lighting technology to suit the residential, hotel, commercial and retail sectors, as well as exploring wireless audio control solutions too, which are increasing rapidly in popularity. Our aim is to instil confidence in our installers that they can overcome technical issues on-site and complete a successful installation.  Hamilton Litestat,

24/01/2020 16:39

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14/01/2020 14:36



BEG TO LIGHT UP FRANKFURT BEG Lighting Controls will be demonstrating its advanced range of KNX Generation Six Presence Detectors at Light+Building 2020 in Frankfurt next month.


uilding on its wellproven range of presence and motion detectors, German manufacturer, BEG Lighting Controls, has updated versions of its KNX range, including a Deluxe version that has built-in logic as well as sound and temperature monitoring – an industry-first for the KNX market. The Deluxe version will offer a premium solution for KNX integrators facing more demanding applications with extra functions, which can include a logic module, sound sensor and temperature sensor. BEG Lighting Controls KNX System Sales Manager, Stephen Payne, says, “We’re delighted to be appearing at Light + Building again this year and are keen to demonstrate our new KNX Generation Six Presence Detectors to the trade at this premier event.

“The logic module in the new Generation Six sensors are independent of the detector operation and this has proved to be most useful to integrators. The integrated sound sensor can be used in areas where there are restrictions to the normal presence detection, such as a toilet cubical. “If configured, the sound sensor will activate, but only after motion is detected. Run-on times are configurable. The built-in temperature sensors will send temperature readings to the KNX bus to be used by HVAC actuators. This means separate temperature sensor do not have to be fitted to the wall, which will save electrical contractors time and the end user expense.” The new KNX Generation Six Presence Detectors mean BEG Lighting Controls now offers flush fitting and surface mount options on nearly all of its devices with different levels of functionality, giving the widest choice of detectors on the market.

All BEG KNX Generation Six detectors can be configured to be fully automatic or semiautomatic, via the ETS software or optional remote controls. The sensors include lens shields to obscure parts of the detectable area, which is useful when detection is not required in certain sections of the space. BEG Lighting Controls Sales Director for UK & Ireland, Paul Jones, adds, “BEG Lighting Controls is leading the way with the widest choice of presence detectors to suit all types of requirements in the UK and Ireland. Our new KNX Generation Six range offers more choice in operational height, detection area, installation and functionality than ever before. We even offer different colours.”  BEG Lighting Controls,

Control energy use in multi-room dwellings

Ecostat is always striving to minimise heat output Landlords can be confident that they aren’t using energy unnecessarily and could be saving 25-35%* on their energy costs. Occupants can raise or lower the temperature within agreed parameters but programs cannot be changed on the controller. Ecostat knows if rooms are unoccupied or if windows are open and adjusts the heat input accordingly.

• PIR presence/absence detection • Open-window technology • Tamper-proof • Lot 20 compliant • Boost, set-back and frost setting • 2 event - 7 day timer • Electric or ‘wet’ systems • Ideal for retro-fitting • Dedicated hand-set adjusts programs • 45 minute Non-invasive install. • 01787 320604

Smart Lighting & Lighting Control – BEG.indd 40

* Savings are dependant on building, current control methods and settings used.

Ideal for student accommodation, hotels, leisure resorts etc.

Wholesalers & Distributors

Software & Apps

Test Equipment

NEXT TIME… In addition to our regular range of news and viewpoints, the March issue of ECN will contain special features relating to wholesalers & distributors, software & appsand test equipment. The features will include articles and information from major companies, providing a range of information about the latest issues and technological developments affecting the sectors. For electrical contractors, the features will prove to be a valuable reference point for all that is happening within this area.

To make sure that you don’t miss this major opportunity to advertise your products to ECN’s 40,000 readers, call Kelly Byne on 01634 673163 /

24/01/2020 16:52







1 2

428484849 Scolmore Solutions February Advert.indd 1

Wiring Accessories – Scolmore.indd 41



Switch 1 allows the minimum brightness to be adjusted Switch 2 allows the dimming mode to be adjusted

22/01/2020 15:56:37

February 2020 | 41

28/01/2020 12:03



CONTRACTORS — THE DRIVING FORCE FOR PRODUCT DEVELOPMENT Marie Parry, Group Marketing Director at Scolmore Group, looks at how feedback from electrical contractors is helping to shape the company’s growing wiring accessories portfolio.


egular engagement with contractors via social media, trade magazines and faceto-face at exhibitions and trade shows is how Scolmore gains constructive insight into how contractors like to work, the issues they face and what they need to help them do their work in the most timeefficient and cost-effective way. It is this valuable feedback from contractors working on the job, and often in challenging environments, that helps to drive the new product development programme. We want to come up with solutions that will help them to overcome issues and be able to carry out their work more quickly and efficiently. These are the some of the latest new products that have been brought to market as a direct result of the feedback we have received.

Half media plates

A dual mode dimmer module allows minimum brightness to be adjusted

A new range of half media plates was developed to satisfy requests from contractors who were looking for a smaller version of the existing media plates. The plates feature a decorative ingot switched double socket outlet with a triple aperture that will allow the installation of any three new media modules to build a plate to suit a variety of installation requirements. With flexibility and quick installation for the end user in mind, the half media plates include a pre-manufactured insert onto the back of the plate to eliminate the need for a mounting yoke. There are five new half media plates available – polar white, polished chrome (with a choice of black or white ingot) and satin chrome (with a choice of black or white ingot).

A new range of half media plates was developed to satisfy requests from contractors who were looking for a smaller version of the existing media plates

GridPro media modules

Illuminated switches

The extensive GridPro collection of interchangeable mounting plates and modules has been enhanced with the addition of a range of media modules that will widen the appeal and applications for the range with specifiers and contractors. The new modules are fully compatible with the GridPro range and have been designed to allow a combination of power and media modules within the same plate. These additions will expand the installation of GridPro across an array of applications where some form of media or media and power combination is required – such as education and training facilities, offices, healthcare premises, hotels, conference rooms. A total of 16 media modules have been added, including USB, VGA, satellite, TV, telephone, RJ11, RJ45 CAT-6, two RCAs, two loudspeakers, audio jack, Hi-Fi, HDMI, time delay and buzzer modules.

Developed with the hotel sector in mind, but with appeal across other applications, are new illuminated blank modules which have been added to the GridPro range, as well as a new accessory plate that allows two single modules or a twin width module to be situated next to two Grid Pro switches to build a plate specific to hotel requirements. Combining the key card module with two GridPro switch modules with neon on the hotel accessory plates provides a smart, modern and secure solution. The occupier of the room will have an internal switch furnished with etched neon indicator modules that they can switch on and off; for example, ‘clean the room’or ’do not disturb’. This will illuminate the corresponding module located outside the room, giving staff a clear indication of the occupant’s requirements. The illuminated blank modules are available in both red and green and available in all 11 of Scolmore’s finishes.

OVERLOAD PROTECTION FOR VENTILATION EQUIPMENT 10A 3 Pole Fan Isolation Switch and a Fused Connection Unit Module all in one Switch Plate.

Scolmore Solutions February Strip advert.indd 42 428484849 | February 2020

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23/01/2020 10:26:22

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Also new to GridPro is an illuminated switch locator module, which provides a solution for the location of switches in the dark, such as hotel rooms during the night. There are three new modules available, each in polar white and black finishes with a blue neon indicator. The one- and twoway switches illuminate when the switch is in the ‘off’ position, and the double pole switches illuminate when the switch is in the ‘on’ position. Utilising Scolmore’s in-house laser etching service, which is available on all GridPro modules, will allow bespoke solutions to be created.

Key lockable switches and sockets A range of key operated switches and sockets is available across our vast range of wiring accessories collections, offering contractors and specifiers multiple choice when it comes to procuring products that have this required additional security feature. Providing the means to lock and unlock the power supply to the sockets and switches makes them ideal in a range of applications where security is of prime importance – such as hotels, schools and care homes, to name a few. With only the key holder able to operate them, this will prevent any unauthorised use of the switch or socket outlets. The range includes 20A double pole lockable switches and 13A one-gang double pole lockable sockets, and they are available in all of the Click wiring accessories collections – Mode, Polar, Metal Clad, Deco, Deco+, Define and Definity. The sockets are fitted with two earth terminals to provide a double earth facility when installations require high integrity protected connections. The sockets also feature a neon indicator to give clear visual evidence of the on or off status of the socket outlet.

“The problems of flickering and poor dimming range are welldocumented issues for installers when it comes to LED dimmers.”

A wide range of key operated switches and sockets is also available from Scolmore

Dual mode dimmer The problems of flickering and poor dimming range are well-documented issues for installers when it comes to LED dimmers, and it is a problem that we regularly hear about when talking to contractors. We came up with an intelligent dimmer module that not only eliminates flickering, but is much easier to control than regular dimmers. It is essentially two dimmers in one and offers the installer maximum compatibility. With a choice of dimming modes – leading or trailing edge – installers can choose the mode that works most effectively with the LED lights they are using. The electronics inside some LED lamps have better compatibility with trailing edge, and some are better in leading edge. Flicker at the bottom end of the dimming range is quite common when dimming LEDs. By incorporating a minimum brightness setting, the dual mode dimmer module allows the minimum brightness to be adjusted, so that any flicker at the bottom end of the dimming range can be trimmed out. Some LED dimmers can also be quite complicated to install. We have made installation much easier by positioning two small switches on the back of the module. Switch one allows the minimum brightness to be adjusted, while switch two allows the dimming module to be adjusted. Their position on the back of the module also makes it easier to change the dimmer settings without removing the module from the plate, thus saving installation time. The dual mode dimmer module also includes electronic thermal overload protection, so that if the module gets too hot it will cut out without damaging the internal electronics, allowing the module to cool down. With some dimmers, the overload protection will reset the dimmer to factory settings, resulting in the installer having

ILLUMINATED SWITCHES The Illuminated Switch Locator Modules are the perfect smart, modern solution for location of switches in dark situations, such as a hotel room in the middle of the night.

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to be called out to reprogram the dimmer. With the Scolmore module, the thermal overload protection does not have any effect on the installation settings, which means that the dimmer will remain set in the ideal compatibility settings for the LED lamps, as originally set by the installer. The small size of the new dimmer module means they can be placed above/ below each other on multi-tier plates. They will fit into 25mm back boxes when used on raised plates, and into 35mm back boxes when used on flat plates. As part of our quest to engage with contractors, we have recently launched a dedicated YouTube channel – SGTV. The aim is to provide the viewing contractor audience with engaging, informative and innovative content that will help keep them up to date with the latest products and developments, and to hear the opinions of industry experts on issues that impact their working lives.  Scolmore,

Media modules are also now available as part of the GridPro range

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A switch from terminal strips to lever or push-in connectors could give electrical contractors a competitive edge, Brett Smyth says

WHY NOT SWITCH TO TERMINAL STRIPS? Brett Smyth, from global electrical manufacturer, Ideal Industries, discusses the benefits of switching from terminal strips to lever or push-in connectors when installing electrical distribution networks.


he old adage ‘if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it’ is a mantra often quoted by those content to remain permanently within their comfort zone where they can use tried and tested tools and techniques to complete jobs in just the same way they’ve always done it. There’s a lot to be said for that philosophy; it’s a low risk, no learning curve strategy that champions experience over innovation and uses skills hard won over years of contracting practice. The problem is, without trying new tools and techniques, we don’t find out whether the job can be done faster, better and with a greater level of consistency. Often,

keeping to the same routines can mean missing an opportunity to save time and improve quality, both of which can deliver commercial advantages for the electrical contractor. Even small time savings on a single task can add up to a significant time and cost saving over the length of a full installation. What’s more, consistent quality not only reduces the risk of snagging and call backs; it could also enhance the success rate of bids for repeat work. Installation of terminal strips may seem like the simplest of tasks using the most utilitarian of generic products, but, even here, there are time, quality, cost and consistency gains to be had. Simply by switching to lever or push-in connectors, it could be possible to save man hours and achieve a more consistent and compliant installation.

ILLUMINATED SWITCHES The Illuminated Switch Locator Modules are the perfect smart, modern solution for location of switches in dark situations, such as a hotel room in the middle of the night.

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Barriers to change The electrical sector is not alone in being a profession where traditional ways of getting the job done are often a barrier to adopting new techniques for faster, more consistent approaches. Many trades across the construction sector have used proven methodologies passed down from one generation to the next, and there remains a tendency for specifiers to select products they know and trust rather than more modern and innovative alternatives. With commodity items and routine tasks like the installation of terminal strips, however, the issue is not specifier led; the pace of change is driven by the habits and preferences of electricians. There is a tendency to remain loyal to the products and installation techniques we used when we were


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Improving installation integrity

“While the unit price of connectors may be slightly more than terminal strips, the time savings they offer easily offset the minimal additional costs.”

The In-Sure Gen 2 lever connector is designed to make the use of connectors even easier and more cost-effective

trained and, despite working in a sector where continuous learning is integral to professional competence and compliance, this is just as true for electrical contractors as it is for any other industry, particularly when it comes to routine tasks like making connections. As a manufacturer with significant research and development resources, along with the international reach required to adopt best practice innovation from around the world, Ideal Industries is always on the lookout for better, faster and easier ways of carrying out electrical installations. However, we recognise that expecting experienced professionals to adapt habits that have been ingrained over decades is like asking someone to ditch the sugar in their tea overnight. That’s why we’re working with colleges to support training of the next generation of electricians using lever and push-in connectors, offering complimentary products so that they can practice using consumables that are faster, easier and more consistent.

We continue to believe, however, that there are benefits for more experienced electricians willing to make the switch. And, just like cutting the sugar from tea, it’s a switch that offers clear benefits and, once made, is unlikely to be reversed. The other barrier to change when it comes to switching from terminal strips to lever or push-in connectors is perceptions of cost. While the unit price of connectors may be slightly more than terminal strips, the time savings they offer easily offset the minimal additional costs. Connectors not only help to keep the job within programme, but also reduce labour costs over the length of the project. What’s more, making the switch provides peace of mind, because use of connectors removes any inconsistency associated with the tightening of terminal strip screws, thereby building value into the cost of the connectors by reducing the need for quality assurance checks or call backs.

An installed cost purchasing strategy for delivering consistently safe and highquality installations by using lever or push-in connectors doesn’t only benefit contractors; it also delivers quality assurance for the completed installation. Firstly, it ensures that installations are consistently safe and compliant with current wiring regulations. The 18th Edition of the Wiring Regulations requires that traditional terminal strip connections should be accessible for annual inspections in compliance with BS EN 60670-22, which makes it difficult to select a suitable location for terminal strip connections, leading to non-compliance for many projects. Conversely, lever and push-in connectors are classified as maintenancefree when used in conjunction with an approved enclosure box, so they can be part of a compliant installation anywhere within the property. Secondly, using connectors rather than terminal strips ensures every connection is consistent, because there is no variation in the tightening of the fixing screw that fastens the cable in place. Ideal Industries’ connectors even include a stripping guide on the side to aid consistently accurate stripping of the cable prior to connection, along with a CPC port for relevant testing. This standardised approach to making the connections ensures lever and push-in connectors deliver a fit-and-forget solution, as well as driving speed of installation. While speed and consistency of terminal strip installations grows with experience, connectors remove any margin for error, even for inexperienced electricians who are still training. This means that routine connections can be given to less experienced operatives on site, freeing-up the team’s most experienced professionals for more complex jobs.

A developing opportunity Lever and push-in connectors are not new, but neither are they static. Ideal Industries is now introducing the In-Sure Gen 2 Lever Connector, a development that will make the use of connectors even easier and more cost-effective. Robust and well-designed at an attractive price point, our lever and push-in connectors offer a user-friendly, cost-effective and quality-led alternative to terminal strips. As the electrical contracting sector continues to tackle the challenges of tighter programmes, skills shortages and stricter compliance, a switch from terminal strips to lever or push-in connectors could be one of the marginal gains that gives electricians a competitive edge.  Ideal Industries,

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A shortage of charging points isn’t confined to the home – more and more retail and hospitality customers expect on-tap charging too


WHAT’S NEW FOR 2020? Emma Segelov, EMEA Marketing Operations Manager at MK Electric, looks at the wiring device trends to watch for in 2020.


or every contractor, a new year and its new trends offers the potential to boost revenue. By recommending the right finish or advising on a solution that the enduser hadn’t previously considered, value can not only be added to a current job, but a trust built which could result in further work down the line. Below are some of our top picks for the next 12 months, to help contractors capitalise on new and emerging trends.

Decorative devices With the proliferation of social media channels, consumers now have unbridled access to an array of interior design inspiration, upcoming trends and hero products from brands. Whilst many are content with white moulded sockets and switches, the more style-conscious individual wants options that will enhance their surroundings and deliver a touch of individuality. Although they are small in size, light switches, dimmers and switchsocket outlets play a large role in adding an element of sophistication to interior design. From a

commercial perspective, these items will be interacted with frequently – especially in hospitality premises – so they can really make an impact on how the customer perceives the venue. The use of metallic tones is set to grow for 2020, with Ideal Home predicting the emergence of the ‘Eclectic Glamour’ trend. This look utilises a mix of warmer tones such as rose and bronze, including burnished copper and brushed brass. Meanwhile, luxury interior brand, Brabbu, anticipates that matt black finishes will continue to grow in popularity amongst hospitality premises.

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With this in mind, contractors should look for wiring device ranges that include a range of finishes, from metallics such as rose gold, gunmetal grey, brushed bronze and striking shades, such as the ever-popular popular matt black, to meet the demands of customers – domestic and commercial – looking to replicate this style. A further consideration is ease of update. For buildings where staying on trend is a priority, wiring devices that can easily be replaced to reflect the latest trends are a real plus. Our MK Dimensions range offers two-part installation – functional module and clip-on frontplate – with the two individual components available as separate parts, with individual order numbers. This not only means part loss and damage is avoided during first fix, but that the frontplate can be interchanged easily for a new design as and when required. From the customer’s perspective, this means keeping up with the latest trends is simple and affordable, whilst the minimised risk of part waste and speed of fit is ideal for the contractor.

Ecotherapy Mental health is in the top three reasons given for illness and cause of death amongst construction industry workers, at a concerning 32%. It is very pertinent then that another trend set to gain momentum in 2020 is the use of external and green spaces to promote good mental health – known as ‘ecotherapy’. The ability to combine physical activity, social contact and being surrounded by nature is thought to be beneficial for our mental health. Consequently, access to outdoor power will become increasingly important for homeowners and businesses alike – with restaurants, event venues, and holiday parks using outdoor spaces to create a calming retreat for their customers. In order to cater for this, contractors should recommend protective outdoor solutions, such as MK Electric’s Masterseal Plus, to provide access to power and lighting no matter what the weather. It has an IP66 rating for total protection against high-pressure water jets and extreme cold. Made from high-strength polycarbonate, a durable material also found in the protection of motorcycle helmets, it features rear drill holes and a gasket which is fixed to the mounting frame – and is thus quick and easy for electricians to install.

“According to recent research, around five million UK households are falling out over who gets use of power outlets around the home.”

Power struggles

Energy management

Alongside the ever-changing trends of property interiors, handheld technology is moving on at an incredible pace too, with tech-users needing increased accessibility to charging points for electrical devices. According to recent research, around five million UK households are falling out over who gets use of power outlets around the home, and it’s stated that around 12 portable electronic devices that require charging can be found per residence, so it’s unsurprising that one in five households reports arguments over whose device gets access to charge. This shortage of charging points isn’t just limited to domestic environments. More and more retail and hospitality customers expect on-tap charging, whilst studies estimate that the average office worker has three or more devices to keep charged every day. Savvy contractors can offer a simple resolution to the so-called ‘power-struggle’ simply by recommending USB integrated sockets that provide convenient charging points. However, it’s important to check the features included in these devices, as not every USB integrated socket offers the same level of functionality.

Last year, the UK Government set out ambitious plans to tackle climate change, and owners and managers of public and private premises will be looking for intelligent solutions to manage their consumption without compromising their daily operations. Everyone wants to be able to control things remotely for convenience, safety, ease of maintenance and to benefit the environment. There has already been some progress in this area within the domestic sector, but the next stage is to explore how larger buildings and estates, such as office blocks and university campuses, can be ‘connected’ to manage energy outlay from smaller power, as there are more devices installed in these types of buildings than anywhere else. It is still early days for this technology, but contractors who are early adopters of intelligent, connected wiring devices will be ahead of the curve when demand inevitably grows as a result of government initiatives and business objectives.

ILLUMINATED SWITCHES The Illuminated Switch Locator Modules are the perfect smart, modern solution for location of switches in dark situations, such as a hotel room in the middle of the night.

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Although they are small in size, light switches play a large role in adding an element of sophistication to interior design

MK Electric,


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THE IMPORTANCE OF QUALITY CRIMP CONNECTIONS Tim Harris, Technical and Support Services Manager of Cablecraft, discusses why it is important to achieve a quality crimp connection.


n the ever-evolving electrical installation market, some core requirements never change – the need for quality, reliable electrical terminations. Whether it be through the application of solderless crimp terminals or the use of cord end ferrules inserted into a terminal block, the fundamentals are the same. Correct wire preparation, terminal selection and the right tooling, are three of the five key elements required to create a quality crimp terminal. Documentation and trained personnel make up the remaining elements of the crimping system. Matched tooling and terminals are required to achieve quality results that can be relied on. Correct tool and terminal selection at the point of design plays a vital role in ensuring that the job is done in the correct way first time. Without all the elements in place, errors can be made, resulting in wasted time, scrapped products and costly failures.

Tool selection

It’s vital that crimp tools are maintained and kept in good condition

Wire preparation

To prolong the life of tools, Cablecraft advises they are calibrated on a yearly basis

A key element to achieving a quality crimp is wire preparation. Good quality, well maintained tools will cut the conductor cleanly and avoid damage. Insulation material for cables can vary, so having the right tool for the job ensures that insulation is removed completely, and all the wire strands are kept intact. The temptation to use cable cutters should always be avoided and a specialist stripping tool should always be selected to complete the job. During the stripping process, up to 60% of strands can be removed or damaged, thus reducing the carrying capacity of the cable, whilst also reducing the mechanical strength of the joint. Whilst this is less of an issue with single core cables, any damage to the conductor can lead to problems with the electrical connection.

Torn or ripped insulation can cause issues with the placement of the insulation support and wire barrel in the terminal. This is a problem, as correct strip length is key for positioning of the wire in the terminal barrel. Selecting the right design of stripping tool with the correct blade shape can greatly reduce the chance of mistakes.

Terminal selection Selection of a terminal can be based on varying different factors including price, application, ease of use, specification and availability. Selecting quality terminals from reputable manufacturers gives contractors the peace of mind that the equipment is fit for purpose. All terminals should have the manufacturer’s name and sizing stamped on the terminal, as this is vital for traceability and quality control after the terminal has been installed. Terminal suppliers should be able to provide technical data and drawings for all the terminals they sell and have recommended tooling to match each terminal. Insulation material and base metal needs to match the cable, and time should be taken in selecting the correct product. While end ferrules are installed to contain the strands and are not the final termination of the cable, care still needs to be taken in the crimping of these products and quality manufacturers selected.

Terminals come in many shapes and forms, with many companies and suppliers to choose from. Whatever the size or shape, the goal is the same – to create a solid mass of material, and this is achieved through the crimping process. The correct matched tooling and terminals are essential to achieve this. Each tool has a set of dies which match the terminal in terms of size and form. The dies are designed to crimp the terminal to the correct size to ensure the wire barrel achieves the correct compaction and the insulation support is formed into the correct shape. Many tools come fitted with a terminal locator to help the user position the terminal in the correct place. Incorrect compaction through the use of unmatched tooling can lead to air gaps, which in turn can lead to overheating. The tools dies should also mark the terminal to state that is has been crimped with the correct size of die or the correct aperture in the tool head.

Documentation Crimping systems were developed so that repeatable results can be achieved and quality results are ensured time after time. The BS EN 60352-2:2006 standard gives guidance on general requirements and test methods for quality assurance.

Trained personnel Trained personnel are key when creating a perfect crimp. We offer a full range of crimping solutions along with matched terminals and tooling, to achieve results that meet all the relevant industry standards. Crimp training courses are available and expand on the basics of the crimping process and quality control.  Cablecraft,

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THE DECARBONISED FUTURE OF ENERGY Nadège Petit, Executive Vice President of Global Power Products at Schneider Electric, looks at why the decarbonised future of energy will involve more electric and digital solutions.


lean energy, reducing carbon emissions and sustainability – increasingly, these are the battle cries of not only environmentalist groups, policymakers and youth organisations, but energy companies and increasingly committed energy consumers across the world. Climate change is becoming the defining issue of our time, and we find ourselves at what could be a defining moment to take action. Our generation must be the one to create a sustainable future for the planet. Renewables are gaining ground, with the new generation of energy consumers eager to create energy as well as use it. Increasingly, power will be cleaner, more efficient and less centralised. Energy efficiency is even expected to double, while energy savings could increase by as much as 25%.

New challenges on the horizon However, a plentiful, efficient energy future will create new challenges. More efficient energy makes power a lifeline for a country’s economy. When that power isn’t available, the entire country stalls. In the past 12 months, we have seen massive power cuts that have left 48 million South Americans, and 5% of the UK population without power, causing widespread disruption and costing millions in downtime. Organisations aren’t ready for the paradigm shift created by an all-electric world. In tomorrow’s 5G networks, digital services will run on thousands of private micro data centres distributed across each country. In a digital economy, data is the currency – and to ensure vital services stay operational, organisations must deliver 100% up-time, all the time. No excuses. To deliver on the promise of the electric future, organisations must adopt an innovative approach that eliminates complexity and helps them scale fast. This means considering technologies, platforms and partners that deliver on collaboration and connectivity.

The fast-approaching all-electric future will significantly change how energy is generated and consumed

52 | February 2020

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A fragmented foundation Electricity has never been more complex to operate, and current power infrastructures simply aren’t up to the task. The ecosystem of products, solutions and power solutions is fundamentally fragmented. There are thousands of solutions providers offering thousands of alternatives for every part of the electrical system. Organisations are spoilt for choice, but it also means there’s additional complexities from incompatibilities and products that don’t work well together. Delays, extra costs, less secure installations as well as design and integration mistakes have become all too common. Indeed, engineering fees now make up 53% of total installation costs. To make matters worse, by the end of it you have a system that doesn’t work quite as it should. Organisations are quite literally setting themselves up for failure. Problems at the installation phase are compounded during operation. Poor design choices will likely add extra costs and inefficiencies, while a lack of skills and experience may cause downtime and safety issues. For example, electrical assets that aren’t connected or compatible can rarely be monitored in real-time. Scheduled maintenance may flag wear and tear before it causes a power failure, but only if luck is on your side. More than likely, you’re going to suffer downtime or, in the worst case scenario, a damaging electrical fire that could have been avoided.

Integrating and innovating the system To escape this quagmire, businesses have to innovate. It’s crucial they reexamine their power infrastructures and seek improvements that will make them more resilient, while lowering both capital and operational expenditure. First and foremost, organisations should try to simplify and integrate digital models into their electrical systems to cut this complexity. Complexity slows down projects with too much time spent on engineering efforts from integration to commissioning and increases project costs. More components and moving parts have a higher rate of failure than those which are streamlined and simplified. The more subsystems there are, the more likely something will go wrong. To rectify this, they first need to design installations specifically for the application they serve and integrate them with the process they deliver. Doing so not only lowers the chance of failure and installation error; it significantly reduces installation costs and benefits customers’ project balance sheets, thanks to a simpler design and commissioning process.

Electricity has never been more complex to operate, and current power infrastructures simply aren’t up to the task, Nadège Petit explains

“In a digital economy, data is the currency – and to ensure vital services stay operational, organisations must deliver 100% uptime, all the time. No excuses.”

An IoT connected power infrastructure Then, companies should embed edge control and smart devices connected to the Internet of Things (IoT) in functional and integrated building blocks. An IoT-connected power infrastructure offers improved asset management, energy cost optimisation and greater resilience. An operator can monitor asset condition and energy usage in real-time – if a connected circuit breaker is starting to malfunction, the organisation will be alerted before it has a chance to turn into a businessinterrupting crisis. Energy waste can also be more quickly identified and resolved. This will drive down costs and eradicate mission-critical power outages. Yet there’s only so much a single company can do by itself. Organisations should seek to create a more efficient digital energy management ecosystem that leverages open platforms. Schneider Electric’s electrical distribution platform of the future, EcoStruxure Power, facilitates such an ecosystem. With an extended community of experts to draw from, you’re assured faster, better designed installations and, should any issues arise, faster support and resolution. The fast-approaching all-electric future will significantly change how energy is generated and consumed. It accelerates the need for new approaches, tools and innovative technologies. To deliver the uptime and efficiency required, organisations need a strong foundation, formed by a streamlined and connected power system. Now is the time for collaboration and innovation. The world of energy is evolving, and we need to evolve together. Schneider Electric,

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With new detection devices, such as Crabtree’s Starbreaker Mini AFDD, the number of fires across the UK can be significantly lowered


AN EXTRA LAYER OF PROTECTION AND DETECTION Every year, thousands of fires occur in the UK as a result of electrical faults. While electricity will always be a source of danger, there are ways to improve safety and minimise the risk of fires breaking out, as Dave Enefer of Electrium discusses.


Installers can now improve electrical safety through the use of the Starbreaker combined AFDDRCBO

lectrical fires caused by arc faults typically originate from poorly made terminations, insulation faults, damaged leads and cables, or through ageing wiring with failing insulation. In an effort to minimise the likelihood of fires originating from this type of fault, the 18th Edition of the Wiring Regulations (BS7671) set out standards for electrical installation in the UK, including requirements for protection of persons, livestock and property against the risk from fires that may be generated and propagated in electrical installations. In turn, these regulations require designers and installers to ensure that installations are arranged to reduce the risk of ignition from high temperatures or electric arcing, and that protection from harmful thermal effects is provided. Requirements include protecting against fire caused by insulation faults, arcs and sparks and high temperature.

UPS & Power Distribution – Crabtree .indd 55

Arc fault detection devices In order to prevent fires from electrical fault conditions, Arc Fault Detection Devices (AFDDs) monitor the arcing conditions to detect faults before overheating, or even ignition of cables occurs. This type of device has been broadly used in countries like the USA for several years, where there has been a noted reduction of fires originating from such conditions. Following suit, a number of EU countries have also mandated the use of AFDDs in certain types of premises to reduce the occurrence of fires from electrical arc faults. While these devices currently aren’t mandatory in the UK, installers can now improve electrical safety through the use of the Starbreaker combined AFDD-RCBO. An innovative new product from Crabtree, it integrates arc fault detection with RCD and MCB capability in a revolutionary single DIN module to deliver maximum safety in the minimum footprint, while fully catering for the requirements and recommendations of the 18th Edition of the Wiring Regulations.

Importantly, Starbreaker Mini AFDDs protect against both serial and parallel arc faults, providing an extra layer of protection against the risks from arcing referred to in the 18th Edition.

Improving electrical safety Serial arc faults are typically found in loose/poorly made connections, impacted/damaged conductors or frayed, or crushed parts. On the other hand, parallel arc faults – which are not short circuit faults – are typically found with damaged or degraded insulation that allows the flow of current between conductors. These arcing conditions can cause overheating and lead to ignition of cable insulation and that can spread to surrounding materials. While RCDs and MCBs are critical devices in preventing circuits from overcurrent, short circuit and earth leakage conditions, they are not capable of detecting arc faults – leaving a critical gap in the safety provision.

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Meeting current and future requirements “While RCDs and MCBs are critical devices in preventing circuits from overcurrent, short circuit and earth leakage conditions, they are not capable of detecting arc faults.”

AFDDs can help to bridge the gap in safety by helping to detect arc faults


AFDDs bridge this gap in safety. However, early models were two modules wide and took up too much space to be accommodated within crowded consumer units, and the size effectively limited widespread uptake

of the device. The new Starbreaker Mini AFDD overcomes this barrier by combining all three layers of protection in one DIN module – yes, there are three technologies in one MCB sized AFDD Device.

Using digital technology to constantly monitor circuit conditions, the Starbreaker Mini AFDD is able to distinguish between ‘operational sparking’ – for example, in washing machines and vacuum cleaner motors – and abnormal activity that could denote a potentially dangerous event. Complying fully with (and exceeding) the requirements of BS7671, this single module AFDD is a two-pole switching device which isolates any faulty circuit or appliance, ensuring complete peace of mind for installers, homeowners and investors. As an additional benefit, the new Starbreaker Mini AFDD-RCBO is an easy to fit ‘plug and play’ option that can be installed into any appropriate Starbreaker consumer unit, without the need for special assembly or new busbars. So, whatever the age of the Starbreaker unit, the new Mini AFDD slots easily into place, making it equally suitable for new builds, upgrades and retrofits to provide additional protection. Bringing three levels of safety in one easy-fit single module, Crabtree’s Starbreaker Mini AFDD represents a major step forward in electrical safety.  Electrium,



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Telephone. 020 8503 8500 | Facsimile. 020 8503 8900 |

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28/01/2020 12:25

8.11.2018 9:20:16



HOW UPS SCALING BOOSTS POWER AVAILABILITY Alex Emms, Operations Director at Kohler Uninterruptible Power, discusses the circumstances under which UPS scalability can contribute to availability and uptime.

What does availability mean?

Example 1

(1+1) Parallel Redundant Configuration Standalone UPS units

(4+1) Parallel Redundant Configuration Standalone UPS units











Before we can see how scalability can influence availability, we need to understand exactly what the term means. Certainly, as power problems are the largest single cause of computer downtime, increasing power availability is the most effective way of increasing overall systems availability. To understand how availability impacts users, we can describe it as the amount of time per year that a system is operational and performing as it should be. More formally, it is defined as

• MTBF of the (1+1) system is higher than that of the (4+1). • MTTR is 6 hours for each configuration. • Results: Availability of the (1+1) system is higher than that of the (4+1).

A=MTBF/MTBF+MTTR Where A = Availability MTBF = Mean Time Between Failures MTTR = Mean Time to Repair

Example 2

(1+1) Parallel Redundant Configuration Standalone UPS units

(4+1) Parallel Redundant Configuration Modular UPS units











From this, it’s clear that availability can be improved both by increasing MTBF, and by reducing MTTR. However, before examining this more closely, let’s return to the issue of scalability.

• MTBF of the (1+1) system is higher than that of the (4+1). • MTTR of the (4+1) system is shorter than that of the (1+1), achieved using rack mounted modular UPS units. • Results: Availability of the (4+1) system is higher than that of the (1+1).

Table 1: The impact of modular topology on UPS availability

Scalability While early double-conversion online UPSs used internal step-up transformers, the industry has generally moved towards transformerless technology, with evergrowing power capacities becoming available. Transformerless technology has an intrinsic advantage; it significantly improves overall UPS energy efficiency, increasing it by around 5% to yield a substantial reduction in heat loss and energy costs. However, its other key advantage is that it allows a considerable reduction in UPS size and weight, to an extent that UPSs can be implemented as relatively small and manoeuvrable modules rather than as large, floor-standing units.

Fig 1: Sample availability calculations.

(1+1) Redundant Configuration

How scalability can improve availability

(4+1) Redundant Configuration















Availability Load 120kVA

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Availability Load 120kVA

These modules can be simply plugged into a system rack; it’s easy to build a ‘right-sized’ UPS system using such an approach, so that its capacity closely matches the load requirement. By keeping the modules adequately loaded, energy efficiency is optimised. Then, as and when the load grows, the UPS can be readily scaled by adding more modules. Energy efficiency is preserved, and there’s no need to invest in the excessive capacity that’s often inevitable with monolithic systems. Meanwhile, now that we’ve discussed the concept of modules and their ‘incremental’ property, we can look at their impact on availability.

We saw that availability depends on both MTBF and MTTR; going modular can improve each of these factors. Firstly, using modules allows efficient configuration of systems with N+1, or, if required, N+N redundancy. The redundant element can be achieved just by plugging in extra modules, without unwanted or excessive extra capacity. And, by adding a level of redundancy, a three- to six-fold improvement in MTBF can be gained. However, reducing MTTR is also critical to availability improvement. Hot swap modular systems facilitate this, because they allow a faulty module to be removed from the UPS

rack, without interrupting power to the load, and replaced with a working unit – a process that can be completed in half an hour or less, compared with a time of more typically six hours that would be needed to take a monolithic UPS offline and repair it in situ. An example will show how these factors can translate into availability levels for the UPS. Fig.1 shows a 120kVA load, supported alternatively by a 1+1 system, or a 4+1 system. Table 1 shows how UPS availability is affected by the choice of configuration. It also makes some other key points; the highest availability comes from using a 4+1 rack-mounted modular solution. And this is entirely due to the modular system’s hot swap capability, which allows MTTR to be reduced from six hours to half an hour. Merely going from 1+1 to 4+1 configurations using standalone systems actually reduces MTBF, and availability, because of the increase in components associated with the change.

Conclusion This article has shown how designing a UPS for scalability also brings energy-saving and availability benefits. Availability is improved in two ways; firstly, because implementing redundancy becomes efficient and easy, and, secondly, if the modules used for scaling are hot-swappable, then MTTR can be reduced. These two benefits can be represented in a Power Availability chart – see Fig. 2. This shows that by applying these two concepts to a standard UPS that has neither redundancy nor hot-swappability, UPS power availability moves from ‘Normal’ through ‘High’ to ‘Very high’. Finally, it’s worth noting that the benefits of scalability now extend to very high power levels. The PowerWAVE 9500DPA, for example, supports capacities of up to 3MW through a combination of vertical scaling (adding modules to racks) and horizontal scaling (adding more racks). Kohler Uniterruptible Power,

Fig 2: A power availability chart

Hot-swappability (low MTTR)


f you’re told that a UPS is scalable, you may think that this simply describes its potential for future growth. While this is true, scalability in UPSs brings many further benefits, including both improved power availability and better energy efficiency.

PA-3 Hot-swappable but not redundant. High power availability.

PA-4 Redundant and hotswappable. Very high power availabilty.

PA-1 Neither redundant nor hot-swappable. Normal power availability.

PA-2 Redundant but not hot-swappable. High power availability.

Redundancy (high MTBF)

24/01/2020 16:44

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29/01/2020 10:11



CENTIEL TO SHOWCASE UPS SOLUTIONS AT DCW 2020 Leading UPS manufacturer, Centiel UK, will demonstrate its agility by showing its industry leading, flexible UPS solutions at Data Centre World this year on booth D810. Louis McGarry, Sales and Marketing Director at Centiel, comments, “With real-estate prices at a premium, plus the high costs of power consumption and the cost to maintain oversized UPS systems, the need to constantly right-size appropriate to the load has never been more important. For data centres looking to minimise running costs and maximise returns, an agile approach to system design is key. At DCW, we will demonstrate how to achieve a flexible approach through the use of true modular UPS systems. “We will be showcasing a 600kW CumulusPower UPS frame populated with our fourth-generation, highavailability, high-efficiency, hot swappable 60kW modules, offering 540 N+1 in a single footprint. We will also demonstrate one of our most popular frames, which maximises availability, achieving 75kW N+1 within a single footprint of just 0.59m2. With up to 320 battery blocks internally, this solution offers a great option for facilities with limited space. “An innovative design also allows the larger CumulusPower UPS systems to be connected from either high or low level, without the requirement for a separate cable entry enclosure,” continues McGarry. “This enables a more adaptable layout within comms rooms and data centres, accommodating the best use of space and potentially reducing installation costs too.” CumulusPower is known for its “9 nines” (99.9999999%) system availability and low total cost of ownership through its Maximum Efficiency Management (MEM) and low losses of energy. CumulusPower has now been installed in data centres and comms rooms in over 60 countries across five continents. More than 50MW of critical power loads are now protected with CumulusPower in locations across the world. DCW takes place at the London Excel on March 11-12. For further information, visit

A FLEXIBLE LIGHTING CONTROL MODULE FROM METWAY The MCC Connection Centre lighting control module from Metway offers a wealth of features to benefit the installer and specifier alike. It is a simple, flexible and cost-effective solution for your lighting installation. The Metway Connection Centre unit comes in a 10 and 8 output configuration with dedicated PIR inputs. It features dual side latching luminaire outputs and PIR inputs, dual channel dimming and dual channel switching. The robust moulded, low profile construction allows for simple single fix installation and loop in termination of cabling. The unit also features pluggable switch inputs which combine dimming and switching of detectors on individual channels. The switch inputs can also be used to facilitate Metway’s range of communicating detectors to create a networked system with corridor hold. Pluggable BMS integration is also available via third party controls.

INSULATED JACKETS AND TROUSERS FROM SNICKERS WORKWEAR Street-smart, stylish looks and market-leading Gore-Tex and 37.5 fabric technology make these jackets and trousers a must for winter on site or for outdoor leisure activities. You’ll stay warm and dry in this layered clothing that’s robust, waterproof and windproof too! The design and fabric combinations will keep your body in the optimum comfort zone as the weather conditions change on site. They’ve got all the features and functionality that you’d expect in Snickers Workwear jackets and trousers. They’re great looking garments that will keep you feeling comfy wherever you are and whatever you’re doing at work in cold weather. With a range of winter accessories to choose from as well, Snickers Workwear’s FlexiWork and ALLroundWork garments feature contemporary designs packed with must-have features that focus on fit, comfort and freedom of movement; as well as using innovative fabrics that deliver long lasting protection. For further information, visit

For further information, visit

NEW PART M ADDITIONS FOR GRIDPRO Scolmore continues to invest in its wiring accessories collection to bring installers an ever broader range of solutions that are designed to help them carry out tasks more easily and speedily and to meet regulatory requirements where needed. The latest development sees the expansion of the GridPro range of interchangeable mounting plates and modules to include Part M frontplates. The Part M GridPro Frontplates range offers a visually contrasting, flexible range of wiring accessories and will join Scolmore’s comprehensive Part M collection, which has been designed and developed as a high quality, flexible and modern solution to assisted living requirements. As well as one-gang, two-gang, three-gang and four-gang standard switch plates, the new Part M GridPro range comprises one-gang, two-gang and three-gang wide rockers. With ease of visibility in mind, these wide rockers are an ideal choice for assisted living installations and to aid with Part M compliance. For further information, visit

SMART THERMOSTAT ADDED TO ESP’S SANGAMO RANGE When ESP introduced a Wi-Fi thermostat to its Sangamo range of heating controls and time switches, it offered installers the opportunity to easily add a smart control function to their customers’ home heating. Coming under Sangamo’s Choice range of heating controls, the Choice Wi-Fi Thermostat allows you to control and monitor the room temperature and thermostat activity from anywhere in the world, through the free to download Sangamo Choice app. As more and more households are seeing the benefit of smart devices to control various elements in the home – so the demand for smart controls that can help with energy saving in particular is on the increase. ESP’s Wi-Fi Thermostat offers energy efficient programming and with remote access via the app, it allows for constant monitoring and control at your fingertips. It has been designed to be straightforward to install and operate and is suitable for electric, gas or oil systems. For further information, visit

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A SMALL PRICE TO PAY FOR PEACE OF MIND Prefect Controls is pleased to announce the arrival of a new member to the Hobsafe family – the PRE 9276. The single gang unit is installed between the hob and the cooker isolator switch, at a convenient location for those preparing food, and ensures that hobs cannot be left on should the cook be distracted. This version of Hobsafe has the same features as the popular two-gang versions, but is more compact. The capacity of the unit is 30A with 15, 20, 30, or 45-minute run-times being selectable during installation. There are both a neutral feed terminal and a neutral output. These large (13.3mm) terminals make fixing easy and quick – eliminating the fiddly issue of doubling up two cables into one terminal. There are two modes of operation: fixed, when the timer runs its course; or on/off, where a second press of the button allows the time-run to be stopped at any point. Hobsafe is easy to use with simple button operation and clear LED indicators, which are dimmable. When the current time-run is about to expire, the red ‘hob active’ LED will flash to warn that the hob is about to be turned off, giving the operator the opportunity to reset the timer if necessary. Hobsafe conforms with EN60730 and is moulded in PC/ABS, making the timer extremely durable. PC/ ABS is fully UV stable and is resistant to cleaning products. A gloss finish overlay allows for easy cleaning. Prefect Controls is also able to install Hobsafe – providing a ‘one stop’ peace of mind service for student accommodation managers, safety conscious landlords, and care partners of those living with dementia. For further information, visit

LEWDEN LAUNCHES TYPE B RCCBS Lewden has recently introduced Type B RCCBs to its range of circuit protection devices, in addition to the Type A and Type AC versions. Available in both two-pole and four-pole versions, Type B residual current circuit breakers (RCCBs) provide total protection for all known residual current faults. They are particularly suited to applications such as: electric vehicle charging, where smooth DC fault current >6mA exists, small scale electricity generating systems (such as solar PV and wind generators), inverters for variable speed control, uninterruptible power supplies (UPS), and battery chargers and three phase rectified supplies. The comprehensive range of RCCBs available from Lewden includes two-pole RCCBs in Class AC, Class A, Class B, and four-pole RCCBs in Class B. For further information, visit

A COMPREHENSIVE RANGE OF METAL CONSUMER UNITS The Axiom brand from the CED Electrical Group boasts a comprehensive range of single-phase metal consumer units. This includes high integrity boards with a 100A DP switch and dual RCD, a package of up to 22 free way boards with pre-fitted mains switch or 80A RCD plus split load boards with mains switch, 80A RCD or both. And finally, there are fully loaded 8, 12 and 18 way boards, as well as garage and shower units. Garage unit options include three- and four-way boards, with the shower unit also three-way – all prefitted with an MCB and 63A RCD. Fully Amendment 3 compliant, this complete Axiom metal consumer unit range, including a full range of devices, has been designed for ease of installation and offers a stylish contemporary design to integrate with any home. Quality is assured with RoHS compliance and certification to BS EN61439-3. For further information, visit

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NIGHTSEARCHER INTRODUCES SOLARIS PRO FLOODLIGHT The Solaris Pro is the latest addition to the renowned NightSearcher Solaris floodlight range. This high-powered portable floodlight is extremely compact, lightweight and is designed for all types of emergency or industrial applications. This high-power, 16,000 lumen output provides a long-distance search beam or flood beam to light wider areas of up to 500 metres. It is easy to set up and features a multi-position 1.8 metre extension pole and light head for inspection of manholes, along with fold out stabilising legs that can be used on uneven ground. Supplied with a smart control panel, the run time can be easily programmed for up to 24 hours, and automatically sets the light level to last the time required. The Solaris Pro features the latest lithium rechargeable battery technology, removing the need for any cabling or costly generators. Contact Nightsearcher now to book a demonstration. For further information, visit

NEW LONG RANGE PRESENCE DETECTOR FROM CP ELECTRONICS Ideal for corridor and aisle applications, the new GENB-IR from lighting control expert CP Electronics is a long range, narrow beam presence detector that provides savings in installation time and costs. Part of the popular green-i range, the GENB-IR PIR presence detector uses an adjustable PIR ‘curtain style’ lens designed for longer range detection of movement and a head that can be adjusted to any angle between 0-90 degrees to create the required detection pattern. The low-profile detector head also locks into position to prevent tampering. These directional PIRs are ideal for mounting in corridors and low bay aisle applications where a long narrow detection pattern is required. This IP40 rated PIR sensor can be easily set up, post installation, with the handy, user-friendly GEFL-HS infrared handset that is available to purchase separately, making set up fast and convenient. Time delay from 10 seconds to 30 minutes and lux settings can also be set using the GEFL-HS handset. For further information, visit

February 2020 | 61

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BUYERS’ GUIDE FIRE, SAFETY AND SECURITY PRODUCTS Fire, safety and security products that help deter false fire alarms, prevent theft and minimise damage to building equipment.

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AC Fast & DC UltraFast Smart Chargers Mobile Phone & RFID Operated Chargers Back Office Management Solutions Domestic, Workplace & Public Charging


Start/Stop Charging

Charge Point Locator





Pay to Charge

To attend a Rolec EV Product Awareness Day or to become a Rolec Approved Installer, contact Head of Technical and Contractor Relations, Gary Frost:

For more details contact Rolec’s technical / support / sales team or visit your local electrical wholesaler

t: 01205 724754 e:

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Charge Session Notification

@RolecEV / Rolec-Services 28/01/2020 12:15

Slim, Stylish

& Smart The NEW SALUS Quantum SQ610 and SQ610RF are extraordinary thermostats designed to be multifunctional, yet simple to install and operate. At only 10mm thick, they are ultra slim and stylish and due to their smart technology, can be controlled from anywhere with a simple to use app, via your Smartphone. Control electric panel heating and electric underfloor heating by adding SALUS SR600 16A smart relays. Being able to control the behaviour of your central heating, electric heating and underfloor heating zones individually can mean significant savings on energy bills and to the environment, however we have decided to go one step further and have designed the thermostat with an internal rechargable battery that has a two year lifespan from a single charge, so no more batteries!


Large Backlit Screen

Intuitive Menu

Built-in Humidity Sensor


Power Supply

Electric Heating

Merely 10mm thick in the 230V version and 11mm thick in the batterypowered version.

The thermostat is available in the 230V version - SQ610 and in the built-in battery version - SQ610RF, with charging via a standard micro USB port approximately once every two years.

Control electric underfloor heating or electric panel radiators with the SALUS SR600 smart relay.

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