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CONTENTS

PUBLISHER

Danny J. Salchert OFFICE MANAGER

Anita Salchert ASSOCIATE PUBLISHER

Jerry DiChiara jerryd@epsmag.net CREATIVE DIRECTOR

Derek Gaylard CIRCULATION DIRECTOR

Pam Fulmer

16

CONTRIBUTING WRITERS

Jeff Jowett • Bryan Rupert • Jim White

FEATURES 6 Trending Insulation Tests for Electrical Maintenance By Jeff Jowett

16

A Grounded Approach to Arc Flash Analysis By Bryan Rupert

Executive and Advertising Offices 3591 Cahaba Beach Road Birmingham, AL 35242 toll free: 800.981.4541 phone: 205.981.4541 fax: 205.981.4544 www.epsmag.net • danny@epsmag.net

CASE STUDY 22 A Tale of Two Accidents By Jim White

22 DEPARTMENTS 28 34 40

PRESIDENT

Danny J. Salchert

Industry News Product Focus Ad Index

ON THE COVER Photo courtesy of Megger

Electrical Products & Solutions™ is published twelve times a year on a monthly basis by ABD Communications, Inc., 3591 Cahaba Beach Road, Birmingham, Alabama, 35242, USA. Electrical Products & Solutions™ is distributed free to qualified subscribers. Non-qualified subscription rates are $57.00 per year in the U.S. and Canada and $84.00 per year for foreign subscribers (surface mail). U.S. Postage paid at Birmingham, Alabama and additional mailing offices. Electrical Products & Solutions™ is distributed to qualified readers in the electrical contracting industry. Publisher is not liable for all content (including editorial and illustrations provided by advertisers) of advertisements published and does not accept responsibility for any claims made against the publisher. It is the advertiser’s or agency’s responsibility to obtain appropriate releases on any item or individuals pictured in an advertisement. Reproduction of this magazine in whole or in part is prohibited without prior written permission from the publisher. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to ABD Communications, Inc., P.O. Box 382885 Birmingham, Alabama 35238-2885

PRINTED IN THE USA

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FEATURE • Megger then preempt any catastrophic failure and keep the equipment running. The time and cost of doing this are generally small in comparison to equipment breakdown. There are five critical times to perform insulation testing: 1. Upon manufacture, to check for manufacturing defects, damage during the process, or bad materials or components. 2. Upon installation, to check for shipping damage, installation damage, wiring errors, and to assure that you got what you paid for. 3. Periodically as part of a predictive/ preventive maintenance program. Such a program will reveal problems caused by electrical stress, thermal stress, environment, chemical attack, and mechanical stress, as reviewed above. 4. Restoring to service after maintenance, to check for wiring errors and inadvertent damage during repair. 5. After prolonged shutdown, to check for environmental damage through moisture, humidity, gnawing of rodents, and so on.

Trending Insulation Tests for Electrical Maintenance

By Jeff Jowett

A

relatively easy and convenient way of performing electrical maintenance on valuable equipment is with the judicious use of an insulation tester, or megohmmeter. Testing the insulation is comparatively quick and generally does not require disassembly of the test item. (It does require de-energizing the equipment, which is foremost for safety.) Two factors that are paramount are the range of the tester and the goal of the testing. Insulation test measurements provide information about the overall state of a piece of equipment, and therefore can be used much like a car odometer (only in reverse; big numbers here are “good”). An odometer reading provides a lot more information than simply the number of miles. It gives an indication of where the car is no its life cycle, and a reasonable expectation of what 6

might be anticipated. Insulation readings work similarly. A host of assailants progressively degrade electrical insulation and cause gradual drop in readings. Water ingress into the insulating material is, of course, a huge factor. Dirt, oil, corrosive fumes, temperature effects both high and low, voltage spikes, current surges, vibration, cracks, voids in the material, “water trees” and other factors all leave their mark. The net effect is that increasing amounts of current (“leakage”) get through the insulation instead of channeled down the conductor. At some point, “breakdown” will occur and the equipment will cease to function. An insulation tester measures this current and converts it into resistance. It provides a fairly simple means of assessing equipment condition, without having to go over it part by part. The goal is to

Electrical Products & Solutions • May 2013

Depending on the above situation, the testing may be performed with two different goals in mind. The choice of instrumentation is affected accordingly. Most of these tests may be simply “go/no-go” or “pass/fail” tests. The equipment is tested to see that it is satisfactory. This may be an intuitive determination by the operator, an agreed-upon or mandated acceptance value, or an overrange indication (commonly called “infinity” on analog testers). The tester need only match the demands, and so a relatively simple, economic model may be more than adequate. However, for the third of the above applications, periodic maintenance, the goal changes, and with it, the instrumentation. The test isn’t performed just to see if equipment is “good”, but if it is changing. Full-featured testers offer additional valuable capabilities, the most noteworthy being extended measurement range. Equipment can be measuring what would be considered “good” values, yet at the same time, these values could be dropping steadily. This could be an early warning of a problem, such as the uptake of moisture or some contaminant. As an example, take a series of readings over time and graph them (Fig. 1). In the Continued on page 8 “old days”, this was all


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FEATURE • Megger

Continued from page 6

for the decline in insulation values is difficult. The apparent problem is first addressed by correction to a common temperature base (Fig. 2). Temperature has a profound effect upon insulating materials. Increased agitation at the molecular level assists the flow of leakage current. Typically a 10°C rise in temperature cuts the insulation resistance in half! This gives a good idea of the

FIGURE 1

done manually, and testers typically came supplied with “test record cards” for this purpose. They still may, but modern testers may offer storage and downloading of results via software, a great convenience in eliminating possible “human error” as well as in reducing contention from third parties. In the example here, the test results appear erratic and the establishment of a time line

FIGURE 2

general magnitude of temperature effects. Specific insulating materials have their own gradients, and this data should be part of the specifications of cable or other equipment. Temperature correction is a simple multiplier of the measured value by a correction factor to a common temperature; 20°C is an industry standard. The sawtooth pattern of the readings will be corrected and a curve begin to appear. A second environmental complication is from electrical “noise”. This is a current induced on the test circuit by proximate sources of electrical interference. Since the insulation tester is measuring current and converting it to resistance, an added current “seen” by the tester reduces the resistance reading. In the “old days” of analog testers, noise, emanating largely from unstable sources, tended to be reflected in corresponding instability of pointer movement. The pointer swings could be averaged for an approximate reading, but often were too unstable and measurement not possible. Modern digital testers, of course, still suffer from instability, with readings constantly jumping, but have the added advantage of electronic noise indicators that at least inform the operator of what is going on. Readings can also be destabilized by intermittent breakdown of the test item, and so it is advantageous to have Continued on page 12 FOR FREE INFO, CIRCLE 40 ON READER SERVICE CARD

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FEATURE • Megger

Continued from page 8

cause only a fraction of the selected test voltage was actually applied, when it goes into service it may experience an “early” failure, and that could be a costly error. Testers that display the applied test voltage critically enhance the reliability of the readings. A corollary consideration is that of test current. While megohmmeters apply a high voltage, they supply only a limited current. This is easy to understand logically; they test insulation, which by definition accommodates no more than minimal current, lest it isn’t to be considered as insulation anymore! The application of test current is walking the knife edge between opposing parameters: test time and destructiveness. More available current will more quickly charge the inherent capacitance and absorption of the test item, and produce a stable reading more quickly. On large equipment, this may take some time and be a practical consideration. The reliability of the readings at the critical low end of acceptable insulation resistance is also af-

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Electrical Products & Solutions • May 2013

FIGURE 3

a tester that gives appropriate warnings. Select a tester that has superior noise suppression capability; this should be part of the tester’s specifications. With errors caused by poor noise immunity of the tester corrected, the graph becomes more readable (Fig. 3). Another potential problem…one that’s easily overlooked…is the voltage stability of the tester. It is essential to have repeatability of the tests in order for the readings to be comparable. Therefore, test voltage should be maintained as closely as possible. Isn’t this merely a matter of selector switch position? Not necessarily. Some testers have slow rise times; they will get to selected voltage output eventually, but may be halfway across the megohm scale by then. This can be particularly hurtful because it is on the low end of the resistance range that the most critical decisions must be made, whether to leave equipment in service or not. The testing should not be shortcircuited by poor quality of the readings. If the equipment appears to have passed be-

fected by the amount of available current. But at some point, “too much” current crosses the test over from an insulation test to a “high-pot”, a potentially destructive test. Therefore, a judicious compromise must be achieved in instrument design, typically around 3-5 mA. Test current is also a critical factor in the performance of the guard terminal. Not all insulation testers have guard terminals, but many come equipped with a guard. This is a shunt circuit around the Continued on page 14


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FEATURE • Megger

Continued from page 12

petes with leakage through insulation for limited available test current. Often, as with surface leakage, the guarded resistance may be quite low and siphon off so much of the test current as to make test voltage decay and the resistance reading unstable or unreliable. When intending to use the guard, always check the instrument’s accuracy statement when the guard is engaged, so as

FIGURE 4

instrument’s measurement module that enables the separate testing of different elements within the same piece of equipment, merely by moving the leads. It can be used to eliminate surface leakage from a measurement, or to distinguish primary-to-secondary resistance in a transformer while eliminating leakage to ground, for example. But when engaged, the guard circuit com-

FIGURE 5 FIGURE 6

to be sure of the readings. The effects of test voltage variation have been removed from the graph in Fig. 4. In Fig. 5, the possible sources of measurement area that we have discussed have all been corrected. Note now that the actual graph line closely approximated the theoretical line shown for comparison in Fig. 1. The projection of the equipment’s expected performance over time can now be made more accurately and reliably (Fig. 6). The benefits include scheduling off-line time for routine maintenance as opposed to working on fixed intervals, making projections for capital outlays when equipment has reached end of cycle, and, of course, the avoidance of down time. ❏

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Source: Trouble with Trends?, Paul Swinerd, Electrical Tester, July ‘11


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FEATURE • Facility Results

A Grounded Approach to

Arc Flash Analysis

By Bryan Rupert

very arc flash analysis is not created equal. The only way to know that your organization is getting its money’s worth is to recognize the best features of a sensible arc flash analysis plan and the potential pitfalls of a plan that is not well thought out.

E

lectors, and even when they do, the estimating part of arc flash analysis is not an exact science. That’s because data collection points (aka: “points”) can be counted differently by each contractor. One may be estimating based on counting every nameplate or where the label will be placed,

Work with a qualified contractor you trust The first rule of thumb is to pick a contractor you can be comfortable with over the long term. Right now you may only be concerned with getting an initial analysis done, but compliance is an ongoing requirement. That means every time your facility experiences a change to its electrical system, the NFPA 70E standard requires that all major modifications or renovation shall be updated in the analysis in a timeframe that is “not to exceed five years.” The alternative to picking a long-term partner is orienting a new contractor every time you need to update your analysis. Each time you work with a new contractor, you increase your potential for wasting time and money. Remember, not every contractor sends out qualified electrical data col-

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while another only estimates for those points with protected devices. The only way to be sure you’re comparing apples to apples when having the project quoted is to have a clear scope of work defined and a consistent definition of what is to be considered a point. Continued on page 18


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FEATURE • Facility Results Assess the contractor’s plan for change management As you consider whether a particular arc flash analysis contractor is the right one for your facility, be sure to inquire about the contractor’s plan for managing change—in real time and over time. It’s not practical to hire a contractor to come in after the fact and document change every time it happens, and doing a “wall-to-wall” system audit every year can be very expensive. That’s why many companies with defined change management programs find it easier to manage change as it happens. To accomplish this, a facility should require as part of the scope of work for the new electrical installation that the installer must document and catalog all the required data needed for updating the analysis. So, for example, if a new industrial air compressor is to be installed, the facility should be proactive in requiring the installer to document and catalog such things as the wire size, wire length, fuse or breaker types or settings, etc.

Continued from page 16

This approach is very effective because making the documentation a required part of the final deliverable means that the job is not complete until the data is received. And unless you’re an expert at analyzing arc flash data, another rule of thumb before giving the go-ahead to start the installation is to inquire up front about whether the installer is a qualified data collector. If the installer is not, you need to have a contingency plan for making sure the data gets collected accurately.

Ask about the availability of cataloging software Qualified data collectors are even more effective if they arrive at your facility armed with a cataloging software program designed specifically for conducting arc flash analyses. Cataloging software is invaluable on three levels—for data collection, label installation, and change management. Data collection: Good cataloging software will require and alert the data collec-

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tor if all of the data is not collected for each point. This has an immediate positive effect in that it reduces the number of return trips the collector has to make by ensuring that complete data is captured the first time. Label installation: State-of-the-art arc flash data collection software provides the ability to capture photographs with each point and to generate a corresponding report so you have an absolute visual reference for where to install each label. Change management: And finally, any worthwhile arc Continued on page 20


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FEATURE • Facility Results flash data collection software can be used to manage change. That way, it’s very easy for any qualified installer to document, for example, a new circuit that has been added, by simply recreating it within the software and answering the attribute prompts as they go. Remember, good software ensures that no data is missed.

Look for a contractor who can provide safety training for your employees Nowhere is it written that your arc flash analysis provider has to be a huge conglomerate to be able to provide valuable training on the NFPA70E safety standard. In fact, you should expect that any full-service arc flash analysis contractor can also provide training for your employees. As you review their available training options, don’t settle for generic safety training; instead, consider a contractor who can provide safety training specific to your facility or environment.

Continued from page 18

label and what that means in their specific environments. In addition, they should be trained in the practical application of protective measures, for example, how to properly operate and disconnect a switch, field test a voltage-rated glove, or inspect the arc-rated gear. When you consider all the different aspects that go into selecting an arc flash analysis contractor and the potential pitfalls that loom in the background if you do try to cut corners, it is easy to see why the best arc flash analysis contractors are A truly beneficial training program does- more than just contractors—they are often n’t rely on simply lecturing to your em- more like partners. ❏ ployees about the OSHA regulations or how the standards groups arrived at the calAbout the Author: Bryan Rupert culations in a 70E analysis. Instead, the (brupert@facilityresults.com) is cobest trainers—the ones who are worth what founder and lead consultant at Facility your organization is paying them—will foResults, a Plymouth, MI, company that cus on the information qualified workers designs and markets an extensive need to do their jobs efficiently and safely. collection of electrical reliability and For example, qualified workers need to be safety solutions, including FlashTrack, trained in reading and interpreting all the the company’s flagship software package information that appears on a best practices for performing arc flash analyses.

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CASE STUDY • Shermco Industries

A Tale of Two Accidents

By Jim White, Director of Training, Shermco Industries, Inc.

M

ost electrical workers are pretty aware of the consequences of an arc flash incident; burns caused by the heat of an electric arc, ignited clothing, weeks, possibly months of painful rehabilitation that may include skin grafts and reconstructive surgery. With large-area electrical burns there is

also the possibility of death, often from infections. Many times, though we don’t get the full story. We hear of the accident, the possible injuries or fatality, but often not the details of the aftereffects, mostly because it may be months before things are resolved and it is no longer “newsworthy”. This article looks at two arc flash incidents and follows them through to their conclusions. This article is not intended to blame anyone or to find fault, but only to increase people’s awareness of the more unusual aspects of an arc flash event.

Incident Number 1 This arc flash event occurred at a wind generation site inside a wind tower base. Wind sites present some unique hazards for technicians, in that the generator can be locked down, but the main circuit breaker will still be energized from the transformer connected to its load side, Figure 1. Each wind generator is connected into a collector “string” of 4 to 7 generators, which then feed to the main substation. Each wind site is a little different in the details, but all are generally

the same in this regard. Extra care must be taken when isolating electrical equipment, as the line and load side of the main circuit breaker can be energized even with the circuit breaker in the OFF position and the short circuit current from a string of generators can be quite high when backfeeding a fault. A technician went to work at the wind site, only to discover his partner was not there that day. The company policy was to have two qualified persons to perform electrical maintenance tasks, but Worker “A” decided he would work by himself. Anyone who has been to a wind site knows how scattered the site can be, so technicians are mostly self-supervised. Workers “B” and “C” saw Worker “A” performing maintenance on a UPS supply and asked Worker “A” to join them for the remainder of the day. Worker “A” declined, saying he wanted to finish the maintenance on the UPS, as it had been reported to have a loose connection. Worker “A” operated the handle on the main circuit breaker to the OFF position. The Line side of the circuit breaker was deenergized, but the Load side was being backfed from the transformer collector string. Worker “A” apparently did not complete a JHA or LOTO forms and was not wearing the company-required arc-rated clothing. While removing the UPS module from the cabinet, the case made contact with an energized part, causing an arc flash. Continued on page 24 Figures 2 and 3 show

Generator Collector “Strings”

Figure 1: Example Wind Generation Site One-Line

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Figures 2 and 3: Damaged UPS Supply and Main Circuit Breaker

Electrical Products & Solutions • May 2013


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CASE STUDY • Shermco Industries

Continued from page 22

Figures 4 and 5: Damage to the Wind Tower Interior

the UPS supply and its damage. The resulting arc flash damaged the wind generator controls, rendering it unserviceable, Figures 4 and 5. Worker “A” was able to make it to his truck and call for help. He drove himself back to the office where he was taken to the local hospital. Worker “A” suffered 2nd and 3rd degree burns on approximately 15% of his body; certainly serious, but most people would not expect this to be life-threatening on a 29 year old man in good physical condition. Unfortunately, Worker “A” died due to complications during his hospital stay, most probably infection.

up. Worker “A” had experienced this several times in the past and knew the racking screws on this type of breaker could be balky. He racked the breaker out a bit and then racked it back in and it started to bind up at the same spot. Worker “A” decided to force the breaker into its cubicle, but was unaware that some wires connected to an added-on transducer looped across the path of the circuit breaker and was the cause of the “binding”. Forcing the breaker into the cubicle pulled the wires from the transducer and onto the energized 4.16kV bus, Figure 6. The resulting arc

Incident Number 2 The second incident occurred at a manufacturing facility for a well-known defense contractor. Two workers were assigned to rack a 4.16kV circuit breaker from its cubicle, then rack it back in later and return it to service. At the time of the accident, this facility had no electrical safety program, no procedures and no arc flash PPE. This was a routine task for the two workers and the equipment was less than five years old. When returning the circuit breaker to service, Worker “A” shut the enclosure door and proceeded to rack the breaker in. As is common in many facilities, Worker “A” was wearing a cotton t-shirt, jeans, tennis shoes and nothing by way of PPE. Worker “B” was dressed in a similar manner and was observing Worker “A” and leaning against the switchgear. As Worker “A” racked the breaker in it began to bind Figure 6: Transducer Wiring 24

Electrical Products & Solutions • May 2013

flash was estimated to be 33 cal/cm2. Worker “A” was on one knee as he racked the breaker in. As stated before, Worker “B” was standing next to him, with one hand on the door of the cubicle above the one where the breaker was being racked in and the other in his pocket. I’m not certain this would qualify Worker “B” as a safety backup. The pressure wave created by the arc blew the lower door open, but the door, which was solid and had no vents or openings, diverted most of the arc flash heat and blast away from the two workers. Worker “B” received second-degree burns on the palm of his hand, because the door of the upper cubicle heated up so fast that he was burned before he could reflexively withdraw it. The arc flash and blast blew open the upper cubicle door, also, and that cubicle and breaker were also damaged. Figure 7 shows the aftermath of the incident. Figure 8 shows the damage to the upper cubicle door. It is hard to imagine the amount of pressure that caused the door to deform like it did in Figure 8. The handle on the enclosure door struck Worker “A” in the side of the head, knocking out a quarter-sized piece of his skull, but he did not suffer any serious burn injuries. Worker “A” was rushed to the emergency room, where they operated to remove the bone fragments and to reduce the swelling that he had to his brain. He was out of work for several months. When I met Worker “A” he was Continued on page 26


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CASE STUDY • Shermco Industries

Continued from page 24

back to work and seemed pretty much okay. He had some difficulty putting sentences together, but would only pause briefly while he sorted things out. Worker “A” became emotional when describing the incident, which for me, was very humbling. It was obvious that the accident had left some very deep scars in him. I later learned that Worker “A’s” wife had left him just before the Christmas after I delivered the training program. I don’t know for certain that her leaving was directly attributable to his injury, but people who suffer serious injuries often require long-term counseling to cope with their “new” life. As sad as this story is, the ending is even worse. Worker “A” took his own life shortly after the beginning of the year. This accident may never appear in OSHA’s statistics, but I am certain that his final gesture was due to his injuries and his Figure 7: Damaged 5kV Circuit Breaker Enclosure frustrations and losses.

Two Arc Flash Incidents; Same Outcome If one wanted to start the blame game, there would be plenty to go around for all parties involved. Workers who ignored company safe work practices, companies that did not properly qualify or equip their workers; I could write another 2,000 words on the mistakes and miscues taken by all involved. That doesn’t help, though. In reading the accounts of these two events it is pretty easy to see what went wrong and who did (or did not do) what.

All of us working on electrical power systems need to be mindful that there is no such thing as a minor arc flash event. In both of these incidents the workers received injuries that should not have been lifethreatening, but due to other circumstances turned out to be fatal. Once an accident begins, you have no control over its ending, nor do you have any idea of how serious it may end. What is sad is how poorly-trained many electrical workers are, and how unprotected their companies allow them to be. It is re-

Figure 8: Damage to Upper Enclosure Door

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ally time to step up to the plate. Electrical workers need to have a professional attitude about their safety, wear the available PPE and clothing and comply with their company’s safety policies and procedures. Companies need to do more than the bare minimum, scrimping on safety and doing “check-the-box” training. The personal and financial consequences of a serious arc flash event far outweighs whatever discomfort there may be in wearing arc-rated PPE. How does five minutes of inconvenience compare with weeks lying in a hospital bed recovering from a burn injury? I meet people all the time who didn’t think it would happen to them; and it did. How much does the cost of training and equipping your personnel with the proper PPE and arc-rated clothing compare with going to court, having your company’s name beat up (and a part of public record) as part of a lawsuit, dealing with OSHA fines and paperwork? In one instance I’m aware of the company hired a contractor to do high-voltage maintenance. One of the contracted workers was killed due to his own negligence. His widow did not sue the contractor he was working for, she sued the company that hired the contractor! After four years of litigation the company finally settled; not because it was at fault, but because it was too expensive to fight. We all need to do the right thing, both workers and companies. It’s good for the worker and it’s good for the companies that employ them. ❏


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Industry NEWS

With new solar installation, Berkshire East becomes world’s first ski area fully powered with on-site renewables From its lifts and lodges to its snowmaking and “magic carpet,” a new solar installation has helped the central Massachusetts family run ski area, Berkshire East, become the world’s first ski area to be powered entirely from on-site renewables. The year-round resort recently developed a 500kW solar tracker farm that will produce 700,000kWh annually. The solar farm will supplement a 900kW wind turbine the company installed in 2011. Together, the two systems will cover the area’s entire annual electric demand. “We view onsite renewable as a hedge against the rising price of power,” said Jon Schaefer, 32, at Berkshire East. “Energy is our largest non-labor expense and it’s the one thing we are most dependent on beyond the snow.” The recently commissioned 500kW solar farm consists of 90 dual-axis AllSun Trackers, which are Continued on page 30

In spite of the snowy winter conditions at Berkshire East, the solar farm will produce 700,000 kWh a year for the ski area.

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Industry NEWS

Continued from page 28

manufactured in Vermont and follow the sun throughout the day to boost energy production. Berkshire East, in the small Berkshire’s town of Charlemont, Massachusetts, hosts over 100,000 skiers annually, has six lifts and two lodges. Sustainable Energy Development Inc. (SED) of Ontario, NY developed the project. SED chose the solar trackers for the project and managed the design and installation. The solar trackers at the farm use GPS and wireless technology to position the more than 2,000 solar panels directly into the sun throughout the day, boosting production by up to 45 percent over rooftop installations. The solar farm is expected to produce 700,000 kWh annually and the wind turbine produces 1.4 million kWh annually. “We built our product produce more energy from the sun each day and withstand the harshest of northeastern climates. We were particularly excited to be involved in this unique project and thrilled to have AllSun Trackers helping power Berkshire East’s operations,” said David Blittersdorf, CEO of AllEarth Renewables. “Berkshire East Ski Area is a prime example of how distributed

A 900kW wind turbine along with a 500kW solar farm will cover all of Berkshire East’s annual electricity needs.

energy projects like wind and solar can help small, family-owned businesses thrive for years to come. Installing wind and solar projects at ski areas and resorts simply makes sense throughout the northeast, they are prime locations to take advantage of the benefits of renewable energy projects,” said Kevin Schulte, CEO of SED. The AllSun Tracker is manufac-

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tured by AllEarth Renewables of Williston, Vt. The ground-mounted solar systems are designed for homes, businesses, non-profits, and commercial-scale installations. The company is a 2012 Inc. 500 business for fastest growing companies nation-wide and has installed over 1,400 complete grid-connected solar tracker systems. ❏


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Industry NEWS

First Nine Installers Were Educated at IRISS Newly Opened Corporate Headquarters and Training Facility IRISS, a leader in the industrial infrared (IR) window market for electrical safety, announced today their first graduating class of IRISS Certified Installers taught in the newly built IRISS state-of-the-art corporate headquarters and training facility located in Bradenton, FL. “We designed this course to benefit our customers and electrical service contractors,” states Martin Robinson, IRISS CEO. “When a customer of ours needs their IR windows installed, they can depend on an IRISS Certified Installer whom has been trained and passed practical field tests to be certified by our installation experts.” “What’s not exciting about putting on a blast suit and playing the game Operation,” states Mike McMurrain, IRISS Training Manager. McMurrain helped develop this course to be a hands-on learning experience with a variety of experiments and simulations using the tools and personal protection equipment (PPE) to make learning enjoyable and engaging. “The IRISS Certified Installer course helped me understand why I was installing IR windows, and how to do it safely,” states one of the satisfied students. Additionally, electrical service contractors benefit by growing their client base with referrals because IRISS is only referring installation

of IR windows to IRISS Certified Installers. The Certified Installers class is one of seven courses taught through IRISS’s Safety and Maintenance Academy of Reliability Technologies or SMART Academy. These courses provide students and their companies the knowledge and practical experience necessary to complete electrical inspections safely and efficiently. Courses include Energized Electrical Maintenance, Level I IR Electrical Certification, Level II IR Electrical Certification, IRISS Certified Installer, and Customized On-Site Training Solutions Auditing Electrical Assets, Jump-Start IR Window Program, and Installation Support of IR Windows. In addition to training available at the SMART Training Academy, IRISS offers on-site or regional classes.

to the risk of a hazardous arc flash, accidents or injuries. Our unique window designs feature a durable, clear polymer lens that allows visual, UV and short/mid/longwave IR spectrum inspections and are available in custom shapes and sizes to fit the needs of any application. Through our Safety and Maintenance Academy of Reliability Technologies, IRISS offers many unique training and certification classes that provide the practical exAbout IRISS, Inc. perience and knowledge necessary to IRISS industrial-grade infrared (IR) windows complete electrical maintenance inspections give customers an efficient way to safely in- safely and efficiently. For more information, spect electrical equipment without exposure visit www.iriss.com. ❏

United States EPA Approves Mitsubishi Electric Power Products, Inc. UPS Division as an ENERGY STAR® Partner The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency approved the Uninterruptible Power Supplies (UPS) Division of Mitsubishi Electric Power Products Inc. as an ENERGY STAR partner with the qualification of four of its UPS modules, Mitsubishi Electric announced today. The ENERGY STAR-qualified products are Mitsubishi Electric’s 1100A and 1100B Series modular UPS units, and the 9900A and 9900B Series UPS modules. All offer unprecedented reliability, efficiency, and ease of operation. The 1100A and 1100B Series UPS units are expandable from 10kVA to 50kVA, and 50kVA to 80kVA, respectively. Both operate a threephase 208Y-volt input and a three-phase 32

208Y/120-volt output to service various loads. The 9900 Series fixed UPS units are available with a wide range of power ratings. The 9900A Series offers 80kVA, 100kVA, 150kVA, 225kVA capacities and the 9900B Series offers 300kVA, 500kVA and 750kVA capacities. Both products operate on a three-phase 480-volt input and a three-phase 480-volt delta output. These UPS modules are transformerless, which reduces floor loading, and are configured for parallel operation, which increases mission reliability. “We’re committed to providing quality products that meet or exceed customer expectations, and this is another way for us to take our

Electrical Products & Solutions • May 2013

products to the next level,” stated Dean Datre, general manager, Mitsubishi Electric Power Products, Inc. UPS Division. ENERGY STAR is a government-backed program helping businesses and individuals protect the environment through superior energy efficiency. The ENERGY STAR qualification process requires that products be tested in EPA–recognized laboratories, with the results reviewed by an independent, accredited certification organization. In addition to up–front testing, a percentage of all ENERGY STAR products are subject to “off–the–shelf” verification testing each year. In addition to UPS units, the UPS Division of Mitsubishi Electric Power Products, Inc. offers a complete line of maintenance bypass panels, power distribution panels, remote power units and customized critical load cabinets. Information about these products is available at www.meppi.com. ❏


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Appleton Offers Electricians Simpler, Faster Way to Install Cable Glands in Hazardous Industrial Areas no disassembly, so there are no parts to fumble with or possibly drop from high ladders. Installers simply prepare the cable end, insert it into the TMC2X cable gland, and tighten the nut to secure the cable armor and provide a true 360° ground in a single step.

Faster Curing, Faster Installs When industrial facilities are wired with jacketed metal clad cable, there can be thousands of cable glands for electricians to install and seal. The right gland can make the job quicker and easier - plus help electricians avoid costly mistakes and rework - resulting in significant savings on the project’s labor costs. Installation ease, speed and reliability make all the difference. That basic principle is behind the design of the Appleton TMC2X connector for jacketed metal clad cable. No other cable gland comes close to the TMC2X for ease of installation and quick, reliable curing of the barrier seal compound. Unlike common 3-piece cable glands, the 2-piece design of TMC2X connectors requires

Appleton RapidEx barrier seal is easier to install than standard epoxy/clay compounds. The electrician simply mixes the two-part epoxy resin compound in a convenient applicator pouch, then pours the mixed compound into the cable gland and around the conductors using the applicator tip. No kneading or packing is required. RapidEx compound flows freely to eliminate any gaps or voids, and cures fully in as little as twenty minutes depending on ambient temperature. At that point, the cable gland assembly is ready for final installation. It will provide reliable duty in any weather, with no shrinking or cracking of the RapidEx compound for the life of the cable gland. Also, the

unique built-in union allows installers to disassemble the TMC2X without disturbing the resin barrier or cable, allowing for hassle-free maintenance to enclosures or for field inspection. Appleton TMC2X connectors are available for a wide range of hub and cable sizes, and can be used with: • MC/MC-HL cable • Corrugated Interlocked Aluminum/Steel Armor cable • Continuously Welded Armor Cables, such as TECK or CLX. The Appleton TMC2X is available in copper free aluminum, fully nickel plated brass, and stainless steel. Suitable for use in Class I, Division 1 hazardous locations, and with NEMA 4X and IP66 ratings, TMC2X may be the only cable gland needed for rugged, harsh and hazardous location work. ❏ For more details, please visit www.appletonelec.com

Resilient, Sturdy Copper Electrical Wiring Keeps Building Occupants Safer Electricians Trust Copper to Protect Against Power Outages, Personal Injuries and Fires Almost no modern building material is more time-tested than copper electrical wiring. From generators and motors to electric lights, copper is recognized as the industry standard and is the only wiring material to be approved by all electrical codes nationwide. It’s resilient, reliable, and most importantly, safe. With National Electrical Safety Month in May, reviewing your electrical system is as important as understanding the safety benefits of copper wiring. Copper electrical wiring is used commercially and residentially because it’s easy to work with and can be easily, securely and safely connected to outlets and other electrical equipment. It requires less maintenance and its connections are much less likely to loosen and corrode over time. It’s these advantages, not to mention copper’s superior conductivity, that make this metal the preferred choice among professional contractors working on building wire systems. “Electrical wiring is everywhere, nestled just behind every wall of your home or office. It’s

just not worth the risk to rely on non-copper wiring materials that can corrode or give under pressure,” said David Brender, program manager for the Copper Development Association, CDA. “It’s hard to find a material better suited than copper to prevent electrical fires and keep building occupants safe.” Copper wiring is known for withstanding an overload better than other materials because of its significantly higher melting point (1,984 degrees Fahrenheit, compared with aluminum’s melting point of 1,221 degrees Fahrenheit). Additionally, repeated cycling is less likely to loosen a copper joint. Corrosion is another major risk of using other metals and alloys in wiring. Commonly called a “noble metal,” copper is not susceptible to galvanic corrosion when connected to non-copper metals. It effectively resists moisture- and humidity-driven corrosion that can destroy other wiring systems, reducing the risk of power outages, system failures and fires. Copper wiring

typically does not require the use of conductive greases at its connections, and torque is not critical. It does not loosen over time; connections remain tight. Because copper is regarded as a timeless building material, it’s well-known. Electrical contractors and electricians alike require little special training, reducing the risk of a dangerous mishap. For that same reason, copper wiring is very common, meaning electricians making repairs rarely encounter compatibility issues. The unique combination of strength and ductility allows copper electrical wiring to be bent further, twisted tighter and pulled harder, all without stretching, creeping, nicking or breaking. Such exceptional strength ensures that copper is the safest and most preferred wiring material available to electricians. ❏ To learn more about the safety benefits of copper electrical wiring, visit www.copper.org. May 2013 • epsmag.net

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0513EPSp34-40_Company Spotlight 5/3/13 11:11 AM Page 34

Product FOCUS Woodchuck® Hard Cider Adds Solar Orchard to Energy Mix Vermont Hard Cider Company, LLC, maker of the growing Woodchuck® Hard Cider brand, is also growing its renewable energy use. Woodchuck is now harvesting the sun through a solar orchard in nearby Bridport, Vermont. The solar project will produce approximately 210,000 kWh of electricity per year for the Woodchuck cidery. The project will cover approximately 10% to 15% of the company’s current electric demand. “Sustainability efforts like this are at the core of our mission,” said Vermont Hard Cider President and CEO Bret Williams. “To be able to tap into local renewable energy is good for our business, the local economy, and the planet.” The 1.5 acre solar orchard consists of 26 pole-mounted dual-axis AllSun Trackers, which use GPS and wireless technology to follow the sun throughout the day. The solar trackers are manufactured locally by AllEarth Renewables of Williston, Vt. According to AllEarth Renewables, the solar tracker system boosts the panel’s energy production by up to 45 percent over roof-top installations. “We’re excited to be working with Vermont Hard Cider Company on this project, a company that understands they can make both a financially sound decision and a sustainable decision as they produce their great product,” said David Blittersdorf, CEO of AllEarth Renewables. Woodchuck also purchases 25% of its power through Green Mountain Power’s “Cow Power” program, which converts cow manure to electricity. Combined with the new solar project, around 40% of Woodchuck’s power use is now renewable. For more information visit The Woodchuck Blog, The Core. For more information, visit www.woodchuck.com/blog

Legrand Introduces New Hospital Grade Pass & Seymour® USB Charger with Tampr-Resistant Receptacle Quality, Safety And Convenience For The Hospital Environment Legrand, a leading provider of electrical wiring devices and home systems, has announced the availability of its Pass & Seymour® Hospital Grade USB Charger with Tamper-Resistant Receptacle (Hospital Grade USB Charger). It is available in 15A and 20A, 125V versions and carries a Hospital Grade certification. The new USB Charger has a compact design and features two 5-volt DC USB ports that work with USB 2.0 and 3.0 compatible devices. “The Pass & Seymour® Hospital Grade USB Charger is perfect for the hospital and healthcare environments,” said Steve Rood, product line manager for Legrand Electrical Wiring Systems. “They are specifically designed and manufactured to withstand the constant use and demands of a fast-paced environment that is typical of hospitals. Users can feel confident that they have the safety of a hospital grade receptacle with USB charging capabilities for a wide array of devices.” From a third-party compliance perspective, the Pass & Seymour® Hospital Grade USB Charger is ETL Tested in the US and Canadian markets. It also complies with the following test requirements: UL 498, UL 1310 and complies with Fed Spec WC596, CSA C22.2 No. 42, CSA C22.2 No. 223. The Pass & Seymour® Hospital Grade USB Charger has a 2.1A USB type A receptacle that not only delivers a faster charge compared to other receptacles, but it also does away with the need for bulky AC adapters. It has a zinc plated ground terminal screw and a stainless steel auto-ground clip that assures positive ground. To prevent the improper insertion of foreign objects, the new USB charger has a tamper-resistant patented shutter system. It also meets the 2011 National Electric Code® Tamper-Resistant requirements. Back and side wire terminals on the charger accommodate both #14 AWG - #10 AWG stranded and solid wire. Triple-wipe brass contacts ensure lasting retention and the presence of screw-pressure-plate back wiring facilitates a fast and easy installation process. The Pass & Seymour® Hospital Grade USB Charger is available in seven different colors: White, light almond, ivory, black, brown, gray and red. For more information, visit www.legrand.us 34

Electrical Products & Solutions • May 2013


0513EPSp34-40_Company Spotlight 5/3/13 11:11 AM Page 35

Introducing Greenlee E-Z BORE® Self-Feed Wood Boring Bits Greenlee’s new and redesigned E-Z BORE® Self-Feed Wood Boring Bits make conduit or pipe sized holes up to 4 times faster than standard bi-metal hole saws, plus there’s no difficult slug to remove. “We designed E-Z BORE® bits to help electricians, plumbers, and general contractors make clean, conduit-size holes in many different types of construction lumber, including hardwood, softwood, laminated veneer, and pressure-treated woods,” said Tim Beed, Senior Product Manager. “The two-blade design resists clogging, and the outer spur teeth help prevent splintering and blowouts – providing fast, smooth holes.” All E-Z BORE® bits feature carbon alloy cutting edges that can be resharpened for increased tool life. The replaceable screw-point also helps pull the bit through wood with less effort. All E-Z BORE® bits also feature a 7/16-inch hex shank that fits 1/2inch drill chuck. A 5-1/2-inch Bit Extension is also available for cutting through thick woods. Greenlee E-Z BORE® bits are available in thirteen sizes from 1” to 4-5/8” (for installing 1/2” to 4” conduit and pipe). A seven-piece Contractor Kit is also available. For more information, visit www.greenlee.com

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0513EPSp34-40_Company Spotlight 5/3/13 11:11 AM Page 36

Product FOCUS Orbit Introduces Labor-Saving Easy Access Lighting Box Orbit Industries has released a new Easy Access Lighting Box for high bay fixtures that can be installed by just one person. With an innovative design, Model EALB features removable side and cover plates that allow the lighting fixture to be set in place while wiring connections are being made. Here’s how it’s done: The installer mounts the box to the beam with the side and cover plates removed. Installer then attaches the cover plate to the lighting fixture and slides it back onto the box. He completes the wiring connections and then attaches the side plate to finish the installation. The entire job can be completed by one person, saving labor. Model EALB is constructed from durable steel and features interchangeable cover plates, including swivel style. Heavy-duty screws ensure stability during the installation process. The Easy Access box is also adaptable for the installation of other electrical devices, such as sockets. The product measures 4” x 4” x 2 1/8” deep and has side and bottom knockouts. Capacity is 30.3 cu in. Orbit Industries has become a leading supplier of innovative products for the pre-fab market. More information about Model EALB can be seen online at www.orbitelectric.com. Orbit Industries is a major manufacturer of electrical products for the professional installer. Orbit products are UL or ETL listed and include: NEMA enclosures; steel boxes; weatherproof products; emergency/exit signs and lights; photoelectric controls; fasteners, fittings and grounding devices; landscape lighting fixtures and accessories. For more information, visit www.orbitelectric.com

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0513EPSp34-40_Company Spotlight 5/6/13 3:37 PM Page 37

Platinum Tools® Launches 10Gig Termination Kit Complete Field Kit (P/N 90170) Includes 10-Gig Cat6A Shielded Connectors, the Tele-TitanXg Cat6A Crimp Tool, Cable Stripper and External Shielded Crimper; Exceeds 10-Gig Performance Standard for Streaming High Bandwidth Across Cat6E, Cat6A, & Cat7 Cable Platinum Tools® , the leader in solutions for the preparation, installation and hand termination of wire and cable, is proud to announce the launch of the new 10Gig Termination Kit, a complete turnkey field kit (P/N 90170) that includes 10-Gig Cat6A shielded connectors, the Tele-Titan™Xg Cat6A crimp tool, cable stripper and external crimper. The new system, which exceeds 10-Gig performance standard requirements for streaming high bandwidth across Cat6E, Cat6A, and Cat7 cable, is now shipping. “Streaming media traffic, whether, data, audio or video, is on a sharp rise and networks are demanding more bandwidth,” explained John Phillips, Platinum Tools, Inc. product manager. “That means bigger and usually shielded cable, such as Cat6E, Cat6A and Cat7. Our new 10Gig Kit terminates larger cable to meet 10-Gig standards.” The connector choice is critical. In today’s world, it needs to be at least 10-Gig rated, cable compatible, and field-terminate capable. “Our 10-Gig Cat6A shielded connector not only meets, but exceeds these requirements,” Phillips added. “Used along with the Tele-TitanXg Crimp Tool, our cable stripper and external shielded crimper you achieve an optimal termination every time.” 10-Gig Shielded Connector RJ45 Cat6A (P/N 106190) specs: • Max cable OD: 8.5mm/0.335in. • Max conductor OD: 1.35mm/0.053in. • Exceeds 10-Gig performance standard • UL and RoHS compliant For more information,visit www.platinumtools.com

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0513EPSp34-40_Company Spotlight 5/3/13 11:11 AM Page 38

Product FOCUS SORAA Ends the Reign of Halogen; Releases World’s Highest Output, Full Visible Spectrum, Ultra-Efficient LED MR16 Lamps Removing barriers to the widespread adoption of LED lighting, Soraa announced today its new perfect spectrum SORAA VIVID 2 and PREMIUM 2 LED MR16 lamp lines—the first ultra-efficient replacements for 65-watt and 75-watt halogen lamps, available for both 12V and line voltages. A technological breakthrough made possible by Soraa’s recently announced worldrecord performance gallium-nitride on gallium-nitride (GaN on GaN™) LEDs, the new SORAA LED MR16 lamps deliver the industry’s highest light output, while rendering vivid colors, richer reds and whiter whites, transforming ordinary lighting in any space into extraordinarily vibrant, brilliant and energy efficient lighting. “The SORAA VIVID 2 and PREMIUM 2 lamp lines represent a tipping point in the widespread adoption of LED MR16 lamps— we now have 65-watt to 75-watt equivalent lamps that produce full visible spectrum light and consume 80% to 85% less energy,” said Soraa CEO Eric Kim. “And what’s amazing is that we have just scratched the surface in terms of performance gains from our GaN on GaN LED technology. Look out halogens—your days are numbered.” Most LED lamps available today are based on LEDs made by depositing GaN on foreign substrates like sapphire, silicon carbide or silicon. Consequently, these LEDs have high crystal defect densities that limit the amount of current densities they can handle, thereby limiting the amount of light they emit per unit area. These high defect densities also constrain the LEDs to much lower temperatures in order to operate reliably. Both these limitations are amplified when these LEDs are used in a small form factor like an MR16 lamp, which is frequently installed in constrained or enclosed fixtures, and is used in applications that require very high light output. The lamps that use these LEDs have to make compensating design choices like using multiple LED light sources to generate the required amount of light, and active cooling mechanisms to keep the LEDs within their operating temperature range. For more information, visit www.soraa.com

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Electrical Products & Solutions • May 2013


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T3 Innovation Launches Revolutionary New Power Prowler™ 3-In-1 Electrical Fault Finder Utilizing Advanced Digital Multimeter, Fault Detection, and Live Event Detection Technologies and Functionalities, the PLR600 Power Prowler Seeks and Measures for Electrical Faults Over Energized Data Lines, Electrical Cable Runs, and Coax Systems T3 Innovation, a leading provider of advanced handheld test equipment for the cable/telecommunications, datacom/networking, electrical design and maintenance, and residential/CEDIA custom install markets, is proud to introduce the new revolutionary 3-In-1 PLR600 Power Prowler™ fault finder. The Power Prowler is scheduled to ship April 2013. “The Power Prowler eliminates the need for carrying three separate testers, allowing a technician to have a digital multimeter, cable fault detection, and a live event detection all in one unit,” said Ron Vogel, T3 Innovation CEO. “By not only combining multiple necessary tools, such as these three distinct yet sometimes necessary testers into just one device, the end result is not just time saved, it has the potential to save repair facilities millions of dollars in down time. Additionally, it eliminates frustration, by finding events on cable that only occur during field use and when the electric systems are actually carrying voltage and current.” The Digital Multimeter functions support DC Volts, 10M Ohm input impedance, AC Volts, 10M Ohm input impedance; automatically selected AC or DC Volts with a lower impedance; continuity with audible signal for low resistance; Ohms measurement, and data logging and graphing capability options. Fault Detection provides 1) a quick picture of a cable’s condition, measuring distances to shorts or open faults in a cable or the cable length, 2) features library of common cable type VOP values, 3) Calibration mode calculates the VOP once the length of a cable is inputted, and 4) Loop testing with audible indication of changing readings. For more information, visit www.t3innovation.com

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0513EPSp34-40_Company Spotlight 5/7/13 9:28 AM Page 40

Advertiser INDEX This advertisers index is compiled as a courtesy to our readers. While every effort is made to provide a complete and accurate listing of companies, page numbers and reader service numbers, the publisher is not responsible for errors.

Company ACR SYSTEMS AEMC INSTRUMENTS ARPI OF USA BRADY WORLDWIDE BYTE BROTHERS CALIFORNIA TURBO CANADIAN FLEXI DRILLS CORP. CHICKEN SWITCH CONDUIT REPAIR SYSTEMS CONTINENTAL CONTROL SYSTEMS, LLC COPPER DEVELOPMENT ASSOCIATION E-Z METER FACILITY RESULTS FLIR GENERATOR INTERLOCK TECHNOLOGIES GENSCO HB BRACKETS HERCULES INDUSTRIES, INC. HIOKI USA ICC

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Electrical Products & Solutions • May 2013

Company IRISS, INC. KRENZ & COMPANY MEGGER MH RHODES/CRAMER COMPANY MILWAUKEE ELECTRIC TOOL MINUTEMAN UPS NFPA 2013 CONFERENCE NORTHWEST LIGHTING SYSTEMS PHASE-A-MATIC SOKKIA STEELMAN INDUSTRIES STRIP-TEC SUMMIT TECHNOLOGY, INC. THE HOME DEPOT THE JACMAN GROUP TOSHIBA INTERNATIONAL CORP. UNDERGROUND DEVICES UTILITY METALS YOKOGAWA CORPORATION

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EPS Magazine May 2013  

May 2013 Issue of EPS Magazine