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CONTENTS

PUBLISHER

Danny J. Salchert OFFICE MANAGER

Anita Salchert NATIONAL SALES MANAGER

Jerry DiChiara jerryd@epsmag.net CREATIVE DIRECTOR

Derek Gaylard CONTRIBUTING WRITER

Ken Whiteside CIRCULATION DIRECTOR

Pam Fulmer

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PRESIDENT

FEATURES 6 Solar Innovation by the Numbers By Ken Whiteside

TESTING EQUIPMENT PRODUCT SPOTLIGHT 28 Megger 29

Hioki

30

Extech/FLIR

31

AEMC® Instruments

DEPARTMENTS 22 Industry News 32 Product Focus 40 Ad Index ON THE COVER Alternative energy photovoltaic solar panels being installed on a roof.

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Electrical Products & Solutions • June 2011

Danny J. Salchert 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 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 • Ontility

Solar Innovation By Ken Whiteside

T

by the Numbers

he solar PV (photovoltaic) industry of the early 21st century has often been compared to the semi-conductor and personal computer industry of the 1980s. The technologies are certainly related. After all, a PV cell is based on the same technology which makes semi-conductors work. But the comparison most often made has more to do with price and capacity than core technology. Do you remember computers from 1980? (Hint, there were no laptops then) If you don’t, that’s ok. You didn’t miss much; they were large, slow and expensive. When I

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bought one of the first Macs in 1984, it had a processor speed of 8MHz and cost $3,500. Soon though we began to see very rapid change and we learned about a new law: Moore’s Law. That’s the one about how fast technology advances and how cheap it gets at the same time. We’ve certainly seen it in computing - I’ll leave it to you to do the math, but compare the processing speed and price of my first Mac to that of an iPad. What’s all this got to do with solar? Solar PV today is like computers of 1980, and the prediction is that the rate of im-

Electrical Products & Solutions • June 2011

provement and innovation will follow a similar path. Moore’s Law will apply. When this parallel is drawn, technological innovation typically comes to mind. And that almost always is thought of in terms module efficiency, the percentage of available sunlight which is converted to electricity, and the cost per Watt. Half way through 2011, those numbers are about 14% for efficiency and $2 per Watt for a PV module. If Moore’s Law is in effect, we can anticipate power conversion rates of close to 30% for $1 per Watt by 2014. Continued on page 8


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PHOTO COURTESY OF DUPONT

FEATURE • Ontility

6/8/11

But let’s look at the numbers in a different way. Module efficiency and price is too narrow a measure. Its like measuring the cost of transportation solely on miles per gallon and the cost of gasoline. For PV we need to consider whole system efficiency and cost per installed Watt. This broader measure takes into account not only innovation in the PV cells and modules, but also considers improvements in inverters, junction boxes, and most important to many, improvements in installation practices and job management which contribute to lower labor costs. This approach is being championed by the U.S. Department of Energy’s Sun Shot program goal of $1 per Watt by the end of the decade. If Moore’s Law is in effect, DOE will see its goal achieved well before 2020. 8

There is another area, quite apart from the massive innovation in PV cells, modules and inverters, where equally important innovation is taking place – innovation which is having a greater short-term impact than any of the technological advances being explored and commercialized: How systems are financed. With the slow-down of government backed incentives in many parts of the country and new programs few and far between, it is time for the industry to take steps toward sustainability – not just incremental steps, but major Moore’s Lawabiding ones. During the easy days of massive incentives, a property owner, wither residential or commercial, decided to install PV. They paid thousands of dollars up front for a system and then were paid back in the form of rebates from Continued on page 12

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utility companies or local governments, or tax credits on State and Federal income taxes: Quite straightforward, but unsustainable. For the past two years, the solar market has been like mushrooms after a rain, sprouting profusely where incentives are funded and fading just as rapidly as soon as the funding runs out. And in many cases, like mushrooms, that cycle lasted

only a few days or even hours. The market demand for solar is so strong that incentive funds, especially utility company sponsored rebate programs, were fully committed (spent) shortly following their launch. This on-again, off-again approach to building a solar energy industry is also not sustainable. So, with the looming end of all sorts of

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Electrical Products & Solutions • June 2011

incentive programs and the prospect that the government sponsored ones have little chance of being renewed or extended (the one exception being the 30% Federal income tax credit), the solar market is ripe for innovative financing. First were production based incentives – utility companies willing to pay a fair price for electricity produced by Continued on page 14


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distributed solar PV systems. These arrangements have been very effective in places like San Antonio where even small residential systems can qualify so owners of those systems get paid a reasonable rate per kWh for power fed back to the grid. The effect on the local market has been very positive; San Antonio is a thriving solar market in a state with no statewide

incentives or government sponsored programs. Well planned and executed power production agreements go a long way toward building sustainability, but they still require that the system owner, the customer, have the capital to make the initial investment. This typically requires about $10,000 for a modest residential system and can amount to as much as $30,000.

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Electrical Products & Solutions • June 2011

One innovation which reduces and can eliminate that initial cash outlay is the Energy Efficiency Mortgage. These low cost home improvement loans are tied to energy savings, and can include the installation of solar PV systems They are structured such that the monthly payment is less than or equal to the projected monthly electricity savings. For commercial projects, there are other loan programs which tie loan payments to the monthly power purchase payments. The bottom line with these instruments is that the property owner’s monthly cash flow is not impacted negatively by the loan: Loan payments are offset by the energy produced from the PV system. Another way to avoid up-front costs is to lease the system rather than buy it. Just like leasing a car, you get the benefits of ownership without the capital outlay. And also like other leases, there are restrictions. In most traditional solar leasing programs, the customer doesn’t have many options when it comes the equipment installed and who installs it – not necessarily a bad thing. With equipment choices limited to a small number of packaged systems, decisions about system size and the equipment to be used are highly streamlined. The same is true for installer selection. Reducing the number of choices reduces the time between deciding to go solar and having a system installed. It also simplifies the whole process – removing great complexities from the decision making process. Sometimes simple is good. And sometimes it isn’t. Some customers want more flexibility in how the system in configured. Some locations are not suitable for a packaged system. Until recently there wasn’t a leasing option for these folks, but now an innovative new lease program has been devised. National solar distributor ONTILITY has partnered with SunCap Financial, an NRG company, to launch a Solar Residential Lease Program. Like most residential lease programs it is a 20 year lease with no upfront cost to the customer, it comes with a power production guarantee and web based power production monitoring, it is fully transferable, assures fixed low monthly payments and includes an installation warranty and system insurance; But this program differs from others in some Continued on page 16 significant ways.


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There is a pre-pay option which enables customers to make all the lease payments up-front, essentially buying out the lease. They then are eligible for immediate savings through Federal income tax credits and other incentives, some of which would take a customer who buys a system outright months to recoup. In fact, by leveraging depreciation and Federal in-

come tax credits this lease program is financially viable even without additional rebates or other incentives. In less than 10 minutes the contractor can put together an accurate quote. Since customers have a number of choices regarding their payment plan, they need to see the numbers and compare. And the contractor needs to be able to present

those options quickly and accurately. The web based quoting software lets the contractor quickly model and demonstrate the monthly payment, prepaid amount, guaranteed power production, and overall system performance. Contractors can set their own price rather than being forced by a lease program to accept low profit margins to make the numbers work. Contractors can choose from a wide range of products. Systems can be designed around almost any product that ONTILITY distributes. If made in American is required, that option is available. If low price is the key deciding point, then that can be accommodated too. This level of flexibility also means that leased systems can work in a large variety of situations, even those requiring specialized equipment or unusual configurations. Overall this lease program is very straightforward and contractor friendly and represents a welcome level of financial innovation in the industry. A healthy, sustainable solar energy industry depends on many factors of course. Looking around midyear 2011 shows that a number of those factors are trending upward and looking strong. Market demand is solid – a recent national survey revealed that more than 80% of Americans are interested in installing solar on their homes. Reliable product at a competitive price is readily available – solar equipment has never been better, the technology is advancing rapidly, and manufacturing capacity continues to expand at a very aggressive pace. A qualified workforce is ready – solar training programs are doing an excellent job of preparing solar professionals for success and industry standards of excellence are gaining recognition and acceptance. The numbers must make sense – when all is said and done, if the financials don’t work, the system very likely won’t be installed. Financial innovation and the widespread adoption of new financial tools will help put in place this last piece of the solar puzzle and ensure that Moore’s Law is fully invoked. ❏ Ken Whiteside, Director of Education for ONTILITY, writes from Austin, Texas. His blog can be found on the web at www.ontility.com and his Tweets @ontility.

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ADVERTORIAL


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ADVERTORIAL


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Industry NEWS

The Hertz Corporation’s Solar Energy Program

The Hertz Corporation’s solar energy program continues to expand with the installation of solar electric systems at various Hertz locations. The most recent installation was completed at a Hertz Equipment Rental Corporation (HERC) facility in Commerce City, Colorado. Hertz is the first equipment rental corporation in the nation to announce the completion of a solar power facility. Installation of solar panels will continue at the following HERC locations in the upcom-

ing months: Tucson, AZ, Augusta, GA, Bogart, GA, Norcross, GA, Boston, MA, Baltimore, MD, Newark, NJ, and Harrisburg, PA. The project is a part of Hertz’s initiative to install solar electric systems across the United States. Earlier this year, Hertz announced that it will be completing the installation of solar electric systems at 16 Hertz facilities throughout the United States. Other locations include Hertz facilities in Arizona, California, Colorado, Georgia, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, and Pennsylvania. ❏

Bridgeport Fittings Names S-Squire Inc. New Representative for New Mexico and El Paso, Texas, Sales Regions Southwestern manufacturers’ rep has been serving customers since 1985 Bridgeport Fittings, a leading supplier of quality fittings to the industrial, commercial and residential channels of the electrical industry, has named S-Squire Inc. its new representative for the manufacturer’s New Mexico and El Paso, Texas, sales regions. S-Squire will assume the representation effective June 1, 2011. The Albuquerque firm has been providing outstanding customer service and sales support to both the New Mexico and El Paso, Texas, markets since 1985. “With our ‘Mighty-Focus’ commitment to provide the best products and service possible to our distribution partners in every market, we are very proud to have the opportunity to align ourselves with this group of unparalleled industry professionals,” said David Turk, Bridgeport vice president, sales and marketing. “We look forward to our newly formed partnership with S-Squire Inc.” Bridgeport’s new distribution partner is located at 8512-A Calle Alameda NE, Albuquerque, NM 87113. For more information, visit www.s-squire.com or www.bptfittings.com. 22

Electrical Products & Solutions • June 2011

IDEAL Appoints Jeff Kellermann as Vice President/ General Manager of Tool Group IDEAL INDUSTRIES, INC. recently announced the appointment of Jeff Kellermann to the position of Vice President/ General Manager of its Tool Group. In this role, Mr. Kellermann will be responsible for all aspects of the operation of the company’s retail and industrial sales groups, as well as its SK Hand Tool and Western Forge business units. He will report directly to IDEAL President and CEO Jim James. Mr. Kellermann comes to IDEAL from ITW Metals Group Fleetwood-Signode where he served as President for the past 18 years, both prior to and after ITW acquired the organization, then known as Fleetwood Packaging Company. Before his tenure with Fleetwood, Mr. Kellermann worked for fine paper distributor LaSalle Whitaker in roles of increasing responsibilities, eventually rising to Vice President of Marketing and Operations. Mr. Kellermann began his career with the accounting firm of Price Waterhouse. Mr. Kellermann earned a Bachelor’s of Science degree from the University of Rhode Island. For more information, please visit www.idealindustries.com.


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Industry NEWS

Delmar and DEWALT® Keep Electrical Professionals up to Code with the Release of Three Updated Guides New editions revised to include National Electrical Code® 2011 requirements Delmar, part of Cengage Learning and a leading provider of learning solutions for ongoing career development and education, today announced the release of three new electrical reference guides updated for the 2011 NEC®: DEWALT® Electrical Professional Reference – 2011 Edition, DEWALT® Electrical Code Reference: Based on the 2011 National Electrical Code and DEWALT® Electrical Licensing Exam Guide: Based on the NEC® 2011. “It’s crucial for all tradesmen, electricians and apprentices alike, to be knowledgeable of all current codes”, said Greg Clayton, vice president, Delmar. “Based on the requirements of the individual, the three DEWALT® reference guides updated with NEC® 2011 revisions, provide different levels of functionality to ensure optimal readability and ease-of-use, allowing professionals to access critical information at a moment’s notice.“

The DEWALT® Electrical Professional Reference – 2011 Edition, a comprehensive reference guide covering all aspects of electrical wiring, delves into areas critical for success in an electrical professional’s career, from motors, transformers and grounding, to voltage drops, fastener charts and tools. Recently revised to include critical NEC® 2011 requirements, this guide covers both residential and commercial electrical wiring, in addition to a vast compilation of formulas, tables, calculations and best practices. Designed to provide electrical professionals quick access to residential elements, DEWALT® Electrical Code Reference: Based on the 2011 National Electrical Code, examines all aspects of residential wiring codes. It explores each room of the house in detail, including receptacle placement, smoke detector installation, stairwells and crawl spaces, ensuring that readers

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Electrical Products & Solutions • June 2011

perform safe and accurate residential wiring installations. This updated guide includes worksheets to simplify advanced load calculations, diagrams for wiring devices and code references that highlight NEC® 2011 requirements. Regarded as one of the most trustworthy license prep resources in the industry, DEWALT® Electrical Licensing Exam Guide, Based on the NEC® 2011 provides electricians and apprentices with the tools necessary to effectively study and prepare for electrical licensing exams. This comprehensive resource provides need-to-know knowledge, valuable test-taking strategies and thorough guides to successfully master various state and local electrical licensing exams. For more information or to purchase these titles or any other book in the DEWALT Professional Reference Series, please visit www.dewalt.cengage.com. ❏


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Industry NEWS

NEMA Publishes NEMA 410-2011 Performance Testing for Lighting Controls and Switching Devices with Electronic Drivers and Discharge Ballasts The National Electrical Manufacturers As- Controls and Switching Devices with maintained by the association’s Lamp, sociation (NEMA) has published NEMA 410- Electronic Drivers and Discharge Ballasts. Ballast, Lighting Controls, and Wiring 2011 Performance Testing for Lighting This standard, last published in 2004, is Device sections. NEMA 410 provides guidance for the design and testing of lighting controls and switching devices to be used with electronic drivers, discharge ballasts, and self-ballasted lamps to assist in establishing and verifying compatibility between products. This standard has been expanded to encompass additional types of lighting technology, and numerous figures and test circuit diagrams and designs have been added. Ed Thomas of GE Lighting, chair of the Ballast Section Technical Committee, said, “NEMA 410 is the industry standard for electronic ballast inrush current. This revision extends its applicability to include selfballasted compact fluorescent lamps and integrated LED lamps, and NEMA encourages the standard’s use by those evaluating and designing electronic ballasts and device drivers.” To find other NEMA lighting standards, go to www.nema.org/stds/lighting.cfm. NEMA 410 may be downloaded at no charge, or a hardcopy purchased for $78, by visiting www.nema.org/stds/410.cfm, or by contacting IHS at 800-854-7179 (within the U.S.), 303-397-7956 (international), 303397-2740 (fax), or global.ihs.com. NEMA is the association of electrical and medical imaging equipment manufacturers. Founded in 1926 and headquartered near Washington, D.C., its approximately 450 member companies manufacture products used in the generation, transmission and distribution, control, and end use of electricity. These products are used in utility, industrial, commercial, institutional, and residential applications. The association’s Medical Imaging & Technology Alliance (MITA) Division represents manufacturers of cutting-edge medical diagnostic imaging equipment including MRI, CT, x-ray, and ultrasound products. Worldwide sales of NEMA-scope products exceed $120 billion. In addition to its headquarters in Rosslyn, Virginia, NEMA also has offices in Beijing and Mexico City. ❏ NEMA. Setting Standards for Excellence FOR FREE INFO, CIRCLE 34 ON READER SERVICE CARD

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June 2011 • epsmag.net

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TESTING EQUIPMENT PRODUCT SPOTLIGHT

Digital/Analog Movements Analog Arc vs. Digital Reading

C

onfusion persists over digital

and analog representations of test results. Both have their adherents. Common multimeter functions like voltage and current are quite agreeable to digital rendering because they tend to be fairly constant. The operator is concerned with finding out what the value is under test, and digitals have the advantage of a precise rendering, without the parallax that plagues analog interpretation. Where exactly has the pointer stopped on the arc? This can be open to interpretation by the operator, but is eliminated by a digital. It may also be noted that analogs, being electro-mechanical, are increasingly more expensive than digital counterparts. Veteran operators were often trained on analogs before digitals existed, appreciate the familiarity, and can function quite well. While economic and practical arguments may be difficult to overcome, there are some areas where analog and digital are at a genuine standoff. Primary among these is the difficult area of insulation testing.

Analog Strengths Procedures exist for interpreting the time factor, and are worth familiarization. Once understood, the “travel” of an analog pointer tells a lot about the condition of the item. Experienced operators may rely on it more than on the reading. Rapidly changing digits are difficult for the human

The Best of Both Technologies

Understanding the Aspect of Time Insulation testing has the additional dynamic of a pronounced time element. While much of electrical testing amounts to getting the reading and you’re done, insulation testing is different. The meter must determine how much “leakage” current the insulation of the item passes through the insulation under the applied voltage. But initially, leakage is masked by two charging currents, capacitance and absorption. These can be greater than leakage, and as they go to completion (test item becoming fully charged) the readings being posted by the meter become progressively higher. An operator used to working with a multimeter and not trained in insulation testing can be mightily confused by these changing readings. Which is correct? They all are…for the time at which they were taken. 28

smooth travel. If leakage predominates, the effect may be visible as erratic travel. Arcing causes pointers to drop and rise again, moisture vaporizes off and reinvades, and so on. Sharp operators spot these deviations. Numbers by themselves aren’t always easy to interpret, considering that readings can range from megohms to tera-ohms.

mind to grasp. As charging currents diminish, digital meters post readings whenever they hold for the sampling interval. Eventually, numbers begin to “freeze”, but by then, most of the scale has been traversed. An analog pointer, by contrast, sweeps the scale in a coherent pattern. Smooth travel is what the operator wants to see. If “good”, the item has large charging current compared to leakage, and

Electrical Products & Solutions • June 2011

Actual readings, however, are indispensible. Digitals provide the most accurate readings and are user-friendly. Drop them and you can generally pick them up and continue. Don’t try that with a mechanical analog! Both types, then, have their advantages and disadvantages. Fortunately, it’s no longer a choice between one or the other. Megger® has introduced the combination digital/analog display. These testers have Liquid Crystal Displays that incorporate an electronic pointer traveling as does a mechanical pointer. When the measurement stabilizes, a digital reading appears. The combination is the best of both worlds, offering the advantages of both technologies without the disadvantages. Some testers simulate analog movement by substituting a curved bar graph. While this may offer an advantage over a purely digital model, it does not properly simulate a mechanical analog. Adding segments is not the same to the eye as watching a discrete pointer move, and experienced analog operators will not enjoy the same ease of interpretation they get from a mechanical or a genuine digital/analog model. More important, a curved bar graph lacks logarithmic expansion on the low end of the scale that enables the operator to form a clear idea of conditions on the most critical part of the range…the lower values where the test item may be approaching breakdown. Megger’s MIT400 Series provide an LCD with a genuine logarithmic scale and all the advantages of both time-tested and modern innovative technologies. ❏


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HIOKI Power Quality Analyzer PW3198 Record and Analyze Power Supply Problems Simultaneously with a Single Unit

M

odel PW3198 has just been re-

leased and is now available as the newest member of the HIOKI power quality family. The PW3198 leads the way as the New World Standard for power quality analysis. The number of power supply problems is increasing as power systems are becoming more and more complicated due to the rising use of power electronic devices plus a growing base of large systems and distributed power supplies. The most efficient way to approach and resolve these problems is to understand the situation quickly and accurately. The PW3198 Power Quality Analyzer is ready to effectively determine your power supply problems. The PW3198 is ideal for troubleshooting. Understand the actual power situation at the site where the problem is occurring. Enables the user to troubleshoot solar and wind power generation systems, electric vehicle charge stations, smart grids, tooling machines, OA equipment (e.g. computers, printers and UPS), medical equipment, server farms, and electrical equipment (e.g. transformers and phase-advancing capacitors). The PW3198 allows the user to manage the parameters with a control set point, such as a voltage fluctuation, transients, flicker, power factor, unbalanced loads and harmonics. Perform load surveys to study the power consumption and confirm system capacity before adding any additional load.

The features and benefits of the PW3198 are plentiful including: Easy setup function with presets, ability to verify settings and connections before testing, CAT IV 600V, detect voltage transients up to 6kV with 2MHz sampling, operates up to 3 hours on battery during power loss and restarts measurement upon power restoration, password security, GPS time synchronization

The most efficient way to approach and resolve these problems is to understand the situation quickly and accurately. The PW3198 Power Quality Analyzer is ready to effectively determine your power supply problems.

(through an external device), measure at a power line frequency of 50/60Hz as well as 400Hz, incorporates both USB and LAN capability, includes a 2GB SD Card for recording up to 55 weeks and 55,000 events (also supports SDHC cards up to 32GB), measure high order harmonics, inrush current and watt-hours, conduct off-site remote control using a wireless LAN router, analyze recorded data with optional software 9624-50 REV.2 PQA-HiVIEW PRO, and meets International Standard IEC61000-4-30 Edition 2 Class A. The PW3198 can measure all waveforms of power, harmonics and error events simultaneously. When a problem occurs with the equipment or system on your site, the PW3198 will help you detect the cause of the problem quickly and easily. You can depend on the PW3198 to monitor all aspects of your power supplies. â??

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TESTING EQUIPMENT PRODUCT SPOTLIGHT

Finding Problems, Outlet by Outlet Extech CT70 AC Circuit Load Tester

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iring problems or errors can pliant to code. By finding

lead to a range of issues: false or insufficient grounding can put users at risk for electrical shock; a high resistance ground in a circuit can cause electrical fires; and performance of components connected to the circuit can also be adversely affected. Poor power quality (sometimes referred to as “dirty power”) is a major source of damage and failure of components and equipment that controlled by or based on electronic or solid state circuits. When these types of problems are investigated, often times, the cause is improper wiring or a lack of sufficient grounding. Using a circuit load tester permits a user to quickly evaluate the condition of a branch circuit’s wiring and grounds, to help isolate and repair such problems to avoid future down time. The Extech CT70 can help electrical contractors verify that circuits are com-

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problem areas, hazardous conditions related to defective wiring can be eliminated, not to mention legal liabilities. By using the new circuit load testers, an electrician can get an accurate sense of the power quality of a branch circuit and verify if it is a good match electric or electronic loads intended for that circuit. If there is voltage between a neutral and ground conductor, the Extech can identify this before the performance of components degrades or fails altogether. Equipment is at risk when without a sufficient path for fault current is hampered by high ground impedance. In par-

Electrical Products & Solutions • June 2011

ticular, power conditioning and surge protection systems that are in place to protect equipment aren’t as effective in the absence of low ground impedance. Extech’s CT70 quickly inspects and detects circuit and wiring problems such as poor ground impedance, false grounds, missing ground fault protection, low voltage availability under load, and high ground-to-neutral voltage. In addition, the CT70 tests GFCI and EPD circuits. The color-coded display changes from blue to red, providing a visual alert when a problem is detected. As an AC load tester, the CT70 provides selectable loads of 12, 15 and 20 amps. Both loaded and unloaded AC line voltages are measured. Excessive voltage drop under a load is measured as an easy to understand percentage. This metric helps illustrate the severity of possible problems that are fire hazards, including bad or loose connections, as well as wires that are not sized properly or are damaged. line impedance, peak line voltage and frequency. Outlet tester functions include: GFCI trip time and current measurements; neutral-to-ground voltage testing; hot, neutral and ground impedance testing; and open or reversed wiring detection. The CT70 is a must have tool for electrical contractors; electrical, home, and safety inspectors; builders and developers; multifamily and public housing maintenance; HVACR/mechanical contractors; and others. Electrical contractors can use the CT70 as a valuable tool for increasing business by offering a quick, thorough inspection of all circuits while at a job site to identify additional repairs. The new CT70 is CAT II-rated and includes an AC test cord with standard, North American, 3-prong plug for use on all NEMA 5-15 and 5-20 outlets. To learn more about the CT70, or to find a distributor, please visit www.extech.com/ct70. ❏


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AEMC Introduces its NEW MTX 3280 Series of 100,000-Count Digital Multimeters

A

EMC® stands apart from the function selection. The MTX 3280 series recording of min, max and average val-

competition with its’ new high end, hand-held graphic MTX Mobile Multimeters, offering several significant features not found in traditional DMMs. To start with a resolution of 100,000 counts, 0.02% basic accuracy and bandwidth up to 200kHz provides very high accuracies and response time on all measurement ranges. The unique design features a multi-position display making it ideally suited for both benchtop, hand-held and hands free use. Electronic direct access push button function selection provides for easy one hand operation even with gloves on and eliminates the reliability issues associated with rotary switch

of multimeters provides the ability to measure a wide variety of parameters that include AC and DC Volts, AC and DC Amps, Frequency, Resistance, Continuity, Diode testing, Capacitance, Temperature with programmable selection of RTD or Thermocouple probe types and user selectable °C. °F or K scales. Several unique measurement s include Power Decibels (dBm) with adjustable reference from 1 to 10,000 ohms, Resistive Power (V2/R or I2 x R), dB. Built in math functions provide for customized measurement results such as power (VxA) or process variables such as pressure or flow by applying built in formulas to the measured variable and presenting the results on the display in the desired measurement units such as PSI or GPM with proper numeric scaling. Several direct function keys provide valuable analysis tools such as a relative function that allows the user to take a measured value as the reference point and then display future measurements as a deviation from that point. A Spec function that displays the measurement tolerance from the measured value quickly shows the margin of measurement error in both exact value and percentage. A Survey function provides tracking and

ues over the time of the measurement survey. Each value is date and time stamped and recorded. The 3280 series display provides a wide range of information at a glance including text, graphic and bar graph measurement indications battery status and more. The power supply system is equally innovative, offering all the benefits of a modern instrument, with rechargeable batteries for on-site use and an AC power adapter doubling as a battery charger for lab use. This prevents the instrument from shutting down due to low power during measurements over long periods. The new smart wall plug power pack reduces the average charging time of the batteries. The MTX Mobile Multimeter also gives a precise indication of the batteries’ remaining capacity. Two 1.5V AAA rechargeable batteries are included. This multimeter comes equipped with PC-compatible analysis software. Measurement results may be exported in realtime or downloaded from memory via Bluetooth or using a USB cable enabling the ability to store, analyze, document and transfer data to a standard Excel spreadsheet. Up to 6500 measurements with date and time and up to 4 simultaneous parameters can be stored in the instrument’s memory. The display provides complete analysis capability of the recorded data as well as shown here. The 3280 series of DMMs provide unparalleled measurement and analysis capability in a handheld package with features and functions not found in other meters and it is UU/CSA approved and available with Bluetooth communications. Visit us at www.aemc.com to see all our products! ❏ June 2011 • epsmag.net

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Product FOCUS AEMC® Introduces the NEW Multi-Function Installation Tester Model C.A 6116 AEMC's NEW Multi-Function Installation Tester is an all-in-one tool for electrical installation complying with international standards (IEC 60364-6, NF C 15-100, VDE 100, XP C 16-600, etc.) The Model C.A 6116 combines smart design, ergonomics, simplicity, rapid measurement and accuracy. Suitable for all types of neutral systems (TT, TN, IT), it can be used in all industrial, commercial and residential markets. The C.A 6116 is specifically designed to be quick and easy to learn. The user can view all the essential results at a glance on the large backlit graphic display. The rotary switch on the instrument’s front panel gives direct access to all the functions. A wide range of audible alarms and visual symbols are available for quick interpretation of the results in accordance with the standards. The contextual help for each function guides users step-by-step or when needed. The high-performance C.A 6116 offers excellent measurement stability, including operating in electrical noisy industrial environments. With the C.A 6116, users can prepare their measurement setup in the instrument or via the PC using the supplied DataView® software. This function allows hierarchical storage on the basis of the site, the location and the equipment tested. The unit comes complete in a carrying bag and all required accessories; the standard version also includes wrist-strap and harness for hands-free use. Applications: • Initial electrical testing of a new installation • Electrical testing after renovation • Periodic testing of an installation • Maintenance and troubleshooting on an installation For more information, visit www.aemc.com

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Product FOCUS Multi-Wire Connectors from AutomationDirect AutomationDirect has expanded its ZIPport™ product line to include the standard series multi-wire connectors. The heavy duty connectors are designed to maintain reliable electrical connections while providing protection against dirt, moisture and mechanical stress common in industrial environments. Available in five frame sizes (3A, 6B, 10B, 16B and 24B), heavy-duty metal housings are constructed of polyester powder coated die-cast aluminum alloy. Self-extinguishing thermoplastic housings are also available in the 3A frame size. Connector hoods are available with top entry and side entry cable passages. All housings are available in a standard profile; several are offered with a high construction profile to allow more room for wiring higher density inserts. All housings feature Pg threaded cable passages; optional Pg thread to NPT adapters are available. A single or double lever locking system assures coupling stability and protection against accidental opening. ZIPport multi-wire connectors require one male and one female insert. The inserts, suitable for use with alternating (AC) or direct current (DC), are available in multiple pole configurations from 3 poles plus ground up to 108 poles plus ground and with termination sizes ranging from 14 to 5 AWG; units are rated for 10 to 80 amps. ZIPport inserts are made of UL 94 V-0 rated self-extinguishing thermoplastic resin rated at a maximum temperature of 125°C (257°F). The inserts are available in screw terminal and crimp style contact block connections. The contacts are copper alloy with hard silver plating. The plastic insulators are numbered on both sides by laser printing or molding in accordance with EN 60068-2-70. For more information, visit www.automationdirect.com

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Product FOCUS General Cable Enhances Uniblend® Medium-Voltage Cable for Pulling Longer, Faster General Cable (NYSE: BGC) is proud to announce Uniblend® LF MV-105, the trusted brand of medium-voltage cable that now features a Low-Friction PVC jacket for ease of installation. With up to a 45% reduction in coefficient of friction, Uniblend LF can be pulled longer and faster, delivering efficient, cost-effective performance for even the most difficult installations. Uniblend LF is available with both copper compact Class B stranded conductors that provide excellent electrical stability and aluminum compact Class B STRANDFILL® blocked conductors for longitudinal water penetration resistance. Its ultra-clean EPR insulation provides excellent heat and moisture resistance, flexibility for easy handling, high dielectric strength, low dielectric loss and electrical stability under stress, while its triplelayer extrusion of strand shield, insulation and insulation shield combine to form a virtually perfect cable core. Uniblend LF’s 5 mil copper tape shield with 25% overlap stands up to the rigors of installation and provides superior short-circuit performance. “Uniblend is the same brand of medium-voltage cable from General Cable that the industry has known and trusted for nearly 50 years,” said Steve Crowley, Vice President, General Cable Industrial Sales. “In keeping with our commitment to maintain the most comprehensive line of industrial power cables for every application, Uniblend LF is our medium-voltage cable offering with an enhanced low-friction, lead-free PVC jacket that provides easier installation in the most demanding environments, while continuing to provide the excellent heat, moisture, chemical and flame resistance that the Uniblend brand is known for.” Ideally suited for a broad range of performance-demanding medium-voltage applications, Uniblend LF MV105 is compatible with all standard splice and termination kits and can be installed in conduit, open tray and underground duct applications. It is available in voltages ranging from 5 kV to 35 kV and meets or exceeds all electrical and physical requirements of UL 1072 MV-105. For more information, visit www.GeneralCable.com

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Product FOCUS Joslyn Surge Protection Products from Thomas & Betts Ensure Reliable Operations The Joslyn line of AC surge protection products from Thomas & Betts includes more than 1,300 standard configurations that are available through Thomas & Betts’ network of authorized distributors. Joslyn surge protection devices (SPDs) protect operations from the damaging effects of electrical power surges, transients and noise, from the service entrance to the equipment level. Suitable for protecting single, split and three-phase applications ranging from 120 V to 600 V Delta, Joslyn surge protection products are capable of handling high-surge energy to 400 kA per phase and are suited to meet the many requirements of industrial, commercial, institutional and residential applications. “Per 2008 NEC Article 708, a cascading approach is recommended when protecting a facility, which includes surge protection at the service entrance, the branch panel and point of use,” said Lina Salah, Thomas & Betts SPD product manager. “This approach minimizes overall lifecycle costs and optimizes facility uptime, for which Thomas & Betts has the complete solution for any facility.” The Joslyn line of AC surge protection products features a surge counter, LED display, audible alarm status indicator and remote monitoring. In addition, the line features individually fused metal oxide varistors (MOVs) to provide protection from extended surge events. The products are listed to Underwriters Laboratories (UL) 1449 Third Edition and are Restriction of Hazardous Substances Directive (RoHS) compliant. Joslyn AC surge products also are available in multiple voltage configurations and feature proprietary designs that maximize system performance. For more information, visit www.tnb.com

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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

PG#

RS#

Company

AEE SOLAR AEMC INSTRUMENTS ALCAN CABLE AMERICAN TECHNICAL PUBLISHERS ARPI OF USA BURNDY PRODUCTS BYTE BROTHERS CONDUIT REPAIR SYSTEMS CONTINENTAL CONTROL SYSTEMS, LLC COPPER DEVELOPMENT ASSOCIATION DH SOLAR EXTECH INSTRUMENTS/FLIR SYSTEMS E-Z METER GENERATOR INTERLOCK TECHNOLOGIES GENSCO HIOKI USA ICC

13 IBC 23 26 36 14 16 4 32 25 34 3, 9 36 7 24 15 17, 19

12 2 17 34 38 31 32 6 43 18 37 5, 9 39 8 33 13 14, 16

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Electrical Products & Solutions • June 2011

PG#

RS#

KRENZ & COMPANY LAPP USA MEGGER MINUTEMAN UPS PG LIFELINK PHASE-A-MATIC SCHNEIDER RENEWABLES SESSION SOLAR SOKKIA SOLAR UNIVERSE SOUTHWIRE COMPANY SPECTRUM INDUSTRIES

38 33 1 37 IFC 38 11 10 5 39 35 32

40 19 4 21 1 41 11 10 7 22 20 35

STEELMAN INDUSTRIES STRIP-TEC THE HOME DEPOT UNDERGROUND DEVICES UTILITY METALS

34 12 BC 40 18

36 30 3 42 15


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EPS Magazine, June 2011