This year's Product of the Year contest proved to be the largest to date with 111 entries. We gathered a group of 10 electricians, engineers, and facility managers to narrow the product playing field down to one finalist in each category. The judges based their decision on each product's ability to boost productivity, cut costs, and fill a gap in the market. We revealed the finalists at this year's Electric West Show in Las Vegas, and now we're passing the torch to you to select the coveted Product of the Year Platinum Award winner. Of course, we wouldn't ask you to do such a thing without a little reward. Log on to www.ecmweb.com through May 3 to cast your vote, and to compensate you for the wear and tear on your mouse pad, we'll place your name in a drawing for a $100 American Express gift certificate. All the waiting will be over when the winner is announced at the Electric Show, May 25-27 in Indianapolis.
Category: Connectors, Fittings & Terminating Devices
The T/R+ electrical wire connector combines a tan hard shell with a red miniskirt to eliminate the need for separate red, tan, and yellow connector inventory. It can accommodate as many as two 18 AWG wires or five 12 AWG wires, and it's made with a quick bite spring design. It's available in boxes, jugs, and kegs.
Outdoor surveillance system
Category: Security Equipment & Systems
Disguised as an outdoor lighting fixture, this integrated wireless camera system provides real-time video surveillance. The core unit of the camera is a miniaturized, video-compression device that can be specified in a fixed-position video camera or with Micro-Server technology. Computer encryption, Internet protocol network transmission, and optic technologies allow camera images to be transmitted to PCs, recorders, viewing screens, or imaging devices like laptops and cell phones. The system is constructed of ASTM 356.2 virgin ingot aluminum. It's available in black, bronze, gray, green, Verona, and white.
Category: Lighting Fixtures
The Sure-Lites UEL emergency light housing is constructed of die-cast aluminum with a clear polycarbonate shield that protects against rain, moisture, cold, corrosion, dust, and vandalism. The light includes a nickel-cadmium battery, self-diagnostics, a photocell laser test, and four torx head tamperproof screws with a center pin reject. Two adjustable 12-WMR16 lamps provide egress coverage for light during a power outage. The lamp is UL-Listed for -35°C to 50°C ambient environments.
Circuit breaker analyzer
Category: Test Instruments
The CBA-1000 verifies the safe operation of 120VAC 15A and 20A circuit breakers. The handheld instrument plugs into any receptacle outlet to conduct a series of measurements like available voltage, wiring correctness, and voltage drop under load. It verifies if the breaker will safely respond to a short-circuit load on the branch circuit. During a breaker performance test, the instrument will detect series faults like improper wire size, bad splices, and loose connections. All test data is recorded and can be viewed on the LCD or downloaded to a PC with the manufacturer's software.
Category: Specialty Products
The Chico SpeedSeal allows users to install an explosionproof seal in less than 5 min. The compound comes in a pre-measured, self-contained applicator so it requires no extra mixing equipment. Upon injection, the compound expands to fill the entire fitting, automatically separates the conductors, and hardens into a dense mass. It's UL- and cUL-Listed for use with the manufacturer's EYS sealing fittings as large as 2 in.
Fuses with open indicator
Category: Protective Devices
Tri-onic Class RK5 TR and TRS fuses are equipped with current-limiting capabilities that prevent damage to system components in short-circuit conditions. The fuses feature an open-fuse indicator, which turns from silver to red when a fuse is open. The RK5 current-limiting time delay fuses provide overcurrent protection for motors, transformers, service entrance equipment, feeders, and branch circuits.
Designed for the datacom and electrical environment, the TS90 cable fault finder combines a fault locator, a cable and wire manager, and a tone generator. The finder can locate the distance to opens or shorts in fiber runs as long as 2,500 ft, and its results appear as a distance reading rather than a waveform. The manufacturer's SmartTone technology provides five tones for wire and pair identification. A voltage detection alarm will immediately sound if the unit is clipped onto an energized pair as high as 250VAC.
Optical lighting system
Category: Lighting Systems
Efficient Fiber Optic (EFO) lighting fixture systems are designed for recessed ceiling downlights, track lighting, and display case lighting applications. The system includes an illuminator, fiber, fixtures, and a plug-and-play system. Each illuminator contains one 68W discharge lamp and the manufacturer's compound parabolic collector optics with an integrating rod.
Conduit layout tool
Category: Tools & Equipment
The Marksman conduit layout tool is for knockouts in sizes 0.5 in. to 4 in. Users mark the strut line, the conduit combination, and the center of the knockout to find a spaced conduit. The tool is made of anodized aluminum and features laser-etched markings and a panel schedule that shows the branch circuit number to its corresponding color.
Category: Boxes & Enclosures
The UL-classified Fireline enclosure provides fireproofing for recessed downlighting applications and helps prevent the spread of heat and flames into the ceiling space. It maintains the 1-hr fire rating of L500 series ceiling assemblies where recessed lighting is used. The enclosure is constructed of Albi DriCald material and is available in three sizes, including an enclosure to fit 2 × 6 wooden construction.
Category: Lamps & Ballasts
The ULTim8 high-efficiency ballast family operates one to four standard or energy-saving T8 lamps and comes with a 0.78 or 0.88 ballast factor. Available in 120V and 277V models, the ballasts feature the same wiring and mounting footprint as conventional ballasts. Standard features include auto-restrike, anti-striation control, and total harmonic distortion of less than 10%.
Universal Lighting Technologies
Fuel cell-based UPS system
Category: Power Sources
Fuel cell modules power the Evolution uninterruptible power supply (UPS) system. The UPS system comes in a rack-mounted package with 3kVA of power that provides 4 hr to 24 hr of backup, depending on the size and quantity of fuel storage. It's designed for installation in 19-in. racks, and it comes with electrical connections and N11 redundancy capability. Each 1kW module has ±24VDC output and produces 40A of current. The line-interactive UPS system uses 3.5-in. of rack space and weighs 80.4 lb. It includes six standard 15A NEMA receptacles, USB, serial, and SNMP/Web connection.
MGE UPS Systems
Safety training software
Category: Computers & Software
The Electrical Safe Work Practices training program includes OSHA and state-required information. It features interactive exercises, full text narration, pop-up definitions, word search functions, enlargeable graphics, and animated instructions. The program is available as a CD-ROM or a downloadable Internet file.
New Standard Institute
Category: Wiring Devices
TradeMaster decorator devices are available in 17 combinations like two single-pole switches, four single-pole switches, and a receptacle with a hallway light. The switches feature an external screw-pressure plate that's back- and side-wired and accepts 12AWG and 14AWG, a wraparound strap to beat pullouts and callbacks, and a rounded back body to limit the potential to damage wires. They're available in black, white, light almond, and ivory.
Pass & Seymour Legrand
Category: Power Conditioning Equipment
The 9320 uninterruptible power supply (UPS) system is available in two models. The 9320-CO2 houses batteries inside the cabinet for applications where space is limited. The 9320-CO3 offers longer battery run times, and will adapt to system capacity growth as high as 60kVA and as high as N+2 redundancy. Both models have distributed parallel architecture and power modules that are hot-swappable, which allows for modules to be added or replaced without interruption of power.
Category: Monitoring Instruments
The IR FlexCam infrared camera pinpoints and documents electrical and mechanical faults. The camera operates with an uncooled microbolometer IT detector that produces a video-rate thermal image on a 5-in. LCD. The IR technology allows users to freeze the infrared image and retain infield, noncontact, radiometric temperature measurements on all points on a single image. The camera also features a 180° articulating lens joint, a five-button control panel, and a built-in mouse.
Category: Power Distribution Equipment
The Maxi-PLS bus bar is available in two sizes that feature a square profile cross-section of 45 mm × 45 mm (rated 2,000A) or 60 mm × 60 mm (rated 3,200A). The bus bar has horizontal and vertical symmetry that allows for access to connection points on all four sides without drilling or tapping. T-bolt connectors are inserted into the bar profile to allow for round cable, flat bus bar, or Flexibar connection. The bus bars come pre-cut to fit various enclosures, and splice kits allow for the extension of copper bars between enclosures without any cutting or drilling of the bus bar.
Cable support system
Category: Fasteners, Hangers & Accessories
The Caddy Cablecat CAT-CM cable support system is an alternative to a cable tray in low-voltage and power cable applications. The system, which has three installation options, includes U-hooks and double J-hooks that have large-diameter, rounded support surfaces and edges to avoid over-bending and kinking of cables. Rod-mounted installation allows for a customized interval between hooks. Cantilever-mounting consists of U-hooks mounted on brackets that allow for cable runs along walls or columns. Strut-mounted installation uses standard-strut, contains sheet-metal U-hooks, allows for customized support spacing, and has fittings for horizontal and vertical change of direction.
Category: Wire & Cable
Designed to help suppress radiated electromagnetic interference in airport lighting systems, the StrikeShield lightning-retardant cable is composed of two independent isolated shields. The first layer of metallic tape shield wraps helically around the second layer, which is made up of wires isolated from each other. The magnetic field resists the flow of lightning-generated current, allowing it to dissipate without damaging the cable. It can be used in direct burial, conduit, or raceway applications, and it also works for inset and elevated lighting systems for runways and taxiways.
Category: Motors, Drives & Motor Controls
The Telemecanique TeSys U-Line motor starter offers motor branch short-circuit protection, manual disconnect, remote switching of the power circuit, and thermal overload protection in a 45-mm-wide unit. It's available with a 12A or 32A power base and features a standard breaking capacity of 42kA at 480V. The motor starter comes with AC/DC control, two built-in auxiliary contacts, and offers six wide-range thermal protection modules to 32A. It can operate at ratings as high as 20 hp at 480VAC with a breaking capacity of 50kA at 400V.
Square D/Schneider Electric
Category: Conduit, Raceways & Wireways
The Vista series architectural column is a relocatable communications closet that can be customized to match the design of any space. The columns are available in two sizes, including the Point5 series for conference spaces. Users can choose from rounded or square corners, and the customizable center panel is available with finishes like wood, painted metal, fabric, perforated metal, and glass.
The Wiremold Co.