NECA Publishes Generator Standard
The National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA) recently released its newest installation standard. NECA/EGSA 404-2000, Recommended Practice for Installing Generator Sets covers the installation of generators used for on-site power production in commercial or institutional buildings, including emergency applications. NECA joined efforts with the Electrical Generating Systems Association to develop this ANSI-approved publication.

Metal Conduit Web Sites Launched
Plasti-Bond REDH subscript 2OT and Perma-Cote, both located in Gilmer, Texas, recently unveiled new Web sites. The www.plastibond.com site includes a detailed product overview of the company's conduit, elbows, clamps, and nipples. At www.permatcote.com, you'll find an overview of the company's conduit, fittings, and accessories.

DOE to Modify Motor Software
BJM Corp., a submersible pump and test equipment company in Old Saybrook, Conn., is leading a partnership to sponsor a reliability-based maintenance modification to the U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE) MotorMaster Plus software tool. Call (800) 442-2562 for a free copy of DOE's MotorMaster Plus and Pump System Assessment Tool (PSAT).

Breakthrough in Smart Fire Notification


Recent advances in fire notification system technology address the very issues building owners, building managers, and electrical contractors consider most important: meeting all appropriate codes.

A new technology, developed by Simplex, Westminster, Mass., extends the benefits of interactive addressability to notification appliances - the horns, strobes, and combination horn/strobes that warn building occupants of a fire.

Addressable technology for smoke detection was introduced a decade ago, but until now its benefits have been confined to the detection component of fire alarm systems. According to the manufacturer, this new development represents a significant breakthrough in the industry - bringing new and valuable benefits to those who use, purchase, install, and design fire alarm systems. For more information, call (800) SIMPLEX or visit www.simplexnet.com.

Expanded Product Offering from bestroute.combr> A business-to-business online stocking distributorship of hard-to-find items, bestroute.com, Dewitt, N.Y., recently added Ortronics, Klein Tools, Advance Transformer, Carlon, and Osram Sylania Inc. to its list of suppliers.

Adding to its voice/data category, bestroute.com will stock patch panels, interface cords, workstation outlets, cable management, and fiber optic/residential systems from Ortronics. Products available from Klein Tools include cable cutters, snips, side cutters, tool boxes, pouches, belts, bags, wrenches, hex-key sets, pliers, screwdrivers, and nut runners.

You can find HID ballasts, electromagnetic ballasts, low-frequency electronic ballasts, and high-frequency electronic ballasts from Advance Transformer. The online distributor will also stock floor boxes, Carflex, nonmetallic enclosures, expansion fittings, FS boxes, ENT and fittings, and data and old-work Zip boxes from Carlon.

Also, bestroute.com is also an authorized distributor for Osram Sylvania Inc. As a result of the agreement, bestroute.com will provide a real-time inventory of the following categories: incandescent; halogen; fluorescent; metal halide; high- and low-pressure sodium; and mercury vapor.

Electric Tie Between U.S. and Mexico
AEP-Central Power and Light and Commission Federal de Electricidad joined with ABB Power Systems and EPRI to dedicate an electrical tie using High Voltage Direct Current (HVDC) technology.

This tie links the transmission system of AEP with the CFE Mexican transmission system, converting the formerly incompatible AC of both countries to DC. As a result, operators can allow the transfer of power between the two countries without interrupting customers.

The project will serve as an "electrical bridge" between Eagle Pass and Piedras Negras, says E. Linn Draper Jr., AEP's chairman, president, and chief executive officer. "We are dedicating a different type of international bridge, and electrical interconnection that will bring two cities and two countries closer together."

Bodine Electric Holds 95th Anniversary Online Sweepstakes
Bodine Electric Co., Chicago, a manufacturer of fractional horsepower electric motors, gearmotors, and motion controls, will celebrate its 95 superscript th anniversary under the theme "Quality in Motion" and offer a monthly sweepstakes through its Web site: www.bodine-electric.com.

The "Windy City Wrigleyville Weekend" sweepstakes package for two includes round trip air transportation to Chicago, two nights at the House of Blues Hotel, dinner at Harry Caray's Restaurant, a pair of prime tickets to a Cubs home baseball game, "Cubs Cash" for snacks and souvenirs at the game, and postgame food at the Cubby Bear Lounge. Winners can also take a guided tour of Bodine's headquarters.

Study Shows Potential GFCI Weaknesses
A GFCI circuit breaker field study from the Leviton Institute, Little Neck, N.Y., found a high percentage of ground fault circuit interrupters (GFCIs) installed in homes, didn't work when tested.

Reviewing data from 13,380 building inspections, the study revealed that on average, 15% of GFCIs were inoperative when tested. In areas where lightning is prevalent, as many as 58.2% of GFCIs were inoperative.

"Voltage surges from lightning, utility switching, and other sources all take their toll on the devices." says Steve Campolo, lead investigator in the study. "That's why Underwriters Laboratories requires that GFCIs be tested monthly."

For more information on the study, call (800) 323-8920.