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FCC Chairman Ajit Pai
FCC Announces Vote to Repeal Net Neutrality Rules

On Tuesday, Nov. 21, Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Ajit Pai announced plans to hold a vote for the repeal of the FCC's net neutrality rules on Dec. 14. Despite popular support of the FCC's net neutrality rules, the repeal is widely expected to pass.

New Partnership Gives A Boost To On-Bill Financing In Rural Areas

When it comes to the adoption of energy efficiency and renewable power, financing is always a challenge, especially in rural areas. A new partnership between a business group and an environmental advocacy organization takes aim at that challenge.

VR And AR Trends Impacting Electrical Contracting In The Future

Electrical contracting—and the electrical construction industry as a whole—may not be the first thing that comes to mind when you think of innovation.

Bill Gates to Build a 'Smart City' From Scratch

Bill Gates and his investment firm have just invested $80 million to build a "smart city" in Arizona.

Legal Drama Heats Up Over Causes Of Northern California Wildfires

Less than a month after a series of unprecedented wildfires devastated several Northern California communities, controversy has ignited over who is at fault.

Don't Go Into the Water

Sometimes you have a choice to get wet; sometimes you don’t. Splashing through puddles for fun is one thing. Forgetting your umbrella is another. Getting doused with 27 trillion gallons of rain, which is how much Hurricane Harvey dumped on Texas and Louisiana, is altogether something else. 

Flir C2 pocket-size thermal camera
Cool Tools: Gadgets 2017

Most tradespeople love gadgets. This is a report about interesting tools and devices not necessarily categorized for electrical work, but which electricians may find useful. 

After The Flood: Inspecting Electrical Components and Equipment

Major storms this hurricane season wreaked havoc on the southeastern United States, including Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. These storms created weather hazards as well as dangerous conditions for power utilities and restoration efforts.

Utilities Pitch In: Disaster Response Is a Year-Round Effort

Another storm on the horizon and another image of electric utility trucks heading off to help with recovery efforts. That seemed to be an almost-nightly occurrence in late August through mid-September, as hurricanes Harvey and Irma made their way to the U.S. mainland.

Spraying, Dipping, Coating And Printing

For years, Article 516 of the National Electrical Code (NEC)— covering spray applications, dipping and coating processes using flammable liquids, combustible liquids and combustible powders—did not seem to change much, if at all.


A Safety System That Works

The North American Electrical Safety System is made up of four vital components, and they all must be applied together for the system to function successfully.

No Details Required! (Maybe): Arc Flash Labels

Life is full of surprises, and so is the 2018 edition of NFPA 70E. After years of requiring specific information on arc flash equipment labels, as listed in 130.5(H1) through (H3), the 2018 edition has introduced Exception No.

Blurred Lines: Technology Bridges Traditional Markets

Residential and commercial security products are becoming easier to integrate. Big box stores and electronics retailers sell security systems that enable users to check on their home or business from anywhere, with advanced features such as night vision, phone alerts and more.

Small Cells, Big Business: Fiber Investment Is as Important as Ever

Like many technology markets, telecom has always been a hotbed of hype. Somebody is always talking up the latest and greatest technology that will revolutionize the market. Not too long ago, it was fiber-to-the-home (FTTH). Recently, wireless has been getting all the attention.

Risk Analysis Demystified

I know from experience with contractors in the field that, when it comes to mass notification systems (MNS), being required to perform a risk analysis for the MNS ranks just above getting a root canal at the dentist’s office!

Internet of Things
Creative Destruction: LEDs, the IoT and More Disruptive Lighting

At the 2017 Strategies in Light conference, Robert F. Karlicek, Jr., spoke about creative destruction in the lighting industry brought on by LED technology and the internet of things (IoT).

Ideas That Work: Laser Measurement and Headgear Reference

Every month, we pick the top Ideas That Work submitted by you, ELECTRICAL CONTRACTOR readers.

Flicker Can Lead To Flickering

When a customer complained about the lights flickering in the past, it was difficult to get a quantitative measure of the problem. The parameter, Pst (perceptibility short term), specified in IEC Std 61000-4-15 and eventually IEEE Std 1453-2004, now provides such a quantitative approach.

Image courtesy of Community First! Village
Austin Tiny House Village for the Homeless Set to Expand

It was announced this week that Alan Graham, the CEO of Mobile Loaves & Fishes, a nonprofit group, plans to raise $60 million in donations to expand Community First!

Utility Offers Blueprint for California's Clean Energy Future

Already a leader in clean energy and greenhouse gas reduction, California has set some ambitious goals for the future. One state utility thinks those goals are attainable and offers a plan for success.