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HOTS 12/2001

Issue: December 2001

By: Frank Bisbee


 

Featured Story

 


It's official we are having a recession. The government has recognized these financial hard-times as a RECESSION. Call it whatever you want to call it, but it's still painful. These cycles of financial conditions have historically lasted approximately eleven months from the recognized beginning until the point where recovery is definite.

Most experts agree that this recession began in full force in March 2001. A few experts estimate that the bottom occurred about 2 weeks after the terrorist attack on America (Sept. 11, 2001). Even fewer experts are predicting a recovery from the recession (in red) beginning slowly in December 2001 and continuing through the third quarter of 2002.

There are signs to confirm those optimistic forecasts. Now, there are a few "players", who are willing to go to the end of the limb, and predict a whopping 3% increase by the end of the first quarter of 2002. Hopefully, the worst is over, and providing we don't have anymore "big" surprises, like the September 11th event, the technology sector is itching to move forward. Many projects, which were "on-hold", are getting ready for the green light in the first quarter.

If you are a former investor in the high technology world of the dot.com business, there is a special rule of thumb for you. Remember: "Things are always darkest, just before they go completely black".



The following mini-article, "GETTING THE LEAD-OUT", was written by our new contributing editor for www.wireville.com and The Heard On The Street column. She gives us a clear picture on the environmental health problem that we face in the cabling industry. Most communication cables contain LEAD and other heavy metals. Now, we have the technology to make the cables without the hazardous materials (HAZ-MAT) at no additional cost.

Today, the most common and wide spread environmental health problem facing young children is LEAD poisoning. Millions of American children have been exposed to LEAD and now suffer from elevated levels of LEAD in their bodies. Once in the body LEAD can cause a wide variety of physical and mental problems. The problems associated with LEAD poisoning are compounded by the fact that many people do not know what it is or how their children get it. It is very important that the cabling and connector industry (from manufacturer to installer), learn how LEAD poisoning can be prevented. www.epa.gov/seahome/leadenv/src/main.htm.

SAFETY is too important to ignore.



GETTING THE LEAD OUT

By Diane Santarelli

Contributing Editor

Since the end of World War II, technology has developed at a rate, which has defied all predictions. We have had breakthroughs in medicine, communications, science, chemistry, manufacturing, and almost every other segment of our world.

Now, for the bad news. We have really screwed-up the environment, and it's coming back to haunt us. Thanks to technology, we are learning about the dangers of pollution. Man has poisoned the water, polluted the air, wasted most of the precious natural resources, and damn near killed himself with the by-products and waste generated by progress.

A few years back, we hailed asbestos as a miracle insulation material. It was fire proof, and had a long functional life. Then, we found out what happens when we inhale the microscopic asbestos particles. CANCER!

Now, we are focused on - LEAD. Overexposure to LEAD is a major public health risk. LEAD is highly toxic, persists indefinitely in the environment and bio-accumulates in humans and aquatic organisms. LEAD poisoning is the leading environmentally induced illness in children. When accumulated in the human body, LEAD also causes health problems in adults, who can suffer pregnancy complications, high blood pressure, nervous disorders and memory and concentration problems. http://otn.uoregon.edu/english/impact.html

The potential for harm from lead and other heavy metals have been well established and has forced changes in consumer products. LEAD, for instance, has been banned from gasoline and household paints, food cans, pipes, ammunition, fishing lures, and dishes (just to name a few). High mercury levels have kept certain fish off restaurant menus for years. In semiconductors and solder, LEAD has either been prohibited or restricted. There is growing pressure for the total elimination of LEAD.

Why didn't we know about all of the LEAD that was being used in manufacturing? The Emergency Planning and Community Right-To-Know Act (EPCRA) and section 6607 of the Pollution Prevention Act (PPA), mandate that a publicly accessible toxic chemical database be developed and maintained by US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). This database, known as the Toxics Release Inventory (TRI), contains information concerning waste management activities and the release of toxic chemicals by facilities that manufacture, process, or use these hazardous materials.

The new TRI reporting rule requires more companies to report on the LEAD they use and release into the air, water or land. Previously the rule required facilities report lead and lead compound emissions if they manufactured or processed more than 25,000 pounds annually or used more than 10,000 pounds annually. Under the new rule, the reporting threshold will be lowered to 100 pounds annually for each facility. [The first reports under the new rule must be submitted by July 1, 2002 for the 2001 reporting year. www.epa.gov/tri/tri_pb_rule.htm

What's all the fuss that making products Lead-Free? The disposal and recyclability issues are a major concern. Heavy metals such as LEAD, cadmium, and mercury can seep from landfills into water supplies, or travel from incinerators into our atmosphere. The European Council Directive on Waste from Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE) proposes restrictions on the use of LEAD and other heavy metals in electronic products. LEAD was once the backbone of the electronics assembly industry, and is now being shown the door. The solder used in electronic assemblies contains about 37% LEAD. When printed circuit boards, disposed of in landfills, are exposed to acid rain, the lead will leach out of the solder. European electronics assembly firms have made a global alliance to plan an early transition to the use of lead free solders in electrical and electronic equipment.

Due to environmental concerns, the need for lead-free solutions in electronic components and cabling systems, is receiving increasing attention within the telecommunications and electronics industries. Product stewardship is the new frontier in the environmental management and pollution prevention fields. Spurred into action, by approaching packs of litigious marauders, many US companies are taking an "interest" in actions that reduce their environmental "footprints" across product life cycles. With benchmarks in the billions for the tobacco industry, can you spell L I A B I L I T Y?

Many companies have initiated their commitment to the environment by providing LEAD-FREE products. For example, recently Tyco Electronics announced their Lead Free Solutions on-line catalog. In all, the site lists approximately 5,000 lead-free part numbers. Tyco says it can make "almost any new product" without using LEAD. Tyco promises more to come soon. http://catalog.tycoelectronics.com/TE/bin/TE.Menu?M=Main

The January 2001 newsletter by AlphaGary, (a manufacturer of PVC specialty compounds, used in cabling), states, "In order to enhance the disposal and recycling capability of cables removed from service, and in response to recent environmental concerns, AlphaGary has developed PVC-based LEAD-free and cadmium-free counterparts to their standard jacket and insulation materials for energy/power cables and LAN cables". www.alphagary.com

If you are planning to recycle PVC cables, there is a big problem. Solvay, an international chemical and pharmaceutical Group, (operates through more than 400 companies spread over 50 countries), has a passion for progress. Recently, Solvay www.solvay.com announced that they can recycle PVC coated cables through their patented Vinyloop® process www.vinyloop.com/anglais/sitemap.asp. But, they are NOT able to separate the heavy metals (LEAD, cadmium) from the recycled PVC compound. It seems the only way to GET THE LEAD OUT is not to put it in.

www.vinyloop.com/anglais/faq01.asp#q1 (FAQ "Is it possible to separate heavy metals in the Vinyloop® process?)

Aside from the health and liability issues, the costs of cables, which contain LEAD, may be considerably higher than the original purchase price. Soon the building owners will insist that the rental tenants cease to use the building as a cable trash dumpster when they move out. In the future you can be sure that the larger costs for disposal of "abandoned" cabling, which contains LEAD, will be the curse that no one wants to assume.

Looking for LEAD-FREE cable? The new CMP-50 Limited Combustible CAT 5, CAT 5e, and CAT 6 UTP plenum rated cables are LEAD-FREE. This cable offers enhanced fire safety and it's 100% recyclable. These new cables are offered by various manufacturers, including: Mohawk/CDT, Belden, Avaya, and Berk-Tek. Furthermore, Belden and Mohawk/CDT have completed tests and will soon have LEAD-FREE CMP-rated cables in addition to their Limited Combustible cables.



Avaya Introduces First Category 6 Limited-Combustible Cable

GigaSPEED® 4070 cable features improved electrical

performance and industry's best fire safety rating

Avaya Inc. (Basking Ridge, NJ), a global leader in business communications solutions and services, today announced the immediate availability of the industry's first limited-combustible (LC) cable to meet the TIA/EIA Category 6 (draft 9) and Underwriters Laboratories limited-combustible standards.

The SYSTIMAX® GigaSPEED® 4070 limited-combustible cable is jacketed and insulated with a fluoropolymer (FEP) resin that generates extremely low smoke during fire situations-up to 10 times less than a typical Communication Metallic Plenum (CMP)-rated plenum cable. The new cable also has an extremely low flame-spread distance of less than six inches compared to distances of up to five feet for CMP plenum cable. These factors can add valuable escape time for building occupants in the event of fire.

"The fire safety of the GigaSPEED 4070 cable is ideal for environments such as health care facilities, schools, financial and banking institutions, data centers, government agencies and public utilities," said Chin Choi-Feng, SYSTIMAX business development manager. "The electrical performance of the GigaSPEED 4070 cable also meets the needs for these types of environments since high-speed, high-bandwidth, and high-reliability networks are often required."

The GigaSPEED 4070 limited-combustible cable is fully recyclable and is resistant to performance changes due to aging or environmental conditions, such as temperature, humidity, and exposure to certain chemicals.

Avaya's 4070 GigaSPEED limited-combustible cable is available globally in standard ordering intervals. http://www.avaya.com/connectivity



Tyco claims lead-free product capability

Tyco Electronics, parent company of AMP Netconnect, recently stated that it has the capability to make new lead-free products. "Our lead-free process technology has developed such that we can make almost any new product lead-free," said Robert Hilty, the company's director of materials research. That statement came in a release announcing the company's Lead-Free Solutions Catalog, which is available at Tyco's Web-based catalog, http://catalog.tycoelectronics.com.

Connectors, cable assemblies, switches, terminal blocks, and circuit breakers are among the products included in the online lead-free catalog section. In all, the site lists approximately 5,000 lead-free part numbers. Tyco promises more to come soon.

"Tyco Electronics is committed to providing environmentally friendly products," Hilty said. "More stringent lead-use rules and disposal standards, such as WEEE and RoHS directives in Europe, and MITI recycling laws in Japan, are increasing the demand for a broad portfolio of lead-free electronic components."



Graybar and Ericsson Enterprise Sign Distribution Agreement

Graybar Electric Co Inc. (St. Louis, MO), a leading international distributor of voice and data communications products and services, today announced it has signed a major distribution agreement with Ericsson Enterprise, ( Menlo Park, CA), a leader in voice, data and mobility solutions.

Beginning November 2001, Graybar will offer Ericsson's complete line of enterprise communications products to authorized resellers in the United States and Canada, including the MD110 Business Communications Systems, MD110 Compact Enterprise for small- and medium-size offices, the WebSwitch IP telephony family and wireless LAN (802.11b) products.

"We are enormously pleased to be partnering with one of the world's leading communications companies," said Al Eddings, vice president comm/data products, Graybar. "Ericsson's brand leadership in mobility means our resellers can now provide their clients with innovative solutions that translate into competitive business advantage."

"Graybar's reach throughout the United States and Canada enables Ericsson Enterprise to expand its penetration in the North American market," said Harald Greifensteiner, director of marketing, Ericsson Enterprise. "Graybar is able to sharpen a reseller's competitive position through their powerful logistics network of 16 regional zone warehouses and more than 290 branch locations, as well as their training and financing services."

Today's announcement further extends Ericsson Enterprise's reach in North America, and is in line with the company's indirect, multi-channel global sales strategy. Over the course of the last year, Ericsson Enterprise has introduced a broad spectrum of high-quality voice, data, Internet and mobility solutions, thereby expanding both its product offerings and its competitive advantage in North America.

http://www.ericsson.com/pressroom www.graybar.com



TIA rejects ATIS proposal to merge standards-making bodies

The Telecommunications Industry Association www.tiaonline.org issued a release rejecting a "blueprint" proposed by the Alliance for Telecommunications industry Solutions (ATIS--www.atis.org). Under the proposed blueprint, the standards-development work of both organizations would be integrated into the work of a single entity. The ATIS proposal stems from the TIA's August 20th announcement that it plans to restructure its existing standards work into a legally separate and autonomous entity.

Martin McCue, chair of the ATIS board of directors, said, "A constructive alignment/integration of the various TIA and ATIS standards committees would provide an unprecedented opportunity for public benefits, allowing committee participants to focus this country's communications standards work and establish a single voice in the global communications standards arena."

Matthew J. Flanigan, TIA president, said that he agreed with McCue that an alignment could provide such opportunities. He further stated, "That is why TIA initiated discussions with ATIS as far back as 1998 to analyze and consider such a mutually beneficial agreement." However, Flanigan characterized the ATIS proposal as a "takeover" of TIA standards work and the intellectual property in the TIA's database of standards. Such a takeover, "together with the added costs to TIA members to 'join' ATIS is not what TIA members will find acceptable," he said.

In a release, the TIA characterized the ATIS blueprint as "woefully lacking from the vision of the TIA board for a consolidation or 'merger of equals' and thus is inadequate and unacceptable to TIA."

Flanigan concluded, "TIA is open to further discussions for a rationalized telecom standards-development-organization structure that meets the requirements of both service providers and manufacturers."

The full text of the blueprint is available at ATIS's Web site.



Avaya's SYSTIMAX® LazrSPEED Solution More Than

Triples Transmission Distances of High-Speed Ethernet Networks

Avaya Inc. (Basking Ridge, NJ), a global leader in business communications solutions and services, today announced that its SYSTIMAX® LazrSPEED Solution now guarantees Gigabit Ethernet transmission up to 1,000-meter distances. Longer transmission distances can allow customers to more than triple the Local Area Network (LAN) connectivity distances between campus buildings or high-speed data sharing clusters.

The LazrSPEED Solution, a LAN backbone for private networks introduced in August 1999, is the only fiber-optic system to guarantee 10-Gigabit-per-second (10Gb/s) serial transmission over 300-meter distances (using 850-nanometer multimode fiber with associated apparatus). It provides the bandwidth to accommodate Gigabit or 10-Gigabit Ethernet (10GbE) networking systems-up to 1,000 meters or 300 meters, respectively.

"Avaya's LazrSPEED Solution now literally extends the reach of high-speed networks," said Luc Adriaenssens, director of systems engineering, Avaya Labs. "As an integral part of an Avaya 10-Gigabit Ethernet network, the LazrSPEED Solution supports high-speed, mission-critical business applications like converged voice and video Internet Protocol communications for video conferencing or distance learning and large, centralized data storage/backup operations.

"As networking speeds to the desktop increase and Internet traffic continues to rise, this solution provides a scalable backbone that allows for a smooth migration to 10-Gigabit speeds on one fiber path," Adriaenssens said.

Soon, 10GbE networks are expected to deliver the newest broadband services-all types of streaming media, including high-definition video, audio and advanced voice applications-less expensively to businesses of all types and sizes.

The LazrSPEED Solution uses a short-wavelength multimode fiber to transmit data up to 10Gb/s rates. Prior to the introduction of the LazrSPEED Solution in August 1999, one Gb/s transmission was considered to be the maximum capacity for practical multimode systems.

The LazrSPEED Solution includes several types of building cables, indoor/outdoor cables, dielectric campus cables and a complete line of apparatus products, all providing 10Gb/s support.

The LazrSPEED Solution now includes: building cable with maximum 72 fiber count; all new indoor/outdoor cables in 12, 24 or 36 fiber count; dielectric campus cables (non-metallic outside plant cable suitable for direct burial, aerial or use in conduit) with maximum 96 fiber count; a complete line of apparatus including configurable jumpers.

For shorter distance network needs, the LazrSPEED Solution now includes cables that support 150-meter distances (previously 100 meters) at 10Gb/s rates with a retroactive transmission distance guarantee.

Pricing and Availability.

Avaya's LazrSPEED Solution products are immediately available and can be ordered globally through Avaya's worldwide network of authorized Connectivity Solutions BusinessPartners. www.avaya.com/connectivity



Congdon elected chair of TIA 42.1 Subcommittee

Herbert V. Congdon II, PE, director, fiber systems marketing for Tyco Electronics www.tycoelectronics.com, has been elected chair of the TIA TR 42.1 subcommittee.

Congdon previously served as vice-chair of the subcommittee and was elected by acclamation during the November 2001 meeting. His two-year term began at the conclusion of the meeting. Congdon has been active in the TIA TR 42 formulating groups since 1996, and still serves as the chair of TIA TR 42.8, Optical Fiber Cabling.

TIA TR 42.1 is the formulating group that authors the ANSI/TIA/EIA-568 standard. Current projects of the committee also include developing the Building Automation Systems standard and a new project for network distribution nodes.



Every now and then, we run into an exceptional website. The new website for Belden is easy to work with, graphically pleasing, and packed with a great deal of valuable information. Belden is linking people and technology for electronic, electrical and communications markets. Visit Belden's website at www.belden.com.



Panduit teams with Cisco to offer IT training

Panduit Corp. www.panduit.com will sponsor a Fundamentals of Voice and Data Cabling course, which will be offered within the Cisco Systems Inc.'s Cisco Networking Academy Program. www.cisco.com/edu

The Fundamentals of Voice and Data Cabling course is scheduled to be taught in English by Networking Academies in the United States and selected sites internationally beginning in July 2002.

The Cisco Networking Academy program is designed to include key aspects of cabling systems and prepares students for a broad range of IT endeavors or jobs in the Internet economy. Students will get hands-on experience in the lab exercises which will be taught utilizing Panduit's complete copper and optical-fiber cabling system solutions, including connectors, outlets, cable management, surface raceway, cable ties and identification products.

"Cisco is delighted to announce Panduit as a sponsor for the new Fundamentals of Voice and Data Cabling course within the Networking Academy program," says Kevin Warner, senior director of worldwide education at Cisco. The Cisco Networking Academy program employs an e-learning model, using a combination of Web- and skills-based, instructor-led learning and hands-on exercises to teach students how to design, build and maintain computer networks. The Fundamentals of Voice and Data Cabling Systems course is part of the academy curriculum which Cisco announced in January 2001. More than 218,000 students are enrolled in more than 8,200 Networking Academies in 133 countries around the world. The curriculum is available in nine languages.



Organizational changes at Graybar

Graybar has initiated a corporate-wide reorganization that took effect Thursday, November 1. At corporate headquarters in St. Louis, MO, the company is bringing all of its sales and marketing under one senior vice president, consolidating its operations functions under one leader, and establishing a new position of senior vice president of business management to oversee its districts and branches.

The changes also affect some managers' responsibilities with respect to electrical and communications/data cabling. Graybar is establishing a structure in its field organization revolving around geographical business groups made up of multiple districts. Group vice presidents were named to head these business entities. They will be responsible for the districts' net profitability and operations. Graybar says the move will free its district vice presidents to concentrate on building market share. At the corporate level, Graybar named three executives to senior vice president positions. Charles R. Udell, formerly senior vice president of electrical business, was appointed senior vice president of business management. He will be responsible for eight newly formed business groups. Dennis E. DeSousa, formerly senior vice president of comm/data business, was named senior vice president of sales and marketing. He will lead the company's marketing organization for both the electrical and comm/data business. Golden W. Harper, formerly vice president of operations, was named senior vice president of operations. His responsibilities will include logistics, inventory management, and service organization.

"These moves coincide closely with the completion of Graybar's logistics network of regional zone warehouses" the company said when announcing the change. "All 16 facilities will be in operation in the first quarter next year." Eight newly appointed group vice presidents come from the ranks of the company's district vice presidents. Each will have geographic responsibilities for one or more of Graybar's current districts, including the comm/data districts.

The group vice presidents, and their districts, are: Donald M. Block, New York, Boston; Thomas S. Gurganous, Pittsburgh, Richmond; Richard D. Offenbacher, Atlanta, Tampa; Richard A. Cole, Minneapolis, Cincinnati, Chicago; John C. Loff, St. Louis, Dallas, Houston; Kenneth B. Sparks, Seattle, Phoenix; Gary D. Hodges, California. Additionally, John C. Mansfield, who heads Graybar's district serving Lucent Technologies, was promoted to group vice president.

Rob B. Bezjak, who is currently district vice president of the Midwest Comm/Data District, has been appointed to the newly created position of Vice President Market Development, at corporate headquarters. Alan L. Eddings, vice president of comm/data marketing, has been appointed to the new position of vice president of comm/data products. And Bruce C. Judkins, vice president of electrical marketing, has been appointed to the new position of vice president of electrical products. All three report to Dennis DeSousa. www.graybar.com



BICSI issues first telecom-education license in Australia

BICSI www.bicsi.org has granted a training license to Freshwater Global Institute in Harbord, New South Wales, Australia. It is the first such license that BICSI has granted to an organization in Australia.

"We recognize the need for global relationships to fulfill the demand for BICSI training," said Richard Dunfee, BICSI's training manager.

"The demand is twofold: international membership is growing at 120% annually, and more international telecommunications projects are specifying RCDDs and BICSI-registered installers."

Freshwater actually obtained two licenses: a multi-site cabling installation license and a distribution design license. The installation license allows Freshwater to deliver BICSI's three-level Telecommunications Cabling Installation Program at up to five fixed sites. The program includes Installer Level 1, Installer Level 2, and Technician registrations. The Distribution Design Program license includes three core courses in the BICI distribution-design curriculum: DD100, DD102, and DD200. Both licenses allow Freshwater to deliver courses anywhere outside of North America.

BICSI requires that only BICSI-certified instructors teach licensed courses.



Corning cuts more jobs at UK operations

Corning Inc., said it will cut about 170 jobs and idle its optical cable plant in Whiston, northwest England because of continued falling demand.

Corning, the world's largest maker of fibre-optic cable, said it would keep about 20 jobs at the factory in anticipation of sales picking up again towards the end of next year or early in 2003.

About 100 employees at Corning's other businesses, including in management and administration functions, would continue to work at the Whiston site, it said in a statement. Last month the firm said it was closing its Deeside optical fibre plant in North Wales with the loss of 436 jobs. The UK workers are among 12,000 employees the company expects to lay off by the end of the year.



Belden Inc. Declares Regular Quarterly Dividend

The Board of Directors of Belden Inc. , (St. Louis, MO) - (NYSE-BWC) declared a regular quarterly dividend of five cents per share payable on January 3, 2002 to all shareholders of record as of December 7, 2001.

C. Baker Cunningham, Chairman, President, and Chief Executive Officer said, "The weakening in our markets that we observed in the first half of the year accelerated in the third quarter. Sales into each of our market segments are down from a year ago. We have worked aggressively to reduce spending, control working capital, and lower our costs. As a result, even with our markets down from a year ago, we have been profitable, generating good cash flow, reducing our debt, and solidifying our market position. When the markets come back, our earnings should quickly benefit through improved operating leverage."

Belden's third-quarter balance sheet and cash flow remained strong and improved over the second quarter. At September 30, 2001, the Company's debt as a percent of total capitalization was 45.4 percent, and the EBITDA interest coverage ratio was over six times. During the third quarter, Belden generated $45.8 million in operating cash flow from earnings and management of working capital, a 23 percent increase over the third quarter a year ago.

"It's difficult to forecast revenue in market conditions like this," said Mr. Cunningham. "To a large extent, the company's revenue picture depends on the level of confidence and investment in the United States economy as a whole. Manufacturing in the United States remains in a recession, and conditions in Europe are deteriorating. Right now, early in the fourth quarter, we sense more uncertainty than confidence. Our revenue forecast for the year is about 15 percent off from the prior year, and in fact we see revenue in the fourth quarter sequentially lower than the third quarter.

"As we noted earlier, the Communications segment expects recovery in the fourth quarter due to the take-or-pay agreement with a major customer. With that in mind, we expect Belden's fourth quarter earnings per share to be in the range of $0.25 to $0.30 per share, which would put earnings for the year at $1.38 to $1.43 per share, excluding the third quarter unusual items.

"We are accomplishing the cost reductions that we need both in response to the current market and to improve our operating performance in the future. For the long term, we are continuing to make the process changes that, in our business, tend to yield both long-term quality improvements and margin benefits. When things pick up, we expect to see a brisk recovery. I'm proud of how the company has performed in this challenging period and I'm confident that we're well positioned for 2002."

Belden is linking people and technology by designing, manufacturing and marketing wire, cable and fiber optic products for the electronic, electrical and communications markets worldwide. To obtain additional information, contact Paul Schlessman, Vice President, Finance and Chief Financial Officer, or Dee Johnson, Director, Investor Relations, at 314-854-8054, or visit Belden's website at www.belden.com.



Adelphia loss widens, will spin off telecom unit

Cable television operator Adelphia Communications Corp. (Coudersport,PA) on Friday posted a larger third-quarter loss and said it would spin off its majority-owned telephone company to shareholders. Adelphia said its net loss rose to $267.2 million, or $1.54 per share, from $145.4 million, or $1.06 per share, a year earlier.

Adelphia said earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization, or EBITDA, grew to $357.1 million from $280.3 million, driven by growth in digital cable and high-speed Internet services. The company said it remains on track to end the year with 1.8 million digital cable subscribers, 375,000 high-speed cable modem subscribers, and EBITDA growth of 11 to 12.5 percent.

The company said its board in principle had authorized the spin-off of its 79 percent stake in Adelphia Business Solutions Inc., a provider of local telecommunications services to businesses. Adelphia said it expects to complete the spin-off no later than March 31, 2002. In connection with the spin-off, Adelphia said it may provide up to $100 million of additional credit support to Adelphia Business, which has never turned a profit.



Copper prices have touched 14-year lows in recent times

BHP Billiton to Slash Copper Production by 15%. The bleak outlook for commodity prices could prove a double-edged sword for BHP Billiton Ltd (Melbourne), which today announced plans to cut copper production by about 15 per cent this fiscal year. BHP Billiton will curtail production by about 170,000 tonnes from its Escondida mine in Chile and its Tintaya operation in Peru in response to a serious fall in copper demand, a result of the slowdown in global economic activity.



Ortronics Introduces Clarity Category 6

Standard and High Density Patch Panels

Ortronics (New London, CT), is pleased to introduce new Clarity Category 6 standard and high density patch panels as part of Ortronics new Clarity line of products, an evolutionary advancement in Category 6 connectivity that is the first completely component and channel standards compliant line in the market today.

The Clarity 6 patch panels exceed TIA Category 6 (draft 9b) component compliance and are precisely targeted to the Clarity 6 patch cords for optimum performance that is field measurable in the channel. Clarity uses dual reactance technology to enhance signal-to-noise ratio, providing a nearly transparent signal path.

Clarity 6 patch panels reflect mechanical improvements which make it easier to terminate the larger conductors of Category 6 enhanced cable. For an installer friendly, universal panel solution, panels are supplied with labeling for T568B wiring, but can be easily converted to T568A with the simple change of a supplied label.

Other beneficial features include new low emission IDC contacts that support standard termination practice using a 110 impact tool. A single piece IDC housing is designed to accept larger Category 6 conductors, and easy to follow universal wiring labels are quick and user-friendly and eliminate confusion. The new Category 6 panels include supplied front and rear labeling fields and rear cable management. Panels are icon compatible and backward compatible to Category 3, 5 and 5e. The new Clarity 6 product line also includes new Category 6 TracJacks and patch cords as well as 110 blocks and 110 cords. www.ortronics.com



Corning Cable Cuts More Jobs Citing Lagging Fiber-optic Sales

Fiber-optic cable maker Corning Cable Systems will slash another 870 jobs, about 7 percent of its work force, with about 540 positions lost at plants in Hickory and Winston-Salem. Corning Cable employed about 13,000 before its third round of layoffs this year were announced The company will drop 465 jobs in Hickory, about 18 percent of its 2,600-workers at five locations in the city. About 75 jobs were cut at a Winston-Salem plant that has been temporarily idled for two weeks. The story of Corning Inc.'s shutdown of its Greenville plant isn't just about the loss of 350 jobs and the painful departure of a business that has operated for more than 40 years. It's also about the long arm of globalization reaching into Ohio farm country, the constant churning of America's market economy and the efforts of a small city to cope with the vacuum that will be left behind. Corning, based in Corning, N.Y., announced the closing in late October, saying 150 of the plant's workers would be laid off by the end of the year and the rest would continue working until the plant is shuttered during the third quarter of 2002.

The layoffs also affect 125 workers in Keller, Texas; 20 in Marshfield and Strafford, Mo.; 25 in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada; 60 in Rio Grande, Puerto Rico; 65 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; and assorted field sales staffers worldwide, spokeswoman Robie Cline said Wednesday. Prior reductions netted 690 layoffs and 450 voluntary leaves from all operations.

The Hickory-based subsidiary of Corning Inc. wants to cut $100 million in costs by the end of 2002 with the layoffs, reduced work schedules, consolidated operations, and reduced plant capacity, Cline said. Corning Cable makes products used by phone companies, TV cable businesses, hospitals and universities.

Customers are limiting their orders because of the sluggish economy and the uncertainty following the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, Cline said. The company is about 15 percent off the pace of last year's $2.7 billion in net sales. The company does not expect a turnaround in business until late next year.

No plant closings are planned for North or South America, Cline said, and no more layoffs are anticipated for now. Last month, Corning Inc. said it would temporally close its Cabarrus County fiber-making plant, cutting 800 jobs, and anticipated making 4,000 more layoffs on top of the 8,000 it already made this year.

Corning Cable's actions represent another setback for the Hickory area. Corning and competing cable makers Alcatel and CommScope combined for about 1,800 job losses in Catawba County this year. www.corningcablesystems.com



Nexans Unveils New Range of Telecommunications Cables

The French cable manufacturer Nexans has launched a new series of cables designed to meet the high-speed requirements for STM1 connections between switching and transmission equipment. Targeted at telecomms operators, equipment manufacturers and installation/distribution companies, the NCX cable range supports voice, Internet, video and all data transmission at rates of up to 155Mb/s. Features include a diameter of just 3.6mm - less than current standard cables - and a maximum cable length of 110m.

The NCX cables will be manufactured in several versions - mono 1 and multi 4/8/16 - at Nexans' facility in Fumay, France. Pricing details were not revealed.



Superior TeleCom Inc. of New York, the No. 1 supplier of copper- wire and cable-phone networks in North America, cut 700 jobs as spending by its largest customers slowed and its third-quarter loss widened.



Graybar To Distribute 3Com Network Jack Products

Graybar, the nationwide independent distributor of comm/data and electrical supplies and equipment, has entered into an agreement with 3Com to distribute its new NJ100 Network Jack. This revolutionary networking product will help businesses save money on the implementation of active desktop ports and CAT 5/5e cable while giving optimal connectivity flexibility for users. The NJ100 is available for immediate delivery from several of Graybar's National Zone locations.

The 3Com® NJ100 Network Jack is the first in a family of network jack products providing four 10/100 unmanaged switch ports that fit into any standard wall cutout or modular furniture opening. Residing at the point where devices connect to an organization's network, 3Com's new NJ100 Network Jack is installed in an organization's cubicle or office, conference room or classroom, giving four active 10/100 ports that are connected to a LAN switch in the wiring closet by a single Ethernet cable.

"3Com has rethought how networking solutions should be designed from the bottom up by embedding switching technology into the wall jack so users have more Fast Ethernet connectivity at their desks," said Gary Wang, vice president, Personal Systems Business, Business Connectivity Company, 3Com Corporation. "With 3Com's NJ100 Network Jack networking solution, organizations can substantially reduce the cost of cabling while increasing the number of active connections available to them. 3Com creates trusted network connections out of ordinary office wall jacks."

"This technology breakthrough is an excellent opportunity for resellers and contractors wanting to deliver switched Ethernet to their clients and at the same time reduce the volume of horizontal network cabling. The NJ100 is an ideal solution for the modular furniture environment and areas with high concentrations of workstations such as college dormitories and call centers," says Karl Griffith, Graybar Director of Reseller Markets.

NJ100 Network Jack Relieves Networking Headaches for IT Managers

Network managers in organizations of all sizes typically wire multiple CAT 5/5e connections per desktop. 3Com's new NJ100 Network Jack requires only a single CAT 5/5E cable and allows for four Fast Ethernet LAN connections while also accommodating voice over IP (VoIP) traffic. This streamlines the need for multiple cable runs per desktop. It also lets the user create a customized approach to connecting to the data and voice network via different devices. Typical network devices, such as laptop or desktop PCs and printers, are easily and seamlessly connected at will with 3Com's NJ100 Network Jack solution.

For a low price, 3Com's NJ100 Network Jack gives IT managers new benefits realized in a variety of environments – such as businesses, hospitals, K-12 schools and university campuses. By allowing for multiple connections per desktop, the cabling effort is streamlined and costs are greatly reduced. In addition, the NJ100 Network Jack integrates seamlessly into the network infrastructure and is a snap to upgrade. The product easily comes in and out of the cutout in the wall to be deployed wherever and whenever needed in the organization. This streamlines wiring while improving administration and lowering costs for cube and office moves, adds and changes. IT administrators will appreciate how effortlessly they can extend existing LAN infrastructure with NJ100 Network Jack for a savings of up to 60 percent over the traditional cost of implementing four live connections per desktop. www.graybar.com



Brooklyn college and non-profit group train cabling installers

Tuesday, November 20 will mark the first public graduation of Brooklyn Networks, a new training program designed to move New Yorkers into careers as telecommunications installers and technicians. Currently the program offers the Installer Level 1 curriculum from BICSI. Brooklyn Networks will soon offer Installer Level 2 and Technician training as well, the group says.

Brooklyn Networks is a partnership between Brooklyn Workforce Innovations (BWI--www.bwiny.org) and New York City Technical College. The college provides the hands-on skills training; BWI is a non-profit organization and an affiliate of the 23-year-old Fifth Avenue Committee, a community-development corporation. On the 20th, the college will host an open house, which will include comments from current students about their new skills and from former students about their new jobs.



Daikin & American Standard's Trane Division

announce global air conditioning alliance

Daikin Industries Ltd. and American Standard Companies Inc. (Osaka, Japan, & Piscataway, NJ) today announced that Daikin's Air Conditioning Division and Trane, American Standard's Air Conditioning Division, have agreed to form a comprehensive global strategic alliance to source and sell each others products. www.diakin.com



PennWell Publishing puts another one in the bullseye

Check out the December issue of Cabling Installation & Maintenance magazine. The cover story article is focused on SAFETY. Dan Kennefick, Copper Products Business Manager for Berk-Tek, explains the concept of enhanced performance and increased fire safety with the use of the new CMP-50 Limited Combustible Plenum Rated UTP cable. This product contains NO-LEAD, no phthalates, no dioxins, and (due to the ultra stable materials), no jacket or insulation break-down. AND, it's 100% recyclable.



10 Gb/s Solutions Available from Chromatic Technologies

and Draka-Molex Cabling Systems

Chromatic Technologies, a division of Draka USA, announces the immediate availability of fiber optic cables for 10 Gb/s applications. All Chromatic Technologies cable configurations can be obtained utilizing MaxCap MMF produced by Draka Fibre Technology of the Netherlands.

Draka Fibre Technology, trading under the marketing label 'Draka Comteq", introduced their MaxCap MMF multimode fiber solution at the recent International Wire and Cable Symposium in Orlando. This product is ideally suited for 10 Gb/s applications as reflected in the IEEE 10 Gigabit Ethernet (10GbE) standard (completion in 2002), which includes both Wide Area Network and Local Area Network applications.

The Draka-Molex Cabling Solution, utilizing Chromatic Technologies cable offerings and Molex's connectivity and cable management solutions, is proud to support the 10 Gb/s system solution with the addition of this new 50 micron (OM-3 type) MMF - Max Cap MMF.

The traditional low cost, short reach multimode fiber (MMF) solution is maintained in this standard by means of a new, next generation (OM-3) multimode fiber deployed with low cost 850 nm VCSEL (Vertical Cavity Surface Emitting Laser) sources.

After the successful introduction of the 1 Gb/s HiCap class of Multimode fibers, MaxCap MMF clearly demonstrates that Draka is continuing its strong support of multimode fiber applications based on its proprietary Plasma-activated Chemical Vapor Deposition (PCVD) process

  • MaxCap MMF 10 Gigabit Ethernet offers:

  • Low-cost solution for high bandwidth and high speed

  • 50 micron fiber, laser-optimized at 850 nm

  • Suitable for 10 Gb/s applications over 300 meters

  • Supports backwards compatibility to legacy applications

  • Available in all jacketing configurations

This technology is currently available in any fiber cable configuration. This includes plenum, riser and general purpose cables in indoor/outdoor, tight buffered, loose tube, aerial/duct, patch, dry blocked, direct burial and armored designs.

For technical information contact Rob Gilberti at Chromatic Technologies, Inc. in Franklin, MA by phone at 888 541-7100 or, e-mail rgilberti@drakausa.com.

To learn more about this product first hand, complete details will be available at the BICSI Winter Conference in Orlando, FL January 20 – 24, 2002. See "the team" at either the Draka-Molex or Draka-Molex booths #195 or #36.



The November issue of CI&M has two excellent editorials. Both of these editorials are looking at the same set of confusing issues from different perspectives. On page 88 of the magazine, Arlyn S. Powell, Jr., Contributing Editor, peels the Standards Game like an onion until your pocketbook is dry and your eyes are filled with tears. We agree with Mr. Powell that the Standards situation seems to be getting out of control. It is becoming increasingly difficult to follow the guidelines and procedures for the Standards. Like the easy to follow IRS code, the TIA/EIA's cabling standards are a challenge that makes almost every installer feel like "The Weakest Link". Somehow, we have to give our industry guidelines and procedures that are simple, concise, and designed efficiently. The job should not end up like a gilded installation, with a price tag to match.

On the other hand, kudos to Patrick McLaughlin, Chief Editor, whose editorial (on page 9), addresses the vendors who command no sympathy because they were the authors of these confusing and sometimes misleading standards. McLaughlin points out that that IEEE and TIA must work closely together and end the separation between the first and second layers of the famous OSI model. The network must be able to support the terminal gear and the protocol to run over the installed base of cabling. He is right on target.

However, there are a couple of small details that tend to wreck the entire scenario. First, not all cabling materials maintain the same level of performance over time and/or various temperatures. Material degradation in both cabling and connectors goes to the heart of this Standards Game. Sometimes, the various practices should start with the words, "Once upon a time".

The other minor detail (or fly in the ointment), is what to we do if we find out that part of the standard was incorrect? Remember good old CAT 5? It seems they forgot about delay skew, and a few dozen other issues. Yes, it was possible to build a CAT 5 that did not have any of those problems, and we called it CAT 5 plus. In fact, we called a lot of manufacturers products CAT 5 plus, while we waited and watched the snail race in the standards bodies. Now, if you still believe in Santa, the Easter Bunny, and the Standards Game, go ahead, don't listen to the manufacturers and don't buy their Category 5e plus with bells and whistles. Just go with plain old CAT 5e and have faith. Maybe you will retire before the ship sinks. Try blaming it on the "new guy".

Clearly, McLaughlin and Powell are correct. Do not forget the Latin slogan "Caveat Emptor". If you let some remote vendor club sit around and do your thinking for you, you may just get what you deserve. Let the buyer beware is more than a watch word. Before we had these "blame it on somebody else" standards, we held the vendor responsible. Guess what? The rules have not changed.

Never lose sight of the big sign, with the huge lettering, in front of you, that says, "I KEEP THINKING IT WAS BUILT BY THE LOWEST BIDDER WITH THE MINIMUM REQUIRED TO MEET THE STANDARD". The standards are the low water mark. Living at the bottom of that scale is no fun, if you are an astronaut or an IT manager.



New cooperation between the Unions on telecom installations?

There are more than 725,000 men and women of the CWA (Communications Workers of America Union), and there are millions of members of the IBEW (International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers) and don't forget about the AFL-CIO with its 13 million plus members. What would happen if the "borders" between these various labor organizations became blurred by changes in technology? CONFUSION would prevail.

Today, these labor organizations are working to come together, in an agreement, which would clarify jurisdiction over telecom installation for the building industry. Current confused jurisdictions involve the installation of equipment (and cabling), for voice, data, video, and wireless communications. We have heard reports that there is now a clear understanding that employers under contract to either CWA -OR- IBEW, may bid for and perform telecom installation.

We spent the better part of an entire afternoon searching the websites of these labor organizations and found no information about this "New Deal". Go ahead, knock yourself out. See if you can find any information on this news.



CommScope Announces Restructured Venture With Furukawa Electric

to Purchase Lucent's Fiber Optic Cable Business

CommScope, Inc.( Hickory, NC), reported that it has agreed with The Furukawa Electric Co. Ltd of Japan to restructure the previously announced joint venture arrangements between the companies to acquire an interest in the fiber optic cable business of Lucent Technologies. The transaction is expected to enhance CommScope's technology platform with access to key intellectual property and provide it with a strategic partner in optical fiber and fiber optic cable manufacturing.

The venture is being formed to operate a portion of the optical fiber and fiber optic cable businesses within Lucent's Optical Fiber Solutions (OFS)group, following the purchase of those businesses from Lucent, which is expected to close this quarter.

Under the new terms, CommScope will issue 10.2 million shares of its common stock to Lucent valued at approximately $203 million, based upon a $19.94 share price, which is the 10-day average closing price for the period ending November 6, 2001. CommScope will purchase an approximate 18% ownership interest in the fiber optic cable venture, which includes transmission fiber and cable manufacturing capabilities at a 2.9 million square foot facility in Norcross, Georgia, as well as facilities in Germany and Brazil and an interest in a joint venture in Carrollton, Georgia. CommScope will also purchase an interest-bearing note of the venture for $30 million to finance a portion of the initial working capital needs until permanent financing of the venture is secured. The proceeds of the stock issuance to Lucent will fund both the acquisition of the interest in the venture and the purchase of the note.

"We are excited about this opportunity and are pleased to have been able to restructure our arrangement with Furukawa in the midst of a difficult environment," said Frank M. Drendel, CommScope Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. "We believe this venture will create significant value over the long-term."

"This transaction provides CommScope with a strategic partner in the manufacture of optical fiber and fiber optic cable, cross licenses for use of key intellectual property and an attractive supply arrangement for optical fiber, including premium fiber," Drendel added. "We look forward to working with Furukawa to build upon the strong capabilities of our partner and the OFS cable group."

"We are also pleased that Eddie Edwards, who recently joined CommScope as Executive Vice President Strategic Development and President of its Wireless Products Group, will join Furukawa to serve as President and Chief Executive Officer of OFS Fitel and OFS BrightWave, which are the new entities created for a post-closing reorganization of the Optical Fiber Solutions (OFS) division of Lucent Technologies," noted Drendel. "Furukawa and CommScope are fortunate to have such a highly qualified and capable leader to manage the new OFS family of businesses."

While the Company does not expect the investment to be accretive in the near term due to current conditions in telecommunications and the global economy, it believes the strategic partnership offers significant opportunities for long-term growth.

CommScope is the world's largest manufacturer of broadband coaxial cablefor Hybrid Fiber Coax (HFC) applications and is a supplier of high- performancefiber optic and twisted pair cables for LAN, wireless and other communicationsapplications.



Berk-Tek and C-Tech Offer Network of Quality Candidates

for Data Communications Cabling Work Force

Berk-Tek,(New Holland, PA) a Nexans company, announces an agreement with C-Tech Associates, Inc that will provide Integrators access to pre-qualified localized labor pools.

C-Tech is a New Jersey-based developer of training aids and curriculum for data communications cabling. Berk-Tek reviewed the C-TECH PREP curriculum for content and applicability in the data communications cabling marketplace. By recently signing the agreement, Berk-Tek pledges support of the hiring of C-Tech certified Network Cabling Specialists to its national and global network of integrators.

Berk-Tek developed its Open Architecture Systems Interconnection Solutions (OASIS) Program through partnerships with approved connectivity partners and independent testing laboratories to offer high performance solutions, backed by one of the industry's finest open architecture warranties and a certified network of integrators. The signing of the agreement will provide Berk-Tek OASIS Certified Integrators nationwide information on pre-qualified local labor pools.

"We entered into this agreement with C-Tech because we saw an opportunity to provide an added-value service to our network of over 600 certified integrators in the US, Canada and Latin America," said Todd Harpel, Berk-Tek Marketing Manager. "By hiring C-Tech certified specialists, we believe that our integrators will see an immediate benefit by employing entry-level technicians with an industry-specific standard, basic skill set."

C-Tech took an innovative approach in the development of its training program. "Early on we recognized a need for trained technicians at an entry-level wage," stated Ken Lowenstein, Director of Marketing for C-Tech. "It is very important to deliver the technology at a level that addresses the majority of the population and still provides the much-needed skills."

Companies have been able to cut as much as three months off a new employee's preparation cycle by hiring C-Tech certified technicians, Lowenstein said. Since entering the educational/training market six years ago, C-Tech has established a network of over 240 certified training facilities throughout the country, including vocational and comprehensive high schools, community colleges, labor unions, community and faith-based organizations, Job Corps centers and correctional institutions.

Training sites are equipped with the resources, knowledge and skills to provide entry-level job training to any individual regardless of age or background. More than 7,000 graduates (4,500 over the past 20 months) possess the telecommunications skills and knowledge base to work as technicians, sales associates, customer service representatives or a number of other positions.

Berk-Tek sees teaming with C-Tech as a natural fit. "We are always looking for ways to better serve our OASIS Integrators," Harpel said. "By assisting them in creating relationships with local training providers, we see a tremendous benefit for the integrators, the schools and especially the students as they begin their careers. We want to help provide students with this opportunity." www.berktek.com



Solvay enters into one-to-one talks with Montedison

aiming at the acquisition of Ausimont USA

Solvay entered into a process of one-to-one talks with the Montedison Group, aiming at the purchase of 100% of Ausimont and of 100% of its holding company, Agora.

SOLVAY is an international chemicals and pharmaceuticals group with headquarters in Brussels. It employs about 32,000 people in 50 countries. In 2000 its consolidated sales amounted to EUR 8.9 billion generated by its four sectors of activity: Chemicals, Plastics, Processing and Pharmaceuticals. It is already active in the area of fluorinated specialties. Solvay is listed on the Euronext 100 index of top European companies. Details are available at www.solvay.com.

AUSIMONT is a manufacturer of fluorinated specialties based in Bollate (Milan), which operates production and R&D sites in Europe and the United States. The company has some 2000 employees and generates an annual turnover of almost EUR 600 million. Its activities are very complementary with those of Solvay.

AGORA is a sub-holding of the Montedison Group, which holds 100% of Ausimont.

MONTEDISON is an international industrial and services group, which has almost 33,000 employees and generated a turnover of EUR 14.3 billion last year.



CDT/Optical Systems Division Announces the Availability

of Laser-Optimized 10 GbE Multimode Fiber Cable

CDT Provided The Fiber Backbone For The World's First Multi-Vendor 10 Gigabit Ethernet Technology Demonstration -- The 10 Gigabit Ethernet (10 GbE) technology demonstration, hosted by the 10 Gigabit Ethernet Alliance at the September 2001 NetWorld+Interop show, showcased the products of 18 industry- leading network vendors. CDT's laser-optimized 50/125 um multimode fiber cable enabled a 300 meter network distance between the 10GBASE-S network devices used in the multi-vendor demonstration. 10GBASE-S is a 10 GbE port type that uses 850 nm lasers to transmit serial data over two multimode fibers for operating distances up to 300 meters. Chris Di Minico, chief technical officer for CDT's network divisions, commented, "A large percentage of the initial demand for 10 Gigabit Ethernet will be in short distance applications such as switch-to-switch and switch aggregation in the data centers and storage area networks. This growth will provide a significant market opportunity for CDT's laser-optimized 10 GbE multimode fiber cable."

CDT's single-mode fiber cable was used to demonstrate the 10GBASE-E network devices operating over distances of 40 kilometers and the 10GBASE-L network devices operating over distances of 10 kilometers. 10GBASE-E and 10GBASE-L are 10 GbE port types using 1550 nm and 1310 nm serial laser transceivers respectively. The single mode fiber port types are targeted at longer distance 10 GbE applications such as wide area networking (WAN) topologies and metropolitan area networking (MAN) topologies, and where interbuilding campus backbones exceed 300 meter distances.

CDT/Optical Systems Division offers 10 GbE standards compliant cabling solutions tailored to various applications, such as premises structured cable, storage networks or data centers. Mike Connaughton, Director of Sales & Marketing, states, "It is important not only to provide a path to transport the data, but also package the solution in a way that the customer can use the product effectively."

10 GEA member companies whose products were on display in the booth included: Agilent, AMCC, Broadcom, Corp., CDT Corp., Cisco Systems, Extreme Networks, Inc., Foundry Networks, Intel Corp., Ixia, MindSpeed, Nortel Networks, PMC-Sierra, Inc., Picolight, Spirent Communications, and Velio Communications. www.cdtc.com



DAIKIN AMERICA open full service fluoroelastomer lab in NY

Daikin America (Orangeburg, NY) has recently commissioned a full-service fluoroelastomer applications laboratory in their headquarters in Orangeburg, NY. This laboratory will support the development of Daikin's DAI-EL fluoroelastomer products. The start-up of the laboratory, along with his summer's hiring of James Jacks as DAI-El Technical Service Engineer, will allow Daikin to provide Applications and Product Development support for the fluoroelastomer product line. Parent company: www.daikin.com

Next year, Daikin America will be going into their 8th year of FEP production in the USA. PTFE and FEP polymer manufacturing facilities in Decatur, AL, started production in 1994. The next phase of Daikin America's presence in the USA, was a $60 million expansion of the Decatur plant to manufacture FEP and ETFE in 1995. Daikin America then invested to manufacture Unidyne Fabric Protection Fluorochemicals in late 2000. www.diakin-america.com



Clearview splitters complement StraightlineSupply.com CATV line

Clearview precision machined and SCTE compliant coax splitters are rated from 5 MHz - 1 GHz. With Nickel-plated zinc die-cast housings with soldered bottom plate and a weather ridge these splitters have minimum RFI 120db and low insertion loss. Drop splitters are available from 2 way to 8 way. Clearview also features unique, inline splitters that are designed with ports on a single side for tighter spaces. These as well as coax cable, connectors, surge protectors and crimp tools are available online at www.StraightlineSupply.com.



CommScope Introduces Media 6(TM), Low Cost,

Non-Isolated Category 6 Twisted Pair Cable

CommScope, Inc. (Hickory, NC), a world leader in the manufacture of broadband and high-performance communication cables, announces the addition of a new Category 6 twisted pair cable called Media 6(TM) to its family of Category 6 cables.

The Media 6 twisted pair cable is designed to meet Category 6 specifications to support broadband video and high-speed, full duplex transmission protocols that new and emerging technologies demand. Features include a flexible jacket, thousand-to-zero footage markers, coextruded colorstripe pairs for easy identification, and a smaller outer diameter than typical Category 6 products.

"Media 6 rounds out our family of Category 6 twisted pair cables," said Randy Crenshaw, Executive Vice President and General Manager, Network Products Group. "Now we offer our customers a broader line of Cat 6 cables to meet virtually all budget requirements." www.commscope.com



INTERTEK TESTING SERVICES LAUNCHES TRAINING SERIES

FOR CABLING INSTALLERS AND INSPECTORS

Independent, comprehensive courses provide insight on proper cable installation and inspection techniques; graduates earn BICSI Continuing Education Credits.

The ETL SEMKO (Boxborough, Mass) division of Intertek Testing Services (ITS), today announced that it is now offering a series of independent, comprehensive cabling installation and inspection training courses to contractors, inspectors and cabling professionals. The hands-on courses provide useful tips on installation and inspection techniques, and insight from veteran cabling industry experts. What's more, ITS ETL SEMKO's current course offerings are valid for BiCSi Continuing Education Credits (CEC), providing an additional source for the training necessary to meet BiCSi title requirements.

"As an independent third-party testing lab, we are involved with and have insight into almost every aspect of the cabling industry," said Don Nicholson, general manager, ITS ETL SEMKO. "Because of that perspective, we're in a prime position to offer focused, unbiased training that addresses the unique issues affecting all cabling professionals. Contractors, inspectors, consultants and executives alike will benefit from our small class sizes, expert instructors and relevant curricula."

Current course offerings

The following courses are now available to contractors and installers seeking BiCSi CECs for Registered Communications Distribution Designer/Local Area Network (RCDD/LAN) Specialist and/or Installation:

  • CAT 5, 5e & 6 Installation, Testing and Verification

  • Hands-on Fiber Optics

Both courses guide students through installation, testing and verification of cabling and networks over two- and three-day classes, respectively. ITS ETL SEMKO has developed a unique third course, also valid for BiCSi CECs

VDV Cabling Systems Inspection Techniques for Electrical Inspectors

This course provides inspectors, contractors, architects and consultants with instruction on the proper inspection of voice/data/video (VDV) cabling systems, according to NEC codes and TIA and IEEE standards. Over three days, the course outlines the importance of proper VDV installations and accurate inspections, and their impact on life safety and power quality. Students will also learn useful techniques on how to install, inspect, test and verify VDV systems.

"Installation requirements for cabling systems differ from those for high-voltage electrical systems," said Nicholson. "True, cabling systems are low-voltage applications, but an improperly installed system can still have a devastating affect on life safety, power quality and surrounding electronic equipment. Inspectors, contractors and others working primarily with electrical systems may not be as familiar with cabling system codes and standards. This course will give them the knowledge and hands-on techniques they need to safely install and inspect these increasingly popular systems."

Upon completion of each course, participants must take a comprehensive exam to receive a course completion certificate. Students will receive in-depth training manuals, follow-up materials, final exam results and a course completion certificate. www.etlcable.com

ETL SEMKO is a division of Intertek Testing Services Ltd., the world's largest product and commodities testing organization, which operates 240 laboratories and 469 offices in 93 countries throughout North America, Europe and Asia. ITS ETL SEMKO provides product safety testing and certification, EMC testing, performance testing and quality management systems registration for global clients in such industries as medical, HVAC, appliances, telecommunications, aerospace, automotive, semiconductor, building products and power generating systems. For more information about ITS ETL SEMKO's services, companies can call 1-800-967-5352 or visit www.etlsemko.com.



DCM Introduces 1.8 GHz LAN Cable Testing

DCM Industries, Inc. (Union City, California). DCM announces the new Model ES-2G Structured Cabling Test System designed for testing Category 5e, Category 6 and Category 7 cables up to 1.8 GHz. DCM is the first company to offer LAN cable testing to this level.

The ES-2G includes the automatic switching and baluns needed to interface the cable under test to an external network analyzer. The ES-2G Windows-based software solution includes a simple, easy-to-use test program with automatic comparison against the test specification, full test reporting and data management.

The ES-2G uniquely-designed test heads provide an easy means for connecting the cable under test to the test system, minimizing external influences and providing the isolation needed for accurate test results. The test system is suitable for both 4-pair Unshielded Twisted Pair cables (UTP), Shielded cables (FTP, STP) and 4-pair Individually Shielded cables (ISTP, S/STP). www.dcmindustries.com

 

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