In the electrical industry in South Africa, counterfeits are estimated to be a multi-million-rand problem. From circuit breakers that do not trip when they should to batteries without vents for built-up gases to grounding rods with only a fraction of the required copper coating, counterfeit electrical products fail to meet standards and pose risks of injury and even death. Furthermore, contractors may be liable if they install a counterfeit product and, for years, manufacturers have considered contractors to be the men and women on the front lines in the battle against counterfeiters.
During September, an international webinar was held where Eaton presented its investigation of counterfeit electrical products. Tom Grace, who has spent more than 10 years focusing on the impact of counterfeiting on Eaton and the electrical industry, notes that to combat counterfeiting, companies are moving towards dynamic marking (rather than adhesive labels) such as laser marking serial numbers directly onto the product itself and making it harder for counterfeiters to replicate. The company has also developed a mobile app, named PowerEdge, which allows electrical contractors to scan the serial number of a circuit breaker to authenticate the product in the field.
In this issue, Sparks Electrical News speaks to leading local manufacturers about this problem, and offers some measures to help protect electrical contractors and the end-user from counterfeiting.
Personality of the Month
Shaun Singh, Sales Director at JDL Electric, has a rich 23 year history in the electrical industry, with the last 14 at JDL Electric. He is a strong advocate of hard work, and believes that if you do what you love and love what you do; then it is not a job but a career path with endless opportunities to grow.
Column: Energy supply measurement
This month Terry Mackenzie Hoy states that the simple bottom line is that when a consumer is connected to a power supply, it is desirable, from the point of view of the supplier, that the consumer pay for the electricity consumed. He discusses the measurement of electricity and fluctuating energy loads.
Seen at Electra Mining 2018
Fusing its rich heritage with new innovation and technology, Electra Mining Africa once again delivered a world-class experience for exhibitors and visitors. Thousands of potential buyers met with over 850 sellers of leading products, specialised services and the most cutting-edge machinery, equipment and solutions, enabling effective business growth, more streamlined operations and ensuring a business that remains future-fit. As usual, a number of Sparks Electrical News customers were present at the show, and we visited them at the show.
The October Buyers’ Guide lists manufacturers and distributors of products and services for Motor Control Centre and Motor Protection.