The inaugural BICSI (www.bicsi.org) Cabling Skills Challenge will feature the world"s best information transport systems (ITS) installers testing their skills and knowledge as they compete for the title of Installer of the Year. The event will be held in conjunction with the evening exhibition sessions during the 2008 BICSI Spring Conference, April 27-30, at the Gaylord Opryland Resort & Convention Center inNashville, TN.
Competitors will be selected from the field of entrants based on such qualifying criteria as professionalism, quality ofresume, and work experience. Over the course of the three-day challenge, installers will compete in six events: StructuredCabling Systems (SCS) Installation; Copper Cable Terminations; Fiber Terminations; Cable Assembly; Cable Troubleshooting/Technical Support; and Competency Exam.
Competitors will also be scored on professionalism. Scores will be based on resume, orientation (attendance and promptness) attitude, safety, tools and equipment, attention to detail and aesthetics.
The award ceremony will be held at 10:15 a.m., Wednesday, April 30, during the closing session of the conference.
"The Cabling Skills Challenge offers a substantial oppor-tunity for BICSI Registered Installers and Technicians to highlight the expertise they"ve gained through years of training and experience working in the ITS industry," says Dan Morris, RCDD, chairman of the BICSI Installation Committee. "We are very excited to develop the event as part of our continuing effort to broaden our outreach to the heart of our industry—the installers and technicians."
"This event will be the first time that the Installers will have a forum at a BICSI Conference to showcase their talents," says David Richards, RCDD/NTS/OSP Specialist, vice president of technical training for PCC Network Solutions (www.pccinc.com).
Richards adds, "Giving the front line BICSI installers and technicians their deserved recognition is important to promote BICSI ‘best practices" and the future RCDDs of the ITS industry."
W. HARTFORD, CT—Cablofil/Legrand (www.cablofil) has acquired California-based PW Industries, manufacturer of cable trays and prefabricated wiring systems. Cablofil will continue to produce and market its wire basket tray along with the PW line of ladder tray. In addition, parent company Legrand recently acquired Macse, Mexico"s leading producer of metal cable trays. The acquisition is said to strengthen Legrand"s presence in Mexico, a high-growth market where Legrand says it is already a leader in wiring devices and energy distribution.
BRICK, NJ—Private equity firm The Halifax Group (www.thehalifaxgroup.com) has acquired integrated video surveillance and security systems provider North American Video (NAV; www.navcctv.com). Cynthia Freschi, NAV"s founder and CEO, will reportedly retain a significant stage in the company and continue to serve with the existing senior management team. "Our partnership with Halifax will accelerate North American Video"s continued growth and expansion into new security markets while providing enhanced services and support for both existing and new clientele," says Freschi.
MOUNTAIN VIEW, CA—The Ethernet Alliance (www.ethernetalliance.org) has formed the Small Form Factor Plug-gable Module/Electronic Dispersion Compensation (SFP+/ED)subcommittee, formerly known as the 10GBase-LRM subcommittee. It will promote 10-Gbit Ethernet by providing information and education on the new SFP+ form factor and associated EDC host ICs, and demonstrate interoperability and technical feasibility of SFP+ through plug-fests and other activities. EDC is a key enabling physical layer technology for high-speed communications that compensates for optical and electrical signal impairments.
TAMPA, FL—BICSI (www.bicsi.org) has added "Telecommunication Distribution Methods Manual Update Review" (DD300) as a new course in its Telecommunications Distribution Design and Fiber Optic area. The course looks into the latest applicable standards, methodologies, and design and installation best practices for all technical personnel involved in the design, specification, installation, inspection or maintenance of information transport system (ITS) projects. "This course will constantly evolve and address the latest development to ensure every student is better prepared on the job," says Betty Bezos, RCDD/NTS/OSP/WD Specialist and BICSI Master Instructor.
MILAN, ITALY—Prysmian Cables & Systems (www.prysmian.com) has secured a contract to supply the first phase of a FTTx network in Schwerte, Germany. The project will initially link nearly 1,800 households, and conclude by 2012 with the connection of the entire community of 50,000 with ultra-high-speed broadband via optical fiber. The project, based on Prysmian"s Sirocco blown fiber technology—where optical fibers are blown into pre-installed tubes to create the fiber network—is typical of many FTTx schemes in western Europe where the majority of activity is undertaken by utility companies, local authorities, and independent operators.