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2014 Product of the Year Winners

2014 Product of the Year winners

Consulting-Specifying Engineer readers have cast their votes for the 2014 Product of the year; read about the winners.

Chris Vavra, Content Specialist, and Amanda McLeman, Project Manager

Winners of the 10th annual Consulting-Specifying Engineer Product of the Year awards included products for critical power applications, top-notch fire and life safety technologies, and a host of cutting-edge energy-efficient products.

This year, companies submitted in January and February their new and improved products to be judged for this distinguished honor. Then readers whittled them down to 31 winners you’ll find here—including the 2014 Most Valuable Product winner below, which received the most reader votes overall.

View the full list of finalists in the 2014 Consulting-Specifying Engineer Product of the Year program.

Download the official press release here.

A total of 104 products qualified as finalists for the 2014 Product of the Year award. We left the final say up to the readers. Here are the winners, starting with the Most Valuable Product and followed by the 30 individual winners for each of the 10 sub-categories.

Most Valuable Product

End-suction centrifugal pumps

Xylem’s Bell and Gossett Series e-1510 single-stage end-suction centrifugal pumps are designed for the end-suction market for HVAC and plumbing applications. Its efficiency island helps the e-1510 reduce electricity consumption, improve overall system performance, and lower lifecycle costs. The Series e-1510 is available in 26 sizes and a variety of configuration options that enable customization and flexibility to fit many operating conditions. Stainless steel impellers reduce corrosion or degradation potential from varying water quality, and provide improved sustainable hydraulic performance. These optimized hydraulics contribute to further efficiency for both fixed and variable speed operation

Bell & Gossett,

Apps for Engineers

HVAC/R energy savings calculator

Schneider Electric’s HVAC/R energy savings calculator app is designed to accurately quantify how much energy can be saved when floating high (head) pressure control with VSD technology is applied to chillers and refrigeration systems. This technology is incorporated into the Condenser Fan Pak, which reduces energy costs by up to 30%. Energy savings potential is calculated using the user’s location weather bin data, cost per KWH, chiller tonnage, and operational schedule. After performing calculations, the user can generate a tablet view and PDF report, which can be saved and e-mailed to other users. The app is available in Web and mobile versions.

Schneider Electric,

Fault current calculator

Eaton Bussmann’s Fault Current Calculator (FC2) mobile application (app) is designed for calculating available fault current levels in single- or three-phase electrical systems. The FC2 app is available for all iOS and Android devices, and allows contractors, engineers, electricians, and electrical inspectors to quickly and easily determine available fault current levels anywhere in an electrical distribution system. The FC2 app is designed to simplify the point-to-point calculation process with an intuitive interface. Beyond calculations, the FC2 app also includes a fuse sizing guide for main, feeder, and branch circuits.

Eaton’s Bussmann Business,

Mobile programming application

Schneider Electric’s Altivar 212 mobile programming app and drive to iPad converter cable allows users to perform all Altivar 212 and S-Flex drives programming through iOS tablets. The application contains simple menu-driven parameter sets that walk users through the drive configuration process. Digitizing the start-up and programming of a drive streamlines the process, allowing customers to store pertinent drive information in a single location, and facilitates a standard drive configuration throughout a facility. The Altivar 212 mobile app addresses programming challenges that emerge from the coded parameter sets commonly found in these very flexible products. The new app enables an iPad to function as a drive keypad for easy setup using pre-loaded common default parameters for HVAC fan and pump applications, significantly streamlining the configuration process.

Schneider Electric,

Electrical Distribution & Systems

Power distribution, lighting panelboard

Schneider Electric’s Square D I-Line Combo Panelboard combines an I-Line power distribution section and NQ or NF lighting sections into one panelboard to save time and space. The I-Line Combo Panelboard is built to the same UL 67 standard as other Square D panelboards, and provides a simple, quick installation. It also has a reduced footprint by combining a power panel with up to two lighting sections in one enclosure. The I-Line Combo Panelboard enclosures fit into the same footprint on sites where an existing Classic I-Line power panelboard resides, providing easy upgrades of electrical equipment. The Single I-Line Combo Panelboard is available in 26- and 32-in. widths.

Schneider Electric,

Shunt trip safety switch

Eaton’s safety switches provide remote tripping and a visible means of disconnect for commercial and industrial applications with a shunt trip module. When signaled remotely, the device will electrically trip the switch, enhancing personnel safety. The safety switches are designed to communicate with equipment sensors to identify unauthorized or unsafe conditions, and disconnect the machine’s power source to help protect personnel and equipment. The switch is also engineered to seamlessly integrate into safety interlock systems. The switch is available in two-, three- and four-pole configurations for maximum system voltages of 600 Vac and 1,000 Vdc with fusible and nonfusible protection options.


Arc resistant MCC

The Model 6 arc-resistant MCC from Schneider Electric offers personnel protection in MCCs with an arc-resistant rating of 100 ms, in accordance with IEEE/ANSI C37.20.7. The structure provides arc-resistant Type 2A rating, protection of the front, rear, and sides, and comes standard with full-depth vertical wireway. Its design is intended to minimize the potential for personnel injury from dangerous arcing faults by redirecting and channeling the arc energy out of the top of the structure. The MCC is equipped with designs such as self-aligning bucket power stabs and insulated/isolated vertical bus, along with many others design features to reduce the potential of an arc flash incident.

Schneider Electric,

Emergency, On-Site, Standby Power

Mobile generator set

Cummins Power Generation’s Tier 4 Final generator set includes the C150D2R generator (standby rated at 150 kW), the C200D2R generator (standby rated at 200 kW), and the C275D2R generator (standby rated at 275 kW). The Tier 4 Final certified mobile generators feature switchable 60/50 Hz dual frequency operation with multiple voltage configurations of 208, 240, and 480 V in three-phase, and 240 V in single-phase. The units also feature the PowerCommand 3.3 controller with both paralleling and advanced master-less load demand capabilities.

Cummins Power Generation,

Automatic transfer switch

Eaton’s 1,600-amp automatic transfer switch (ATS) product line is designed to provide monitoring, reporting, and transfer control operations to include in-phase monitor. The 1,600-amp bypass isolation contactor is equipped with dual ATS technology. The bypass isolation contact switch supports concurrent maintainability through automatic control in the bypass mode for mission critical applications. Automatic transfer switches are critical components to any emergency or standby power systems. Features include a double-throw, mechanically interlocked transfer mechanism to prevent connection of both sources and a field-selectable multi-tap transformer panel. It is also NEMA, UL, and CSA listed and certified.


Natural gas generators

HIPOWER Systems’ HRNG-165 and HRNG-230 natural gas generators are specifically engineered to stand up to the rigors of remote oil and gas operations. The company has developed prototypes of five different models, all of which are built to meet UL and CSA standards. In addition to their durability, the generators are integrated with MasterTrak, a telematics asset and fleet management tool that communicates with the engine and other components to provide equipment data. MasterTrak lets operators monitor faults and alerts remotely and in real time, resolving engine problems and reducing unexpected failures.

HIPOWER Systems,

Fire, Life Safety, Suppression Systems

LED exit sign

Dual-Lite’s EVE Series features an architectural LED exit sign that provides bright and uniform illumination. It uses efficient, long-life red or green LEDs rated at over 100,000 hours. The fixture’s long lifecycle NiMH battery provides 90 minutes of emergency exit illumination in the event of a power failure, and an LVD protects the battery during prolonged outages. The EVE Series accepts 120 to 277 Vac input at 60 Hz and optional 220 to 240 Vac input at 50 or 60 Hz with a self-diagnostics option and current charger. The fixture’s operating temperature range is 20 to 30 C, and it is NFPA 101 and NFPA 70 certified.


Ground fault circuit interrupter

Littelfuse’s SB6100 Series Industrial Shock-Block is a ground fault circuit interrupter (GFCI) device designed to meet UL 943C Class C and Class D requirements. It is tested up to 50,000 amps, which eliminates the need for short-circuit protection. The SB6100 Shock-Block GFCI goes beyond the UL standards by including built-in overcurrent protection supplied by Class T fuses. Because fuses are included, installation is easy and there are no extra costs. The SB6100 Shock-Block GFCI is available as an open-chassis unit or as an enclosed unit with a NEMA-4X UL-listed enclosure.


Seismic bracing attachment

The TOLCO Fig. 4LA seismic bracing attachment from Eaton’s B-Line Business is available for piping sizes that range from 1 to 12 in. The seismic product offering is designed for a wide range of mechanical, electrical, plumbing, and fire sprinkler seismic bracing applications. Manufactured from carbon steel, the TOLCO Fig. 4LA is designed to brace piping against sway and seismic disturbances. The Fig. 4LA is pre-assembled with all of the necessary pieces and components and does not require additional assembly. The design also allows the product to be used in longitudinal and lateral applications. It also allows for easy inspection by any local authority having jurisdiction.

Eaton’s B-Line Business,


Commercial indoor/outdoor fan

Big Ass Fans’ Essence commercial fan is designed for indoor and outdoor commercial spaces. It features an efficient, sensor-less direct-drive motor for powerful air movement in any space. Essence is available in 8-, 10-, 12-, and 14-ft diameters. The gearless direct drive motor provides silent operation (less than 35 dBA) and is lightweight and easy to install. Other features include permanent magnets that reduce power consumption and onboard electronic microprocessors that offer design flexibility and control options that best fit the user. Essence is suitable for ceilings as low as 12 ft and has a wired or wireless wall control system.

Big Ass Fans,

VRF zoning systems

The Hyper-Heating Inverter (H2i) R2-Series of variable refrigerant flow (VRF) zoning systems can operate at up to 100% of their rated heating capacity at temperatures down to 0 F. The flash injection technology allows the H2i R2-Series to simultaneously heat and cool down to -4 F. The unique two-pipe configuration allows for more efficient design and installation, while the compact system components allow for convenient application to both historic retrofit and new building construction. One outdoor unit can connect to up to 48 indoor units, and the heat pump is compatible with all CITY MULTI indoor unit styles.

Mitsubishi Electric Cooling and Heating,

Variable frequency drives

Siemens’ BT300 variable frequency drives are designed specifically for HVAC systems with an increased focus on energy efficiency of variable flow systems. The BT300 features include a motor switch ride-through. During maintenance the motor maintenance switch can be opened and closed without stopping or tripping the drive. The BT300 also has thin film capacitors, which eliminate the need to condition or reform the capacitors before applying power. The user can also view and monitor nine parameters at one time. Other features include integrated harmonic filters that reduce noise and interference, and two built-in PID controllers for fast and accurate process control.

Siemens Industry Inc.,

Lighting Controls & Sensors

Lighting control panelboard

Schneider Electric’s Energy Insight solution is an enhancement to the company’s Measurement and Verification Panelboard (MVP) offering for lighting control. It is designed to provide facility and energy managers with more detailed visibility into energy use information, enabling them to better understand how various lighting and plug load energy conservation measures perform. With the Energy Insight software solution, panelboard data auto-populates into a Web-based dashboard, automatically analyzing current, power, energy, power factor, and volt data on a per circuit, zone, or panel basis. Utilizing historical data of each circuit, users can identify energy use trends and detect future opportunities for improved energy efficiency.

Schneider Electric,

Lighting control system

Cooper Controls’ Room Controller lighting control system incorporates occupancy sensing, daylighting, receptacle control, demand response, and manual controls as well as a UL 924-listed relay and integral skylight control. The Room Controller system has been developed to meet the unique and evolving energy codes and lighting control needs of private offices, open office spaces, conference rooms, classrooms, and patient rooms. In addition to allowing for precise lighting controls, the system is designed to save energy and time during installation with its quick connect cable and pre-configured components. The Room Controller system also provides demand response and receptacle control functionalities.

Eaton’s Cooper Controls Business,

Dual loop photosensor

WattStopper’s LMLS-600 Switching and Dimming Dual Loop Photosensor combines open- and closed-loop daylighting control strategies. The two photosensors—an open-loop sensor to detect daylight contribution, and a closed-loop sensor to read the ambient light level—and sophisticated algorithms are designed to simplify setup and ensure optimal performance. The LMLS-600 provides superior automatic daylighting control for buildings with skylights, preventing distracting lighting level changes. It features automatic commissioning, including self-calibration and establishment of setpoints, saving time for installers and improving performance. Additionally, it recalibrates itself every night to adapt to reflectance changes in the space.


Lighting Fixtures

Outdoor LED luminaire

Hubbell Outdoor Lighting’s LED Multi-purpose Dusk-to-Dawn luminaire features multiple distributions, zero uplight performance, and versatile mounting options in a single SKU. It provides general-purpose area/security, roadway, and landscape lighting with up to 3437 lumens at over 86 lumens/watt. The luminaire’s refractor provides enhanced security and LED brightness control; and the product comes with a symmetric LED lens installed standard, but also comes with a field rotatable asymmetric LED lens. The fixture’s rugged die-cast aluminum housing is coated with a textured gray powder paint that provides corrosion resistance and a clean finish. The product comes with a 120-V twist-lock style photocontrol, and versatile mounting options including direct wall/surface mounting.

Hubbell Outdoor Lighting,

LED basket fixture

Columbia Lighting’s Transition Enclosed LTRE (LED) fixture is designed to deliver strong light output, efficiency, and precise color rendering for a wide range of environments. It also comes with a built-in dust guard enclosure to reduce maintenance costs. The Transition Enclosed LTRE is available in 2- by 2-ft and 2- by 4-ft configurations that can be easily recessed, surface mounted, or suspended in new or existing spaces. Enclosed LTRE have specialty options such as antimicrobial paint to resist bacterial growth on painted surfaces, wet location listing, and a full-length layer of gasketing for the lens that does not impact the product’s performance.

Columbia Lighting,

LED downlights

The Halo Surface LED Downlights (SLD) incorporate WaveStream LED technology. The SLD dimmable series installs in standard 3.5- and 4-in. junction boxes and retrofits 4-, 5- or 6-in. aperture IC and non-IC recessed housings. The SLD Series can also retrofit surface-mounted fixtures. The LED series consumes only 12 watts while lasting 50,000 hours. Available in 4-in. (SLD4) and 6-in. (SLD6) sizes with 3000 K CCT and an 80 or 90 CRI option, the SLD integrates with advanced lighting controls solutions and has dimming capability to nominally 10% with standard 120-V electronic low voltage and 5% using select dimmers with low-end trim adjustment.

Eaton’s Cooper Lighting Business,

Mass Notification, Emergency Communication

Emergency communications system

The FirstCommand emergency communications system (ECS) by NOTIFIER is designed to seamlessly interface with virtually any commercial fire alarm to provide a system for broadcasting live and pre-recorded general messages and emergency alerts. FirstCommand’s scalable design allows the system to be tailored to fit the needs of a single building, with ample capacity for future expansions. Every FirstCommand system can support a combination of up to eight remote control panels and microphone consoles, which can be installed at easy access points throughout a facility. As many as 14 pre-recorded messages can be customized for a facility to use for emergency alerts, as well as day-to-day notifications.

NOTIFIER by Honeywell,

Fire alarm communications panel

The IPGSM-4G by Honeywell Power is compatible with virtually any brand of fire alarm control panel and connects to both ports on the panel’s digital alarm communications transmitter (DACT). It can operate over 2G, 3G, or 4G networks, automatically choosing the best available cellular signal in the area. No additional fire alarm panel configuration is needed after installation. An installer can configure this product for Internet Protocol (IP) or Global System for Mobile Communications (GSM) as the sole communication path or, for maximum reliability, IP as primary with GSM as backup. The IPGSM-4G seamlessly connects to the dialer of any Contact-ID fire alarm control panel.

Honeywell Power,

Intelligent notification appliances

The Simplex TrueAlert ES is a family of intelligent notification appliances that have been designed to provide better protection, maximum ease of use, and lower operating costs. Each TrueAlert ES device is electronically supervised and built with the intelligence to continuously report its status to a Simplex 4100ES fire alarm control panel. Other features include self-testing capability and device information and test history being stored into a database for AHJs and other code compliance officials. TrueAlert ES devices also provide specific warning alerts for faster troubleshooting and maintenance.

SimplexGrinnell by Tyco,

Software: Design, Modeling, Monitoring

Remote monitoring system

The PowerCommand 500/550 remote monitoring system from Cummins Power Generation provides a Web-based means of remotely monitoring and controlling on-site generator sets, transfer switches, sensors, and output controls from any PC. With the PowerCommand system, users can remotely start and stop generators, start and stop transfer switch tests, and reset and acknowledge faults. The PowerCommand 500 remote monitoring system can monitor and control two devices like a generator set and transfer switch. The PowerCommand 550 remote monitoring system can monitor and control up to 12 on-site devices like generator sets, multiple transfer switches, and other I/O modules.

Cummins Power Generation,

Electrical calculation software

Design Master Electrical RT is an add-on application that expands and improves the electrical calculations available in Revit MEP. It allows the user to make more precise calculations and judgments during the planning and execution stage of a project. Calculations include branch circuit breaker and wire sizing, feeder sizing, fault, voltage drop, and arc-flash. The engineer is given control over all the parameters of the wires to allow the calculations to be as accurate as possible. All calculated values can be overridden as necessary for the final design.

Design Master Software,

Water heater sizing program

AERCO Smart Size is a water heater sizing program that helps consulting and specifying engineers, as well as facility owners and managers, select the most appropriate water heater for their facility load demands. The online tool accurately calculates a building load and recommends the proper water heater to satisfy the specified load without excessive oversizing, for a more space- and cost-efficient system. The program offers users a high degree of flexibility during the sizing and selection process. The program captures all project information, such as application (hotel, school, office building, etc.) and location (for seasonal considerations), as well as fixture count and GPM.


Test Instruments, Meters, Data Loggers

Infrared camera

Fluke Corporation’s Ti400 infrared camera features advanced connectivity and accuracy to maximize technicians’ productivity in the field. The infrared camera features LaserSharp Auto Focus, which uses a laser to pinpoint exactly where the camera should focus for precisely focused images every time. The rugged Fluke Ti400 connects to the Fluke CNX Wireless system, allowing it to be used as a main unit to view live measurements of up to five wireless modules. The infrared camera features wireless connectivity to easily transfer images from the cameras directly to PCs or iOS devices, which can then be imported into Fluke SmartView software, a professional suite of analysis and reporting tools for creating professional reports.

Fluke Corp.,

Three-phase energy logger

The Fluke 1730 three-phase energy logger is an intuitive, easy-to-use tool with professional-level energy data gathering capabilities. The compact energy logger conducts key measurements of voltage, current, power, and power factor to identify areas of energy waste. All measured values are logged automatically and can be reviewed during logging. Common setup errors are rectified, through re-engineered cables, digital check and auto-correct of all connections, and an on-screen wizard for interval setup. It can be powered directly from the measured circuit, eliminating the need to find a power outlet, and has two USB ports for fast data downloads to PCs or standard thumb drives.

Fluke Corp.,

Multi-point meter

The Eaton Power Xpert Multi-Point meter is engineered to accurately track facility energy use in multi-tenant applications and gives property managers and building owners a solution for quantifying, benchmarking, and allocating energy use. The meter is also designed to accurately aggregate gas, water, and steam consumption data to enable a comprehensive review of a facility’s utility use and the development of energy savings solutions. The meters can be installed in new and retrofit applications and include robust commissioning tools that support accurate installation and reliable operation. The meters provide a cost-effective, scalable approach to monitor energy in assemblies or power distribution equipment with a high density of metering points.