preconference seminars

The day before the conference, you may attend a basic, advanced, or one of two special topic seminars that reinforces your existing skills, expands your battery knowledge, and lets you explore industry trends. Topics include design, use, operation, terminology, system integration, maintenance, and the challenges facing battery users everywhere.

Each seminar brings industry specialists into your classroom. Content focuses on batteries, technical aspects of the DC system, manufacturing, maintenance, and testing issues. The fee for the day is $99. You must register for a particular seminar in advance.

Preconference seminars and activities are on Sunday, May 7, 2017. View our full conference schedule. The seminars, offered at additional cost, start either at 8:00AM or at 1:30PM. The 8:00AM seminar runs concurrent to the golf outing. All 1:30PM seminars run concurrently.

8:00AM Preconference Seminar

Implementing a NERC compliant battery maintenance program.
Instructors: Tom Carpenter (Chair) (Tennessee Valley Authority), Bill Cantor (TPI), Mike Nispel (Quality Standby Services, LLC), Chris Searles (BAE Batteries USA), Kurt Uhlir (Standby Power System Consultants, Inc.)

NERC PRC-005 requires owners to implement a battery maintenance program that meets certain requirements. There are various options allowable in the implementation of the maintenance program. There are also supplemental guides and FAQs associated with PRC-005 that attempt to help the users understand the requirements. This seminar will help users understand why PRC 005 was developed, provide an interpretation of the requirements by battery and utility experts, provide some in-depth understanding on how ohmic readings can be used, and provide user experiences of actual implementations.

1:30PM Preconference Seminar
Stationary Battery Basics
Instructors: Rick Tressler (Chair) (Rick Tressler, LLC), John Kim (EnerSys)

How does a battery work? What are the basic electrochemical actions that occur? What is the impact of using the wrong charge voltage? What is float service? What are some of the more predominant battery failure mechanisms, and what can be done to avoid and control them? What are the recommended maintenance tasks for a stationary battery system? What is a VRLA battery and why is it called maintenance-free? How can I get the most life out of my batteries? This seminar can help answer these and other questions. Our two instructors will spend the afternoon discussing fundamentals of the lead-acid battery, which may prove helpful in getting you up to speed for the conference.

1:30PM Preconference Seminar
Beyond the Fundamentals: Advanced Topics in Lead Acid Batteries
Instructors: Curtis Ashton (Chair) (CenturyLink), Mike Nispel (Quality Standby Services, LLC)

This seminar provides additional, in-depth information for attendees who need a more in-depth understanding of their battery systems. Beyond the Fundamentals explores five key topic areas that will assist in understanding more about what goes on inside as well as outside a battery. These topics include discussions on the following: Advanced lead acid fundamentals. Application, selection, and considerations for both conventional flooded and VRLA types. Data collection, record keeping, IEEE recommendations, warranty, and trending health. Failure modes, the aging process, warranty issues, and end of life determination. Periodic visual inspection criteria, where problems arise, and causes of troubles throughout the service life of a battery.

1:30PM Preconference Seminar
Focus On: Battery fires, explosions, arc flash and other scary things! Learn best practices for how to analyze the risks, protect your workers and complete the job without incident.
Instructors: Lesley Varga (Chair) (Quality Standby Services, LLC), Bill Cantor (TPI), Randy Schubert (Telcordia NIS, a Division of Ericsson, Inc.)

This seminar will examine the typical operations conducted on a stationary battery installation – from properly qualifying a battery, to understanding the risk environment, to installing and then maintaining the system. It will teach recommended techniques in analyzing the hazards involved and determining the risks to personnel, and will show how to mitigate and protect personnel from these risks. You will learn how to determine proper PPE per NFPA70E, how to calculate DC Arc Flash, and how to write a Project Plan including a Job Hazard Analysis. A ‘must-attend’ for anyone responsible for the design, installation and service of DC power systems.


Notes on Preconference Seminars
There is no prerequisite for any seminar. The 8:00AM seminar runs concurrent to the golf outing. The 1:30PM seminars run concurrently.



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