IAEC Annual Forum
IAEC celebrated its 20th anniversary with its Educational Extravaganza and Forum on May 10-12 in New York City.
The International Association of Elevator Consultants (IAEC), founded in 1991 as the National Association of Vertical Transportation Professionals (NAVTP), celebrated its 20th anniversary this year with its Educational Extravaganza and Forum in New York City (NYC) at The Westin Hotel on May 10-12. More than 70 of the association’s members registered for the event, along with another 80 elevator-industry professionals, including elevator contractors, equipment manufacturers and suppliers. In spite of the downturn in the national economy, this year’s forum had the largest attendance in the association’s history. More than 200 people attended the Mon-day evening opening event, to which many additional NYC elevator, real-estate and building design industry professionals were also invited. The three-day event was very successful for both the association and attendees.
Hosted by Nicholas J. Montesano, president of DTM Elevator Consulting, the forum included a number of unique educational sessions and networking events. The opening party showcased 40 elevator equipment exhibit stands and included plenty of good food and drink for those in attendance. As the event was held in the heart of NYC’s Times Square/Theater District, the social events were scheduled to conclude early in the evening so as to allow attendees to enjoy the area’s numerous restaurants and theaters.
On the first day, educational sessions got off to a start with welcoming remarks by Montesano and IAEC’s President Sheila N. Swett. Throughout the day, the latest destination-dispatch systems (DDS) were presented and discussed by some of the industry’s major elevator companies and in-dependent elevator-controller manufacturers. The specifics of these systems, how they control elevator operation and how to perform DDS traffic studies, along with the performance criteria that should be achieved, were all discussed. The presentations were given by the following: Johannes de Jong of KONE; Randy Huff of Computerized Elevator Control Corp.; Emery Thran of Motion Control Engineering Inc.; Jeff Blain of Schindler; and Theresa M. Christy of Otis. The presenters then participated in an extensive discussion panel with the audience on this subject. During the second morning session, Montesano and Jay Popp of LBA Elevator Consultants presented a consultant’s viewpoint on how DDS can best be applied not only in theory, but in actual practice, as well.
During the afternoon sessions, Richard “Dick” Gregory of Vertex Elevator Consulting presented the latest provisions being considered for adoption in the ASME A17 code relative to the use of elevators during fires and other emergencies. Following, Robert Cuzzi of VDA Elevator Consulting brought the group up to date on recently adopted NYC elevator-code provisions, along with the newly implemented inspection procedures now being enforced by city and private elevator inspectors throughout the city.
A new-technology session followed with Carl Strychaluk of Mad Elevator Fixtures, Inc. discussing the features provided in his company’s touch-screen car-operating panels and landing stations. Peter Rampf next described Webb Electronics’ fixtures for use during emergency operations. Kevin Heling of Brugg Wire Rope, LLC, gave a presentation on wire ropes, emphasizing how they should be applied to today’s elevator arrangements, the care and handling of wire ropes on a construction site and the proper rope inspection procedures that should be used by inspectors and consultants.
Following the first day’s educational sessions, attendees participated in a second exhibitor showcase, which included a silent-auction fundraiser for the Elevator Escalator Safety Foundation, while a vocalist rounded out the evening with an enjoyable repertoire of popular songs and Broadway show tunes.
Day two got off to a start with presentations by GAL and Richmond Elevator Co. on “Today’s Generic MRL Elevator Technology and Code.” Doug Witham and Doug Dietrich presented GAL/HW’s latest ma-chine-room-less (MRL) elevator technology, and Jim Duffy described NYC’s latest MRL code requirements.
The new-technology discussions continued throughout the morning with a discussion panel during which the representatives of Elevator Controls Corp., Computerized Elevator Control, Smartrise Engineering, Motion Control Engineering, and KONE described the attributes of their companies’ MRL elevator systems, then responded to audience questions relative to operation, maintenance and inspection of MRL systems.
Following lunch, attendees boarded buses and traveled across town to participate in a tour of the 780 Third Avenue office building, in which a recent modernization of the elevators included Computerized Elevator Controls’ latest controllers and Magnetek’s Quattro drives. On Wednesday evening, during another exhibitor showcase, a book signing was held, during which George Strakosch was on hand to meet and sign copies of the recently published fourth edition of The Vertical Transportation Handbook. Attendees had the opportunity to meet Strakosch and spend time with him, during which he engaged in conversations with both longtime and newly made acquaintances.
The third day continued with educational sessions on the recently published ASME A17.7 performance-based code. ThyssenKrupp Elevator’s Phillip Hampton offered his views on the benefits and utilization of the new process to obtain code approval on new elevator technology not specifically covered in the A17.1 code. Following the session, the discussion of new technology approval continued with a presentation by Kevin Connelly of Under-writers Laboratories (UL). Connelly described the equipment-approval process that UL uses to ensure that elevator equipment is submitted to his organization for approval under the A17.7 code. Following these two sessions, the rest of the morning was set aside for the IAEC Annual Membership Meeting.
During the membership meeting, the IAEC committee chairmen presented re-ports on their committees’ work, old and new business was discussed, and officers and directors were elected and sworn into office.
Following a lunch break, the subjects covered during the afternoon sessions included maintenance and inspection of conventional elevator equipment and new technology. The speakers who participated in these sessions included Ken Breglio of BP Elevator Co., Bobby Schaffer of D&D Elevator Co., Cuzzi and Tom Stack of VDA Elevator Consulting and Joseph Neto of Joseph Neto Elevator Consulting.
As the event drew to a close, Swett and Montesano thanked participants and exhibitors for supporting IAEC and encouraged them to attend the closing party at the Houndstooth Pub. There was an extensive crowd at the “Say Goodnight Gracie” Party (named to reflect the name ofNYC Mayor Michael R.
Bloomberg’s “Gracie Mansion” home). In addition to the available food and drink, magician Oz Pearlman performed some remarkable feats of magic. As good as the evening’s magic was, it was agreed by all that nothing will make the knowledge gained from attending the 2011 IAEC Annual Forum, nor the fun and camaraderie that the forum created, ever disappear.
Recognition is in order for the IAEC organizers, supporters and attendees for making this year’s event one that will long be remembered as one of (if not the) best forum that IAEC has had in its 20-year history. For more information about how to get involved with IAEC and be notified of next year’s event, visit website: www.iaec.org or contact IAEC Executive Director Gordon J. Ernst at e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.