Panel Builder System Integrator

February 26, 2018

New Electric first opened its doors in 1970, in Burlington, Ontario. The electrical contracting company serviced electrical wiring in homes, shops, and factories. New Electric quickly earned a reputation for excellence, quality and quick response times, and soon became a major contractor throughout southern Ontario.

Once established New Electric began to further specialize in the industrial sector, undertaking business in automation shops, whose projects increasingly involved building custom control panels. New Electric recognized the potential of this opportunity and the advantages that would be rendered from expanding operations to include an entire Panel Shop division. So, in 2000 the New Electric Panel Shop was officially launched.

Jon Kennedy, who has been working at New Electric for over 20 years, started as an apprentice in 1996 and was a founding member of New Electric’s Panel Shop. At the beginning of his apprenticeship, Jon worked at several automation facilities, building any/all panels required. Jon quickly became the resident expert and was called upon whenever a new panel was needed.

The Panel Shop has a dedicated staff of 7 full-time builders, but also enjoys the benefit of being able to draw on New Electric’s over 200 industrial electricians and apprentices when needed. The shop itself can adapt to high volume as well as large scale projects, with easy access to New Electric’s warehouse and garage spaces. Jon hopes to grow the Panel Shop team of dedicated technicians beyond 20 full-time staff members in the next few years while also doubling the production space.

“To me, Panel Building is an art. I assume in the near future there will be dedicated courses that you’re required to take before you can build panels and that you will need to be licensed to do so.”
— Jon Kennedy

Some benefits of working with the New Electric Panel Shop, specifically that which differentiates them from other Panel Shops are:

  1. Precisely what you want: Fully customized control panels from your drawings, designed to your exact specifications
  2. Turn-Key solutions, inhouse and under one roof:
    1. Design the panel
    2. Create any/all required drawings
    3. Build pre-approved panels (with CSA or UL for installation in North America)
    4. Include programming (setup and/or on-site)
    5. Install and integrate with existing systems

Since the Panel Shop first opened, there have been thousands of panels made for diverse industries, installed all around the world. The New Electric Panel Shop is a fully CSA and UL approved shop, meaning that all panels intended for North American installation are pre-approved as they leave the shop.

New Electric has made panels for a diverse set of applications. Notable projects have included:

  • Panels built on-site for the control room and inside the retractable roof of the Rogers Centre
  • Multiple panels built and shipped to solar farms outside of North America, with specifications beyond the CSA and UL standards
  • Massive, multi door slitting line and furnace panels, that need to be designed and built to allow separation, shipping and re-assembly at the customer site

As technology in the electrical industry changes, so too does the panel shop. In the beginning, typical builds consisted mostly of relay logic panels, which then lead to building more and more complex panels with HMI’s and PLC’s installed. New Electric Panel Shop employees are constantly kept on the leading edge of emerging technology and are always training to keep up with current trends in the industry. In 2017 New Electric merged with Spark Power, greatly increasing the volume and capability for high voltage and smart grid panels projects.

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