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GTEC helps IET Update Standards on Renewables

Authored by Marco on May 9, 2023


GTEC helps IET Update Standards on Renewables

The Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) is a world leading professional organisation, informing and influencing the global engineering and technology community to work to the very best standards. It works with British Standards Institution (BSI) to produce BS 7671 The IET Wiring Regulations to keep those working in the electrical industry – and the public – safe.


As new technologies develop, the IET sometimes finds itself in need of help from industry in updating and developing guidance publications that accompany BS 7671.


Recently, the IET’s Head of Technical Regulations, Mark Coles, sought advice from GTEC’s MD and renewables expert, Griff Thomas, on standards relating to the installation of renewable technologies. The IET is working on a new guidance publication to accompany the 18th Edition of the Wiring Regulations.


In order to move things forward, the IET came to GTEC last December to discuss the practical challenges that installers face day-to-day when working with new renewable technologies. Mark explained:


“As new products come in, we find the requirements set out in the British Standards can begin to lag behind. The installers that turn to us for advice by contacting our technical helpline, for example, need a solution and we have a responsibility to them to keep our guidance up to date.


“I met Griff back in 2008 when he worked for the Electrical Contractors’ Association (ECA), as a demonstrator, extolling the benefits of renewables.  As an early adopter of renewable technologies Griff is a recognized expert in the field and has since become a technical expert on a number of our committees. When we were looking for guidance and practical industry solutions, he was the obvious choice.”


Mark, who began his career as an electrical apprentice at Sellafield, the nuclear reprocessing plant on the Cumbrian coast, has been working for the IET for eighteen years. His role is varied and he values the opportunities he has to shape global electrical standards as well as those in the UK.


“One of the most important parts of my job is interacting with engineers who are working day-to-day in the sector. Speaking with installers gives me the opportunity to find out what’s really going on, what they are up against and what they need. We are then able to respond, bringing in the help of an expert such as Griff to ensure our guidance is up to date and that we, as an organisation, are relevant.”


Griff added: “It was great to have the IET technical team at GTEC and we thoroughly enjoyed showing off some of the latest technology to Mark and his team. We’ve worked hard over the years to ensure that we work closely with the right stakeholders and for electrical systems there is no better than the IET.


“Things have moved on rapidly recently with the introduction of the “prosumer” and advent of energy storage systems, intelligent charging for electric vehicles and related technologies such as heat pumps that take advantage of time of use tariffs are becoming the norm. With all these changes its critical that those writing the supporting standards and code of practice have hands on experience of these technologies to ensure that any updates truly reflect the technologies and don’t introduce any unforeseen barriers to the widescale rollout or low carbon tech.


“We look forward to continuing our relationship with the IET and working with them on a number of exciting projects in the months and years to come.”