National Technical Systems (NTS) Completes ZigBee Smart Energy Certification Testing for SimpleHomeNet Appliance

Rapidly Expanding Smart Grid Compliance Testing Market Is Key NTS Initiative

Jun 04, 2010, 06:00 ET from National Technical Systems, Inc.

CALABASAS, Calif., June 4 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- National Technical Systems, Inc. (Nasdaq: NTSC) (NTS), a leading provider of engineering services, announced today that it recently completed ZigBee Smart Energy certification testing for a feature-rich, wireless electric load controller manufactured by SimpleHomeNet, a division of Compacta International.  The tests were run at the NTS laboratory in Culver City, CA.  Following completion of the certification tests, the ZigBee Alliance reviewed the test results submitted by NTS and the application submitted by SimpleHomeNet and certified the load controller.

NTS is the market leader in ZigBee smart energy certification testing and one of only three companies worldwide with rights designated by the ZigBee Alliance to test wireless products for ZigBee Smart Energy certification.  Completion of the certification tests for SimpleHomeNet is another example of NTS' expanding leadership in the burgeoning testing market for ZigBee Smart Energy.

ZigBee Smart Energy is the market leading wireless home area network (HAN) standard with more than 40 million smart meters being installed around the world. Last year, it was selected by the U.S. Department of Energy and the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) as an initial interoperable standard for HAN devices.  ZigBee has also been adopted by over 350 global manufacturers and there is a large total potential market of 1.5 billion devices that could be installed in homes worldwide for energy management and demand response, according to a recently published report by ON World.  

Smart energy device testing is a rapidly expanding global industry and a growing market for NTS, said NTS Chief Executive Office William McGinnis. The U.S. Department of Energy has allocated $30 billion as part of a national energy initiative backed by national utility companies, which is expected to encourage the development and certification of a broad range of smart energy products McGinnis said.

ZigBee Smart Energy certification demonstrates that a wireless product such as a load controller, or other wireless device, is compliant with the ZigBee Smart Energy standard that was created by energy experts and ZigBee Alliance members. ZigBee members include Ember, Freescale, Texas Instruments, Landis & Gyr, Itron, Cisco, General Electric, Honeywell, Intel, Mitsubishi Electric Corp., Philips, Samsung Electronics, Siemens, Sony and many other leading corporations around the world.

"This is already a large, rapidly growing market and an expanding list of companies is committed to the smart energy path, which we believe is a good opportunity for us," McGinnis added. "We not only provide the test services, but we also design the test tools to simulate the functions of the appliances that allow our clients to do self-testing. We have a full solution for our clients with software testing and validation and multiple engineering services."

Remotely controlled, wireless appliances such as thermostats, meters, load controllers, pool pumps, water heaters and display units designed for homeowners as part of a HAN are key components of a smart grid created to reduce energy usage, increase reliability and cut costs for consumers, said NTS Chief Technology Officer Osman Sakr. The NTS testing demonstrates that the appliances work together properly and can accurately show how much energy is being used, thereby allowing a consumer to manage energy efficiently.  

Al Choperena, President and CEO of Compacta International, said the NTS testing and ZigBee Smart Energy certification of its load controller "is a key milestone in our ZigBee product roadmap and signals our strong commitment to the future of the smart grid. To date, our certification efforts have been on track thanks to our ongoing partnership with NTS."

About ZigBee

ZigBee is the global wireless language connecting dramatically different devices to work together and enhance everyday life. The ZigBee Alliance is a non-profit association of more than 350 members driving development of ZigBee wireless technology. The Alliance promotes world-wide adoption of ZigBee as the leading wirelessly networked, sensing and control standard for use in consumer electronic, energy, home, commercial and industrial areas. For more information, visit:

About National Technical Systems

National Technical Systems, Inc. is a leading provider of engineering and testing services to the defense, aerospace, telecommunications, automotive and high technology markets. Through a world-wide network of resources, NTS provides full life-cycle product integrity support, offering world class design engineering, compliance, testing, certification, quality registration and program management. For additional information about NTS, visit our website at or call 800-270-2516.

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"Safe Harbor" Statement under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995: Statements in this press release regarding National Technical Systems' business which are not historical facts are "forward-looking statements" that involve risks and uncertainties. For a discussion of such risks and uncertainties, which could cause actual results to differ from those contained in the forward-looking statements, see "Risk Factors" in the Company's Annual Report or Form 10-K for the most recently ended fiscal year.

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National Technical Systems

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SOURCE National Technical Systems, Inc.