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Con Edison Opens National Research Facility in the Bronx; Center for Excellence Is Partnership with EPRI, Electricity R&D Group

NEW YORK, May 1 /PRNewswire/ -- Con Edison engineers are studying the future of reliable electricity at the new $10 million Con Edison Cable & Splice Center for Excellence in the Bronx in conjunction with the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI).

Computerized testing equipment that's unique in North America, including a "weathered" manhole where the climate can be controlled to mimic conditions under a New York street, are at the heart of the research facility.

It is expected to become a national magnet for other utilities that want to test their equipment, and attract research and development engineers. Manufacturers, university professors and students, and experts in metallurgy, plastics and physics are interested in participating in the center's research.

"Our facility is the charter Center for Excellence in the EPRI Cable Testing Network - the ECTN. As Con Edison strives for the highest levels of system reliability, we see great value in learning more about the physical processes that drive the performance of electric cables and components. Through our collaboration with EPRI, engineers and cable experts will advance the industry's knowledge of electric distribution system design and diagnostic techniques. Together, we will find ways to better serve our customers and meet their growing electricity needs," said Kevin Burke, president of Consolidated Edison Company of New York, Inc.

"The attrition of expertise in mature cable technologies has become more severe as a result of deregulation and other economic factors. ECTN will benefit the industry as a whole by bringing together a critical mass of multidisciplinary expertise from utilities, universities, and manufacturers," says Clark Gellings, EPRI's vice president, Power Delivery and Markets.

To serve its 3.1 million electric customers, Con Edison has 126,000 miles of cable - nearly 91,000 of it underground, the remaining 35,000 miles overhead. The cables are the lifelines of the Con Edison system, which is the most reliable electric system in North America - 12 times more reliable than other utilities.

EPRI, headquartered in Palo Alto, Calif., was established in 1973 as a nonprofit center for public interest energy and environmental research. EPRI's collaborative science and technology development program now spans nearly every area of power generation, delivery and use. More than 1,000 energy organizations and public institutions in 40 countries draw on EPRI's global network of technical and business expertise. Visit the EPRI website at

Con Edison is a subsidiary of Consolidated Edison, Inc. [NYSE: ED], one of the nation's largest investor-owned energy companies, with $9 billion in annual revenues and approximately $19 billion in assets. The utility provides electric, gas and steam service to more than 3 million customers in New York City and Westchester County, New York. For additional financial, operations and customer service information, visit Con Edison's Web site at

SOURCE Consolidated Edison, Inc. -0- 05/01/2003 /CONTACT: Chris Olert, +1-212-460-4111, for Con Edison/ /Web site: / (ED) CO: Consolidated Edison, Inc.; Electric Power Research Institute ST: New York,

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