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Daily industrial news and top headlines for plant and maintenance managers

New Range Of Lift Check Valves

August 15, 2011 8:29 am | Product Releases | Comments

Spirax Sarco (Blythewood, SC) has released a new range of lift check valves: LCV3 (cast iron), LCV4 (carbon steel), LCV6 (stainless steel), and LCV7 (SG iron). These check valves are designed for EN and ASME standards which can be used for a wide range of applications. Providing a solution for the prevention of reverse flow in pipelines carrying most types of fluids, these check valves protect equipment and prevent pressure surges associated with hydraulic forces such as water hammer.

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Google To Buy Motorola Mobility For $12.5B

August 15, 2011 5:34 am | News | Comments

MOUNTAIN VIEW, California (AP) — Google Inc. is buying cell phone maker Motorola Mobility Holdings Inc. for $12.5 billion in cash. It's by far Google's biggest acquisition and a sign the online search leader is serious about expanding beyond its core Internet business and setting the agenda in the fast-growing mobile market.

Honda To Build $800M Factory In Mexico

August 15, 2011 5:32 am | News | Comments

DETROIT (AP) — Honda Motor Co. plans to build an $800 million factory in Mexico to make small cars for customers in North America, the company said Friday. The plant, near Celaya, Guanajuato, north of Mexico City, is expected to open in 2014 and will employ 3,200 workers from the region, Honda said in a statement.

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Retail Sales At Highest Level In Four Months

August 15, 2011 5:30 am | by Martin Crutsinger, AP Economics Writer | News | Comments

WASHINGTON (AP) — Consumers spent more on autos, furniture, clothing and gas in July, pushing up retail sales by the largest amount in four months. The gain signaled that Americans are a little more confident in the economy and could helped dispel fears that the country is headed for another recession.

Saab Owner To Issue Four Million New Shares

August 15, 2011 5:28 am | News | Comments

STOCKHOLM (AP) — The owner of Sweden's Saab is issuing new shares under a €150 million ($214 million) equity facility to keep the troubled car maker afloat. Swedish Automobile, or Swan, said Monday it is issuing 4 million new shares under an existing agreement with GEM Global Yield Fund Limited.

"Doomsday" Defense Cuts Loom Large

August 15, 2011 5:23 am | by Donna Cassata, Associated Press | News | Comments

WASHINGTON (AP) — For the dozen lawmakers tasked with producing a deficit-cutting plan, the threatened "doomsday" defense cuts hit close to home. The six Republicans and six Democrats represent states where the biggest military contractors — Lockheed Martin, General Dynamics Corp.

Toyota Recalls 33,380 Corollas

August 15, 2011 5:21 am | News | Comments

BEIJING, Aug. 15 (Kyodo) — Toyota Motor Corp.'s China subsidiary said Monday it will recall 33,380 Toyota Corolla EX sedans for repair to fix an engine computer malfunction. The company said the onboard computer controlling engine functions may fail when the computer case is exposed to static electricity, making it impossible to start the engine or causing the engine to stall.

Whirlpool May Cut 270 Workers

August 12, 2011 7:05 am | News | Comments

FORT SMITH, Ark. (AP) — A spokeswoman for Whirlpool Corp. says up to 270 employees may be laid off from the company's Fort Smith plant. Kristine Vernier released a statement Thursday saying up to 250 hourly and 20 salaried employees may be laid off. Vernier said the possible cutbacks are because of an expected reduced demand for side-by-side refrigerators and the softening of the economy.

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Osmotica Plans Manufacturing Center In GA

August 12, 2011 7:02 am | News | Comments

MARIETTA, Ga. (AP) — Gov. Nathan Deal's office has announced that a pharmaceutical firm plans to open a research and development and manufacturing operation in Marietta. Deal says that Osmotica Pharmaceutical Corp. plans to create 156 jobs over five years. He said in a statement that the plans represent a $20 million investment over the next five years.

Machinists Win Union Election At United

August 12, 2011 7:00 am | by Joshua Freed, AP Airlines Writer | News | Comments

The union that represents ramp workers at United Airlines won an election on Thursday to cover more than 14,000 workers as it combines with Continental. It's a big win for the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers, which just gained more than 7,300 Continental workers from the International Brotherhood of Teamsters.

DynCorp Wins $490M Navy Contract

August 12, 2011 6:58 am | News | Comments

FALLS CHURCH, Va. (AP) — Privately held defense contractor DynCorp International said Thursday it won a deal worth up to $490 million for aircraft maintenance at a Navy facility in Maryland. The contract has a base year value of $92.8 million plus four option years. DynCorp will provide maintenance help at the Navy's air warfare center in Patuxent River, Md.

Exxon Reclaims Title Of Most Valuable Company

August 12, 2011 6:56 am | News | Comments

NEW YORK (AP) — Exxon reclaimed the title of the most valuable company in America from Apple, thanks to an increase in the price of oil. Shares of Apple Inc., which makes the iPhone and iPad, rose 2.8 percent to $373.70. But Exxon Mobil Corp. shares had an even better day, rising 5.

PA Town Celebrates Birth Of Jeep

August 12, 2011 6:49 am | by Joe Mandak, Associated Press | News | Comments

PITTSBURGH (AP) — Thirty miles north of Pittsburgh, where industrial giants like U.S. Steel were just beginning to forge the metallic backbone of the nation's upcoming World War II machine, a tiny company that made even tinier cars developed the prototype for a vehicle that would revolutionize the way soldiers traveled: the Jeep.

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How To Overcome Barriers To Wireless Adoption

August 12, 2011 6:09 am | by Adrienne Lutovsky, Staff Writer, ProSoft Technology | Articles | Comments

Is wireless better or worse than a wired network? The answer is no; it’s different. A plethora of wireless technologies exist to suit a variety of users. Is it for every application? No. But for many, wireless can be more flexible, versatile, and cost effective than wired networks.

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Lean Government

August 12, 2011 6:04 am | by Bruce Hamilton, OldLeanDude.org | Articles | Comments

In the spring of 1989, Shigeo Shingo addressed the 14th annual Productivity Conference at Utah State University. On this occasion there were seven hundred persons, mostly academics, assembled to hear Dr. Shingo describe poka-yoke and SMED. Shingo had just received an honorary doctorate from the Utah State College of Business, and had in turn bestowed his name upon the North American Shingo Prize, an award recognizing those companies who have successfully implemented the concepts and techniques of the Toyota Production System.

Boeing (Finally) Unveils The 787

August 12, 2011 5:59 am | Videos | Comments

Last weekend, Boeing unveiled the new 787 Dreamliner. Three years overdue and billions of dollars over budget, the first 787 was finally delivered to its first customer. If you're having trouble watching this video, try downloading the latest version of Flash Player or contacting your IT department.

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Standard Precision Positioning Stages

August 12, 2011 5:54 am | Product Releases | Comments

The Standard Precision Positioning Stages from MISUMI USA (Schaumburg, IL) combine streamlined functionality with precision levels acceptable for many automation-related applications. They offer a practical solution wherever there is a need to make small positioning adjustments in the assembly, inspection, and processing instruments and jigs used in the production of consumer and industrial electronics.

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ConAgra To Close Popcorn Plant, Cut 95 Jobs

August 12, 2011 5:14 am | News | Comments

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — ConAgra Foods Inc. is closing its microwave popcorn plant in Hamburg, Iowa and cutting 95 jobs, a move the company says is needed to improve efficiency. The company, based in Omaha, Neb., says it will close the plant in October and move the operations to its other popcorn facilities.

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Four-Month Low In Unemployment Claims

August 12, 2011 5:12 am | by Daniel Wagner, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

WASHINGTON (AP) — After calamitous losses on Wall Street and fears of another recession, the economy got a dose of good news Thursday: The number of people applying for unemployment benefits fell below 400,000 for the first time since April. Layoffs are easing in most states, and some economists are predicting mild improvement in job growth.

Chinese Bullet Train Maker Orders Recall

August 12, 2011 5:09 am | by Joe McDonald, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

BEIJING (AP) — A Chinese bullet train manufacturer announced a recall Friday of 54 trains in the latest embarrassment for a problem-plagued prestige project following a July crash that killed 40 people. The recall adds to growing signs official attitudes toward the bullet train are shifting and Beijing might scale back its rapid expansion of the high speed rail network.

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