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Daily industrial news and top headlines for plant and maintenance managers

Q&A With Ken McGuire, AME Board Member

July 26, 2011 11:51 am | Articles | Comments

McGuire: As manufacturing companies continue to try to compete globally, the number one issue of complexity has to do with technology. There was a time when you hired people to run machines, and it was self-evident how those machines were to be run. Nobody was going to be able to run it without some skill, but the skill levels didn’t go into computer programming, or get into the kind of PLC controls that are put into equipment now.

A Simple Lesson In Arc Flash Avoidance

July 26, 2011 11:26 am | by Bill Fortman, PE, MBA, Marketing Manager for Meltric Corporation | Articles | Comments

Most think of switchgear, motor control centers, high voltage motor starters, or similar equipment when they worry about arc flash accidents. However some more common electrical devices that are used throughout a typical plant can also be potential arc flash hazards. For instance, industrial plugs and receptacles can be a source of electrical hazard.

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A Culture of Excellence

July 26, 2011 10:26 am | by LUKE SIMPSON, Associate Editor, Pharmaceutical Processing | Blogs | Comments

Prior to 2010, Pfizer Health AB produced its legacy products Genotropin® and Somavert® in separate facilities. Somavert was sourced from a contract manufacturer, while Gentropin was manufactured at a Pfizer facility in Strängnäs, Sweden. The two drugs have opposite effects on the human physiology — Genotropin is used to treat growth hormone deficiency and Somavert is a growth hormone antagonist — but the proteins used in each are very similar.

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Win By Playing To Your Strengths

July 26, 2011 10:21 am | by Alan Nicol, Executive Member, AlanNicolSolutions | Articles | Comments

It's easy to get carried away trying to adopt initiatives and programs that other businesses have adopted or used to improve performance or achieve success. Sometimes, though, the best strategy is not to do what others do well, but to do what you do well, better than anyone else. The Rest of the Story What is true in games is also true in life, and in business.

GE CEO Talks Bringing Jobs Back To The U.S.

July 26, 2011 10:11 am | Videos | Comments

GE CEO Jeff Immelt discusses what it's going to take to take to bring jobs back to the United States. According to Immelt, globalization is important... but so is investing in the United States. What does a company like GE do to strike the proper balance? 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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TwisterBand TB30

July 26, 2011 9:52 am | Product Releases | Comments

TwisterBand TB30 from igus (East Providence, RI) is a compact carrier system that makes rapid rotating movements possible up to 3,000 degrees and depends only on the belt length or design height in the axis of rotations. The smaller masses involved allow lower centrifugal forces and rotary speeds up to 720 degrees.

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VAC-U-MAX Model 860/02

July 26, 2011 9:50 am | Product Releases | Comments

The VAC-U-MAX Model 860/02 from VAC-U-MAX (Belleville, NJ) uses the VAC-U-MAX Air-Powered Vacuum cover with manual pulse-jet filter cleaning and non-stick filtration that captures 99.9 percent of particles as small as 0.5 microns. The portable frame includes a collection hopper with automatic discharge valve and polybag loading accessory.

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Lumetronic Slider Light

July 26, 2011 9:49 am | Product Releases | Comments

The Lumetronic Slider Light from National Electric (Commerce, CA) utilizes Lumetronic LEDs, the next step in rechargeable work lights with more efficient LEDs and nearly three times the brightness of ordinary LED rechargeable worklights. Its oval shape prevents rolling and fits easily in pockets.

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SafeSite Series LED Area Light

July 26, 2011 9:47 am | Product Releases | Comments

Dialight (Farmingdale, NJ) has unveiled its new SafeSite Series LED Area Light, a compact, high-output Class I and Class II, Div 1 certified LED Area Light. Approved for use in Class I, Div 1 Groups B, C, Dl; and Class II, Div 1 Groups E, F, and G hazardous locations, the light is designed to replace up to 150-watt HID fixtures.

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Manufacturer Plans Move To Vacant Auto Factory

July 26, 2011 9:26 am | News | Comments

GRABILL, Ind. (AP) — A company that makes metal and plastic molded parts plans on moving into a closed auto parts factory in northeastern Indiana and potentially hire 400 workers in the next few years. The Indiana Economic Development Corp. announced Tuesday that R3 Composites Corp.

TN Plant Gets 4,300 Applications For 60 Jobs

July 26, 2011 9:23 am | News | Comments

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (AP) — A new solar plant in southeastern Tennessee received more than 4,300 applications for its first 60 jobs. Wacker (VAHK'-er) Chemical Corp. spokesman Bill Toth said Monday that applicants who were not picked for the first jobs will be considered as hiring continues.

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Ford Plans Took Toll On 2Q Profit

July 26, 2011 9:22 am | by Dee-Ann Durbin, AP Auto Writer | News | Comments

DEARBORN, Michigan (AP) — Ford's ambitious plans to grow in Asia took a toll on its second-quarter profit, with higher costs to design and sell new cars offsetting rising sales. The company earned $2.4 billion, or 59 cents per share, down 8 percent from $2.6 billion, or 61 cents per share, a year earlier.

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Heat Contributed To Death Of IN Worker

July 26, 2011 9:20 am | News | Comments

COLUMBUS, Ind. (AP) — A coroner says a southern Indiana man who collapsed while working at a foundry died of a heart attack complicated by extreme heat. Authorities say 50-year-old Charles Hulse of North Vernon collapsed while at his work station at CE Systems Inc. in Columbus. Bartholomew County Chief Deputy Coroner Larry Fisher says Hulse was on medication for hypertension and high cholesterol.

Judge: Whirlpool Can Change Retirees' Benefits

July 26, 2011 9:18 am | News | Comments

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — A federal judge has ruled that Whirlpool can change benefits for about 3,000 people who had retired from Maytag. Whirlpool bought Maytag in 2006 and later closed the Maytag corporate headquarters and a factory in Newton. Whirlpool had said it wanted to change the retirees' medical benefits to bring them in line with current Whirlpool employees.

Gun-Maker To Pay $600K In Gun-Death Lawsuit

July 26, 2011 9:16 am | by Denise Lavoie, AP Legal Affairs Writer | News | Comments

BOSTON (AP) — A Massachusetts gun-maker has agreed to pay nearly $600,000 to the families of one man who was killed and another man who was wounded in a shooting involving a gun allegedly stolen from the company, a national gun-control group announced Tuesday. Danny Guzman, 26, was slain outside a Worcester nightclub in 1999.

Koda Restores Process Flow With Air Cannon Network

July 26, 2011 6:25 am | Articles | Comments

An innovative Minnesota energy company has eliminated labor-intensive air lancing to clean biomass ash from boiler walls by installing a series of high-powered air cannons to dislodge accumulations and restore process flow. The air cannon network at Koda Energy (Shakopee, MN) helps the facility avoid the daily shutdowns and maintenance hours that manual cleaning required, allowing the facility to run at its rated capacity.

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NY Aluminum Plant Launches $200M Expansion

July 26, 2011 5:24 am | News | Comments

SCRIBA, N.Y. (AP) — An aluminum plant in northern New York has launched a $200 million expansion to meet rising demand for sheet aluminum for the auto industry, and expects to create 100 new jobs. Novelis's plant in Scriba, 33 miles northwest of Syracuse, currently employs 650 people.

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United Tech Wins $350M Japan Air Contract

July 26, 2011 5:23 am | News | Comments

WINDSOR LOCKS, Conn. (AP) — United Technologies Corp. has won a maintenance contract worth up to $350 million to support Japan Airlines' fleet of Boeing 787 aircraft. United Technologies said Monday that its subsidiary, Hamilton Sundstrand Corp., would provide the maintenance for the fleet of 35 aircraft.

Nissan Plans $8B China Expansion

July 26, 2011 5:20 am | by Joe McDonald, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

BEIJING (AP) — Nissan announced an $8 billion expansion plan for China on Tuesday as part of a global strategy to focus on faster-growing emerging markets and reduce reliance on the United States. Nissan's plan with its local partner, Dongfeng Group, calls for opening new factories to meet surging demand and introducing 30 new models by 2015.

Worker Killed In Fall At VA Plant

July 26, 2011 5:19 am | News | Comments

HARRISONBURG, Va. (AP) — Authorities are investigating the death of a worker who fell from a lift at a Walker Manufacturing plant in Harrisonburg. Harrisonburg Fire Department battalion chief Jeff Morris says the accident was reported at 2:42 p.m. Monday. Morris tells the Daily News-Record that the man fell from an 8-foot lift.

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