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Daily industrial news and top headlines for plant and maintenance managers

A Party That Happens To Sell Shoes

February 3, 2011 3:27 am | Videos | Comments

Zappos, the online shoe retailer, is a unique company in a couple of ways. First of all, they like to say that they're a service company, and that they just happen to sell shoes. Imagine getting that kind of service at most companies. But more importantly, they offer a variety of perks—such as free lunches and ice cream—and they try to maintain a festive, positive atmosphere around the offices.

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Chevron To Build A $1.4 Billion Plant In Mississippi

February 1, 2011 4:59 am | News | Comments

PASCAGOULA, Miss. (AP) — Petroleum company Chevron Corp. said Monday that it will build a $1.4 billion lubricants plant in Pascagoula, Miss., a project that will create roughly 1,000 construction jobs over the next two years. The facility will extend Chevron's existing refinery in Pascagoula, which employs more than 1,600 workers.

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Battle Over Calif. Global Warming Bill Cost $46 Million

February 1, 2011 4:56 am | by Don Thompson, Associated Press | News | Comments

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — More than $46 million was spent for and against a failed November ballot measure that would have suspended California's landmark global warming law, according to campaign finance reports filed Monday. Out-of-state oil companies and their supporters spent $10.5 million promoting Proposition 23, while opponents spent more than $36 million.

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Drugs, Tupperware, Printers Lead To Profitable 2010

February 1, 2011 4:27 am | News | Comments

Pfizer beats views despite slight profit decline  NEW YORK (AP) — Pfizer Inc. said Tuesday its fourth-quarter profit nearly quadrupled from a year ago when it was weighed down by restructuring charges, as revenue rose 6 percent, thanks to the addition of products from fellow drugmaker Wyeth, acquired late in 2009.

Intel Finds Design Flaw That Could Cost $1 Billion

February 1, 2011 4:02 am | News | Comments

SANTA CLARA, Calif. (AP) — Intel Corp. on Monday said it has found a design flaw in a recently released chip, and is working with laptop makers to replace affected computers. Sales lost while the company rushes out a replacement chip, and the cost of replacing computers with the flawed chip, will cost the company $1 billion, it said.

Marchionne 'Micromanages' Chrysler Into Profitability

February 1, 2011 3:55 am | by Tom Krisher, AP Auto Writer | News | Comments

DETROIT (AP) — Chrysler was collapsing when Fiat took control of the company just 19 months ago. Now, under the Italian automaker's detail-driven CEO, Chrysler is on the verge of turning its first profit since it filed for bankruptcy protection in 2009. Chrysler Group LLC on Monday said it dramatically narrowed its losses in the fourth quarter and 2010.

China's Manufacturing Boom Continues To Slow Down

February 1, 2011 3:53 am | by Elaine Kurtenbach, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

SHANGHAI (AP) — China's manufacturing boom eased further in January as authorities tightened controls on credit, though inflationary pressures continued to rise, according to data released Tuesday. The state-affiliated China Federation of Logistics and Purchasing said its purchasing managers index, or PMI, dipped to 52.

Manufacturing Output Grows To Seven-Year High

February 1, 2011 3:50 am | News | Comments

Factory sector expands at fastest pace in 7 years  WASHINGTON (AP) — America's factory sector expanded in January at the fastest pace in seven years, asmanufacturers reported a sharp jump in new orders. The Institute for Supply Management, a private trade group, says its index of manufacturing activity rose last month to 60.

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Recalls Cost Toyota A Fifth Of Its Global Value

February 1, 2011 3:46 am | by Yuri Kageyama, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

TOKYO (AP) — Toyota remains Japan's No. 1 global brand, but its value has fallen by nearly a fifth because of the recent massive recalls that dented consumer trust in the quality of its cars, according to an international consultant. An Interbrand report released Tuesday said that the value of the Toyota Motor Corp.

January Auto Sales Rose Despite 'Snowpocalypse'

February 1, 2011 3:43 am | by Sharon Silke Carty, AP Auto Writer | News | Comments

DETROIT (AP) — Despite snowy weather in the Northeast that kept buyers shoveling driveways and not shopping for cars, January auto sales in the United States are expected to come in higher than a year ago. Sales could rise 15 percent to 17 percent compared with last January, a sign that auto sales are continuing their slow, steady recovery from 2009, when sales bottomed out.

Cable Carriers Go Vertical

January 31, 2011 10:21 am | Product Releases | Comments

The Guidelok SL, from igus (East Providence, RI) is designed for vertical cable carrier applications operating on storage-and-retrieval units in high-bay warehouses, as well as elevators and material handling equipment. According to the company, it is compact and easy-to-install, even when being retrofitted into an existing system.

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Quiet, Energy-Efficient Compressors

January 31, 2011 10:20 am | Product Releases | Comments

Boge Compressors (Powder Springs, GA) is planning to exhibit a number of new products at the Hannover Fair 2011 in Hannover, Germany, including an extended belt-drive C series screw compressor range. They are available up to 22 kW, and are extremely quiet during operation, according to the company.

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The Right Gear For Electrical Testing

January 31, 2011 10:20 am | Product Releases | Comments

Technicians working around hazardous equipment and high-voltage circuits could benefit from the clamp meters and four-channel handheld oscilloscopes from Fluke (Everett, WA). The test tools all exceed tough international standards for safe use in 480 volt electrical environments, and allow technicials—who must test live circuits—to do so at a safe distance.

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Steam Traps For High-Pressure Situations

January 31, 2011 10:19 am | Product Releases | Comments

Spirax Sarco (Blythewood, SC) has announced the release of the FTC80-FB ball float steam trap series, which is made for applications with pressures as high as 1,160psig. The FTC80-FB carbon steel series has a body and cover made of cast steel, with welded connections. They are self-modulating to provide soft and continuous discharge, which helps maintain stable process conditions.

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Philippine Industry Expanded 7.3 Percent In 2010

January 31, 2011 8:35 am | News | Comments

MANILA, Philippines (AP) — The Philippine economy galloped to its highest annual growth in more than two decades, expanding 7.3 percent in 2010 on strong foreign trade and election spending, officials said Monday, forecasting an equally strong expansion this year. Head of the government's statistical board Romulo Virola said the growth surpassed official growth projections of 5 percent to 6 percent.

Craft Brewers Ditch Glass Bottles For Cans

January 31, 2011 8:32 am | by Clarke Canfield, Associated Press | News | Comments

LEWISTON, Maine (AP) — Canned beer isn't just for swilling anymore. Baxter Brewing in Maine has joined a growing number of small craft-beer breweries distributing their brews in cans — just like mainstream mass-produced beers — rather than in bottles. A decade ago, it's believed there weren't any U.

Rebirth Of Wise Alloys Plant Means Jobs For Shoals

January 31, 2011 8:28 am | by Bernie Delinski, Associated Press | News | Comments

FLORENCE, Ala. (AP) — The parking lots appear full outside the massive Wise Alloys Listerhill plant. Inside, coils of aluminum and 15-ton castings are rolled out. Major deals with Anheuser-Busch InBev and Coca-Cola — two giants in the beverage can industry — have made long-term expectations high.

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S.C. Gets Ready To Run On 'Pig Power'

January 31, 2011 8:23 am | News | Comments

GASTON, S.C. (AP) — It's a case of piggies providing power and it's a first for South Carolina. Officials with Santee Cooper, Environmental Fabrics Inc., a firm based in Gaston, S.C., and Clemson University on Monday announced the construction of a new plant to generate electricity from the methane released by hog waste.

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Cost-Based Purchasing Threatens Supply Chain Integrity

January 31, 2011 6:52 am | by Bill Moore, Senior Vice President of Channel Management, SKF USA, Inc. | Articles | Comments

Distribution Process Faces Evolution Vs. Revolution   Business sectors throughout the industrial supply chain are encountering dramatic change: End users of equipment components and technology are enjoying unprecedented influence when interacting with industrial distributors. Industrial distributors are reacting in unprecedented ways.

Mezzanines Lift Operational Efficiency, Safety

January 31, 2011 6:30 am | Articles | Comments

Alliance Packaging is a well-known, independent corrugated box manufacturer with several facilities located throughout northwest United States. The company provides a full range of packaging solutions from custom shipping containers to retail packaging, from stock boxes to in-store displays, from creative design to same day delivery service.

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