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Daily industrial news and top headlines for plant and maintenance managers

SEC To Investigate Hurd's Devastating Ouster From HP

December 21, 2010 3:42 am | by Jordan Robertson, AP Technology Writer | News | Comments

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Mark Hurd is facing more fallout from his ouster five months ago as CEO of Hewlett-Packard Co., the world's biggest personal computer and printer maker. The Securities and Exchange Commission is investigating the circumstances of Hurd's forced resignation in August, a surprising exit that triggered an immediate $9 billion drop in HP's market value and involved allegations of sexual harassment and inappropriate sharing of inside information.

Union Leaders Not Happy With Kohler Contract

December 21, 2010 3:38 am | News | Comments

SHEBOYGAN, Wis. (AP) — Union workers at Kohler Co. have approved a new contract against the recommendation of their leaders. The contract passed with 62 percent of the vote. Vote totals were not made available immediately following the vote Sunday in Sheboygan. The contract calls for a 5-year pay freeze, and workers will pay more for health insurance.

Pfizer Recalls More Lipitor For Strange Odor

December 21, 2010 3:36 am | News | Comments

NEW YORK (AP) — Drug developer Pfizer Inc. on Tuesday recalled a batch of 19,000 bottles of the blockbuster cholesterol drug Lipitor, citing a consumer complaint about an "uncharacteristic" odor. The latest announcement marks the fourth such recall since August over similar issues. Pfizer said the bottles were supplied by an outside manufacturer, though it did not identify the party.


A Timeline Of Our Gas-Guzzling Nation

December 21, 2010 3:35 am | by the Associated Press | News | Comments

Experts say U.S. gasoline demand is at the start of a long-term decline following seven decades of mostly uninterrupted growth. Here are key moments marking the rise and fall: 1905 — Country's first gasoline filling station is built in St. Louis. 1946 — Gasoline demand rises 25 percent the year after World War II ends.

Toyota To Pay Record $32.4 Million Fine Over Recalls

December 21, 2010 3:34 am | by Ken Thomas and Tomoko A. Hosaka, Associated Press | News | Comments

TOKYO (AP) — Toyota Motor Corp. has agreed to pay the U.S. government a record $32.4 million in additional fines to settle an investigation into its handling of two recalls at the heart of its safety crisis. The civil penalties will settle investigations into how Toyota dealt with recalls over accelerator pedals that could get trapped in floor mats and steering relay rods that could break and lead to drivers losing control.

Multimeters And Calibrators, Combined

December 20, 2010 7:52 am | Product Releases | Comments

Yokogawa (Newnan, GA) has announced the CA450 Process Multimeter, which combines the functionality of a digital multimeter and a 4-20mA loop calibrator into a single instrument. The CA450 allows maintenance personnel to source and measure with a single handheld tool, which helps minimize the amount of equipment users have to carry.


Thermal Imaging In High Definition

December 20, 2010 7:52 am | Product Releases | Comments

NEC Avio Infrared Technologies (San Fernando, CA) has introduced its new InfReC R300 high-definition thermal imager with a variety of capabilities, which includes a thermal movie recording mode, thermal/visible integrated images, a resolution (NETD) of 0.05°C, and an accuracy of ±1°C (1 percent).


Prevent Spillage And Bad Odors

December 20, 2010 7:51 am | Product Releases | Comments

Carts and trucks covered with the covers/caps from EDGECO (Little Ferry, NJ) will keep odors contained and will not spill, according to the company. Material options for the covers include a fire-, bacterial-, and water-resistant vinyl or a heavy-duty nylon in a variety of sizes and colors. A shock cord in the hem provides for a snug fit.


Epoxies For Electronic Components

December 20, 2010 7:48 am | Product Releases | Comments

Master Bond (Hackensack, NJ) had developed a thermally-conductive epoxy system that is designed to mitigate the issues associated with tightly-packed components and miniaturized electronic circuits. With a thermal conductivity of 22 BTU/in/ft²/hr/ºF and serviceability from -60 to 400°F, the EP21ANHT delivers in demanding microelectronic applications, according to the company.


Industry And Sustainable Development

December 20, 2010 6:21 am | by Dr. Joerg Strassburger, Managing Director and Country Speaker, LANXESS India Private Ltd. | Articles | Comments

In today’s age of rapid urbanization and industrialization, sustainable development is certainly the need of the hour for businesses and governments at large. Regardless of the size of the organization, nature of business and geography, there is an incumbent need for everyone to take up this challenge of developing ways to meet the future demands while maintaining the necessary balance in the environment, all in a commercially viable manner.


Made Lean In America

December 20, 2010 4:43 am | by Bruce Hamilton, | Articles | Comments

I was struck by a comment made by Rhode Island Governor, Don Carcieri in his presentation to the Northeast Shingo Conference :  At the turn of the 19th century, his state was  first  in the nation in manufacturing, virtually the birthplace of modern manufacturing in the US and a leader in wealth creation.


Smartphone Makers Battling More In Court Than The Market

December 20, 2010 4:15 am | by Jessica Mintz, AP Technology Writer | News | Comments

SEATTLE (AP) — Competition among smart phone makers is heating up at retail, in advertising and, increasingly, in the courtroom as handset and software makers wield patent lawsuits to protect their turf and slow down their rivals. Just a few years ago, smart phones were mainly for office workers who needed to check e-mail after hours.

Caterpillar, UAW Halt Contract Talks

December 20, 2010 3:58 am | News | Comments

EAST PEORIA, Ill. (AP) — Negotiators for Caterpillar Inc. and the United Auto Workers are taking a break for the holidays and plan to resume talks on a contract on Jan. 11. The contract covers about 9,500 workers at a number of sites around Illinois and in three other states. The two sides met Thursday for about two hours.

Coal Shortages Cause Massive Blackouts In China

December 20, 2010 3:46 am | by Elaine Kurtenbach, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

SHANGHAI (AP) — Communities in central and northern China are facing power cuts and rationing as winter coal supplies fall short of surging demand. Cold weather and transport disruptions typically cause shortages most years, but the problem has been complicated by coal producers' unhappiness over price controls that are crimping their profits.


Qatar Airways: We're Not Abandoning Boeing, Yet

December 20, 2010 3:39 am | by Adam Schreck, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

DOHA, Qatar (AP) — Qatar Airways' CEO voiced confidence in Boeing Co. over its delayed 787 program Saturday, but warned the fast-growing carrier may scrap orders for the planes if development problems drag on. Chief Executive Akbar al-Baker noted, however, that there are no current plans to amend Qatar Airways' multibillion-dollar orders for 30 787s and options for 30 more.

Lockheed Pays Feds $10.3 Million For Lying About Prices

December 20, 2010 3:38 am | by Greg Bluestein, Associated Press | News | Comments

ATLANTA (AP) — Defense company Lockheed Martin Corp. reached a $10.3 million settlement with the federal government Friday to resolve claims that the company's Georgia division inflated rates used to price contracts for the Air Force and Navy between 1996 and 2000. The settlement resolves prosecutors' claims that Lockheed mischarged costs in a commercial contract with Italian company Alenia Aerospazio to develop a tactical transport plane dubbed the C-27J, said U.

Titan Tire Locks Out 1,000 Workers Nationwide

December 20, 2010 3:33 am | News | Comments

QUINCY, Ill. (AP) — Titan Tire has stopped work at three plants in Illinois, Iowa and Ohio amid contract talks with union members. Quincy, Ill.-based Titan closed plants in Freeport, Ill., Des Moines and Bryan, Ohio, as of 11 p.m. Friday. Titan has been in negotiations with the United Steelworkers union for several months.


Keeping Projects On Track

December 17, 2010 10:51 am | by Bob Harrell, President and CEO, Management Controls Inc. | Articles | Comments

Completing chemical plant turnarounds, construction and routine maintenance activities on time and on budget is an elusive goal for most process industry manufacturers. According to industry lore, a staggering 85 percent of North American turnarounds are completed late and/or over budget. One of the key deficiencies is the lack of real-time visibility into contractor activities and costs.


Your 2010 Impovation Award Winners!

December 17, 2010 10:22 am | Product Releases | Comments

IMPO readers voted in droves for the second annual IMPO vation product technology award. From a pool of 80 nominees, you picked your favorites: ___ The winner: The Gold Series High Vacuum (GSHV) pneumatic receiver from Camfil Farr APC (Air Pollution Control) controls emissions in applications up to 17” Hg vacuum or 8 psi positive pressure.


Merry Christmas — You're Fired

December 17, 2010 9:05 am | by by David Mantey, Editor, PD&D | Blogs | Comments

The fireplace is burning, heated blanket warming, frosting mixed, cookies cut, ornaments hanging, everything is perfect. You sit on the plaid and slightly tattered couch under the glow of the Christmas tree, and you smile when you hear a frigid hand scraping the key against the lock. The deadbolt loosens, the door slowly opens, and after a hard day’s work, she stands before you in the red and green speckled glow.


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