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Daily industrial news and top headlines for plant and maintenance managers

Motorola: 1st U.S.-Assembled Smartphones Coming

May 30, 2013 2:21 pm | by Will Weissert, Associated Press | News | Comments

Cellphone pioneer Motorola says it's opening a manufacturing facility that will produce the first smartphone ever assembled in the U.S. — its new flagship device, Moto X. The Texas site was once used by fellow phone manufacturer Nokia, meaning it was designed to produce mobile devices, said Will Moss, a spokesman for Motorola Mobility, which is owned by Google.

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Shelby Developing WA Supercar Factory

May 30, 2013 2:17 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Tri-City native Jerod Shelby is building a factory in West Richland for his SSC North America company that makes cars that can speed hundreds of miles per hour and sell for hundreds of thousands of dollars. Shelby broke ground Tuesday on the $5 million project, which will include a research and development section and museum, The Tri-City Herald reported. It could employ more than 50 people.

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SD Lawmakers Seek Info On Labor Recruiting Plan

May 30, 2013 2:12 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Democratic state lawmakers have asked Republican Gov. Dennis Daugaard for information on the state's $5 million contract with a national recruiting firm that was hired to find new workers for hard-to-fill jobs in the state. The Democrats want information about the program's expense, the contract with ManpowerGroup, the number and type of jobs filled, and the wages paid for those jobs.

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Cheap Leases Offered To Spur Electric Car Sales

May 30, 2013 2:11 pm | by Tom Krisher, AP Auto Writer | News | Comments

Auto companies are hoping lower lease prices can put a charge into sluggish sales of electric cars. Honda announced Thursday that it's slashing the monthly lease cost of its tiny Fit EV by one third, following similar moves by other automakers. Honda also is throwing in other goodies, such as a free home charging station and unlimited mileage.

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Kohler's Expansion Plan Includes 300 Jobs

May 30, 2013 2:09 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

The Kohler Co. expects to begin construction later this summer to expand its generator manufacturing plant in eastern Wisconsin. Increased demand for standby power generators from residential and industrial customers in North America is driving the 80,000-square-foot expansion at its plant in the Town of Mosel, Kohler officials said. The cost of the expansion was not disclosed.

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Inside Chinese Firm's Deal To Buy Smithfield Foods

May 30, 2013 12:06 pm | by CBS News | Videos | Comments

Smithfield Foods, the world's largest pork producer, is being bought by Shuanghui. The price: almost $5 billion. If approved, it will be the largest takeover of an American company by a Chinese buyer. This is the latest in a string of American companies being purchased by China. So why this company—and why now?

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Brooks Expands Global Reach With New Middle East Sales Office

May 30, 2013 11:26 am | by Brooks Instrument | News | Comments

Brooks Instrument, a world-leading provider of advanced flow, pressure, vacuum, level and vapor delivery solutions, has opened a new sales office in Al-Khobar, Saudi Arabia, to support its expanding customer base in the Middle East. The new facility, which officially opened March 9, offers the full line of Brooks products with a focus on thermal mass flow and variable area flow instrumentation.

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Superhydrophobic, Oleophobic Coating

May 30, 2013 8:04 am | by Ted | Videos | Comments

Ultra-Ever Dry is a superhydrophobic (water) and oleophobic (hydrocarbons) coating that will completely repel almost any liquid. Ultra-Ever Dry uses proprietary nanotechnology to coat an object and create a barrier of air on its surface. UltraTech was asked to demonstrate Ultra-Ever Dry at the 2013 TED Conference.

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From Many Colors Comes One

May 30, 2013 8:03 am | by KYDEXsheet | Videos | Comments

Matching a color sounds simple. But what do you do when a customer shows you a tableau of colors to translate into one? KYDEX Global Creative David Scott and Color Development Specialist John English show both the creative and technical process in action.

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Building A Home With A 3D Printer

May 30, 2013 8:02 am | by AssociatedPress | Videos | Comments

The relatively new technology known as '3D printing' has already been used to make prosthetic legs. Now, architects claim they'll soon be able to build a whole house using a 3D printer. The technology is still relatively new, but it's already being used in the medical world and in the arts.

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Flying Car For The Masses Set For Take-Off

May 30, 2013 8:01 am | by ReutersVideo | Videos | Comments

New England aviation company Terrafugia has unveiled its latest conceptual version of a flying car. Unlike its current flying car, which is designed for pilots, the new design incorporates autonomous functionality, a move the company says will open up the skies to everybody. Reuters' Ben Gruber has more.

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OECD: Europe Remains Threat To World Economy

May 29, 2013 2:18 pm | by Greg Keller, Associated Press | News | Comments

The recession in Europe risks hurting the world's economic recovery, a leading international body warned Wednesday. In its half-yearly update, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development said that protracted economic weakness in Europe "could evolve into stagnation with negative implications for the global economy."

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Amway Building $81M Facility In Michigan

May 29, 2013 2:17 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Amway Corp. is building an $81 million manufacturing and warehouse facility near the company's headquarters in West Michigan. The direct-sales giant on Wednesday announced the official start of construction of the 317,000-square-foot facility near its headquarters in Kent County's Ada Township.

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Unemployment Rates Fall In Nearly All U.S. Cities

May 29, 2013 2:16 pm | by Christopher S. Rugaber, AP Economics Writer | News | Comments

Unemployment rates fell in almost all large U.S. cities in April, helped by stronger hiring. The gains show the job market is improving throughout the country. The Labor Department said Wednesday that unemployment rates declined in 344 of the 372 largest metro areas. Rates rose in just 17 cities and were unchanged in 11.

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EU Greenhouse Gas Emissions Lowest To Date

May 29, 2013 2:14 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

The EU's environmental agency says the 27-nation bloc's greenhouse emissions in 2011 were the lowest since it began monitoring them in 1990. The European Environment Agency says greenhouse gas emissions dropped 3.3 percent compared to 2010, and were 18.4 percent below 1990 levels. It cited a milder winter in 2011 as the main reason for the drop.

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Wind Tower Company To Employ 250 In SD

May 29, 2013 2:12 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

A Canada-based wind tower manufacturer that is setting up shop in the southeastern South Dakota city of Brandon says it hopes to start production this summer. Marmen Inc. is moving into a facility built by a U.S.-based wind tower company that never used it, and also expanding the plant.

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Hitachi Automotive To Expand GA Operations

May 29, 2013 2:10 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Hitachi Automotive Systems Americas Inc. is set to expand its operations in Georgia's Walton County, creating 250 new jobs and investing $80 million, state officials announced Tuesday. The expansion will require an additional 290,000-square-foot facility adjacent to its current two buildings, Gov. Nathan Deal said in a written statement.

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China Factory Contraction Signals Fragile Recovery

May 29, 2013 1:47 pm | by Reuters | Videos | Comments

China's economy, the third largest economy in the world, shows fresh signs of faltering, with an advance reading of manufacturing output shrinking for the first time in seven months. That may worry trading partners--but not its leaders.

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Wal-Mart To Pay $81.6M For Illegal Waste Disposal

May 29, 2013 10:07 am | by Greg Risling, Paul Elias, Associated Press | News | Comments

Ending an environmental investigation that lasted nearly a decade, Wal-Mart Stores Inc. has pleaded guilty to improperly disposing of pesticides, fertilizer and other hazardous products and will pay a fine of $81.6 million. The company entered the guilty plea in federal court in San Francisco Tuesday to misdemeanor counts of violating the Clean Water Act and a law regulating pesticides.

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Kobe Steel To Close Kobe Blast Furnace

May 29, 2013 10:05 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Kobe Steel Ltd. said Wednesday it will close a blast furnace at its iron mill in Kobe, Hyogo Prefecture, and increase utilization ratios at two other blast furnaces in the same prefecture. The company said it will consider building a thermal power generation plant at the premises of the furnace to be closed in order to expand its power supply business.

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