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Daily industrial news and top headlines for plant and maintenance managers

Better Flame Detection

March 1, 2011 6:52 am | Product Releases | Comments

The Model 3600-L/LB UV/IR Optical Flame Detectors from Sierra Monitor Corporation (Milpitas, CA) are used to monitor for flames from gasoline, methane, heptanes, ethanol, and diesel fuel, and carry an ATEX approval. The detectors sense the radiant energy in both the UV and IR spectrums, and analyze the signals for frequency, intensity, and duration.

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Make Washdowns Easier, Cleaner

March 1, 2011 6:52 am | Product Releases | Comments

ZONEWORKS (Milwaukee, WI) has developed the SCW Wash-down Curtain Wall to isolate production lines for cleaning, all while operating at peak capacity on other lines. The flexible fabric wall is ideal for any plant with harsh wash-down environments, allowing users to minimize overspray and reduce the potential for cross-contamination during routine processes.

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High-Torque Electrical Actuators

March 1, 2011 6:51 am | Product Releases | Comments

The P-Series, PA-PD Series, D Series, and PL Series Electric Actuators from ProMation (Brooksville, FL) are designed for rugged, industrial use. They are available in a variety of models, such as quarter-turn reversing, quarter-turn reversing spring return, and linear drive models to provide on/off, jog, or proportional control.

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Fuel Prices Force Automakers To Think Greener

March 1, 2011 3:54 am | by Colleen Barry, Associated Press | News | Comments

GENEVA (AP) — Just when carmakers thought it safe to roll out new models in the wake of the economic crisis — 170 premiers are advertised for the Geneva Auto Show opening this week — a spike in fuel prices has cast a new shadow over the industry and redoubled attention on green technologies.

U.S. Manufacturing Hits New High Since May 2004

March 1, 2011 3:38 am | News | Comments

WASHINGTON (AP) — Manufacturers likely increased production at a slightly faster pace in February than in January, when output rose at the quickest pace since May 2004. Economists forecast that the Institute for Supply Management's manufacturing index ticked up to 60.9 in February from 60.

UAW, Caterpillar Avoid Walkout With New Contract

March 1, 2011 3:33 am | News | Comments

PEORIA, Ill. (AP) — The United Auto Workers say the union has reached a tentative labor agreement with Caterpillar Inc., averting a possible walkout. The UAW says the tentative six-year deal was reached Monday night. Union members will vote on it this weekend. Both Caterpillar and the union issued releases on the agreement Monday night, but neither revealed any details about the proposed contract.

Harley's Kansas City Union Approve $15 Million In Cuts

March 1, 2011 3:28 am | News | Comments

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Union workers at the Harley-Davidson plant in Kansas City approved a contract that the company says was needed to keep the plant in Missouri. The seven-year contract approved Monday will mean the loss of about 145 full-time workers. The company will add about 145 positions for workers to fill in when needed.

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Body Armor Contractor Execs Charged With Fraud

March 1, 2011 3:24 am | by Marcy Gordon, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

WASHINGTON (AP) — Federal regulators on Monday charged a U.S. defense contractor and three of its former board members with accounting fraud, saying the company overstated earnings to investors. The Securities and Exchange Commission said DHB Industries Inc. settled the civil charges without receiving any penalty.

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Illegal Immigrant-Hirer Now Faces Discrimination Lawsuit

March 1, 2011 3:18 am | by Holbrook Mohr, Associated Press | News | Comments

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — A Mississippi company that pleaded guilty to conspiracy related to the nation's largest workplace raid on illegal immigrants is now facing a lawsuit accusing it of discriminating against non-immigrants who applied for jobs. A discrimination lawsuit filed Friday in U.

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The Brainstorm: Virtual And Remote Teams

February 28, 2011 10:00 am | Articles | Comments

IMPO sister publication, Product Design & Development , talks with industry to get their perspective on issues critical to the design engineering marketplace. In this issue, we ask: What does it take for virtual or remote teams to succeed? Can you build an effective long-distance design team? Kevin Simmons, Design Development Director, Industrial Designer,  DD STUDIO Being a full-service design and engineering consultancy, DD Studio has communicated at various levels over the course of 27 years with molders and manufacturers in the Far East on behalf of our clients.

Rotary Valves Deliver Sweet Benefits

February 28, 2011 9:41 am | Articles | Comments

Each and every working hour, 10,000 pounds of sugar is processed at the Lance Private Brands bakery in Burlington, Iowa. The company produces about 5 million pounds of product per week: 180,000 cases of crackers and numerous pallets of sandwich creams and wire-cut premium-brand cookies for major stores around the country.

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Try Out Camfil Farr's Filters

February 28, 2011 8:04 am IMPO Product Releases | Comments

Camfil Farr (Jonesboro, AR) announces its 30/30 Test Drive program, which allows facilities to use and evaluate the company’s air filters in their own systems — at no cost or obligation — for 90 days. The 30/30 high-capacity MERV 8 pleated panel filter is ideal for medium-efficiency filtration in almost any application, according to the company.

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Washdown-Safe Electrical Boxes

February 28, 2011 8:04 am | Product Releases | Comments

Calpipe (Hammond, IN) has developed a stainless steel single-gang weatherproof in-use box with a lockable cover, which is ideal for corrosive or harsh environments, such as wash-down applications. The casted, 316 stainless steel receptacle cover is compliant with the NEC and NEMA 3R requirement.

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A 'Squid' Solves Outlet Woes

February 28, 2011 8:03 am | Product Releases | Comments

Trident Design, LLC (Las Vegas, NV) has announced three new marketing partners (NCC, Bits Limited, and Accell) for its PowerSquid, which eliminates the problem of overcrowded power strips and bulky power adaptors with a unique “tentacled” design. The PowerSquid comes in a variety of models, ranging from basic outlet multipliers to advance surge protectors.

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New Tools For Machine Builders

February 28, 2011 8:03 am | Product Releases | Comments

MISUMI USA, Inc. (Schaumburg, IL) has announced new products in its timing pulleys, belts, and keyless bushings categories. The components can be used by machine builders in the design and assembly of rugged factory automation and motion control machinery. The GT Timing Pulleys and Belts include four types of rugged, round tooth profiles, built to deliver exceptionally durable performance in high-accuracy positioning applications, with minimal backlash.

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Q&A: The New Global Supply Chain

February 28, 2011 5:04 am | Articles | Comments

Q&A with Barry Jaruzelski, Partner, Booz & Company IMPO: How is the supply chain changing in 2011? Jaruzelski : It’s a bit of a good news/bad news scenario. Obviously, the good news is that we’ve turned the corner on the recession. Production is back up, which means there is more demand throughout the supply chain.

Operate More Efficiently With Clean Oil

February 28, 2011 4:53 am | Articles | Comments

Filtering the hot oil in your plant to remove contaminants can minimize unscheduled maintenance that could disrupt operations and interrupt reliable supplies of asphalt for road surfacing, aggregates and roofing materials production during your busy months. Top priorities for asphalt producers during seasonal downtime are preventive maintenance (PM) and upgrades to their plants to assure an uninterrupted supply of product from hot and warm mix plants during the busy road building season.

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Toyota: Our 'Crown Jewel' Is Source Code, Not Cars

February 28, 2011 3:59 am | by Gillian Flaccus, Associated Press | News | Comments

SANTA ANA, California (AP) — A federal judge overseeing lawsuits against Toyota Motor Corp. for sudden acceleration problems indicated Friday that he will allow the automaker to monitor plaintiffs' access to its proprietary source code. And he proposed a number of other ways to prevent leaks of what Toyota says is the "crown jewel" of its intellectual property.

Auto Industry Can't Catch A Break As Gas Prices Rise

February 28, 2011 3:54 am | by Colleen Barry, Associated Press | News | Comments

GENEVA (AP) — The car industry, it seems, just can't get a break. Just when automakers thought it safe to roll out new models in the wake of the devastating economic crisis — 170 premiers are advertised for the Geneva Auto Show opening this week — confidence is shaken by a spike in oil prices due to civil unrest in Libya and other energy-producing nations.

Buffett: It's Time To Be Optimistic About Our Future

February 28, 2011 3:50 am | by Josh Funk, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

OMAHA, Nebraska (AP) — Billionaire Warren Buffett wants Americans to be optimistic about the country's future but wary about borrowing money and the games public companies play with profit numbers they report. Buffett said in his annual letter to Berkshire Hathaway shareholders Saturday that he still believes America's best days are ahead.

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