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Daily industrial news and top headlines for plant and maintenance managers

Toyota Tries To Throw Out All Acceleration Lawsuits

November 19, 2010 3:34 am | News | Comments

SANTA ANA, Calif. (AP) — A federal judge in California will consider a motion by Toyota Motor Corp. to dismisslawsuits that claim there are sudden acceleration defects in its cars. U.S. District Judge James Selna will hear arguments Friday about whether he should throw out some of the hundreds of lawsuits filed since the automaker starting recalling millions of vehicles because of acceleration problems in several models and brake defects with the Prius hybrid.

Solar Manufacturer Using China As Low-Cost Stepping Stone

November 19, 2010 3:33 am | News | Comments

TOLEDO, Ohio (AP) — A Toledo solar panel manufacturer opened an assembly plant in China to provide low-cost assembly while it works to automate and expand its local operations, the company's president said Thursday. Xunlight Corp., which has received nearly $50 million in federal and state assistance to develop research and production in Toledo, just started talking publicly this week about the Chinese facility, which opened earlier this year, The Blade newspaper reported Thursday.

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Lockheed Martin Cutting 1,000 Eagan, Minn. Jobs

November 19, 2010 3:31 am | News | Comments

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Defense contractor Lockheed Martin Corp. said on Thursday that it will close its Eagan, Minn. plant by 2013, eliminating or moving about 1,000 jobs. The company makes components for the Navy's P-3 Orion anti-submarine plane at the plant. Lockheed said 650 of the Minnesota jobs would move to Owego, N.

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Kia Ready To Hire Another 1,000 Georgians

November 19, 2010 3:30 am | News | Comments

WEST POINT, Ga. (AP) — Kia Motors plans to hire another 1,000 workers at its west Georgia plant. Kia on Thursday opened the online application process for prospective employees for its plant in West Point, which is near the Alabama state line. The plant officially opened earlier this year and, as of September, had produced about 100,000 Kia Sorrento SUVs.

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How GM's IPO Affected Detroit, New York, And Washington

November 19, 2010 3:29 am | by Bernard Condon and Tom Krisher, AP Business Writers | News | Comments

NEW YORK (AP) — General Motors returned to Wall Street with the satisfying roar of a muscle car's engine, embraced by traders at the New York Stock Exchange who stood in a crowd eight deep for the chance to buy a piece of a resurrected American icon. Elsewhere, the moment was more complex.

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Perfecting A Cost-Saving Methodology

November 18, 2010 11:10 am | Articles | Comments

A Wisconsin-based manufacturer has spent the last decade developing and trying to perfect a methodology for producing a certain product at a significantly lower cost. Before a potato hits the dinner plate, it may have taken six to eight years of development to get there. Among the thousands of varieties of potatoes, characteristics like size, color, solid-matter content, and starch type can all vary, and they are appealing to producers and consumers for their respective characteristics.

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Routine Problems, Routine Explanations

November 18, 2010 11:01 am | by The QA Pharm, Anonymous Industry Insider and Contributor to Pharmaceutical Processing | Articles | Comments

When a recurring deviation and obviously ineffective corrective and protective action happens the third time, you no longer own the deviation/ investigation/ corrective and protective action — your boss does . Here I am at a foreign airport with time on my hands due to a significantly delayed flight.

Better Rooftop HVAC

November 18, 2010 9:50 am | Product Releases | Comments

The Vibro-Curb, available from Thybar Corporation (Addison, IL) has integral, vibration-dampening spring isolators that can be easily accessed. The curbs provide mounting for rooftop HVAC units, and they allow roofing to be completed at a later date. The flexible 9” counter-flashing provides a weather seal while permitting easy access to the isolators.

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Clean And Recirculate

November 18, 2010 9:50 am | Product Releases | Comments

The Trans-O-Filter unit from SERFILCO, Ltd. (Northbrook, IL) re-circulates at flow rates of 3 to 10 GPM on fuel or hydraulic systems to collect moisture on a coalescing element. To enhance the life of the coalescing element, a pre-filter can be added to remove particulates, and the choice of media allows the user to select cartridges with high dirt holding depth or absolute media of pleated membrane to trap particles as small as 1 micron.

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Know Your Costs

November 18, 2010 9:49 am | Product Releases | Comments

MTI Systems (West Springfield, MA) announces the release of the latest version of the Costimator — Version 11.0. According to the company, the new version helps make the user experience easier and more productive while improving speed and quality of results. Easier configuration is also included.

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Dry As A Desert

November 18, 2010 9:48 am | Product Releases | Comments

Atlas Copco (Westfield, MA) has launched three new desiccant air dryer ranges that are designed for efficiency, with low pressure drops, delayed dryer cycles, and a guaranteed constant pressure dew point — even at full load — under any condition. The CD+ range is engineered with a design that guarantees reliability, according to the company.

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Make Friends With The Air Hockey Robot

November 17, 2010 10:00 am | Videos | Comments

A Japanese professor has developed a robotic air hockey player, which uses a camera to track the puck's motion and calculate its trajectory and deliver a mean counter-attack. According to one YouTube commenter, this device is ideal for "people with no friends." That might be a little harsh, as the project is a good test in machine vision and developing faster reaction times for unexpected events.

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The Chevy Volt: Car Of The Year

November 17, 2010 9:59 am | Videos | Comments

The Chevrolet Volt, despite some concerns that it might not be as revolutionary as once thought, is the winner of Motor Trend 's 2011 Car of the Year Award. As Motor Trend editor-in-chief Angus MacKenzie explains, the award is given for performance in six main categories: Engineering excellence Advance in design Efficiency Safety Value Performance in intended function Despite a $41,000 sticker price, reviewers say that the Volt more than makes up for a bigger monthly payment with good mileage, and a lower energy cost when using the electric motor, compared to gasoline.

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Profiting From Anti-China Politics

November 17, 2010 9:58 am | Videos | Comments

China has been in the news lately due to veiled threats of withholding rare earth materials for political reasons, and that has made manufacturers around the world a nervous bunch. Considering a vast majority of the rare earth metals we use come from China, they do have the power to strangle a handful of industries and countless companies.

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What Are The Best Inventions Of 2010?

November 17, 2010 9:58 am | Videos | Comments

Time Magazine recently revealed its list of the 50 best inventions of 2010. There were a number of major technological breakthroughs over the course of the past few months, including the development of a jetpack, robotic prosthetic legs that allows paraplegics to walk again, and a super bus that can hold roughly 1,000 passengers.

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GE Aviation To Build 400-Worker Plant In Auburn, Ala.

November 17, 2010 4:01 am | News | Comments

AUBURN, Ala. (AP) — GE Aviation has picked Auburn for its plant that will make coatings for the components in military jet engines. GE Aviation, based in Cincinnati, Ohio, had announced in August that it planned to locate a plant in Alabama and would decide the location within three months.

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Boeing Unsure When 787 Test Flights Will Continue

November 17, 2010 4:00 am | by Joan Lowy and Joshua Freed, Associated Press | News | Comments

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Boeing Co. said it's still not clear when it will resume test flights for its new 787, and an executive said in an interview that he doesn't know if the plane's first delivery would be delayed once again. Boeing has been flying six of the new 787s with a goal of getting certification to deliver the first one around mid-February.

Roche To Cut 4,800 Jobs For 'Operational Excellence'

November 17, 2010 3:59 am | by Frank Jordans, Associated Press | News | Comments

GENEVA (AP) — Swiss pharmaceutical company Roche will cut 4,800 jobs over two years, mostly in the U.S., to help save 2.4 billion Swiss francs ($2.4 billion) by 2012, the company said Wednesday. The cuts amount to six percent of its 82,000-strong global work force and will mainly affect positions in sales, marketing and manufacturing, Basel-based Roche Holding AG said in a statement.

Officals Call For Safer, Less Faulty Defibrillators

November 17, 2010 3:56 am | by Matthew Perrone, AP Health Writer | News | Comments

WASHINGTON (AP) — Federal health officials are calling on manufacturers of heart-zapping defibrillators to fix long-standing problems with the emergency devices that have triggered dozens of recalls and led to injuries and deaths. Defibrillators use electric shocks to jolt the heart back to normal after patients collapse from cardiac arrest.

Koss Executive Faces 20 Years For Embezzling Millions

November 17, 2010 3:53 am | News | Comments

MILWAUKEE (AP) — The former Koss Corp. executive accused of embezzling $34 million from the headphones manufacturer faces sentencing Wednesday in federal court in Milwaukee. Koss chief executive Michael Koss is asking the judge to sentence Sue Sachdeva (sah-CHEE'-vah) to the maximum 15 to 20 years.

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