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Daily industrial news and top headlines for plant and maintenance managers

C-More Remote HMI App

December 2, 2011 5:45 am | Product Releases | Comments

AutomationDirect ’s (Cumming, GA) new C-more remote HMI application is available through the iTunes App Store for $4.99 and provides remote access and control to mobile users who have a Wi-Fi or cellular connection. A C-more panel with remote connectivity is required, and the C-more Remote HMI app does not require third party remote desktop VNC-type applications.

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Plant Design Maximizes Flexibility In Chocolate Production

December 2, 2011 4:54 am | Articles | Comments

Modern chocolate production no longer involves simple manufacturing. Today it is much more the art of recognizing and developing trends early on — while operating economically and without compromising quality. Over the years chocolate has become a general commodity — both its consumption and its production are more affordable, faster and more global than ever before.

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Cisco CEO Talks Emerging Markets

December 2, 2011 4:51 am | Videos | Comments

Cisco CEO John Chambers says his company currently does about 20 percent of its business in emerging markets, but he added that he feels there is a lot of potential for growth in that area. Chambers also answers a number of other questions about Cisco and the company's future in this recent interview with CNN's John Defterios.

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The Dilemma Of Recurring Problems

December 2, 2011 4:48 am | by Michael Curran-Hayes, Senior Partner, Life Science, Kepner-Tregoe, Inc . | Articles | Comments

Nightmare scenario:  The phone rings and you learn with dread that the problem you thought you had gotten rid of a month ago is back and bigger than ever.  Your stomach sinks and your pulse quickens, as you scramble to find out exactly what is happening.   AND you know it is only a matter of time before plant management will be showing up at your door to have a “serious” discussion.

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Lean Comes To The Industrial Battery Room

December 2, 2011 4:40 am | by Harold Vanasse , Vice President of Sales and Marketing, Philadelphia Scientific | Articles | Comments

More than 20 years after it first entered the manufacturing lexicon, Lean thinking is finally taking hold in the warehouse and DC. Now, the last frontier for Lean implementation may be the industrial battery room. In its simplest form, Lean manufacturing means producing goods with less; it applies fewer resources without affecting the quality or quantity of the goods produced.

Australian Court Bans Galaxy Tab Sales

December 2, 2011 4:14 am | by Kristen Gelineau, Associated Press | News | Comments

SYDNEY (AP) — Apple Inc. won a small victory on Friday in its global patent battle with rival Samsung, after Australia's highest court temporarily extended a ban on sales of Samsung's Galaxy tablet computers in the country. Samsung Electronics Co. is desperate to begin selling the Galaxy in Australia in time for Christmas sales, but the High Court's decision means the device can't go on the market until at least Dec.

Union Says CEO Compared Workers To Tumor

December 2, 2011 4:12 am | News | Comments

FARGO, N.D. (AP) — Union representatives of locked-out employees at American Crystal Sugar Co. are criticizing the company president and CEO for what they call anti-worker sentiments. The union released audio recordings Wednesday of CEO David Berg telling shareholders a story about a friend with cancer and saying, "We can't let a labor contract make us sick forever and ever.

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GM To Buy Back Volts

December 2, 2011 4:10 am | by Tom Krisher, AP Auto Writer | News | Comments

NEW YORK (AP) — General Motors will buy Chevrolet Volts back from any owner who is afraid the electric cars will catch fire, the company's CEO said Thursday. In an exclusive interview with The Associated Press, CEO Dan Akerson insisted that the cars are safe, but said the company will purchase the Volts because it wants to keep customers happy.

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EU Claims Compliance With WTO's Airbus Ruling

December 2, 2011 4:08 am | News | Comments

GENEVA (AP) — The European Union said Thursday it has complied with a World Trade Organization ruling that called for an end to unfair government aid to aircraft maker Airbus. U.S. trade officials and rival Boeing Inc. responded that they would study closely the EU's submission to ensure all illegal subsidies had been removed.

Unemployment Falls To Lowest Rate Since March 2009

December 2, 2011 4:07 am | by Christopher S. Rugaber, AP Economics Writer | News | Comments

WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. unemployment rate fell last month to its lowest level in more than 2½ years. More people out of work either found jobs or gave up looking and were no longer counted as unemployed. The Labor Department said Friday that the unemployment rate dropped sharply to 8.

Honda Announces Global Recall For Air-Bag Problems

December 2, 2011 4:04 am | by Yuri Kageyama, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

TOKYO (AP) — Honda Motor Co. is recalling 304,000 vehicles globally for air-bags that may inflate with too much pressure in a crash, send metal and plastic pieces flying and cause injuries or deaths. Honda said there have been 20 accidents so far related to this problem, including two deaths in the U.

Extreme Picking & Packing

December 1, 2011 9:16 am | Videos | Comments

Vince and Allison take us on a tour of a high-speed warehouse that features packing machines operating at ground speeds of over 70 miles per hour. If you're having trouble watching this video, try downloading the latest version of Flash Player or contacting your IT department. Have any comments or questions about our video editions of IMPO? Or do you have a video you'd like to see featured in one of our deployments? Email me at Rachel.

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Air-Gas Mass Flow Meter Improves Wastewater Processing Efficiency

December 1, 2011 9:15 am | by Stephen Cox, Sr Member Technical Staff, Fluid Components International | Articles | Comments

A fast growing city in the arid desert regions of the Western U.S. recently addressed the need to expand its municipal service for new residents and subdivisions. In recent years, the city’s residential demand for wastewater treatment tripled from less than 1 million gallons to more than 1.

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Systemic Failures Of Leadership

December 1, 2011 9:09 am | Articles | Comments

For some time I have been interested in the whole notion of risk. Subsumed in the concept of risk is the idea that decisions, and the behaviors that result from those decisions, have positive and negative consequences. Virtually every decision we make is a hypothesis about the future, a bet; and we place thousands of internal wagers every single day, large and small.

MO Jobs Chief Defends Review Of Sweetener Maker

December 1, 2011 8:58 am | by David A. Lieb, Associated Press | News | Comments

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — Missouri's economic development chief defended the state's review of a Chinese firm that failed to follow through on a pledge to open an artificial sweetener factory in rural Missouri but insisted Wednesday that it would have been a waste of taxpayer money to more thoroughly screen the company.

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Economy Improving Despite Weak Job Growth

December 1, 2011 8:54 am | by Christopher S. Rugaber, AP Economics Writer | News | Comments

WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. economy is picking up. If only job growth would follow. A spate of data Thursday showed U.S. factories grew last month at the fastest pace since June, construction spending increased for a third straight month, and both retail sales and auto sales rose in November.

Machinists Reach Tentative Deal With Boeing

December 1, 2011 8:51 am | by Gene Johnson, Sam Hananel, Associated Press | News | Comments

SEATTLE (AP) — As Boeing executive Jim Albaugh spoke to an aerospace conference in New York, recent strikes by the company's workers in Washington state weren't far from his mind. "We've had strikes three out of the last four times that we've gone to the table with the union," he noted Wednesday morning.

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U.S. Auto Sales Look Strong In November

December 1, 2011 8:47 am | by Dee-Ann Durbin, Tom Krisher, AP Auto Writers | News | Comments

DETROIT (AP) — People are finally replacing the cars and trucks they held on to during the economic slump, giving a boost to U.S. auto sales in November. Chrysler, Ford and Nissan were among the companies reporting double-digit gains from last November, which is normally a lackluster month because of colder weather and holiday distractions.

Toyota, BMW To Work On Greener Car Battery

December 1, 2011 8:44 am | by Yuri Kageyama, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

TOKYO (AP) — Auto giants Toyota and BMW said Thursday they have agreed to collaborate on research for cleaner, next-generation car batteries, underlining the growing push in the industry for green technology. The agreement brings together Toyota Motor Corp., Japan's No. 1 carmaker and a leader in gas-electric hybrids, and BMW AG of Germany, a European maker that has a strong luxury brand image in both Japan and Europe.

Union Says Crystal Sugar Profits Mean Better Contract

December 1, 2011 8:40 am | News | Comments

FARGO, N.D. (AP) — A banner year has produced big profits for American Crystal Sugar Co. and big paydays for its executives. Locked-out union workers at Crystal plants in three states say that's evidence the cooperative can afford to make a better contract offer. The company's net revenue for fiscal 2011 was $1.

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