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Daily industrial news and top headlines for plant and maintenance managers

Four-Month Low In Unemployment Claims

August 12, 2011 5:12 am | by Daniel Wagner, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

WASHINGTON (AP) — After calamitous losses on Wall Street and fears of another recession, the economy got a dose of good news Thursday: The number of people applying for unemployment benefits fell below 400,000 for the first time since April. Layoffs are easing in most states, and some economists are predicting mild improvement in job growth.

Chinese Bullet Train Maker Orders Recall

August 12, 2011 5:09 am | by Joe McDonald, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

BEIJING (AP) — A Chinese bullet train manufacturer announced a recall Friday of 54 trains in the latest embarrassment for a problem-plagued prestige project following a July crash that killed 40 people. The recall adds to growing signs official attitudes toward the bullet train are shifting and Beijing might scale back its rapid expansion of the high speed rail network.

Union Workers Rally Against Crystal Sugar Lockout

August 12, 2011 5:07 am | by Dave Kolpack, Associated Press | News | Comments

MOORHEAD, Minn. (AP) — Hundreds of American Crystal Sugar workers and others showed up in Moorhead with signs, banners and even guitars Thursday in a rally for employees who have been locked out for 11 days. About 1,300 union workers have been locked out of five sugar processing plants in Minnesota, North Dakota and Iowa in the company's first labor impasse in 30 years.

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Boeing Struggles To Keep Up With Demand

August 12, 2011 5:04 am | by Joshua Freed, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

Boeing booked 19 new orders for its 777 and said on Thursday that it needs to build its commercial planes faster to keep up with demand. Boeing said unidentified customers ordered seven more of its 777s. Cathay Pacific ordered 12 of the planes late Wednesday. Boeing now has a backlog of 293 of its 777s and more than 3,400 of all civilian planes.

GM Recalls Impala, LaCrosse Models

August 12, 2011 5:02 am | News | Comments

DETROIT (AP) — General Motors is recalling some 2012 Chevrolet Impala and Buick LaCrosse models to fix safety problems. GM says 11,915 Impalas are being recalled in the U.S. and Canada because a power steering fluid hose gets too close to the catalytic converter. The hose can melt, and fluid can leak and start a fire.

Magnetic, Electronic Key Interlocks

August 11, 2011 10:00 am | Product Releases | Comments

Tapeswitch Corporation (Farmingdale, NY) has added magnetic and electronic non-contact interlocks and mechanical trapped key interlocks to their product lines. The non-contact interlock product line is offered as four product systems: the F-Series, SSS, and ISIS safety systems; and the Magnasafe.

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Update With Retrofit Kits From Cooper

August 11, 2011 9:58 am | Product Releases | Comments

The Metalux Commerical, OpticaHP, Archos, and Cruze retrofit kits from Cooper Lighting (Peachtree City, GA) consist of architecturally-inspired designs that update a building’s look and value, while offering a wide range of features and benefits that save energy, time, and money. The series of kits include one-piece tool-less reflectors with squeeze and fit mounting capability and Ready-Set—captive and secure self-tapping screws.

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L-shaped Superior Mark Corner

August 11, 2011 9:56 am | Product Releases | Comments

The Superior Mark Corner from Insite Solutions (Wake Forest, NC) is an L-shaped floor marker that features a patent pending beveled edge on all side. Using corner markers requires less material and less maintenance than solid lines—if one corner is damaged, it can be individually replaced.

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HTC Buying Stake In Dr. Dre Headphone Maker

August 11, 2011 9:07 am | News | Comments

TAIPEI, Taiwan (AP) — Taiwanese smartphone maker HTC Corp. says it will pay about $300 million for a 51 percent stake in the U.S. maker of Dr. Dre headphones. HTC said Thursday its alliance with Dr. Dre's Beats Electronics LLC will provide a "flawless listening experience for our customers.

China Halts Bullet Train Manufacturing After Deadly Collision

August 11, 2011 9:03 am | by Joe McDonald, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

BEIJING (AP) — China has frozen approval of new railway projects and halted some bullet train manufacturing, stepping up an overhaul of its controversial high-speed network after a July collision that killed 40 people. The crash, along with delays on a new Beijing-Shanghai line blamed on equipment failures, embarrassed the communist government and fueled public anger at a bullet train network that critics say is dangerous and too costly.

A123 Will Make GM Electric Vehicle Batteries

August 11, 2011 9:02 am | News | Comments

DETROIT (AP) — General Motors Co. said Thursday that battery maker A123 Systems Inc. will produce batteries to be used in future electric vehicles being sold in select global markets. The Detroit-based automaker said the battery packs will be built at A123 Systems' Livonia facility.

NAM Urges Admin to Stop New Ozone Standards

August 11, 2011 8:59 am | News | Comments

Washington, D.C. – Today, 35 state manufacturing associations joined the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) in asking President Obama not to move forward with the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) proposed ozone National Ambient Air Quality Standard (NAAQS). The state associations cautioned the President that this proposal will create more uncertainty for manufacturers and increase compliance costs for each state, which will hurt job growth.

Fired Worker Injures Coworkers At NY Plant

August 11, 2011 8:57 am | News | Comments

MALTA, N.Y. (AP) — Police say a man fired from his job at an upstate New York computer chip plant construction site has been charged with assaulting four former co-workers, including one hit in the face with a fire extinguisher. The Saratoga County Sheriff's Office tells local media that 42-year-old Eddie Robinson Jr.

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U.S. Trade Deficit Widens To $53B

August 11, 2011 8:55 am | by Martin Crutsinger, AP Economics Writer | News | Comments

WASHINGTON (AP) — American producers sold fewer industrial engines, electric generators and farm products to the rest of the world in June, pushing the trade deficit to the highest level since 2008 and dealing another blow to an already struggling economy. The deficit rose 4.4 percent to $53.

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Talk And Tech At MoMA

August 11, 2011 6:26 am | Videos | Comments

The new exhibit ''Talk to Me'' at New York's Museum of Moden Art highlights ways objects and technology have become an integral part of communication. If you're having trouble watching this video, try downloading the latest version of Flash Player or contacting your IT department.

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USMTO: Manufacturing Tech Orders Up

August 11, 2011 6:24 am | Articles | Comments

June U.S. manufacturing technology orders totaled $459.39 million according to AMT - The Association For Manufacturing Technology and AMTDA, the American Machine Tool Distributors’ Association. This total, as reported by companies participating in the USMTO program, was up 15.3% from May and up 91.

Backpacking Or Fracking

August 11, 2011 6:22 am | by Jonnatha Mayberry, Associate Editor, Chem.info | Blogs | Comments

Which do you think of when you hear "state park"? Both backpacking and fracking are associated with previously protected state lands. Ohio recently passed a bill legalizing drilling on all state land, including land that has been designated as a state park. Senate's approval of  Bill 133  hit home for me as a native Ohioan who has spent a great deal of time enjoying the state's parks.

Additional Shares Purchased In Tognum Takeover

August 10, 2011 9:37 am | News | Comments

Stuttgart/London – Daimler AG and Rolls-Royce Group plc have acquired additional shares in Tognum AG equivalent to 0.83 percent of its equity. Upon completion of the public tender offer, the two companies will have acquired at least 95 percent of Tognum’s shares through their joint venture, Engine Holding GmbH.

Harman Fiscal 4Q Proft Falls

August 10, 2011 9:34 am | News | Comments

STAMFORD, Conn. (AP) — Speaker and headphone maker Harman International Industries Inc. said Wednesday its fiscal fourth-quarter profit fell to a fraction of what it was a year ago on tough comparisons to a prior-year period boosted by a $115.4 million profit from discontinued operations.

Aberdeen Plant Humming 24 Hours A Day

August 10, 2011 9:30 am | by Jacob Jones | News | Comments

ABERDEEN, Wash. (AP) — Little more than a low hum sounds from the tangle of steel pipes in the production area of the Imperium Grays Harbor biodiesel facility in Aberdeen, but the plant is churning around the clock. Workers in bright safety vests hustled to direct trucks during a recent visit.

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