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Daily industrial news and top headlines for plant and maintenance managers

Global Economies Growing, But More Slowly

May 27, 2011 4:20 am | by Paul Wiseman, AP Economics Writer | News | Comments

WASHINGTON (AP) — From the United States to Europe and even to booming China, the global economy is showing signs of strain. Most major economies are expected to keep growing. But evidence is mounting that many around the world are struggling to expand as fast as they did last year. European governments are struggling with debts and squeezed budgets.

Saab Restarts Production With Chinese Cash

May 27, 2011 4:18 am | by Louise Nordstrom, Associated Press | News | Comments

STOCKHOLM (AP) — Spyker Cars NV's cash-strapped Swedish unit Saab Automobile on Friday resumed car production after a near seven-week standstill caused largely by payment problems to its suppliers. The long-awaited resumption came after Chinese group Pang Da last week agreed to buy a 24 percent stake in Spyker for €65 million ($92 million).

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Temperature Control Keeps Your Facility Clean And Safe

May 26, 2011 11:24 am | Articles | Comments

As those who operate food manufacturing and distribution plants know, there are a multitude of regulations from both the FDA and OSHA that are intended to help keep them safe and clean. What most do not realize is how important water temperature is in the right place at the right time for complying with those regulations.

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Full Of Sound And Fury

May 26, 2011 11:19 am | by by Anna Wells, Executive Editor, IMPO | Blogs | Comments

As someone who spent the better part of college studying modern literary theory — a vocation so rich with complexity yet sparse in practical application — I can sympathize with the other liberal arts devotees out there: the ones with the music performance or art history degrees.

Soft-Drink Execs Plead Guilty To $800M Fraud

May 26, 2011 9:54 am | News | Comments

PITTSBURGH (AP) — Two men have admitted taking part in a massive scheme to defraud banks and investors out of hundreds of millions of dollars through a now-defunct western Pennsylvania soft-drink company. Jonathan Podlucky and Donald Pollinger pleaded guilty Thursday to charges stemming from a scheme that cost investors in Latrobe-based Le-Nature's Inc.

Delphi Automotive Files For $100 Million IPO

May 26, 2011 9:36 am | News | Comments

NEW YORK (AP) — Auto parts supplier Delphi Automotive PLC filed for a $100 million initial public offering, following former owner General Motors Co. back to public ownership. It's the latest auto-industry company to seek out an IPO as auto sales recover from their plunge during the recession.

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Philip Morris Buys Patent For Smoke-Free Nicotine Device

May 26, 2011 9:25 am | by Michael Felberbaum, AP Tobacco Writer | News | Comments

RICHMOND, Virginia (AP) — Cigarette maker Philip Morris International Inc. has purchased the rights to a technology that lets users inhale nicotine without smoking. The world's largest nongovernmental cigarette seller told The Associated Press on Thursday it has bought the patent for an aerosol nicotine-delivery system developed by Jed Rose, director of the Center for Nicotine and Smoking Cessation Research at Duke University in Durham, North Carolina.

Honda: U.S. Production Will Normalize By August

May 26, 2011 9:23 am | by Tom Krisher, AP Auto Writer | News | Comments

DETROIT (AP) — Honda's North American factories will return to near-normal production in August, the company said Thursday, much faster than expected following supply disruptions. The flow of auto parts was interrupted after Japanese factories were damaged by a huge earthquake and tsunami on March 11, or stricken by the power outages that followed.

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GM Adding 110 Jobs To Arlington SUV Plant

May 26, 2011 9:19 am | News | Comments

ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) — General Motors Co. is adding 110 jobs to a Texas factory and investing $331 million to expand the plant to make full-size sport utility vehicles. The Arlington, Texas, factory will make Chevrolet Tahoes and Suburbans, GMC Yukons and Cadillac Escalades. The plant, which currently has 2,400 employees, opened in 1954 and was expanded in 2001 to 3.

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Heinz: Income Is Up, But We're Cutting 1,000 Jobs

May 26, 2011 9:17 am | by Michelle Chapman and Sarah Skidmore, AP Business Writers | News | Comments

H.J. Heinz Co.'s global expansion efforts are paying off, driving its fourth-quarter net income up 16 percent. But the world's biggest ketchup maker said it needs to raise prices and cut jobs to continue its profitable path. The company, based in Pittburgh, announced Thursday that it will shed up to 1,000 jobs globally in fiscal 2012 as it closes five factories.

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The Future Of Robotics

May 26, 2011 8:07 am | Videos | Comments

Andrew Ng, of Stanford University, has long been trying to solve the complex problem of enabling robots to complement human life. According to him, robots have all the mechanical aptitude needed for any task currently done by a human — and at times, with more efficiency — but they fail when it comes to software.

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No More Sanding Dust

May 26, 2011 7:57 am | Product Releases | Comments

Dynabrade, Inc. (Clarence, NY) has introduced a new series of air-powered Vacuum Disc Sanders, which allows for efficient coatings removal with the capture of the actual contaminants to the vacuum source. The new tool line features 2”, 3”, 5”, and 7” sanders for smooth operation, while the Vacuum Shroud diverts dust and debris.

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More Versatile Actuators

May 26, 2011 7:56 am | Product Releases | Comments

Spartan Peripheral Devices (Vaudreuil, QC, Canada) is selling the ME4840 and ME4940 Spring Return Modulating Actuator with a wider input signal range. They are not on-board selectable with a Jumper J3 selectable range from: 0-10Vdc 2-10Vdc 0-5Vdc 5-10Vdc 4-20mA Users can choose from Spring Open or Spring Closed models with direct or reverse control action.

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Print Labels On The Go

May 26, 2011 7:53 am IMPO Product Releases | Comments

DuraLabel (Portland, OR) has launched a new portable, fully-integrated label printing system called Toro, which combines a full-sized flip-down keyboard, tilting touchscreen, and OSHA-ANSI compliance software, and a thermal-transfer printer. According to the company, the Toro does not need IT support or connectivity to a computer.

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A Tough Industrial Laptop

May 26, 2011 7:52 am | Product Releases | Comments

Panasonic Solutions Company (Secaucus, NJ) has announced a series of upgrades to its Toughbook 31 rugged laptops. The devices now feature Intel Core i5 and i3 processors, increased RAM and hard drive capacity, and up to 20 hours of battery life. The devices have been certified to meet nineteen MIL-STD-810G tests, including shock, drop, vibration, and extreme temperature, and has an IP65 rating for protection from water and dust.

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A Better Caster

May 26, 2011 5:28 am | Product Releases | Comments

The Revvo Caster Company, Inc. (West Seneca, NY) has announced two new Towcaster swivel caster sets for moving ISO freight containers quickly without expensive equipment, such as cranes, gantries, or side-loading forks. The Towcasters are now available as a set of four swivel casters for optimum mobility.

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Shims In All Sizes

May 26, 2011 5:28 am | Product Releases | Comments

The Stainless Steel Arbor Shims from Precision Brand Products, Inc. (Downers Grove, IL) are available in 18 thicknesses in 12 different I.D/O.D. combinations. The shims are corrosion-resistant and can be used for fast, accurate spacing of milling cutters, gang cutters, saws, slitting blades and grinding tools.

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Smoother-Rolling Bearings

May 26, 2011 5:27 am | Product Releases | Comments

NKE (Clifton Park, NY) is introducing bearing solutions for industrial gearboxes with spherical roller and taper roller bearings, along with angular contact and deep groove ball bearings. The roller bearings are offered in more than 3,000 different designs and versions, suitable for high radial loads and moderate-to-high speeds.

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Easy-Upgrade Valves

May 26, 2011 5:26 am | Product Releases | Comments

Hayward Flow Control (Clemmons, NC) has developed the new large-diameter TB Series True Union Ball Valve, which incorporates an actuation mounting pad, per ISO 5211, and an integral panel mount foot pad. Sizes range from 2-1/2” to 6”, and materials include PVC and CPVC. Additional features include: A pressure rating of 235 psi non-shock and a full-port design.

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Making A Sport Out Of CEO Pay

May 25, 2011 12:09 pm | by by Mike Schmidt, Associate Editor, Manufacturing Business Technology | Blogs | Comments

I’ve been a die-hard sports fan all my life. As I’ve grown and matured over the years, my highly-emotional, rabid fandom has evolved into something more statistically-oriented and analytical in nature. But that also means I have less and less tolerance for coaches and executives who don’t look at sports the same way.

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