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Daily industrial news and top headlines for plant and maintenance managers

We Are On Fire Right Now

June 1, 2010 4:34 am | by David Mantey, Editor, PD&D | Articles | Comments

In the latest PD&D Fireside Chat, Heppelmann discusses how working on a dairy farm influenced his work ethic today; why he launched Windchill Technology — and later sold it to PTC; why entrepreneurs die; Rolex watches; the future of PLM technology; the things that keep him up at night, and more.

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The Key To Unlocking Traceability: PLM

June 1, 2010 4:33 am | by George Young, Founding Partner, Kalypso | Articles | Comments

In my last column, we looked at why having a system of traceability is so important for enabling Food and Beverage (F&B) companies to mitigate the risks of contamination and recalls. It didn’t take long to find more examples that reinforce this need. In the first few weeks of May alone, we’ve seen recalls of romaine lettuce and sprouts due to bacterial contamination, as well as beef containing the Invermectin anti-parasitic drug.

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Manipulate Anything

May 28, 2010 10:08 am | Product Releases | Comments

The Mobulator AC from Advanced Manipulator Specialists, Inc. (Hoffman, MN) uses a clean, energy-efficient AC motor and control technology, making your material handling more flexible, according to the company. The elimination of tracking, rails, and floor-mounted bases frees floor space and allows one machine to replace multiple material handling stations.

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Portable Light On Your Cuff

May 28, 2010 10:07 am IMPO Product Releases | Comments

Bossco International (San Diego, CA) has made their HI:BEAM Cuff Lite portable light available in a number of new colors, bringing the full range to options in gray/gray, light gray/gray, camo/gray, blue/gray, black/gray, and red/gray. The light features elastic loops to pull over work gloves, making them ideal for mechanics and other industrial technicians.

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Industrial-Sized Fans

May 28, 2010 10:06 am | Product Releases | Comments

The LS Industrial Fans from AIRLANCO (Falls City, NE) can handle heavy-duty dust loads or coarse materials safely and efficiently with convenient service access. The fans can serve as components in dust collection or cyclone systems, and range from 1,000 to 100,000 cfm.

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Be A Material Handling Pilot

May 28, 2010 10:06 am | Product Releases | Comments

Konecranes, Inc. (Springfield, OH) introduces the DynAPilot sway control system, which is designed to improve load control for all makes and models of overhead lifting equipment. The DynAPilot can be integrated into the bridge or trolley inverter of a crane to provide controlled operation for loads of all types and sizes.

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Who Makes All The Things We Ignore?

May 28, 2010 6:28 am | by Carlie Kollath, AP Writer | News | Comments

SHANNON, Miss. (AP) — Adlam Films makes stuff people don't think about, even though they use it every day. For example, the family owned company makes the clear plastic wrap that protects individual bags of microwave popcorn for brands such as Orville Redenbacher's and Act II. Adlam also makes the laminating materials that are sold to many schools and are used by FedEx Office — formerly FedEx Kinko's.

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The Mentos-And-Diet-Coke... Rocket Car?

May 28, 2010 5:56 am | News | Comments

BUCKFIELD, Maine (AP) — The guys from Maine who became online celebrities by creating geysers from Mentos candies and Diet Coke say they have harnessed that power to create a "rocket car." The contraption created by Fritz Grobe and Stephen Voltz of Buckfield features a utility trailer on the back and a modified girl's bike at the front.

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Oil Rig Workers: BP 'Gambled' With Our Lives

May 28, 2010 5:04 am | by Ben Evans and Mike Kunzelman, Associated Press Writers | News | Comments

WASHINGTON (AP) — Two workers injured when an oil rig exploded in the Gulf of Mexico told Congress that the companies in charge of the doomed drilling operation cut corners and neglected maintenance in a race toward higher profits. Oil has been spewing since the Deepwater Horizon blew up off the coast of Louisiana April 20, killing 11 workers.

Oil Rig Workers: BP 'Grambled' With Our Lives

May 28, 2010 5:04 am | by Ben Evans and Mike Kunzelman, Associated Press Writers | News | Comments

WASHINGTON (AP) — Two workers injured when an oil rig exploded in the Gulf of Mexico told Congress that the companies in charge of the doomed drilling operation cut corners and neglected maintenance in a race toward higher profits. Oil has been spewing since the Deepwater Horizon blew up off the coast of Louisiana April 20, killing 11 workers.

Oakland To Sanction, Tax Pot Growers

May 28, 2010 4:49 am | by Lisa Leff & Marcus Wohlsen, Associated Press Writers | News | Comments

OAKLAND, California (AP) — Local governments in California and other Western states have tried to clamp down on medical marijuana, but Oakland has taken a different approach. If you can't beat 'em, tax 'em. After becoming the first U.S. city to impose a special tax on medical marijuana dispensaries, Oakland soon could become the first to sanction and tax commercial pot growing operations.

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Big Tobacco's Next Target: Young Women

May 28, 2010 4:48 am | by Margie Mason, AP Medical Writer | News | Comments

With half of all men in some developing countries already hooked on cigarettes, the tobacco industry is now courting lucrative new customers — young women, a report said. About 80 percent of the world's estimated 1 billion smokers are men, but more women are picking up the habit in some countries as flavored products and glossy feminine packaging cater to them.

Drew Carey's 'Price' To Save Cleveland

May 28, 2010 4:46 am | by Meghan Barr, Associated Press Writer | News | Comments

CLEVELAND (AP) — Comedian Drew Carey, wearing a loud black-and-white checkered blazer, marched into City Hall in his hometown on Thursday and told council members what they're doing wrong. Respectfully, of course. "I don't envy anybody at this table," Carey said during the three-hour-long discussion.

Mercury On The Automotive Chopping Block?

May 28, 2010 4:31 am | by Dee-Ann Durbin, AP Auto Writer | News | Comments

DETROIT (AP) — Mercury could soon be the latest Detroit car brand to disappear. Ford Motor Co. is assessing the future of Mercury, although a final decision on whether to kill the brand hasn't yet been made, a person familiar with the company's deliberations said Thursday. The person asked not to be named because the process is ongoing.

Foxconn Offers Workers 20 Percent Raises

May 28, 2010 4:30 am | by Annie Huang, Associated Press Writer | News | Comments

TAIPEI, Taiwan (AP) — The Taiwanese electronics company buffeted by a spate of suicides at its China factories said Friday it will raise the pay of workers by an average of 20 percent. The pay raises at Foxconn Technology Group have been in the works for months to cope with a labor shortage following China's recovery from the global recession, said a company official speaking on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to talk to the press.

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Honda's Chinese Operations Halted By Strikes

May 28, 2010 4:29 am | News | Comments

TOKYO (AP) — Honda Motor Co. said Friday that production at three of its four plants in China remains suspended because of a lack of transmissions and engine parts caused by a strike at a parts maker, but will resume partially next week at the fourth. Workers demanding better wages went on strike at Honda Auto Parts Manufacturing Co.

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Albany Industries Adds 200 Furniture-Making Jobs

May 28, 2010 4:28 am | News | Comments

RIPLEY, Miss. (AP) — Furniture manufacturer Albany Industries is expanding its operation in Ripley in northeast Mississippi and could hire up to 200 more workers. The company, based in New Albany, Miss., tells the Northeast Mississippi Daily Journal that it has acquired the former Agracel facility in the North Ripley Industrial Park.

Congress Wants More Electric Car Credits, Infrastructure

May 28, 2010 4:27 am | by Stephen Manning, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

WASHINGTON (AP) — The federal government would provide grants to help cities build the infrastructure needed to support electric vehicles and to offer new tax credits for buyers of those cars under legislation introduced Thursday in Congress. The bills in the House and Senate are designed to smooth the way for the electric vehicles that are expected to start showing up at car dealerships in large numbers this fall.

A College Degree Is Closer Than You Thought

May 27, 2010 11:58 am | News | Comments

DEARBORN, Mich. — The Society of Manufacturing Engineers (SME) and University of Phoenix have reached an agreement that will provide holders of SME certifications with articulation credits toward their college degree. This will enable them to expedite their time towards a degree through a prior learning assessment, potentially saving them as much as an entire semester in courses.

A Chance To LEED The Green Revolution

May 27, 2010 11:49 am | by Krystal Gabert, Editor, Food Manufacturing | Articles | Comments

Innovative manufacturers have the opportunity to pave a greener path for the industry. As consumer attention turns more toward environmental stewardship, LEED certification is emerging as a growing trend in building design and engineering. At the close of 2009, there were 4,286 LEED certified projects — and only 39 of them were in manufacturing facilities.

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