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Daily industrial news and top headlines for plant and maintenance managers

When 'Creativity And Innovation' Means Everything

February 4, 2011 11:00 am | by Joel Hans, Associate Editor, IMPO | Articles | Comments

Tom Moran, COO and President of Midwest Plastic Fabricators, stands next to the "ferris wheel," one of many homemade technological innovations he has developed over his 30-year engineering career. Tom Moran, COO of Ohio’s Midwest Plastic Fabricators (MPF), has a unique story to tell.

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Scared Straight By Foreign Object Damage

February 4, 2011 10:28 am | by by Joel Hans, Associate Editor, IMPO | Blogs | Comments

I recently had the pleasure of traveling to Dallas at the request of Snap-On, the well-known manufacturer of all things tooling. At the event, they educated me and other members of the press on a tool crib that takes all of the hassle out of asset management. All tools removed from the crib are automatically detected by the system.

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Labels, Containers, And More

February 4, 2011 5:45 am IMPO Product Releases | Comments

Melmor Associates Inc. (Niles, OH) has added a new label holder line and material handling identification line. The label holder is a placard label holder, which enables the user to repetitively label returnable containers, pallet racks, and flock racks, without the mess of label and adhesive build-up.

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Indestructible Steam Hoses

February 4, 2011 5:44 am | Product Releases | Comments

Eaton Corporation (Eden Prairie, MN) has developed a new line of steam hose that was engineered to provide maximum safety. The Steam Slayer hose combines a chlorobutyl tube with high-tensile steel wire reinforcement and an Ethylene Proylene Diene Monomer (EPDM) cover to produce a hose with a 10:1 burst safety factor.

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Bolle Brings Eyewear To The U.S.

February 4, 2011 5:44 am | Product Releases | Comments

Bollé (Overland Park, KS) has announced the launch of its Bollé Safety product line to the U.S. safety eyewear market. According to the company, the line is known for its performance, style, and comfort. To support the launch, Bollé has reached a distribution agreement with Protective Industrial Products, Inc.

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Stop Cutting Hoses With Razor Blades

February 4, 2011 5:43 am | Product Releases | Comments

The TC-1 tube and hose cutter — from Beswick (Greenland, NH) is a precision tool for making square cuts, and uses chrome-plated metal for strength. A plastic coating is then applied to the handles to improve the feel. According to the company, the V-shaped head ensures straight cuts and prevents jagged edges, which makes it easier to use than a utility knife or razor.

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Obama Proposes Energy Efficiency Tax Credits

February 4, 2011 3:58 am | by Ben Feller, AP White House Correspondent | News | Comments

STATE COLLEGE, Pa. (AP) — President Barack Obama, turning briefly to his eclipsed domestic agenda Thursday, called on the nation's businesses to make fresh investments in clean energy technology that lay a foundation for long-term American prosperity. He proposed a new tax credit and other measures to encourage businesses to retrofit their plants and reduce costs — steps that he said would save $40 billion a year in utility bills.

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Photo Of The Week: American Productivity

February 4, 2011 3:47 am | News | Comments

In this Jan. 26, 2011 photo, Terri Lewis installs a fan on a diesel engine on the Volvo truck assembly line at the Volvo plant in Dublin, Va. The work force was more efficient last year with productivity rising at the fastest pace in eight years while labor costs fell for a second straight year, something that hasn't happened in nearly five decades.

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Prius Falls Hard From Top-Selling Spot In Japan

February 4, 2011 3:39 am | by Yuri Kageyama, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

TOKYO (AP) — Honda's Fit subcompact overtook Toyota's Prius gasoline-electric hybrid as Japan's top-selling car in January, its first return to that spot in nearly two years. The figures released Friday by the Japan Automobile Dealers Association show how the end of government subsidies for green cars have hurt sales of the Prius after holding the top spot in Japan for 20 straight months.

Wis. Meatpacker Settles Sex-Discrimination Lawsuit

February 4, 2011 3:36 am | by Dinesh Ramde, Associated Press | News | Comments

MILWAUKEE (AP) — A Wisconsin meatpacking company has agreed to pay $1.65 million to settle a sex-discrimination lawsuit accusing it of rejecting 970 female applicants over a two-year period, the U.S. Labor Department said Thursday. Green Bay Dressed Beef LLC will pay the money in the form of back pay, benefits and interest, Labor Department spokesman Scott Allen said.

Thousands Fraudulently File For Electric Vehicle Credits

February 4, 2011 3:34 am | by Ken Thomas, Associated Press | News | Comments

WASHINGTON (AP) — Car companies like General Motors and Nissan are slowly rolling out rechargeable electric cars. But that didn't stop thousands of U.S. taxpayers, including prisoners and some IRS employees, from incorrectly claiming lucrative tax credits for the electric vehicles last year. A Treasury Department inspector general report says nearly 13,000 taxpayers erroneously claimed about $33 million in credits for plug-in electric and alternative vehicles during the first six months of 2010.

U.S. Adds 36,000 Jobs, Unemployment Falls To 9 Percent

February 4, 2011 3:31 am | by Christopher S. Rugaber, AP Economics Writer | News | Comments

WASHINGTON (AP) — The unemployment rate dropped sharply last month to 9 percent, based on a government survey that found that more than a half-million people found work. A separate survey of company payrolls showed a scant increase of 36,000 net jobs as snowstorms likely hampered hiring. That survey doesn't count the self-employed.

A Trailer For Your Plant

February 3, 2011 7:20 am | Product Releases | Comments

Wheelift Systems (Waverly, IA) has announced its space-saving, self-propelled trailers (SPT) in capacities to 100 tons. According to the company, the trailers are ideal for in-plant operation in congested, confined areas, and narrow intersection aisles. In addition, they include computerized independent steering, on-center rotating front axles, remote control operation, a low-profile design, and onboard power generation.

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Everything You Need For Tube Fabrication

February 3, 2011 7:19 am | Product Releases | Comments

Parker Hannifin Corporation (Huntsville, AL) has created a package of tube fabrication tools for small bore tube assembly. The new package provides all the equipment necessary to successfully install tube fittings — both CPI and A-LOK — in various system applications, and includes benders, a cutter, a deburrer tool, a sawing vise with an integral hacksaw guide, and an inspection gauge.

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High-Efficiency Pumps

February 3, 2011 7:18 am | Product Releases | Comments

The TSFR Series Magnetic Drive Rotary Vane Pumps from Clark Solutions (Hudson, MA) are designed for applications such as heat exchange and process loops, where many hours of operation are required. The TSFR Pumps are AC-powered, have four speed selections, and are rated for continuous flow to 1,000 l/h (264gph).

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Burnishing Gets You LEED

February 3, 2011 7:17 am | Product Releases | Comments

Advance (Plymouth, MN) now offers battery and electric burnishers that meet requirements for sustainable cleaning equipment specified by LEED-EBOM, such as the Advolution 20BT battery burnisher and the Advolution 20XP electric burnisher. Both are available with active dust control, and operate at a sound level of less than 70 dBA.

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AMT Applauds Post Of Advisor To Obama Manufacturing Policy

February 3, 2011 4:49 am | News | Comments

Douglas K. Woods, AMT President McLean, Va. — AMT, The Association For Manufacturing Technology, applauds President Obama’s creation of a new post overseeing manufacturing policy. Ron Bloom was named Special Assistant to the President for Manufacturing Policy within the White House’s National Economic Council.

The Challenges Of Shutdowns-Turnarounds-Outages

February 3, 2011 4:37 am | by Kevin Duffy, Global Vice President of Operational Excellence at Kepner-Tregoe | Articles | Comments

The traditional view of operational STOs holds that they are maintenance and engineering events, which is a simplistic view held by many organizations. A more realistic and holistic perspective, however, recognizes that the impact and scope of STOs extend far beyond the maintenance and engineering functions, and can command significant capital and operating budgets.

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Tech Companies Side With Egypt Protesters

February 3, 2011 3:54 am | Videos | Comments

It's been hard to avoid coverage about the massive protests happening in Egypt right now, or the news that the government effectively activated an internet "kill switch," which cut off protesters from spreading images and video to the outside world. In an effort to help foster a democratic, open society in Egypt, technology companies like Google, and groups like Tor, have initiated projects to help get the word out in a variety of ways.

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Should The Gov't Regulate Our Salt?

February 3, 2011 3:29 am | Videos | Comments

For years, some have been pushing for more strict regulation on the amount of sodium that Americans consume on a daily basis. As everyone knows, a high-sodium diet can lead to high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and countless other health risks. So, should the government step in and force fast food chains and food processors to tone down the salt? 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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