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Daily industrial news and top headlines for plant and maintenance managers

A New Kind Of Intelligence

September 23, 2010 12:06 pm | by Brick By Brick | Articles | Comments

Earlier this summer, Boral Bricks Inc., the nation’s largest brick manufacturer and distributor of masonry products, announced its Terre Haute, IN manufacturing facility had received LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Gold certification from the U.S.

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Increase Sales By Adding New Services

September 23, 2010 11:20 am | by Mike Collins | Articles | Comments

In order to take a progressive approach to new opportunities, begin thinking about purchasing the things you make from the customer’s point of view. Often, the customer must spend time, effort, and money figuring out how to buy your products, use your product, maintain it, store it, train their people on it, upgrade it, and dispose of it.

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Q&A With Phil Roether, AME

September 23, 2010 11:02 am | Articles | Comments

AME’s “Rebirth of Manufacturing Jobs” is built on growing the manufacturing sector and manufacturing employment in North America. Manufacturing job growth provides jobs both in the manufacturing sector but also creates the demand for services creating more jobs. In a Nov 20-22, 2009 Gallop poll, respondents rated “Keep manufacturing jobs here” as the best way to create more U.

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Maintenance Considerations For Condensate Removal From Compressed Air Systems

September 23, 2010 10:27 am | by Lester V. Ottinger, President/CEO, Drain-All, Inc. | Articles | Comments

There is a critical, ongoing need to reduce maintenance costs, especially considering companies are being attacked by global competition and such savings go straight to the bottom line. One way to reduce costs is to conduct a survey of the condensate removal approach for your compressed air system.

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Quilting Together A Better Company

September 23, 2010 9:43 am | by Joel Hans, Associate Editor, IMPO | Articles | Comments

Somewhere between the IT offices and the plant floor at Hy-Capacity, Inc. of Humboldt, Iowa, hangs a quilt that serves to remind employees of the multi-faceted and collaborative spirit that makes for a strong company. Many years ago, Hy-Capacity — a remanufacturer and refurbisher of farm equipment parts from the likes of John Deere, Caterpillar, and AGCO — launched an initiative to become leaner, more energy-efficient, and more environmentally-friendly.

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Solidified No More

September 23, 2010 9:05 am | Product Releases | Comments

Material Transfer & Storage, Inc. (Allegan, MI) has developed a new system that utilizes hydraulically-actuated pivoting conditioning arms and a rotary lift table to safely and efficiently return solidified materials to a free-flowing state. The system’s frames penetrate deeply into the material for a more effective operation, and the lift table rotates and positions the bulk bag for material conditioning.

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More Choices Can Be Simpler

September 23, 2010 9:03 am | Product Releases | Comments

The Side Mount Series of reels from Coxreels (Tempe, AR) adds a multi-position guide arm for convenient hose control. The SG Series features a simple two-bolt mounting pattern for easy installation on vertical flat surfaces and is ideal for tight spaces — including tool benches, vehicle lifts, walls, and more — according to the company.

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Mastering Bin Headroom

September 23, 2010 9:02 am | Product Releases | Comments

BinMaster (Lincoln, NE) Level Controls has introduced a series of extended rotaries for top-of-bin mounting when the rotary is used as a high level alarm. For certain applications, BinMaster can custom-manufacture extended rotaries, offering custom lengths up to 144”. These systems help allow users to maintain a certain amount of headroom when filling a bin with solid materials.

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Become A Better Tracker

September 23, 2010 9:01 am | Product Releases | Comments

Huntron, Inc. (Eindoven, The Netherlands) and JTAG Technologies have announced the integration of their test methods within Huntron’s range of prober-enhanced analog signature analysis products. The “Huntron Tracker” allows users to take advantage of advancements that allow PCBs to be tested using built-in logic circuits.

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Minimizing The Risks Of Business Termination

September 23, 2010 4:52 am | by Roberta F. Howell, Attorney, Foley Lardner LLP | Articles | Comments

Terminating a business relationship can be difficult and costly, but sometimes necessary. This is the first of four columns that will discuss how a supplier can minimize the risks of termination at various stages of the relationship, starting at the beginning. Later columns will focus on similar issues during the relationship, when first considering termination, and, finally, when termination becomes inevitable.

Quitting Technology Cold Turkey

September 22, 2010 12:10 pm | Videos | Comments

One way to address and overcome one's insatiable need and overreliance on technology is to put down the connecting devices and take a break from them. But New York comedian Mark Malkoff took this idea to the extreme when he quit technology — cold turkey — for five days and quarantined himself in his apartment bathroom to prevent a tech relapse.

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Building The 1,000-Horsepower Car

September 22, 2010 12:03 pm | Videos | Comments

The Bugatti Veyron carries a certain weight among car enthusiasts. Just the name is suggestive of raw power and incredible speed. It should come as no surprise that a multi-million-dollar car is built by hand, in an equally expensive-looking manufacturing facility. 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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Was Neglect To Blame For Gas Pipeline Explosion?

September 22, 2010 12:01 pm | Videos | Comments

By now, we've all heard about the tragedy in San Bruno, CA, where a large natural gas pipeline exploded. Seven have died, and dozens of homes were damaged, some irreparably. Recently, a number of people have come out and accused the pipeline's owner, PG&E, of neglecting regular maintenance. Was there more the utility company could have done to prevent the explosion? 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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Boeing Soars Into Private Space Industry

September 22, 2010 11:59 am | Videos | Comments

Boeing has decided to throw their multi-billion and international hat into the private space travel market with a number of R&D efforts, and it’s bound to make a few of the smaller companies quiver in their boots, or booster rockets. While experts say Boeing's efforts could be available come 2015, we know that actually means more like 2018 or 2019.

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Locals Blame Oil For Massive Gulf Fish Kill

September 22, 2010 11:57 am | Videos | Comments

Countless Gulf fish were found dead in a Louisiana bayou, and locals fear oil is to blame. While more testing is required to confirm the cause of death, it's entirely plausible that an underwater oil plume could cause this sort of environmental damage. 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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Cessna To Cut Another 700 Jobs In 2010

September 22, 2010 5:05 am | by Roxana Hegemana, Associated Press Writer | News | Comments

WICHITA, Kan. (AP) — Cessna Aircraft announced Tuesday it will cut another 700 jobs, saying it has not seen the growth and recovery that it expected this year. Cessna CEO Jack Pelton told workers in an e-mail that the company's performance mirrored the "lackluster economy." "While cancellations have slowed, the recovery and growth we expected to see throughout the year have not materialized, and the timing of any recovery remains uncertain," Pelton wrote.

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R&D Is A Company's Lifeblood

September 22, 2010 5:00 am | Articles | Comments

Michelle Brand, business director of DSM Somos, a global materials supplier that provides the stereolithography resins used in 3D models and prototypes recently spoke with Production Design & Development, IMPO’s sister publication, and discussed what she felt is a company’s life-blood, and how the “almighty drive to keep cost down creates an end-state detrimental to humanity.

Congressman: Did J&J Lie About Its 'Phantom Recall'?

September 22, 2010 4:59 am | by Matthew Perrone, AP health Writer | News | Comments

WASHINGTON (AP) — Scrutiny of drug and consumer product giant Johnson & Johnson ratcheted up Tuesday as a congressional chairman demanded the company provide proof of its claim that federal regulators cleared a plan to secretly buy up defective painkillers. The letter from Rep. Edolphus "Ed" Towns, D-N.

'Horrified' Egg Exec Apologizes For Salmonella Outbreak

September 22, 2010 4:53 am | by Mary Clare Jalonick, Associated Press Writer | News | Comments

WASHINGTON (AP) — The owner of an Iowa egg company says in testimony prepared for a House hearing that he was "horrified" to learn that his eggs may have sickened as many as 1,600 people in an outbreak of salmonella poisoning this summer. Austin "Jack" DeCoster and his son, Peter DeCoster, are scheduled to testify before a House Energy and Commerce subcommittee Wednesday.

OSHA: Spartech 'Inviting Tragedy' With Safety Violations

September 22, 2010 4:51 am | News | Comments

EVANSTON, Ill. (AP) — Federal authorities have cited an Evanston plastics company that they say endangered employees through 16 serious safety violations. The action against Spartech Plastics LLC comes from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration. OSHA says the company exposed workers to unguarded machinery and electrocution and amputation hazards.

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