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Daily industrial news and top headlines for plant and maintenance managers

Ford Repays $4 Billion Of Staggering Debt

June 30, 2010 4:28 am | by Tom Krisher, AP Auto Writer | News | Comments

DETROIT (AP) — Ford Motor Co., the only Detroit automaker to avoid bankruptcy protection, said Wednesday it will reduce its huge debt by another $4 billion as it continues to show signs of financial strength. The Dearborn, Mich., automaker will pay $3.8 billion in cash to a United Auto Workers trust fund that pays retiree health care bills, and it will pay out $255 million in dividends on preferred securities that had been deferred as the automaker worked its way through financial troubles.

Obama Visits Hard-Hit Wis. Manufacturing City

June 30, 2010 4:26 am | by Scott Bauer, Associated Press Writer | News | Comments

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — If President Barack Obama wants to see a community hard hit by the recession, there's not many places better in Wisconsin than where he's coming Wednesday. Obama invited the public to attend a round table discussion on the economy in Racine, a city suffering under 14.

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Immigration Agents Raid Calif. Manufacturing Plant

June 30, 2010 4:25 am | News | Comments

FULLERTON, Calif. (AP) — Federal immigration agents have taken 43 people into custody following a raid at a Fullerton manufacturing plant. Immigration and Customs Enforcement spokeswoman Lori Haley says federal agents executed a search warrant Tuesday morning at Terra Universal Inc. Haley says the 43 people taken into custody are suspected of being in the country illegally.

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My Problem With Speculative Currency Traders

June 29, 2010 11:29 am | by Gordon Styles, Engineer & Managing Director, Star Prototype | Articles | Comments

Star Prototype China is owned and run by Gordon Styles, British businessman and engineer. In 1993, Styles began building what became the U.K.’s largest rapid prototyping technology (RPT) company, which he later sold. Styles then founded Star Prototype — a full service RPT bureau that specializes in rapid prototyping, urethanes, CNC machining, rapid tooling and molding — in 2005 with the intention of offering western clients the opportunity to use a reliable and high-quality rapid prototyping and rapid manufacturing supplier in China.

Video Gets Portable

June 29, 2010 7:33 am | Product Releases | Comments

Lenox Instrument Company (Trevose, PA) announces the Portable Videoscope System that combines video technology, cordless operation, compact portability, and rugged durability. The system is well-suited for inspection of turbines, airframes, process tanks and vessels, tubing, heat exchanges, hydraulic cylinders, and more.

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Fans In Small Spaces

June 29, 2010 7:33 am | Product Releases | Comments

The AMI Motorized Axial Fans from Continental Fan (Buffalo, NY) are suited to applications where space is limited due to the coupling of the motor and impeller, which also provides for vibration-free operation. The AMI fans are speed controllable, and both the motor and impeller are located directly in the air stream, where the impeller acts as a rotating “heat sink.

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See The Smallest Defects

June 29, 2010 7:32 am | Product Releases | Comments

The In-Sight 5605 from Cognex Corporation (Natick, MA) is a high-resolution self-contained vision system that can see very small defects, even in a large field of view. The In-Sight 5605 offers a full 5 megapixel resolution, support for Gigabit Ethernet communications, and an IP67 rating to withstand dust and washdown environments.

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A Different Kind Of Doctor

June 29, 2010 7:31 am | Product Releases | Comments

Kadant Solutions (Auburn, MA) has extended its doctoring product line to include drum flaking applications with its new ProFlake doctor blade line. The blade uses a bi-metal technology for longer blade life, reduced operating costs, and improved flaker performance. In addition, they’re available in a variety of widths, thicknesses, and bevel configurations.

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Invoice Processing Goes Hi-Tech

June 29, 2010 5:38 am | Articles | Comments

The Situation Perishable Distributors of Iowa, Ltd. (PDI) is a wholly owned subsidiary of HyVee, Inc., Iowa’s largest employer. PDI is one of the nation’s largest food distribution companies, supplying more than 5,000 perishable food products including fresh chicken, beef, and pork; seafood; boxed frozen foods; bakery, dairy and deli products to grocery customers in eight Midwest states.

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Look To Aerospace For The Materials Of Tomorrow

June 29, 2010 5:38 am | by Michael R. Favaloro, Ticona Technical Marketing Manager, Fortron PPS Composites, Americas | Articles | Comments

Aerospace is a great industry to monitor for trends: What developments today might we be able to translate into innovations in other industries tomorrow, especially those involving materials? One material trend that is revolutionizing the aerospace industry in terms of reducing vehicle weight and achieving fuel savings is especially interesting.

U.S. Officials: Oil Spill Proves We Need 'Green' Energy

June 29, 2010 5:06 am | by Adam Schreck, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

ABU DHABI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — A senior American energy official said Tuesday the oil gushing into the Gulf of Mexico dramatically illustrates the need for investment into renewable sources of energy. David Sandalow, an assistant energy secretary, spoke during a visit to the capital of the United Arab Emirates, an OPEC member that is pumping some of its vast oil wealth into green technology.

ConAgra Consumes American Pie

June 29, 2010 4:52 am | News | Comments

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — ConAgra Foods Inc. said Tuesday it completed its acquisition of American Pie LLC, a maker of desserts and frozen dinners under the Marie Callender's and Claim Jumper brand names. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. American Pie makes pies, fruit cobblers and pie crusts under license from Marie Callender's and Claim Jumper.

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CarMax CEO: Auto Recovery Won't Be Full-Throttle

June 29, 2010 4:40 am | by Michael Felberbaum, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — CarMax Inc. CEO Tom Folliard is expecting the recovery of the worst U.S. auto sales market in decades is going to be slower than some others foresee. The head of the Richmond-based used car dealership chain told shareholders at its annual meeting in Richmond that customers are starting to return and sales are improving, but not at pre-recession levels.

Tesla's IPO Opens At $17, Now Known As 'TSLA'

June 29, 2010 4:37 am | by Dan Strumpf, AP Auto Writer | News | Comments

NEW YORK (AP) — Tesla Motors Inc. said Monday its shares were priced at $17 each, above what it expected. The electric car startup plans to launch its initial public offering of stock on Tuesday. The Palo Alto, Calif., company is offering 13.3 million shares, meaning it raised $226.1 million at the $17-a-share price.

Foxconn Plans 300,000-Worker Plant Amid Criticism

June 29, 2010 4:35 am | by Elaine Kurtenbach, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

SHANGHAI (AP) — Foxconn Technology, a supplier to Apple Inc., looks ready to build a huge new factory in north-central China despite the company's own misgivings about city-sized manufacturing facilities after a spate of suicides among its young migrant work force. The company plans to recruit some 300,000 workers for the new plant, to be located in the Henan city of Hebei, according to a notice seen Tuesday on a local government website.

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FAA Lackadaisical On Boeing Cockpit Fires

June 29, 2010 4:34 am | by Joan Lowy and Joshua Freed, Associated Press Writers | News | Comments

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. federal aviation officials have known for years that cockpit window heaters in some Boeing planes catch fire. But they haven't required airlines to fix the problem, even after dozens of incidents that unnerved pilots and, in some cases, forced emergency landings. Pilots have complained about heaters that burned, smoldered or sent electric currents dancing across cockpit windows since at least 2002, according to an Associated Press search of a NASA aviation safety database.

Real-Time pH And Temperature

June 28, 2010 6:47 am | Product Releases | Comments

Omega Engineering (Stamford, CT) has developed the OM-CP-PHTEMP2000 series data logger, which is a battery-powered standalone pH and temperature data logger. A large LCD display is also standard. The logger collects data in real-time and features programmable engineering units, programmable start-times, and automatic temperature compensation.

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Industrial Sanitation

June 28, 2010 6:47 am | Product Releases | Comments

STOKO Skin Care (Greensboro, NC) offers a variety of ethanol-based hand sanitizers for use when typical hand-and-soap washing is not possible or feasible, such as in industrial environments. The Gel Instant Hand Sanitizer provides rapid germ-killing activity when hand-washing facilities are not readily available.

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Flashproof Liquid Leveling

June 28, 2010 6:46 am | Product Releases | Comments

A magnetic liquid level indicator from the Clark-Reliance Corporation (Strongsville, OH) has a unique design that addresses two serious problems that can be encountered with standard level indicators: boiling fluids and flashing vapors. The Jerguson Magnicator II FlashProof gages ensure an optimized magnetic field in close proximity to the indicator, transmitter, or switches.

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Work Lamps Reimagined

June 28, 2010 6:45 am | Product Releases | Comments

Grote Industries (Madison, IN) has developed a new version of its Trilliant 36 LED WhiteLight Conversion Bulb, which is designed to operate in adverse conditions where sodium chloride, high humidity, and other corrosive elements wreak havoc on most PAR 36 incandescent work lamps.

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