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Daily industrial news and top headlines for plant and maintenance managers

Get Ready To Get Training

July 9, 2010 5:02 am | by by Joel Hans, Associate Editor, IMPO | Blogs | Comments

It’s true—some U.S. manufacturers are having trouble finding highly-skilled workers to fill available positions, according to a recent article from the New York Times . It sounds unbelievable. According to the most recent statistics , there are 14.6 million Americans looking for work.

Google, Microsoft, Apple Sued Over Smartphones

July 9, 2010 4:47 am | by Peter Svensson, AP Technology Writer | News | Comments

NEW YORK (AP) — The patent-holding company that won a settlement of more than $600 million from the maker of the BlackBerry said Friday it has sued six other makers of phones and phone software. Patent company NTP Inc. is suing Apple Inc., Google Inc., Microsoft Corp., HTC Corp., Motorola Inc.

Chrysler Recalls Cars For Brakes, Ford For Liners

July 9, 2010 4:43 am | by Ken Thomas, Associated Press Writer | News | Comments

WASHINGTON (AP) — The government says Chrysler is recalling about 22,000 sport utility vehicles and trucks to fix brake tubes that could lead to the loss of brake fluid. Ford Motor Co., meanwhile, is recalling more than 30,000 2010 Transit Connect vans to replace pushpins holding the liners above the driver's head.

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China's Sour Melamine Problem Continues

July 9, 2010 4:37 am | by Alexa Olesen, Associated Press Writer | News | Comments

BEIJING (AP) — Chinese officials have found large batches of milk powder laced with a deadly industrial chemical in at least three provinces that was apparently left over from a milk scandal in 2008 that killed six babies and sickened hundreds of thousands. The discovery shows that toxic milk remains a danger in China despite a crackdown in which dozens of people were arrested and two — a dairy farmer and a milk salesmen — were executed for producing or selling toxic milk.

Toyota Done With Apologies, Wants To 'Move Forward'

July 9, 2010 4:33 am | by Dan Strumpf, AP Auto Writer | News | Comments

NAGOYA, Japan (AP) — The president of Toyota Motor Corp. said he has spent the last year apologizing for the automaker's missteps and now hopes to lead the company past its recall crisis and restore confidence in its vehicles. Akio Toyoda, speaking to U.S. reporters on Friday, also reiterated the company's commitment to fuel-efficient vehicles and said the automaker is testing an electric car prototype with technology from Tesla Motors Inc.

Simple Blower Packages

July 8, 2010 6:33 am | Product Releases | Comments

AIRLANCO (Falls City, NE) Positive Displacement Blower Packages come in pressure, vacuum, and combination models to accommodate any dense phase pneumatic conveying situation. They are self-contained for easy installation and feature heavy-duty frames and adjustable motor bases, plus inlet and outlet silencers for a quieter working environment.

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Hone Your Soldering Skills

July 8, 2010 6:33 am IMPO Product Releases | Comments

Practical Components (Alamitos, CA) has released the WTK-1 Terminal and Wire training kit, which includes everything customers need to train and practice their wire soldering skills. The kit contains three different gauges of wire and five styles of terminals, representative of what is available in the marketplace.

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When Concrete Isn't Dense Enough

July 8, 2010 6:32 am | Product Releases | Comments

The LIQUID-HARD ULTRA lithium concrete densifier and chemical hardener from W.R. Meadows (Hampshire, IL) is a ready-to-use, colorless liquid, which dustproofs concrete at a molecular level, according to the company. The finished surface offers an improvement in abrasion and chemical resistance and will improve the durability the surface compared to untreated concrete.

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Vibration Recording In High-Definition

July 8, 2010 6:31 am | Product Releases | Comments

LUDECA, INC. (Doral, FL) introduces VIBXPERT //, the latest addition to the PRUEFTECHNIK family of portable route-based vibration data collectors. The VIBXPERT // combines the advantages of a rapid processor with a brilliant energy-efficient color VGA display, plus a rugged and lightweight construction.

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A Small Town's Big Cheese

July 8, 2010 4:15 am | by Krystal Gabert, Editor, Food Manufacturing | Articles | Comments

With over 100 years of experience and a commitment to local dairy production, Westby Cooperative Creamery has kept one foot planted in the traditions of the past and a keen eye on the future. A small, Midwestern town, Westby, Wisconsin covers just over two square miles, and a sign at the edge of town announces, “Population: 2,045.

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Apple's Other Co-Founder

July 7, 2010 10:43 am | Articles | Comments

Did you know there was a third co-founder of Apple? Just a mere 11 days after he helped form the company with fellow co-counders Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak, Ron Wayne sold his 10-percent share in the company for $800. If he had only known what the future held for Apple, Wayne's share of the company would be worth about $20 billion today.

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Use A 'Bat Hook' To Steal Power

July 7, 2010 7:29 am | Articles | Comments

You're out in the middle of nowhere, with no outlet in sight, but you need a little juice to power a gadget or two. What used to be an impossible sitation is now a reality thanks to the engineers at the U.S. Air Force, who developed a "bat hook" that can be tossed over nearby power lines. A small razor blade cuts through the insulation and completes the circuit, which brings electricity down to the user.

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Homemade Fusion Power

July 7, 2010 6:44 am | Articles | Comments

According to almost any physicist you ask, creating a fusion reaction that will output more energy than it consumes — not unlike our sun — is well beyond our scientific reach at the moment. Just don't say that to Mark Supez. He's spent $37,000 of his own money, and two years of his time, to build a miniature fusion reactor that gets us a little closer to the energy "holy grail.

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Can The Grid Handle Electrics?

July 7, 2010 6:44 am | Articles | Comments

With more electric cars coming to the market, one has to ask: will the grid be able to handle the extra load? Experts say that charging an electric car draws the same amount of energy as half the average house, which means that as few as three Teslas or Nissan Leafs on one block could overload a nearby transformer.

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Engineering Fatter Consumers

July 7, 2010 6:43 am | Articles | Comments

Have you ever wondered why certain foods are just so edible? Let's be honest — if you're like most people, you just keep on eating instead. And that's exactly what the food industry wants you to do. The Today Show takes a look at food engineering and the effects that some foods may have on consumers’ brains.

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Solar Plane Takes First 24-Hour Flight

July 7, 2010 4:44 am | by Frank Jordans, Associated Press Writer | News | Comments

GENEVA (AP) — An experimental solar-powered plane whose makers hope to one day circle the globe using only energy collected from the sun took off for its first 24-hour test flight Wednesday. The plane with its 262.5-foot (80-meter) wingspan left Payerne airfield in Switzerland shortly before 7 a.

EPA Hopes To Tighten Bush-Era Pollution Restrictions

July 7, 2010 4:42 am | by Matthew Daly, Associated Press Writer | News | Comments

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Obama administration is proposing a new rule to tighten restrictions on pollution from coal-burning power plants in the eastern half of the country, a key step to cut emissions that cause smog. The Environmental Protection Agency said Tuesday the new rule represented its most consequential effort yet to tackle deadly pollution that contributes to smog and soot that hangs over more than half the country.

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FDA Approves First In-Eye Telescope

July 7, 2010 4:39 am | by Lauran Neergaard, AP Medical Writer | News | Comments

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. health officials have approved a first-of-its-kind technology to counter a leading cause of blindness in older adults — a tiny telescope implanted inside the eye. The Implantable Miniature Telescope aims to help in the end stages of incurable age-related macular degeneration, a creeping loss of central vision that blocks reading, watching TV, eventually even recognizing faces.

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Toyota Learns To Take Its Time With New Vehicles

July 7, 2010 4:38 am | by Dan Strumpf, AP Auto Writer | News | Comments

TOYOTA, Japan (AP) — Toyota Motor Corp. is extending the time it takes to develop new vehicles by about four weeks for more quality checks in the wake of its massive safety-related recalls, a top executive said Wednesday. Executive Vice President Takeshi Uchiyamada said the company has learned a lot from its recalls of more than 8.

Executives Charged For Running Bankrupt Company

July 7, 2010 4:32 am | News | Comments

SALEM, S.D. (AP) — Two men at the helm of Salem's largest employer when it collapsed into bankruptcy now face criminal charges. Randy Bauer, 52, of Appleton, Wis., and Jason Ollerich, 37, of Sioux Falls, each are charged with four counts of theft by deception, Attorney General Marty Jackley said.

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