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Daily industrial news and top headlines for plant and maintenance managers

Rival Pirates Have Shootout Aboard Combustible Oil Tanker

January 18, 2010 4:03 am | by Malkhadir M. Muhumed, Associated Press Writer | News | Comments

NAIROBI, Kenya (AP) — Two rival groups of Somali pirates had a shootout just before a ransom was delivered to free a supertanker loaded with combustible crude oil, prompting the pirates onboard to call the anti-piracy force for help, a European Union naval spokesman said Monday. Helicopters dispatched from a warship ended the standoff that could have caused a catastrophic explosion aboard the Maran Centaurus, which is carrying about 2 million barrels of crude oil that was destined for the United States.

N.H. Leaders Rally Against New Pollution Regulations

January 18, 2010 3:50 am | News | Comments

MANCHESTER, N.H. (AP) — Some New Hampshire business leaders say proposed new federal air pollution regulations could put more than half the state in violation of clean air laws. Michael Licata of the Business and Industry Association tells the New Hampshire Union Leader members should be concerned by the proposal, which was announced Jan.

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Updated Chevy Aveo, Ford Focus Steal Spotlight In Detroit

January 18, 2010 3:46 am | by Tom Krisher, AP Auto Writer | News | Comments

DETROIT (AP) — More than any auto show in recent memory, the new cars rolled out this week out at the Detroit auto show will redefine what we drive in the future. As the show opened to the public on Saturday, small cars that push the previous limits on gas mileage, performance, quality and looks took the spotlight.

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Montana Seeks Emergency Grant For Smurfit-Stone Workers

January 18, 2010 3:41 am | News | Comments

FRENCHTOWN, Mont. (AP) — Montana labor officials are applying for a federal emergency grant to help businesses and workers affected by the closure of the Smurfit-Stone Container Corp. linerboard plant in Frenchtown. Montana Department of Labor program manager Kathy Yankoff says the grant would protect the state's dislocated worker funds from being depleted.

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Fisker Raises $115 Million For High-Tech Hybrids

January 18, 2010 3:38 am | by Dan Strumpf, AP Auto Writer | News | Comments

NEW YORK (AP) — Fisker Automotive, a high-tech startup company, said Friday it has raised $115.3 million to develop high-end hybrid cars, bringing it closer to accessing a government loan it won last year. Fisker spokesman Russell Datz said the money brings the company close to being able to tap a $528.

Tyson Sued, Loses For "Raised Without Antibiotics" Farce

January 18, 2010 3:37 am | News | Comments

BALTIMORE, Md. (AP) — A judge has given preliminary approval to a settlement in a lawsuit that involves the nation's largest poultry producer, Tyson Foods Inc. The company would pay consumers $5 million in refunds to settle a lawsuit accusing the company of falsely claiming that its chickens were "raised without antibiotics.

What's In Your Paint?

January 15, 2010 11:11 am | Articles | Comments

The motto “any publicity is good publicity” is not always the case. Imagine picking up the Sunday paper and seeing the headline, “Popular Retailer Recalls Millions of Children’s Toys.” Then, imagine the popular retailer in the article is you.

Automation As An Investment

January 15, 2010 7:30 am | by Paul J. Galeski, Maverick Technologies | Articles | Comments

As every business executive knows all too well, high-return, low-risk investments are hard — if not impossible — to find these days. The economy continues to look uncertain at best, with the stock market having reached its lowest level in many years and numerous companies declaring bankruptcy, including American icons like General Motors and Chrysler.

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The Benefits of Deploying AC Drives

January 15, 2010 7:06 am | by Jacob Kimball, AC Drives Product Specialist, Schneider Electric | Articles | Comments

Variable speed AC drives are crucial in food and beverage manufacturing to improve energy efficiency, but that's just the beginning. For example, predictive downtime capabilities built into an AC drive reduce process downtime potential. This benefit can help avoid missed deadlines and product spoilage, while increasing cost savings.

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Wireless Marches On...

January 15, 2010 7:06 am | by Bob Karschnia, Vice President of Wireless, Emerson Process Management | Articles | Comments

The use of wireless technology to reduce engineering and construction costs while increasing productivity is being realized by more and more chemical companies. In that vein, Emerson has added a number of new products and solutions, including full redundancy, which enables further wireless adoption for control and critical monitoring applications.

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Ergonomic Relief For Tough-To-Reach Spots

January 15, 2010 5:52 am | Product Releases | Comments

The compact Tool Box Kneeler from Bennette Design Group and ErgoPads (Millis, MA) is made of soft, but supportive foam, and helps increase comfort for employees who have to work on their knees. The Kneeler also fits inside most toolboxes, allowing for easy transport and storage, and is made from a black, rugged “closed cell” foam that hides stains and dirt.

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Tensioning, Simplified

January 15, 2010 5:51 am | Product Releases | Comments

The Tensioner, a ready-to-mount tension mechanism from Misumi USA (Schaumburg, IL), helps reduce design and assembly time for end users. The product comes as a fully assembled unit, complete with slotted holes and adjustment screws for easy mounting, installation, and tension control.

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Thermoplastic Go-Anywhere Springs

January 15, 2010 5:50 am | Product Releases | Comments

Lee Spring (Brooklyn, NY) introduces LeeP Plastic Composite Springs, which combine the strength of metal with the special attributes of high-performing engineered thermoplastics. The springs are fabricated from distinctive formations of Ultem* PEI resins, and are stocked in a variety of standard sizes, each available in a variety of strengths.

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Squeaky Clean Conduits

January 15, 2010 5:47 am | Product Releases | Comments

General Machine Products Company, Inc. (GMP, Trevose, PA) announces the Heavy Duty Stiff Spine Conduit Cleaners to its line of underground cable placement tools and equipment. The cleaners are designed to remove obstructions like dirt, ash, sand, oxides, and debris from utility conduits.

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Miss. Lawmakers Impatient Over Toyota Back Rent

January 15, 2010 3:54 am | by Shelia Byrd, Associated Press Writer | News | Comments

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — Some Mississippi legislators are becoming impatient about the interest payments Toyota Motor Corp. is expected to make on money the state borrowed to bring a $1 billion car plant in Blue Springs. State Treasurer Tate Reeves told lawmakers during a fiscal briefing at the Capitol on Thursday that discussions are ongoing about when the automaker would begin making payments.

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Food Manufacturer Expands Nationwise Listeria Recall

January 15, 2010 3:40 am | News | Comments

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — A Minnesota food company its expanding its voluntary nationwide recall. The Minnesota Department of Agriculture says Parkers Farm took that action after the department determined that all products made at the company's Coon Rapids plant may have been contaminated with the Listeria monocytogenes bacteria.

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World's Cheapest 'Nano' Car Readied For U.S. Sale

January 15, 2010 3:36 am | by Tom Krisher, AP Auto Writer | News | Comments

DETROIT (AP) — The world's cheapest car is being readied for sale in the U.S., but by the time India's Tata Nano is retrofitted to meet emissions and safety standards, it won't be that cheap. Tata Technologies Ltd., the global engineering arm of the Tata group conglomerate, brought the tiny car to Detroit as a publicity stunt for the engineering group.

Judge Ends FDA Blockade On E-Cigarette Imports

January 15, 2010 3:31 am | by Pete Yost, Associated Press Writer | News | Comments

WASHINGTON (AP) — A federal judge said Thursday the Food and Drug Administration cannot stop shipments of electronic cigarettes into the United States. The preliminary ruling by U.S. District Judge Richard Leon came as California Attorney General Jerry Brown sought in a state court to halt one company's sale of electronic cigarettes.

Montana Town Stranded After Smurfit Paper Mill Closure

January 15, 2010 3:30 am | News | Comments

FRENCHTOWN, Mont. (AP) — Residents of the Frenchtown Valley in western Montana are wondering what the future holds for the region now that the Smurfit-Stone Container Corp. paper mill has closed. About 70 people gathered for a meeting at a Frenchtown high school auditorium Thursday night to talk with community leaders about the impact the loss of 417 jobs will have on the region.

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Johnson & Johnson Recalls More Moldy Tylenol

January 15, 2010 3:29 am | News | Comments

NEW YORK (AP) — Johnson & Johnson is again expanding a recall of Tylenol caplets due to a moldy smell that made some users sick. The company says the problem also affects some lots of its fever and pain drug Motrin. The company's McNeil Consumer Healthcare Products business said the voluntarily recall applies to some batches of Tylenol caplets, geltabs, arthritis treatments, rapid release, and extended relief Tylenol, as well as Motrin IB, chewable extra strength Rolaids, Benadryl allergy tablets, and St.

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