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IMPO Insider

Daily industrial news and top headlines for plant and maintenance managers

Consumer Reports Lifts 'Don't Buy' Lexus Rating

May 7, 2010 4:31 am | by Tom Krisher, AP Auto Writer | News | Comments

DETROIT (AP) — Consumer Reports magazine is lifting a "Don't Buy" recommendation for a Lexus sport utility vehicle that failed an emergency handling test. The magazine said Friday that the 2010 Lexus GX 460 luxury SUV passed the test after a dealership updated software that runs its electronic stability control system.

S. Korean Electric Automaker Plans $50M Hawaii Plant

May 7, 2010 4:28 am | by Mark Niesse, Associated Press Writer | News | Comments

HONOLULU (AP) — South Korean electric car manufacturer CT&T announced plans Thursday to build an assembly plant in Hawaii that will eventually produce up to 10,000 vehicles a year and employ as many as 400 people. The plant would make small two-seaters that reach speeds up to 40 mph and be deployed onto Hawaii's city and neighborhood roads.

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Doctors Reattach Arm Lost In BMW Industrial Accident

May 7, 2010 4:27 am | News | Comments

GREER, S.C. (AP) — Doctors have reattached the arm of a worker at the BMW plant in South Carolina who had the limb severed in a workplace accident. Multiple media outlets reported the employee had his arm severed between the elbow and wrist Wednesday morning at the plant in Greer. BMW spokesman Bobby Hitt says the man was driving a device similar to a forklift when he went through a doorway and his arm struck a beam and was severed.

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BP Workers Ease Containment Dam Into Gulf

May 7, 2010 4:26 am | by Harry R. Weber and Tamara Lush, Associated Press Writers | News | Comments

The containment vessel is lowered into the Gulf of Mexico at the site of the Deepwater Horizon rig collapse, Thursday, May 6, 2010. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert) ON THE GULF OF MEXICO (AP) — Workers eased a giant concrete-and-steel box into the Gulf of Mexico late Thursday, starting the long process of lowering the contraption over the blown-out oil well at the bottom of the sea in an untested bid to capture most of the gushing crude and avert a wider environmental disaster.

Wireless Sensors In Real-Time

May 6, 2010 12:23 pm | by Aaron LaJoie, Electrochem Solutions | Articles | Comments

The ability to make real-time decisions based on pressure, temperature or flow measurements while a process is running can provide significant advantages in a measurement and control system. These advantages can be expressed in different ways, such as cost savings through improved resource management or reduced reliability upon mobile workers.

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When 'Slackers' Take Over Manufacturing

May 6, 2010 10:01 am | by by Joel Hans, Associate Editor, IMPO | Blogs | Comments

We all know that manufacturing has an old age problem . Something has to be done—and rather quickly—to fill in the massive gaps that the Boomers will leave in this industry once they retire. One of the main initiatives to solve this crisis of sorts is to market manufacturing as a career option for the members of Generation Y, of which I am a part.

Bench Press 1,320 Pounds

May 6, 2010 8:53 am | Product Releases | Comments

Gorbel Inc. (Fishers, NY) has expanded their line of G-Force Q and iQ Intelligent Lifting Devices to include a 1,320lb capacity unit. The G-Force technology combines the responsiveness and flexibility of a human operator with the mechanical power of a machine, according to Gorbel, and can make a workforce more productive by enabling them to safely perform complex lifting and handling tasks.

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A Manufacturing Photo Shoot

May 6, 2010 8:52 am IMPO Product Releases | Comments

The latest photoelectric sensors from Balluff (Florence, KY) are designed to detect issues such as skew, material shifts, object alignment, and web material drag—all issues that force production levels to be less than optimal. The EdgeMaster comes in four types, the first of which is the BAV MA series, with a fixed dual-optical axis edge detection system.

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Get Supplied

May 6, 2010 8:51 am | Product Releases | Comments

Reid Supply Company (Muskegon, MI) has revamped their full-color 2010-2011 catalog with new smart categorization. According to the company, these new categories will help customers find the products they need out of the 900-page catalog. The color-coded categories include fasteners and hardware, leveling devices, material handling, MRO supplies, safety equipment, and more.

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Optimizing Your Production Systems Engineering

May 6, 2010 7:09 am | by Amanda Earing, News Editor, Manufacturing.Net | Articles | Comments

Why can’t we do a better job of system design? Isn’t there some way to minimize design AND operating costs? Can’t we find a means to eliminate the need for piecemeal continuous improvement? If you find yourself asking these questions, then perhaps Production Systems Engineering: Cost and Performance Optimization is the answer you’re looking for.

The Improvising, Marimba-Playing Robot

May 5, 2010 10:17 am | Articles | Comments

This is probably one of the more unique and interesting robots we've featured in the IMPO Insider . Shimon plays alongside human musicians and knows how to improvise based on what his bandmates are playing. Change up the tune, and Shimon follows right along. Time for a solo? Shimon backs off the keys and waits for his turn in the spotlight.

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Your Sweet Tooth Could Kill You

May 5, 2010 10:12 am | Articles | Comments

Added sugar. It's in a lot of what we eat, but most people don’t think twice about it. A tablespoon here and there can’t hurt, right? It turns out the average American eats 156 pounds of added sugar every year, which disgustingly adds up to an entire wheelbarrow . And the foods you think are "healthy" can be packed with sugar, too.

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Wind Is Cheap, But Costs Far Too Much

May 5, 2010 10:05 am | Articles | Comments

Wind power has a number of great advantages over the likes of coal, but it still hasn't gained a significant foothold in the American energy market. While wind used to provide a pretty dismal ROI, with a number successful of turbine manufacturers ramping up production, that really isn't the case anymore.

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BP Not Fazed By Massive Oil Spill

May 5, 2010 9:55 am | Articles | Comments

CNN's John Roberts speaks to Doug Suttles, COO of BP's exploration and production division about the options BP has to stop the 5,000 barrel-per-day leak. There are rumors the well could leak as much as 60,000 barrels of oil a day, so what is BP doing to stem the tide? It's called a coffer dam, a massive construction of steel and concrete that will be placed deep in the ocean, right above the leaking well.

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Beer Production, Consuption Goes Flat In 2010

May 5, 2010 5:02 am | by Greg Keller, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

PARIS (AP) — Anheuser-Busch InBev SA, the world's largest brewer and maker of Budweiser, said Wednesday its first quarter profit fell 34 percent to $475 million as global beer sales remained stagnant and were not forecast to rebound in 2010. AB InBev made a $716 million profit a year earlier.

Boeing To Pay $2 Million Settlement, Restore Fish Habitat

May 5, 2010 4:56 am | News | Comments

SEATTLE (AP) — The Boeing Co. has agreed to restore fish habitat in Seattle's Duwamish Waterway and pay $2 million to settle federal charges that it broke environmental laws by dumping oil and other toxic substances. The settlement was filed Tuesday in federal court in Seattle. Boeing agreed to undertake two habitat restoration projects to benefit migrating juvenile salmon and other fish and birds.

In Your Hands

May 5, 2010 4:53 am | by by Carrie Ellis, Editor, Chem.Info | Blogs | Comments

People always say that you can tell a lot about a person by simply observing his or her hands. In most cases, I’ve found this to be true. In fact, I’m pretty sure that it’s still apparent that my first real job was dishwashing. I remember spending back-breaking hours over those stainless steel tubs of suds and half-scraped dinner plates and appetizer baskets, but nothing was more satisfying than earning a few bucks at an early age, even if the job only paid $4 an hour.

BMW Rakes In $424 Million In First-Quarter Profits

May 5, 2010 4:47 am | News | Comments

BERLIN (AP) — German luxury automaker BMW AG reported Wednesday a first-quarter profit on improved sales and said that rising demand for premium cars bodes well for its full-year earnings. The world's biggest luxury car maker, BMW earned euro324 million ($424.1 million) in net income in the first quarter compared with a loss of euro152 million a year ago.

GM Recalls Hummers For Detaching Hood Pieces

May 5, 2010 4:45 am | by Dan Ciardi, AP Auto Writer | News | Comments

NEW YORK (AP) — General Motors is recalling all Hummer H3s produced since the 2006 model year to fix a portion of the hood that can detach during driving. The voluntary recall affects 164,190 Hummer H3s and H3Ts in the U.S. and 198,404 worldwide. Hummer spokesman Nick Richards says a device on the hood called a hood louver (LOO-ver) can come loose and possibly detach while driving.

Retrofit Helps Pickle Maker Out Of A Jam

May 5, 2010 4:19 am | Articles | Comments

When your mission is to make the world’s freshest pickle, you can’t afford any jams in your cucumber processing line.  A major pickle manufacturer experienced this disruption in production at least two to three times per month because the conveyor that transferred the cucumbers from the water wash tank was prematurely wearing and breaking.

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