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Daily industrial news and top headlines for plant and maintenance managers

NY GM Plant To End 'Big Block' V-8 Production

December 18, 2009 3:23 am | News | Comments

TONAWANDA, N.Y. (AP) — General Motors' Buffalo-area engine plant is marking the end of the line for a class of V-8 engine that's been produced there for 50 years. On Friday, the Tonawanda (ton-uh-WAN-duh) plant will stop production of the latest variation of the "big block" V-8 engines.

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GM Shuts Down Saab After Sale Collapses

December 18, 2009 3:10 am | News | Comments

DETROIT (AP) — General Motors Co. will wind down Saab after talks to sell the brand to Dutch carmaker Spyker Cars collapsed. GM says issues arose during the sale talks that could not be resolved. GM says it will continue to honor Saabcustomer warranties. GM previously tried to sell the brand to Koenigsegg Group AB, but the Swedish carmaker withdrew from the talks last month.

Trash-Talking Intelligently, Or Not At All

December 18, 2009 2:54 am | by Masha V. Petrova, founder/CEO, MVP Modeling Solutions | Articles | Comments

  Or to put it simply — do not talk trash about anyone, whether you know them or not, on Twitter, Facebook, Linkedin, etc, because your words WILL comeback to bite you. Here is a real life example. I am a member of the Board of Directors of a newly formed non-profit, called the Franklin Foundation.

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SlipNOT With Metal Flooring

December 17, 2009 11:06 am | Product Releases | Comments

SlipNOT (Detroit, MI) Metal Safety Flooring offers a variety of slip-resistant flooring products, such as floor plate, bar grating, and ladder rungs. In addition, other products can be custom fabricated according to a user’s need. The SlipNOT flooring is an extremely hard, high-traction surface, ranking between 55 and 63 on the Rockwell C scale, and can endure the abuse of feet, cars, or heavy machinery.

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Safe And Simple Cranks

December 17, 2009 11:06 am | Product Releases | Comments

Ratcheting crank handles from Lowell Corporation (Worcester, MA) offer an alternative to handwheels and other devices for machine control. Designed for permanent mounting on shafts or studs, the handles are less likely to slip, stick, or freeze than other devices. The small arc of operation is easier and safer for the operation, and helps reduce wear on the machinery.

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Totally Tubular Sensors

December 17, 2009 11:05 am | Product Releases | Comments

The GlobalProx line of tubular inductive sensors from Balluff (Florence, KY) allows for a wide range of choice and flexibility in sensor selection with tubular M8, M12, M18, and M30 sensors in multiple varieties of 3- and 2-wire DC outputs. The most recent expansion includes additional 3-wire DC PNP and NPN models for more control variations and more metal porthole models for robust applications.

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A T-Rex For Your Plant

December 17, 2009 11:04 am | Product Releases | Comments

Cooper Instruments (Warrenton, VA) has released the T-Rex Test Stand to accommodate a variety of materials, component, and product tests. The rugged and flexible system provides the capacity of 4 tons in tension and 10 tons in compression, with custom and larger capacity systems also available.

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PMMI's 'Powerful Show' Of Processing And Packaging

December 17, 2009 4:45 am | News | Comments

Arlington, Va. — Several new features at next October’s PACK EXPO International 2010 (October 31-November 3; McCormick Place, Chicago, IL) will make it easy for packagers and processors from around the globe to enhance operational excellence across the production line, speed new product commercialization and grow brand sales.

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PACK's 'Powerful Show' Of Processing And Packaging

December 17, 2009 4:45 am | News | Comments

Arlington, Va. — Several new features at next October’s PACK EXPO International 2010 (October 31-November 3; McCormick Place, Chicago, IL) will make it easy for packagers and processors from around the globe to enhance operational excellence across the production line, speed new product commercialization and grow brand sales.

CSB Warnings: The Fiery Side Of Ice

December 16, 2009 11:24 am | Articles | Comments

An idled pipe and cold temperatures set off a series of events that culminated in a gas explosion and chlorine gas release at Valero's McKee refinery. The CSB looks at ways the incident could have been avoided. 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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The Snowman And His 1 µm Nose

December 16, 2009 11:18 am | Articles | Comments

Researchers at the Britain's National Physical Laboratory (NPL) made a tiny snowman out of two tin beads, and then went as far as to mill out a smile and eyes using a focused ion beam. The little guy's nose, which is under 1 µm wide (or 0.001 mm), was made out of platinum and was deposited by an ion beam.

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The Coolest Gadgets Of 2009

December 16, 2009 10:21 am | Articles | Comments

TIME technology editor Peter Ha counts down his top 10 gadgets released this year, and it runs the gauntlet from cool to crazy. There's the standard cell phones and digital cameras, with some interesting additons from a wristwatch (who wears those anymore?) and a bladeless fan . [ Time.com ] 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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The 787 Dreamliner (Finally) Takes Flight

December 16, 2009 10:00 am | Articles | Comments

As most of us know, Boeing's long-awaited 787 Dreamliner took its maiden voyage on Tuesday, marking the end of a construction process that has been delayed for more than two years due to labor issues and malfunctioning components. While the plane still has a battery of tests to complete before the first models are shipped off to airlines around the world, the first flight represents a significant leap forward for the project.

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Renegade Electric Cars In China

December 16, 2009 9:54 am | Articles | Comments

In the Shandong province of China, some entrepreneurs have started building their own emission-free electric vehicles, much like what we will someday see in the Nissan Leaf or the Chevrolet Volt, to an extent. Thing is, these cars weren't exactly legal to start out. But now that so many companies and individuals have stepped up to retrofit cars with electric drivetrains, demand is steadily rising.

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Whirlpool Recalls 400 For Production Demands

December 16, 2009 3:49 am | News | Comments

FORT SMITH, Ark. (AP) — The Whirlpool Corp. says 400 laid-off workers at its Fort Smith refrigerator plant are being called back to work. The company said Tuesday that production demands prompted the call-backs. The plant now employs between 900 and 1,000 people, far fewer than the 4,600 it had in 2006 before the company moved part of its production to Mexico.

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Senate Nixes Prescription Imports To Appease Drug Makers

December 16, 2009 3:44 am | by Alan Fram, Associated Press Writer | News | Comments

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Senate rejected a plan Tuesday to allow Americans to import low-cost prescriptions from abroad, handing drug makers a victory that may help secure passage of President Barack Obama's health care overhaul. The vote on the amendment by Sen. Byron Dorgan, D-N.D., was 51-48 in favor, but 60 votes were needed to prevail under a special rule.

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Korean Car Part Builder Hiring 200 In Coffee County, Ala.

December 16, 2009 3:36 am | News | Comments

ELBA, Ala. (AP) — A Korean automotive parts manufacturer says it will operate in Coffee County, bringing 200 new jobs to Elba. The Dothan Eagle reports that Koo-Ryong Jung, chairman of the company, which has 22 plants in Korea, India, China and Malaysia that employ 44,000 workers, made the announcement on Tuesday.

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FTC Files Antitrust Suit Against Intel

December 16, 2009 3:23 am | News | Comments

NEW YORK (AP) — The Federal Trade Commission is suing Intel Corp., accusing the world's biggest chip maker of using its size to snuff out competition. The FTC says Intel, which makes the microprocessors that run personal computers, has shut rivals out of the marketplace. In the process, the FTC says Intel has deprived consumers of choice and stifled innovation in the chip industry.

Copenhagen Debate Stall As U.S. Balks On Climate Change

December 16, 2009 3:18 am | by Charles J. Hanley, AP Special Correspondent | News | Comments

COPENHAGEN (AP) — Danish police fired pepper spray and beat protesters with batons outside the U.N. climate conference on Wednesday, as disputes inside left major issues unresolved just two days before world leaders hope to sign a historic agreement to fight global warming. With the talks clearly deadlocked, Connie Hedegaard, former Danish climate minister, resigned from the conference presidency to allow her boss, Danish Prime Minister Lars Loekke Rasmussen to preside as world leaders from 115 nations streamed into Copenhagen.

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Boeing's 787 A 'Joy To Fly'

December 16, 2009 3:12 am | by George Tibbits, Associated Press Writer | News | Comments

EVERETT, Wash. (AP) — The first flight of Boeing's new 787 jetliner brought no surprises — exactly what pilots, engineers and company officials had anxiously sought for the long-delayed aircraft. "The airplane responded just as we expected," Randy Neville, one of the two pilots, said after touchdown Tuesday at Seattle's Boeing Field.

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