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Daily industrial news and top headlines for plant and maintenance managers

Breakers Key To Process Integrity

September 21, 2009 12:15 pm | Articles | Comments

Figure 5 Circuit breakers must be properly maintained and applied in order to operate when called upon. Consider the following scenario: A circuit breaker is helping protect a flow pump and senses a fault downstream. If the electrical distribution system is selectively coordinated, the breaker in closest proximity to the problem on the circuit would trip, isolating the fault to the smallest area.

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High-Grip Pull Caps

September 21, 2009 11:45 am IMPO Product Releases | Comments

Caplugs (Buffalo, NY) introduces the new VFT series of vinyl pull-caps, with a textured finish at the top to enable better gripping to save time and effort in the field. According to the company, hands, gloves, and even automated machinery can grip the VFT series up to 80 percent better than traditional caps.

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Low Capacitance Cables

September 21, 2009 11:45 am | Product Releases | Comments

Belden (Richmond, IN) has expanded its line of low capacitance DataBus cables, which consists of PLTC/ITC-ER, PLTC, and TC-ER versions that are specifically designed to meet Fieldbus specification 61158.2. DataBus cables offer a robust electrical design and robust construction to ensure reliable performance, while providing flexibility in industrial environments, including outdoor installations.

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Inexpensive Thermal Imaging

September 21, 2009 11:44 am | Product Releases | Comments

FLIR Systems (Billerica, MA) has unveiled the FLIR i7 thermal imaging camera, which couples RESNET-compliant 120x120 pixel infrared resolution with 2 percent accuracy and 0.1°C sensitivity. Designed for electrical, HVAC, mechanical, and energy-audit problems, the FLIR i7 reveals abnormal temperature readings with crisp images on a 2.

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Versatile PLCs

September 21, 2009 11:43 am | Product Releases | Comments

The CLICK PLC from AutomationDirect (Cumming, GA) is the latest family of programmable controllers designed as stackable discrete modules for first-time PLC customers as well as experienced users. The product is engineered with a multitude of built-in and stackable I/O options.

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Crafting A Better Brewery

September 21, 2009 10:46 am | by by Luke Simpson, Associate Editor, Food Manufacturing | Blogs | Comments

Visually, the new Hilltop Brewery owned by the New Glarus Brewing Company is stunning. Nestled on a hilltop just past the town of New Glarus, Wisconsin, a cluster of colorful buildings with jagged rooftops rise up from beautifully landscaped gardens. Things get even better inside.

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These Things We Do

September 21, 2009 9:16 am | by by Jeff Reinke, Editorial Director, IMPO | Blogs | Comments

Do you know the name Norman Borlaug? Me neither, but I think it’s worth a minute of your time to learn a little more about an individual who might have been one of the single greatest human beings to ever walk this planet. His life and the way he approached his passion also offers a blueprint from which we can model our pursuits, and the framework we put around them.

Don't Get Diverted

September 21, 2009 8:09 am | Product Releases | Comments

Vortex Valves (Salina, KS) has introduced its new Quantum Series 4-Way Wye Line Diverter, designed to handle dry bulk solids in pneumatic conveying systems with vacuum or positive pressures of to 15 psig. The Quantum is available in 2” to 6” pipe or tube, which can direct material from one source to four destinations, or converge four sources to one destination.

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Cycle Closing And Withstand Tested

September 21, 2009 8:08 am | Product Releases | Comments

The new RTS Series transfer switches from Russelectric (Hingham, MA) are listed for 30-cycle closing and withstand ratings based on testing per UL standard 1008. These switches simplify selective coordination of overcurrent/short circuit devices in emergency and backup power systems.

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Training For Welders

September 21, 2009 8:07 am IMPO Product Releases | Comments

American Technical Publishers (Orland Park, IL) announces new training materials specifically designed for welders and students working with all types of welding processes. Now in its fourth edition, Welding Skills addresses all aspects of the latest welding technology, including the competencies recommended in the American Welding Society (AWS) guidelines.

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Clear Your Vision

September 21, 2009 8:06 am | Product Releases | Comments

Cognex (Natick, MA) has enhanced its VisionView operator interface with new features that enable more detailed visualization of parts and easier storage of failed images. The VisionView interface integrates with Cognex In-Sight vision systems, and version 1.2 of the interface adds panning and zooming capabilities.

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Extreme Maintenance

September 21, 2009 6:54 am | Articles | Comments

Sure, we've all experienced the occasional stuck bolt, especially those charged with building and maintaining manufacturing equipment like yourselves. But what about a stuck bolt in space? In their latest spacewalk outside of the Hubble telescrope, American astronauts braved injury and death to install a new, $150 million dollar camera into the Hubble's aging body.

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Building Behemoths

September 21, 2009 6:21 am | Articles | Comments

Digital Altiel gives a quick tour of their facility, where they utilize Delcam's PowerMILL and PowerSHAPE technology to recreate lifesized sculptures in massive scales for the likes of Disney and Pixar. Digital Altiel scans the original piece and machines it in large pieces, which are welded together to create a finished product.

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The Lego V8 Roars

September 21, 2009 6:12 am | Articles | Comments

Remember the Lego of your childhood, when you spent countless hours just putting together a space ship or castle that just fell apart after an hour? Well, those days are over. In the 21st century, Lego engineers have moved to bigger and better pastures. Listen to the "roar" of this pushrod V8 as it revs up over 1,500 rpm.

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Over-engineering, F1-Style

September 21, 2009 5:45 am | Articles | Comments

Via AutoMotoTV . Take a look inside the incredible precision that goes into making every Red Bull Technology F1 race car. Through extensive research, protoyping, and testing, the vehicles come together like a work of art, not to mention an incredible example of precision in engineering.

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Doosan, Bobcat Struggle With High Debt

September 21, 2009 4:41 am | News | Comments

BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — An analyst says the parent company of Bobcat Co., has been hurt by a global economic slump and by debt it took on when it purchased Bobcat two years ago. Bobcat, of West Fargo, has announced plans to close its Bismarck plant by the end of the year and consolidate its work to Gwinner, in southeastern North Dakota.

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Nektar To Collect $1.12b from AstraZeneca

September 21, 2009 4:16 am | News | Comments

NEW YORK (AP) — Nektar Therapeutics said Monday it licensed a pair of experimental pain treatments to AstraZeneca PLC in a deal valued at about $1.12 billion. AstraZeneca will pay Nektar $125 million upfront for the rights to two drugs: NKTR-118, an oral product intended to treat constipation caused by opioid pain drugs, and NKTR-119, which is intended to combine NKTR-118 with opioid pain drugs to create a painkiller that doesn't cause constipation.

EU Details Intel's Illegal Monopolizing

September 21, 2009 4:06 am | by Aoife White, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

BRUSSELS (AP) — The European Union on Monday published e-mail excerpts from computer makers and Intel Corp. to show that Intel pressured chip buyers into choosing Intel over rival Advanced Micro Devices Inc. Intel was hit by a record EU antitrust fine of euro1.06 billion ($1.45 billion) last May for what the EU said was using strong-arm sales tactics such as threatening to withdraw price rebates to squeeze out AMD.

CAW Workers At GM-Suzuki Plant OK Contract

September 21, 2009 3:56 am | News | Comments

NEW YORK (AP) — Nearly two-thirds of union workers at a Canadian auto plant jointly owned by General Motors and Suzuki have approved a new contract that would freeze wages and pensions, trim benefits, introduce a monthly health care contribution and reduce break times. However, the new contract at the CAMI Automotive Inc.

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BMW Expects Production Increase Despite Economy

September 21, 2009 3:53 am | News | Comments

FRANKFURT (AP) — German carmaker BMW AG said it wants second half 2009 production levels to match levels of the second half of 2008, despite the dramatic sales declines experienced in the first half of this year. The Munich-based carmaker told German weekly Automobilwoche the company "wouldn't build fewer cars in the second half of 2009, compared to the year-ago period.

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