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Daily industrial news and top headlines for plant and maintenance managers

Keeping Projects On Track

December 17, 2010 10:51 am | by Bob Harrell, President and CEO, Management Controls Inc. | Articles | Comments

Completing chemical plant turnarounds, construction and routine maintenance activities on time and on budget is an elusive goal for most process industry manufacturers. According to industry lore, a staggering 85 percent of North American turnarounds are completed late and/or over budget. One of the key deficiencies is the lack of real-time visibility into contractor activities and costs.


Your 2010 Impovation Award Winners!

December 17, 2010 10:22 am | Product Releases | Comments

IMPO readers voted in droves for the second annual IMPO vation product technology award. From a pool of 80 nominees, you picked your favorites: ___ The winner: The Gold Series High Vacuum (GSHV) pneumatic receiver from Camfil Farr APC (Air Pollution Control) controls emissions in applications up to 17” Hg vacuum or 8 psi positive pressure.


Merry Christmas — You're Fired

December 17, 2010 9:05 am | by by David Mantey, Editor, PD&D | Blogs | Comments

The fireplace is burning, heated blanket warming, frosting mixed, cookies cut, ornaments hanging, everything is perfect. You sit on the plaid and slightly tattered couch under the glow of the Christmas tree, and you smile when you hear a frigid hand scraping the key against the lock. The deadbolt loosens, the door slowly opens, and after a hard day’s work, she stands before you in the red and green speckled glow.


Choose The Right Steam Tools

December 17, 2010 8:33 am | Product Releases | Comments

Spirax Sarco, Inc. (Blythewood, SC) has developed a free application to assist customers in identifying the right steam tools for the job. The Steam Tools iPhone app enables quick access to the company’s Steam Tables and a Saturated Steam Pipe Sizing Tool. The tables cover the thermodynamic data for water/stream — users simply need to enter a pressure or temperature into the app, which returns the corresponding pressure or temperature, sensible heat, latent heat, total heat, or specific volume.


Light-Duty Hose Reels

December 17, 2010 8:32 am | Product Releases | Comments

The Series CU hose reels from Reelcraft (Columbia City, IN) are designed for lighter-duty applications that require longer lengths of low-pressure air/water hose. The reels are hand cranked with a balanced brass swivel and inlet. The four available models come with the ability to handle up to 100’ of 3/8” or 1/2” I.


Tow 4,000 Pounds By Hand

December 17, 2010 8:32 am | Product Releases | Comments

Kinetic Technologies, Inc. (Wickliffe, OH) has introduced a double 48” x 96” flat deck cart for towing up to 4,000 pounds. The four-wheel steering improves tracking of carts in long trains, which helps cornering or maneuvering in tight aisles. The one-piece, 7-gage deck is laser cut and rides 15” off the ground.


Expand You MIG Welding 'Skills'

December 17, 2010 8:30 am IMPO Product Releases | Comments

Thermadyne Industries (St. Louis, MO) is expanding its WeldSkill product line — through its Tweco brand — to include a series of durable MIG guns. The new products include 125-amp, 140-amp, and 220-amp guns that are ideal for metal working, job shops, and maintenance and repair applications, according to the company.


Four Arrested For Insider Trading On Apple's Secrets

December 17, 2010 3:29 am | by Tom Hays, Associated Press | News | Comments

NEW YORK (AP) — Federal prosecutors in Manhattan broadened their insider trading crackdown Thursday, arresting four people on charges alleging that so-called "expert consultants" revealed secrets about Apple Inc.'s iPhone and other technology products to hedge funds seeking a trading edge on quarterly earnings reports.


Geithner: Financial Bailout Cost Dips, Now At $25 Billion

December 17, 2010 3:27 am | by Marcy Gordon, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

WASHINGTON (AP) — The eventual cost to taxpayers for the government's $700 billion financial bailout will be less than the $25 billion price tag put on it in the latest estimate, Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner said Thursday. The Congressional Budget Office's most recent estimate is that taxpayers will lose $25 billion on the rescue of automakers, banks and other financial institutions undertaken at the peak of the crisis in the fall of 2008.

A Thief's Delight: Boca Raton's New Gold-Dispensing ATM

December 17, 2010 3:26 am | by Kelli Kennedy, Associated Press | News | Comments

BOCA RATON, Fla. (AP) — Shoppers who are looking for something sparkly to put under the Christmas tree can skip the jewelry and go straight to the source: an ATM that dispenses shiny 24-carat gold bars and coins. A German company planned to install the machine Friday at an upscale mall in Boca Raton, a South Florida paradise of palm trees, pink buildings and wealthy retirees.

UAW Workers Accept Pay Cuts At Mitsubishi Plant

December 17, 2010 3:21 am | by David Mercer, Associated Press | News | Comments

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (AP) — United Auto Workers members at Mitsubishi Motors North America's plant in Normal ratified a new contract Thursday that includes wage cuts the union has said could determine the fate of the facility and its 1,300 jobs. Seventy-seven percent of the union workers who voted on the deal approved it, UAW local President Ralph Timan said.


Ford's Louisville Plant Sends Last Explorer Down The Line

December 17, 2010 3:20 am | News | Comments

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — Ford Motor Co.'s Louisville Assembly Plant saw its last Explorer SUV come off the line on Thursday. The plant is shutting down for a $600 million renovation. The Courier-Journal reports it will reopen late next year with new body, paint, and trim assembly lines equipped to produce multiple fuel efficient models.


The Cost Of Giving Cigarettes To Children: $81 Million

December 17, 2010 3:18 am | by Rodrique Ngowi, Associated Press | News | Comments

BOSTON (AP) — A tobacco company that had tried to hook black children on cigarettes was ordered Thursday to pay $81 million in punitive damages to the estate and son of a Boston woman who started smoking at age 13, in what an attorney said is one of the largest jury awards of its kind in the United States.

Cables That Can Handle Torsion

December 16, 2010 9:44 am | Product Releases | Comments

igus (East Providence, RI) has introduced twistable hybrid, bus, motor, and fiber-optic cables to its torsion-resistant Chainflex robot cable range. The line includes five cables with a PUR outer jacket: CF-Robot 9, which is a hybrid control cable that is available shielded or unshielded.


Reliable Volumetric Dispensing

December 16, 2010 9:43 am | Product Releases | Comments

GPD Global (Grand Junction, CO) has developed Positive Cavity Displacement (PCD) Dispensing for next-generation volumetric dispensing. Fluids are delivered to the substrate via nozzles, a technique that is not affected by variations in temperature or reservoir pressure, thereby improving day-to-day and start-to-finish process results, according to the company.


A More Efficient Impeller

December 16, 2010 9:42 am | Product Releases | Comments

The XE-3 from Chemineer (Dayton, OH) is a high-efficiency axial flow impeller for heat transfer, blending, and solids suspension applications. The XE-3 impeller is as much as 10 percent more efficient than the HE-3 model in turbulent mixing, which can reduce energy costs in both new and retrofit applications.


Three Channels Are Better Than One

December 16, 2010 9:42 am | Product Releases | Comments

The Microlog Analyzer GX series vibration measurement tool from SKF (San Diego, CA) offers one- to three-channel capabilities in a IP 65 rated unit. Because of the three-channel simultaneous triaxial input with a separate tachometer input, the Microlog GX can achieve fast and comprehensive data collection, according to the company.


Fisker Automotive To Bring Electric Vehicles To China

December 16, 2010 8:17 am | News | Comments

SHANGHAI — Fisker Automotive, the California manufacturer of premium electric vehicles with extended range, has partnered with the China Grand Automotive Group, the number one passenger car trader in China, to have its vehicles distributed, marketed and serviced in the region. Executives from Fisker and China Grand Auto (CGA) formalized the non-exclusive agreement during a ceremony near CGA headquarters in Shanghai today.

Ten Tips For Setting Up A School Machine Shop

December 16, 2010 8:06 am | Articles | Comments

It’s probably not a stretch to suggest that most students back in high school shop class didn’t expend a great deal of mental energy wondering how those lathes, drill presses, and grinders made it into the classroom for their enjoyment and educational experience. We’ll assume, however, that most were too busy learning how to manipulate metal, wood, and other materials in a safe and effective manner to care about how the tools got there.


Do Your Homework Before You Buy

December 16, 2010 7:53 am | Articles | Comments

Wireless devices can provide a number of benefits for manufacturing plant personnel. But what considerations should processors make prior to installing a wireless sensor system? Paul Richards, CEO, Wireless Sensors  “Wireless devices provide many advantages for plant personnel, such as elimination of wiring, rapid installation, suitability for temporary or mobile applications, and robust operation.



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