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Daily industrial news and top headlines for plant and maintenance managers

Check Mate

July 21, 2009 8:10 am | by Anna Wells, Editor, IMPO | Articles | Comments

Involvement in non-profit industry organizations has been diminishing over the past several decades, and the most recent economic conditions can’t have helped the membership numbers. These environments of peer-to-peer sharing have been usurped by the current trend of fervent protection of proprietary processes and technology—the closed door approach to competition.

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What The Best Do Better

July 21, 2009 7:01 am | by by Anna Wells, Editor, IMPO | Blogs | Comments

Anna Wells, Editor, IMPO When it comes to email, I’m a sucker for a good subject line. One of the more recent to hit my inbox attracted my attention with this: Why Good Old-Fashioned Hard Work is Back in Vogue! The email is pitching editorial coverage for Jon Gordon and his recently released book “Training Camp: What the Best Do Better Than Everyone Else.

Industrial Magnetics, Inc. Offers Free Plant Audit

July 21, 2009 6:14 am | Articles | Comments

Borne City, MI — Industrial Magnetics, Inc. (IMI) is offering a no-obligation plant survey to companies interested in evaluating how magnetic equipment can improve cycle times, reduce operating costs, purify product, or protect processing equipment from damage. IMI representatives can perform objective and measured strength testing of existing magnetic equipment, test end product for metal contaminant levels, identify key areas where magnets could enhance operating performance and offer a comparative and cost analysis for new or upgraded magnetic equipment.

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Small And Portable Dust Control

July 20, 2009 6:10 am | Articles | Comments

Farr Air Pollution Control (Jonesboro, AK) has released its Gold Series GS4M Mini dust collector, ideal for use indoors because of its small footprint, especially where noise and space constraints are a concern. The unit controls emissions from small airflow applications, up to 2,000 cfm.

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Double Dose of Deburring

July 20, 2009 6:08 am | Articles | Comments

Abtex Corp. (Dresden, NY) has expanded its Tri-Ten planetary head deburring system to include a return-to-operator (RTO) configuration. The new system is designed for applications requiring a small footprint and portability, and deburrs both sides of a part in a single pass.

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Metal-Mount and Interference-Free

July 20, 2009 6:07 am | Product Releases | Comments

  Balluff (Florence, KY) has developed a new direct metal-mount RFID system, which allows the tag to be mounted directly on any alloy or metal surface without the typical interference. This RFID system uses non-contract, ISO 15693 compliant passive data carrier technology.

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Adjustable, Customizable, And Durable Dolly System

July 20, 2009 6:05 am | Articles | Comments

The new Hamilton panel dolly. The Hamilton Caster Truck Design Team (Hamilton, OH) announces a new panel dolly to transport slabs of granite, quartz, concrete, or other heavy materials. Hamilton Truck can customize the dolly to accommodate specific requirements, but standard features include: A lightweight, all-aluminum construction measuring 92” long x 24” wide x 43.

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Ahead of the Bell: Manufacturing Sector

July 20, 2009 5:44 am | Articles | Comments

How investors react to second-quarter earnings from industrial companies is an open question, with share prices for several companies that have so far reported rising only barely, an analyst said late Sunday. Deutsch Bank-North America analyst Nigel Coe said shares on average increased slightly for companies such as General Electric Co.

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Inventory Strength = Reduced Stress

July 17, 2009 12:01 pm | by Andy Kaiser - Yaskawa Electric America, Inc. | Articles | Comments

Hopefully this recent series of articles relating to variable frequency drive (VFD) selection are proving to be helpful and encouraging. In the three previous installments we have covered a large amount of material.

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Police Arrest 1 In Cudahy Meatpacking Plant Fire

July 17, 2009 4:40 am | by CARRIE ANTLFINGER, Associated Press Writer | Articles | Comments

Police have arrested a 25-year-old man and located another male who they believe may have launched a military illumination flare that caused a massive fire at a southeastern Wisconsin meatpacking plant.

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Harley-Davidson To Cut 1,000 Jobs

July 16, 2009 4:59 am | by DAN STRUMPF, AP Auto Writer | Articles | Comments

Harley-Davidson Inc. said Thursday it is cutting 1,000 more employees and lowering its motorcycle shipment guidance as quarterly earnings continued to fall due to weaker sales. The Milwaukee-based maker of the famous heavyweight motorcycles said it plans to cut another 700 hourly and 300 salaried employees from its ranks as it copes with falling demand for its high-end bikes.

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Wal-Mart To Announce Product Eco-rating System Today

July 16, 2009 4:13 am | Articles | Comments

Wal-Mart Stores Inc., the world's largest retailer, plans to demand that all its suppliers measure the environmental cost of making their products so Wal-Mart can calculate and post an eco-rating for each item. The ambitious program, to be announced today, is likely to spur companies to redesign products from electronics to jeans, but it presents still more costs to contain as they pinch pennies to tackle the recession.

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Ohio Worker Killed In Crane Accident

July 15, 2009 11:57 am | Articles | Comments

Authorities say a contract worker died after a boom from a crane fell on him at Appleton Papers in western Ohio. The accident happened Wednesday at the West Carrollton plant, which is temporarily shut down this week so that equipment can be serviced.

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Iowa Town Recovering From Slaughterhouse Immigration Raid

July 15, 2009 11:53 am | Articles | Comments

Life in Postville wasn't easy before federal agents raided the area's largest employer and detained 389 people on immigration charges. The May 2008 raid on the Agriprocessors slaughterhouse came as the nationwide recession was deepening and the city was struggling to cope with some of the long-term economic problems many rural Midwestern communities face.

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Consumer Prices Jump, Industrial Production Falls

July 15, 2009 11:47 am | Articles | Comments

Consumer prices shot up in June by the largest amount in 11 months, reflecting the biggest jump in gasoline prices in nearly five years. The Labor Department said Wednesday that inflation at the consumer level rose by 0.7 percent last month, slightly higher than the 0.

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Sucking The Cost And Complexity Out Of Conveying Systems

July 15, 2009 10:23 am | Articles | Comments

In choosing a system for the safe, clean conveyance of materials, it seems that the choices can be remarkably complex. Prior to such a choice, a facility is usually operating with live personnel, open conveyor belts, and implements such as buckets. While employees may be protected by proper clothing, masks, and goggles, materials are exposed to air and dirt, waste is a constant worry, and expensive equipment is endangered by particulates that can slow or jam it.

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A Lesson From Baseball's All-Stars

July 15, 2009 9:15 am | by by Anna Wells, Editor, IMPO | Blogs | Comments

As a baseball fan, All-Star week is typically a mediocre point in the season for me: My team—the Milwaukee Brewers—doesn’t play for three days, our best talent risks injury in an ancillary ball game, and the American League always wins, this year being no exception.

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Case Study: Reliability With Automated Storage And Retrieval Systems

July 15, 2009 7:23 am | Articles | Comments

In more than 10 years, the Automated Storage and Retrieval System installed at Hershey Creamery Company has not had a single down day. Back in 1997 the Hershey Creamery Company, manufacturer of Hershey’s Ice Cream, sought Westfalia Technologies, Inc. to design and build an automated warehousing system for its new ice cream distribution center in Middletown, PA.

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Case Study: Safe And Expandable Monitoring For Exhaust Purification Plants

July 15, 2009 7:01 am | Articles | Comments

In the past, the safety functions on exhaust purification plants manufactured by Dürr Systems GmbH were monitored using conventional automatic gas burner control systems and safety relays. This required a lot of space; all the logic connections had to be implemented through the wiring. So in the past, any changes that were required during the planning phase and implementation involved a considerable amount of work.

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Customers Design Reid Supply's New Web Site

July 15, 2009 6:00 am | Articles | Comments

Muskegon, Michigan — What does it take to build a great e-commerce web site? According to the web services team at Reid Supply Company, a Michigan-based global distributor of industrial parts, components and supplies, all it takes is getting direct input from many customers, along with some savvy data managers, creative web designers and clever web developers to incorporate the customers’ desires.

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