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Daily industrial news and top headlines for plant and maintenance managers

China's Manufacturing Boom Continues To Slow Down

February 1, 2011 3:53 am | by Elaine Kurtenbach, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

SHANGHAI (AP) — China's manufacturing boom eased further in January as authorities tightened controls on credit, though inflationary pressures continued to rise, according to data released Tuesday. The state-affiliated China Federation of Logistics and Purchasing said its purchasing managers index, or PMI, dipped to 52.

Manufacturing Output Grows To Seven-Year High

February 1, 2011 3:50 am | News | Comments

Factory sector expands at fastest pace in 7 years  WASHINGTON (AP) — America's factory sector expanded in January at the fastest pace in seven years, asmanufacturers reported a sharp jump in new orders. The Institute for Supply Management, a private trade group, says its index of manufacturing activity rose last month to 60.

Recalls Cost Toyota A Fifth Of Its Global Value

February 1, 2011 3:46 am | by Yuri Kageyama, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

TOKYO (AP) — Toyota remains Japan's No. 1 global brand, but its value has fallen by nearly a fifth because of the recent massive recalls that dented consumer trust in the quality of its cars, according to an international consultant. An Interbrand report released Tuesday said that the value of the Toyota Motor Corp.


January Auto Sales Rose Despite 'Snowpocalypse'

February 1, 2011 3:43 am | by Sharon Silke Carty, AP Auto Writer | News | Comments

DETROIT (AP) — Despite snowy weather in the Northeast that kept buyers shoveling driveways and not shopping for cars, January auto sales in the United States are expected to come in higher than a year ago. Sales could rise 15 percent to 17 percent compared with last January, a sign that auto sales are continuing their slow, steady recovery from 2009, when sales bottomed out.

Cable Carriers Go Vertical

January 31, 2011 10:21 am | Product Releases | Comments

The Guidelok SL, from igus (East Providence, RI) is designed for vertical cable carrier applications operating on storage-and-retrieval units in high-bay warehouses, as well as elevators and material handling equipment. According to the company, it is compact and easy-to-install, even when being retrofitted into an existing system.


Quiet, Energy-Efficient Compressors

January 31, 2011 10:20 am | Product Releases | Comments

Boge Compressors (Powder Springs, GA) is planning to exhibit a number of new products at the Hannover Fair 2011 in Hannover, Germany, including an extended belt-drive C series screw compressor range. They are available up to 22 kW, and are extremely quiet during operation, according to the company.


The Right Gear For Electrical Testing

January 31, 2011 10:20 am | Product Releases | Comments

Technicians working around hazardous equipment and high-voltage circuits could benefit from the clamp meters and four-channel handheld oscilloscopes from Fluke (Everett, WA). The test tools all exceed tough international standards for safe use in 480 volt electrical environments, and allow technicials—who must test live circuits—to do so at a safe distance.


Steam Traps For High-Pressure Situations

January 31, 2011 10:19 am | Product Releases | Comments

Spirax Sarco (Blythewood, SC) has announced the release of the FTC80-FB ball float steam trap series, which is made for applications with pressures as high as 1,160psig. The FTC80-FB carbon steel series has a body and cover made of cast steel, with welded connections. They are self-modulating to provide soft and continuous discharge, which helps maintain stable process conditions.


Philippine Industry Expanded 7.3 Percent In 2010

January 31, 2011 8:35 am | News | Comments

MANILA, Philippines (AP) — The Philippine economy galloped to its highest annual growth in more than two decades, expanding 7.3 percent in 2010 on strong foreign trade and election spending, officials said Monday, forecasting an equally strong expansion this year. Head of the government's statistical board Romulo Virola said the growth surpassed official growth projections of 5 percent to 6 percent.

Craft Brewers Ditch Glass Bottles For Cans

January 31, 2011 8:32 am | by Clarke Canfield, Associated Press | News | Comments

LEWISTON, Maine (AP) — Canned beer isn't just for swilling anymore. Baxter Brewing in Maine has joined a growing number of small craft-beer breweries distributing their brews in cans — just like mainstream mass-produced beers — rather than in bottles. A decade ago, it's believed there weren't any U.

Rebirth Of Wise Alloys Plant Means Jobs For Shoals

January 31, 2011 8:28 am | by Bernie Delinski, Associated Press | News | Comments

FLORENCE, Ala. (AP) — The parking lots appear full outside the massive Wise Alloys Listerhill plant. Inside, coils of aluminum and 15-ton castings are rolled out. Major deals with Anheuser-Busch InBev and Coca-Cola — two giants in the beverage can industry — have made long-term expectations high.


S.C. Gets Ready To Run On 'Pig Power'

January 31, 2011 8:23 am | News | Comments

GASTON, S.C. (AP) — It's a case of piggies providing power and it's a first for South Carolina. Officials with Santee Cooper, Environmental Fabrics Inc., a firm based in Gaston, S.C., and Clemson University on Monday announced the construction of a new plant to generate electricity from the methane released by hog waste.


Cost-Based Purchasing Threatens Supply Chain Integrity

January 31, 2011 6:52 am | by Bill Moore, Senior Vice President of Channel Management, SKF USA, Inc. | Articles | Comments

Distribution Process Faces Evolution Vs. Revolution   Business sectors throughout the industrial supply chain are encountering dramatic change: End users of equipment components and technology are enjoying unprecedented influence when interacting with industrial distributors. Industrial distributors are reacting in unprecedented ways.

Mezzanines Lift Operational Efficiency, Safety

January 31, 2011 6:30 am | Articles | Comments

Alliance Packaging is a well-known, independent corrugated box manufacturer with several facilities located throughout northwest United States. The company provides a full range of packaging solutions from custom shipping containers to retail packaging, from stock boxes to in-store displays, from creative design to same day delivery service.

Strike-Free, Heavy-Duty Wrenches

January 31, 2011 5:47 am | Product Releases | Comments

The new strike-free wrenches from Wright Tool (Barberton, OH) can be used for heavy-duty applications, where striking-face box wrenches cannot be used and where cheater bars should not be used. The wrenches also loosen and tighten large fasteners in confined areas where there is not enough room to swing a striking tool.


Get A Handle On Your Fans

January 31, 2011 5:47 am | Product Releases | Comments

The new touch-screen Fan-Commander control station from Rite-Hite Fans (Milwaukee, WI) controls the operation of up to 18 high volume/low speed (HVLS) Revolution Fan or Revolution SP Fan models. With the Fan-Commander, users can optimize year-round performance of the fans. In the winter, the controller changes the fan speed to produce even temperatures from floor to ceiling for energy savings.


Thermal Imaging For The Masses

January 31, 2011 5:46 am | Product Releases | Comments

FLIR (Portland, OR) has unveiled three distinct thermal imaging product lines for every budget. The FLIR i3 is a sub-$1,200 point-and-shoot infrared camera, and is an affordable upgrade from single-spot infrared thermometers or “temperature guns” with numerical readouts. It offers a 60 x 60 pixel resolution and 2 percent thermal accuracy, according to the company.


Configure Your Conveyors In 3D

January 31, 2011 5:45 am IMPO Product Releases | Comments

Dorner (Hartland, WI) has developed a system to draw conveyor systems — — which is designed to save time and serve as a link to more than one million model possibilities. The new conveyor model configurator allows users to draw virtually any conveyor model in 3D, which allows users to see what their conveyors will look prior to purchase, and it allows them to change the conveyor sizes in increments as small as 1/...


If At First You Don't Succeed, Dry Again

January 31, 2011 5:40 am | Articles | Comments

When it comes to fenestration, the components of today’s energy-efficient doors and windows should be made with the same attention to resource management. Recently the Amesbury Group’s textile facility, part of its Sealing Solutions Division, completed a compressed air reduction project that will yield a $41,000 annual electricity cost savings in their extrusion department.


Outsourcing My Self-Control

January 31, 2011 5:24 am | by by Kim Ukura, Associate Editor, Product Design & Development (PD&D) | Blogs | Comments

Most of my New Year’s resolutions have to do with breaking bad habits or developing good new ones: cutting back on frivolous spending, wasting less time online, and getting to the gym more often. The problem that I have — a problem shared by about almost 70 percent  of American and British adults — is breaking a bad habit alone.


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