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IMPO Insider

Daily industrial news and top headlines for plant and maintenance managers

GM Expands Technology Investments In China

September 21, 2011 5:31 am | by Elaine Kurtenbach, AP Business Writer

SHANGHAI (AP) — General Motors Co. says it is seeking to buy back a 1 percent stake sold to its main Chinese joint venture partner, as it expands its technology investments in a market where it is maneuvering to keep its edge. The Detroit company opened an advanced technology center in Shanghai on Wednesday meant to help it design lighter, safer and more efficient cars for China, a market that has proved crucial to its survival.

Embattled Solar Energy Execs Will Plead 5th At House Hearing

September 21, 2011 5:26 am | by Matthew Daly, Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) — Two top executives at a bankrupt California solar energy company say they will invoke their Fifth Amendment rights and refuse to answer questions when they appear at a House hearing on Friday. Solyndra Inc. Chief Executive Officer Brian Harrison and Chief Financial Officer W.

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UAW, GM Deal Creates Or Keeps 6,400 Jobs

September 20, 2011 9:23 am | by Dee-Ann Durbin, Tom Krisher, AP Auto Writers

DETROIT (AP) — A new four-year contract deal between the United Auto Workers and General Motors Co. will add or keep 6,400 jobs in the U.S. with a $2.5 billion investment, the union said Tuesday. Union leaders from around the country were briefed on the deal in Detroit in a morning meeting, and they voted to recommend that GM's 48,500 factory workers ratify it in voting that will take place in the next week.

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Legacy Electronics Cuts Ribbon On SD Facility

September 20, 2011 9:17 am

CANTON, S.D. (AP) — Electronics manufacturer Legacy Electronics cut the ribbon on a 40,000 square foot plant in Canton, S.D. on Monday. Legacy Electronics builds, designs and tests of high-speed, high-density memory modules, printed circuit boards and other computer products. It chose Canton for its manufacturing operations in March.

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Equipment Supplier Plans SC Facility, 50 Jobs

September 20, 2011 9:15 am

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — A Denmark-based machining supplier says it will open a facility in Easley that will create at least 50 jobs. KP Components Inc. plans to spend at least $10 million to begin operations in an existing building that will make hydraulic components. Their parts are used in farm and heavy equipment as well as in wind turbines.

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Nissan To Expand Overseas Parts Procurement

September 20, 2011 9:13 am

TOKYO, Sept. 20 (Kyodo) — Nissan Motor Co. President Carlos Ghosn indicated Tuesday the automaker will expand procurement of overseas components for its Kyushu plant in Fukuoka Prefecture, southwestern Japan, to help cope with the yen's appreciation. Under the strategy, the Kyushu plant will increase the ratio of vehicle components to be procured in other Asian countries as well as the Kyushu region to 80 to 90 percent from 70 percent at present, taking advantage of its proximity to Asia, Ghosn said in Kitakyushu in Fukuoka.

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NASA Selects Boeing For Cryogenic Propellant Tanks

September 20, 2011 9:11 am

WASHINGTON, PRNewswire-USNewswire -- NASA has selected The Boeing Company of Huntington Beach, Calif., for the Composite Cryotank Technologies Demonstration effort. Under the contract, Boeing will design, manufacture and test two lightweight composite cryogenic propellant tanks. The demonstration effort will use advanced composite materials to develop new technologies that could be applied to multiple future NASA missions, including human space exploration beyond low Earth orbit.

CAT's Global Sales On The Rise

September 20, 2011 9:09 am

PEORIA, Ill. (AP) — Caterpillar's global heavy equipment sales rose 34 percent in August, with strong growth continuing despite the economic slowdown in the U.S. and Europe. The world's largest maker of mining and construction equipment, based in Peoria, Ill., provided an update on sales Tuesday in documents filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

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CA Desert Spaceship Factory Completed

September 20, 2011 9:07 am

MOJAVE, California (AP) — Space tourism is closer to reality after the completion of an $8 million Mojave Desert production plant where the world's first fleet of passenger-ready spaceships will be built. Hundreds of public officials and reporters were invited Monday to tour the giant hangar where the White Knight and SpaceShipTwo craft will be built.

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Worker Aid Program Key To Passing Free Trade Deals

September 20, 2011 7:31 am | by Jim Abrams, Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) — A half-century-old program that helps workers who lose their jobs to foreign trade holds the key to whether Congress may finally approve three long-delayed free trade agreements viewed by both the Obama White House and congressional Republicans as a way to invigorate the economy and create jobs.

Driverless Car Navigates Berlin Streets

September 20, 2011 7:29 am | by Kirsten Grieshaber, Associated Press

BERLIN (AP) — It can talk, see, drive and no longer needs a human being to control it by remote. The car of the future — completely computer-controlled — is on the streets of Berlin. All summer, researchers from the city's Free University have been testing the automobile around the German capital.

Gov Promotes Detroit Workforce Partnership

September 20, 2011 6:46 am | by Jeff Karoub, AP Business Writer

DETROIT (AP) — Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder on Monday praised a partnership between a Detroit-based social and economic services agency and a manufacturing assembly company, saying it would be a role model for the jobs plan he plans to announce in November. Snyder spoke at the nonprofit group Focus: HOPE, which has teamed up with Auburn Hills-based Android Industries to assemble parts for the Chevrolet Volt, a rechargeable electric car with a small gas engine.

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Kansas Economy Sending Mixed Signals

September 20, 2011 6:28 am | by John Milburn, Associated Press

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — A mixed bag of statistics released in recent weeks suggests that Kansas, like the rest of the nation, is finding it difficult to get its economic engine firing on all cylinders. Despite rising state revenues, job growth remains flat while more residents are seeking public assistance.

Ariens To Increase Hiring In WI

September 20, 2011 5:46 am

BRILLION, Wis. (AP) — A Wisconsin outdoor power equipment manufacturer plans to hire 100 additional employees. Ariens Co. usually switches from lawn maintenance equipment to making snow blowers this time of year. But, president Dan Ariens says the company will be manufacturing both equipment lines this fall.

New Zinc Plant To Be Built In NC

September 20, 2011 5:41 am

SPINDALE, N.C. (AP) — A Pennsylvania company that extracts zinc from waste generated through steel mini mills said Monday it will build a new plant in Rutherford County that will generate 250 jobs. Horsehead Corp. will build a zinc production facility in Rutherford County near Forest City, Gov.

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GM Agrees To Deepen EV Cooperation With China

September 20, 2011 5:39 am | by Elaine Kurtenbach, AP Business Writer

SHANGHAI (AP) — General Motors Co. agreed Tuesday to deepen cooperation with its flagship Chinese partner on development of electric vehicle know how amid pressure from Beijing to hand over proprietary technology. Investments and other details of the plan were not provided, and it was unclear if the agreement was the result of a renewed push by China to acquire advanced technology its own automakers still lack.

IBM Offers Concession In Antitrust Case

September 20, 2011 5:37 am | by Gabriele Steinhauser, AP Business Writer

BRUSSELS (AP) — U.S. computer maker IBM Corp. on Tuesday offered to make it easier for competitors to provide maintenance services for its mainframe computers, a concession to get European regulators to close an antitrust probe. The European Commission, the European Union's competition watchdog, opened two investigations into whether IBM was abusing its dominant position in the market for mainframe computers in July 2010.

Feds Investigate Failing Ford Jacks

September 20, 2011 5:34 am

WASHINGTON (AP) — Federal regulators are investigating service jacks sold with Ford Freestar and Mercury Monterey minivans because of reports that they can fail and cause the vehicle to fall. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration says on its website that in one case, a person working under a van was killed when it fell off the jack.

Tyson Pays $32M To Settle Wage Lawsuit

September 20, 2011 5:31 am | by Sam Hananel, Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) — Tyson Foods Inc. is paying $32 million to settle a long-running dispute over whether it should compensate poultry plant workers for time they spend putting on and taking off protective clothing. In a consent decree filed in U.S. District Court in Columbus, Ga., Tyson agreed to make payments averaging around $1,000 per worker to about 17,000 current and former employees around the country.

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Rumors Of Acquisition Boost Goodrich

September 19, 2011 9:30 am

NEW YORK (AP) — Shares of Goodrich Corp. soared on Monday as investors weighed rumors that United Technologies Corp. may want to buy the aerospace manufacturer. Goodrich shares jumped $11.38, or 12.3 percent, to $104.27 in morning trading. The stock closed up $6.41, or 7.4 percent, at $92.

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