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Daily industrial news and top headlines for plant and maintenance managers

Peugeot Looks To New Hatchback For Turnaround

August 27, 2013 10:04 am | by The Associated Press

Peugeot is hoping a total revamp of its midsized hatchback — a category that Volkswagen has long dominated — will help lead the struggling French company's turnaround. The company's chief executive, Maxime Picat, says that all the elements for a rebound are in place. 

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Startups Gain Appeal As Some Japan Inc. Names Fade

August 26, 2013 2:23 pm | by Yuri Kageyama, AP Business Writer

In a shabby back-alley office in Shibuya, a Tokyo district known for youth culture and tech ventures, defectors from corporate Japan are hard at work for a little known company they fervently believe will be the country's next big manufacturing success.

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Probe Doesn't Find Fraud At BP Spill Claims Office

August 26, 2013 2:18 pm | by Michael Kunzelman, Associated Press

The head of security for the administrator of BP's multibillion-dollar settlement with Gulf Coast residents and businesses says an internal probe of alleged misconduct by an employee of a Mobile, Ala. claims center hasn't turned up any evidence of fraud.

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Photo Of The Day: Coke's Secret Recipe

August 26, 2013 2:17 pm | by Candice Choi, AP Food Industry Writer

The ability to push a quaint narrative about a product's origins and fuel a sense of nostalgia can help drive billions of dollars in sales. That's invaluable at a time when food makers face greater competition from smaller players and cheaper supermarket store brands that appeal to cash-strapped Americans.

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First Solar Sells Projects To Group Led By GE

August 26, 2013 2:14 pm | by The Associated Press

First Solar Inc. said Monday that it sold a collection of solar projects in Canada totaling 50 megawatts to an investment partnership led by GE Energy's financial services arm. Financial terms were not disclosed. The deal marks the first between First Solar and GE since their solar technology and commercial partnership was announced earlier this month.

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New 'Green Energy' Plants Planned For LA

August 26, 2013 2:11 pm | by The Associated Press

A Denver-based company called Cool Planet Energy Systems plans three Louisiana projects that will create 72 new jobs. Cool Planet announced the plans Friday for bio-refineries in Alexandria, Natchitoches and a site still to be determined. 

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Tesla Shares Jump On Popularity In CA

August 26, 2013 2:08 pm | by The Associated Press

Tesla Motors Inc.'s shares jumped Monday on a report that its Model S is gaining popularity in California. The report, released by the California New Car Dealers Association, found that the Tesla Model S is among the top five selling models in the luxury and sports-car segment in the state through June of this year.

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Walter Surface Technologies Inaugurates $30M International Campus, New Bio-Circle Facility

August 26, 2013 12:51 pm | by Walter Surface Technologies

After several years of investments in sophisticated design and construction of the most recent extension phase housing its new Bio-Circle facility, the entire 92,000 sq. ft Walter Surface Technologies International campus is now complete on its original Montreal (Pointe-Claire,Qc) site and is poised to grow in all of its business segments.

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China: Economy Stabilizing After Slowdown

August 26, 2013 10:13 am | by The Associated Press

China's government tried Monday to reassure companies and its public about the economy's health, saying growth is stabilizing after a lengthy decline and should hit the official target of 7.5 percent for the year. The announcement by the chief spokesman for the Cabinet's statistics agency was part of official efforts to defuse unease about the country's deepest slump since the 2008 global crisis.

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CA Vies For New Space Industry

August 26, 2013 10:11 am | by Mihir Zaveri, Associated Press

As new private ventures to take people on trips to space come closer to becoming reality, California lawmakers are racing other states to woo the new space companies with incentives. They are debating a bill now in Sacramento that would insulate manufacturers of spaceships and parts suppliers from liability should travelers get injured or killed on a voyage, except in cases such as gross negligence or intentional wrongdoing. 

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Orders For Long-Lasting U.S. Factory Goods Plunge

August 26, 2013 10:08 am | by Christopher S. Rugaber, AP Economics Writer

Orders for long-lasting U.S. factory goods fell sharply last month as demand for commercial aircraft plummeted and businesses spent less on computers and electrical equipment. The Commerce Department said Monday that orders for durable goods plunged 7.3 percent in July, the steepest drop in nearly a year. 

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Fracking Health Project Puts Numbers To Debate

August 26, 2013 10:05 am | by Kevin Begos, Associated Press

A project examining the local health impacts from natural gas drilling is providing some of the first preliminary numbers about people who may be affected, and the results challenge the industry position that no one suffers but also suggest the problems may not be as widespread as some critics claim.

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Toyota Freshens Lexus Image To Woo Young

August 26, 2013 10:03 am | by Yuri Kageyama, AP Business Write

Toyota's luxury brand Lexus is trying to shake off its stodgy image. So it's opening a cafe. The special lounges, the first of which is opening next week in Tokyo's fashionable Aoyama district, are designed to look more like a chic home than a standard showroom. In fact, only one vehicle can be displayed at a time.

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Gov't Seeks New Limits On Silica Dust

August 26, 2013 10:00 am | by Sam Hananel, Associated Press

Federal regulators announced plans to dramatically limit workplace exposure to silica dust, an agent known to cause crippling lung disease and cancer in thousands of workers each year. The proposal from OSHA would cut in half the amount of silica exposure allowed for general industry and maritime workers. 

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Smith Electric Announces Joint Venture In Taiwan

August 23, 2013 4:37 pm | by Smith Electric Vehicle

Smith Electric Vehicles, a leading global producer of all-electric medium-duty commercial vehicles, today announced that it has signed a letter of intent to form a joint venture with Taikang Technology Corporation in Taiwan. Taikang Technology Corporation, a leading commercial vehicle manufacturer in Taiwan, has twenty-five years of automotive experience and has expertise in upfitting specialized municipal commercial vehicles. 

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'Hyperloop' Travel Idea Gains Fans, Backers

August 23, 2013 2:02 pm | by Justin Pritchard, Associated Press

Billionaire entrepreneur Elon Musk urged the public to polish sketch plans he released last week for a "Hyperloop" that would shoot capsules full of people at the speed of sound through elevated tubes connecting Los Angeles and San Francisco. From tinkerers to engineers, the race is on.

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Toyota Canada Settles Recall Claims

August 23, 2013 2:00 pm | by The Canadian Press

Toyota Canada says it has agreed to settle consumer claims related to losses stemming from its recalls in 2009 and 2010. About 14,500 Lexus RX350 and RX450h models from the 2010 model year were recalled because of suspected throttle control problems

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TV Plant To Bring 500 Jobs To SC

August 23, 2013 1:59 pm | by The Associated Press

A company that makes televisions is moving a plant from China to South Carolina, bringing 500 new jobs. South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley announced the $7.5 million Element Electronics plant Thursday. The plant will be located in Winnsboro inside a building that's been vacant for several years. Production should start in December.

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GE Adds Jobs In IL, OH Lighting Plants

August 23, 2013 1:56 pm | by The Associated Press

General Electric Co. says it will add more than 150 jobs at three factories in Illinois and Ohio to meet what the company says is increased demand for alternatives to traditional incandescent light bulbs. Part of that includes a new deal with Walmart.

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Indonesia Curbs Luxury Car Imports

August 23, 2013 1:54 pm | by Niniek Karmini, Associated Press

Indonesia said that it would curb imports of luxury cars and take other steps to bolster national finances as Southeast Asia's largest economy suffers a slumping currency and stock market. Indonesia has been buffeted by an exodus of cash from its financial markets as improving economic prospects in the U.S and Europe reverse the tide of money that swept into developing nations the past few years.

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