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Daily industrial news and top headlines for plant and maintenance managers

AR Proposed Steel Mill Lining Up Customers

September 23, 2013 9:51 am | by Chuck Bartels, Associated Press | News | Comments

Financing for a $1.1 billion steel mill planned for northeast Arkansas expects to be wrapped up by the end of the year, but until then backers will be lining up customers and suppliers. The Big River Steel plant, which is projected to employ more than 500 people, recently was approved for an air quality permit from the Arkansas Department of Environmental Quality, pending resolution of any objections that are due before mid-October.

Senate Passes Bill To Avert Helium Shortage

September 20, 2013 2:12 pm | by Matthew Daly, Associated Press | News | Comments

Break out the balloons. Congress moved a step closer Thursday to averting an impending shutdown of the federal helium reserve, a key supplier of the lighter-than-air gas used in a products ranging from party balloons to MRI machines.

Havana Sees New Life For Seedy Industrial Port

September 16, 2013 2:10 pm | by Andrea Rodriguez, Associated Press | News | Comments

Havana's harbor has long been an unsightly jumble of piers left to crumble into piles of rusty, twisted rebar. Its dominant feature is a refinery smokestack across the bay that belches smoke and flame 24 hours a day. But lately demolition crews and towering cranes have been working double-time to finally tear down the ruined docks. 

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The Sweeping Transformation Of Manufacturing

September 13, 2013 8:02 am | by Beth Ambaruch, Director Corporate Communications, PTC | Articles | Comments

Whether we like it or not, globalization has been a major factor in the staying power of many manufacturers. The practice of scattering production, jobs and plants across the globe has delivered great benefits to the consumer and the manufacturer. Companies have been able to squeeze as much efficiency as possible from the products they make so that what we desire is affordable and readily available.

The ‘One-To-Many’ Supply Chain

September 13, 2013 8:01 am | by Joel Hans, Managing Editor, Manufacturing.net | Articles | Comments

Most everyone in manufacturing is aware that today, supply chain is, more or less, “king” of the manufacturing lifecycle. With more globalized supply chains and the trend of working with more and more third parties, it’s critical that manufacturers keep a strong hold on the flow of materials from one location to the next. 

"Made In America": The Competitiveness Imperative

September 10, 2013 8:01 am | by Scott Paul, President, Alliance for American Manufacturing | Blogs | Comments

Politicians love promoting "made in America" during an election season but tend to forget about it once the dust settles. And so, for all the praise of American manufacturing in the last campaign – by Democrats and Republicans alike – very little has actually been done. So what happened to a real competitiveness – and – jobs agenda?

Study: New Gas Development Boom Unlikely In MI

September 6, 2013 2:19 pm | by John Flesher, AP Environmental Writer | News | Comments

Michigan may have large natural gas reserves deep underground, but it will likely be years before they would be developed on a large scale, giving policymakers time to deal with the environmental and public health concerns associated with the extraction method known as fracking, according to a study released Thursday.

IN Gov. Departs For Trade Mission To Japan

September 6, 2013 10:05 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Indiana Gov. Mike Pence left Thursday on his first overseas trade mission as governor, taking along more than 40 political and business leaders to Japan. The trade delegation flew out of Indianapolis for a nine-day trip through Tokyo, Nagoya and Tochigi Prefecture, Indiana's Japanese sister state.

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Boeing Sees China's Air Fleet Tripling In 20 Years

September 5, 2013 2:36 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

China's airlines are likely to triple the size of their fleets over the next two decades, driven by strong economic growth and rising tourism spending, Boeing Co. said Thursday. Boeing and European rival Airbus Industries are looking to China to drive sales as growth in demand cools elsewhere. 

The New But Not Much Improved Microsoft

September 4, 2013 5:22 pm | by CNN Money | Videos | Comments

Microsoft's $7 billion deal to buy Nokia's cellphone business has investors wondering if the software giant can finally stake a claim in the mobile phone industry. A source of national pride, Finland's Nokia Corp. had led the cellphone industry for more than a decade, reaching a peak of 40 percent market share in 2008.

A ‘Made In America’ Walmart: Truth Or Gimmick?

August 30, 2013 8:01 am | by Joel Hans, Managing Editor, Manufacturing.net | Articles | Comments

Last week, Walmart Stores announced that they would be holding a summit on U.S. manufacturing, and there’s a fair amount of skepticism over the company’s motives, particularly considering its long history of sourcing a vast majority of products from overseas.

WestJet Plans To Buy 65 737 Max From Boeing

August 29, 2013 2:28 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Canadian airline WestJet plans to buy 65 of the new fuel-efficient 737 Max aircraft from Boeing as it looks to modernize its fleet. Boeing said Thursday that the pending order is valued at $6.3 billion at current list prices.

Walmart's Plan Sells 'American Made'

August 29, 2013 12:33 pm | by CNN Money | Videos | Comments

Walmart SVP Michelle Gloeckler explains her company's $50 billion effort to sell more American made goods over the next ten years. Even if Walmart is successful in getting key retailers and suppliers on board, experts say it won't rejuvenate the U.S. manufacturing industry. But the movement could help stem the tide of jobs flowing to China and elsewhere that has been occurring in the last two decades.

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Ford Fusion Now Made In U.S.

August 29, 2013 12:28 pm | by CNN Money | Videos | Comments

For the first time, Ford Fusion vehicles are being built just outside Detroit, a positive sign that the automotive industry is bringing production back to the United States. The company's Flat Rock, Mich., plant near Detroit will start making the Fusion Thursday. Ford hired a second shift of 1,400 new workers to make the Fusion at the plant, which also makes the Mustang sports car.

Bombardier In Talks With Russia On Aircraft Deal

August 28, 2013 2:17 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Canada's Bombardier has signed a preliminary agreement with a Russian state corporation for the purchase of as many as 100 Q400 NextGen aircraft in a deal that could be worth up to $3.39 billion. The Montreal-based plane and train manufacturer said the deal with Rostekhnologii also includes the possibility of setting up a Q400 NextGen final assembly line in Russia to complement its Toronto operations.

U.S. Buying F-35 Engines From Pratt & Whitney

August 28, 2013 10:07 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

United Technologies Corp. said Tuesday that its Pratt & Whitney unit will deliver 38 jet engines to the Defense Department for the F-35 Lightning II aircraft. Besides the engines, Pratt & Whitney will also provide engineering support, spare parts and other services.

Shell Seeks Ethane For Proposed PA Plant

August 28, 2013 10:02 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Shell Oil Co. is seeking ethane suppliers for its proposed petrochemical complex in western Pennsylvania. The company says in a statement Tuesday that it will accept bids from August 27 to October 4, 2013. Shell is still a year or more away from making a final decision on whether to build the multi-billion dollar plant at an industrial site about 40 miles north of Pittsburgh.

Indonesia Curbs Luxury Car Imports

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

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.

Wal-Mart Pushes 'Made In America' At Summit

August 22, 2013 2:23 pm | by Anne D'nnocenzio, Mike Schneider, Associated Press | News | Comments

Wal-Mart Stores Inc. is hoping for a groundswell "made-in-America" movement. The world's largest retailer hosted its first two-day summit Thursday bringing together retailers, suppliers and government officials that it hopes will build on its recent commitment to drive more manufacturing in the U.S.

Jack Daniel's Prepares For Its Largest Expansion

August 22, 2013 2:20 pm | by Bruce Schreiner, Associated Press | News | Comments

Jack Daniel's is being served a $100 million-plus expansion of its rural Tennessee distillery to flex more muscle in the growing whiskey market. The investment amounts to the largest single production expansion in the brand's long history.

Maker's Row: Connecting The New Manufacturers

August 20, 2013 8:02 am | by Joel Hans, Managing Editor, Manufacturing.net | Articles | Comments

Maker’s Row, a free service that facilitates connections between designers and the small-batch American manufacturers that can help them turn a sketch into a real product, is on a roll. The startup has recently secured $1M in funding. The users are happy too — Tanya Menendez, COO and co-founder, was pleased to hear that an American manufacturer posted their company’s profile and had a meeting in just two days.

Boeing Blames 787 Extinguisher Defect On Supplier

August 19, 2013 10:30 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Boeing Co. said Friday that a defect in engine fire extinguishers for its new 787 jets occurred during manufacturing of the bottles at a supplier's facility and the issue was being fixed. Boeing has told airlines to inspect the extinguishers and given them directions for fixing improperly configured fire-suppression systems.

IAG To Buy 62 Airbus Planes

August 15, 2013 1:54 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

International Airlines Group has ordered 62 Airbus aircraft in the A320 family, with a list price of $5.4 billion, to replace aging planes and expand the fleet of its Vueling discount carrier. IAG, the parent of British Airways and Iberia, says it negotiated a "substantial discount" on the list price without providing further details.

Fracking Fight Hits England

August 15, 2013 8:03 am | by CNN Money | Videos | Comments

Areas in the North of England are being prepped for the controversial process of freeing fossil fuels from shale rock (or "fracking"), and residents in these rural farming communities are expressing worry about how the drilling plans will impact their communities and their livelihood.

Pipeline Fire Lights Up IL Sky

August 13, 2013 2:24 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

A fuel pipeline exploded beneath a western Illinois cornfield, sending flames hundreds of feet into the sky and leaving a 15-foot-deep crater before pipeline crews were able to stem the flow of fuel and bring the fire under control, authorities said. Nobody was injured in the explosion, which was reported around 11:15 p.m. Monday.

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