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Daily industrial news and top headlines for plant and maintenance managers

The New King Of DIY

March 24, 2011 4:14 am

A lot of people like to do a little "home-grown" science, but Ben Krasnow takes that tendency to a whole new level with a homemade scanning electron microscope. The video is a little long, but the dedication and eye for precision are quite impressive, to say the least. If you’re having trouble watching this video, try downloading the latest version of Flash Player or contacting your IT department.

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Boeing's Newest Jumbo Jet Takes Flight

March 21, 2011 9:12 am

On Monday, Boeing first flew its new 747-8 jumbo jet, which can hold up to 467 passengers and fly 8,000 nautical miles. The first video shows the four-engine beast lift into the air, and the second, of course, shows its successful landing back to the ground. If you’re having trouble watching this video, try downloading the latest version of Flash Player or contacting your IT department.

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Tearing Down The Beauty Of LCDs

March 21, 2011 6:46 am

Surprise, surprise — Bill is back with a tear-down and explanation of how liquid crystal displays (LCDs) work. Chances are you're looking at one right now. The technology behind them — which involves diffusing light across the entire width and length of the screen, followed by unique polarizers and "sub-pixels" — is nothing short of incredible.

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How Smoke Detectors Work

March 16, 2011 10:41 am

Once again we turn to Bill, the “Engineer Guy,” to explain how the world works. This time? Smoke detectors. It turns out, a miniscule piece of radioactive material, Americium, works in conjunction with a special integrated circuit, called a MOSFET (or Metal Oxide Semiconductor Field Effect Transistor).

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The New American Dream

March 16, 2011 10:14 am

CNN's Fareed Zakaria explores the future potential of America's workforce and the new American dream. According to Zakaria, Americans need to focus on acquiring skills that will allow them to become mobile, dynamic, and entrepreneurial workers. The old American Dream doesn't work anymore, so it's necessary to change with the times.

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Relying On A Smarter Supply Chain

March 16, 2011 9:57 am

For those businesses who import or export goods from Japan, particularly those that rely upon Japanese-based suppliers, the supply chain is about to get a bit trickier. CNBC sat down with Jeffrey Schwartz of Global Logistic Properties, and Jon Langenfield of Robert W. Baird & Co. Despite a massive recovery effort, many businesses have sprung back extraordinarily quickly, as Schwartz reports, and with a more integrated global supply chain, perhaps things aren't as bad as many had originally thought.

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Are U.S. Nuclear Plants Safe From Disaster?

March 16, 2011 9:56 am

With the cascading issues at Japan's Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant gaining much international press attention, many are starting to wonder whether or not America's own nuclear plants are safe from disaster. CBS sat down with Cham Dallas, professor at the University of Georgia, to discuss some of the concerns.

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A Whole New Kind Of Flight

March 8, 2011 8:12 am

Keeping on track with this week’s videos of innovative technology, we offer Yves Rossy, a Swiss military and commercial pilot. He is the inventor of a jet-propelled wing, and he remains the only man to pilot one of these machines. The craft uses four model turbine engines for power, and carbon fiber wings to provide enough lift to keep Rossy — also known as Jetman — from plummeting to the earth.

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'Making' Trash Into Art

March 8, 2011 4:48 am

Two weeks ago, we featured a video of Dale Dougherty, publisher of MAKE magazine, talking about how we are all "makers." Well, this video shows almost exactly what Dougherty — and we — were talking about there. Reuben Margolin creates kinetic sculptures, which are a form of artwork he builds using found materials, such as cardboard tubes and scrap metal.

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The Blind Leading... Themselves?

March 8, 2011 4:18 am

Today's technology is being leveraged to actually help people, which is one of the most exciting and inspiring aspects of this most recent age of tech innovation. CBS News reports on an artificial retina that could restore partial vision to the blind and may soon be approved by the FDA. Then, the network discusses how the device works and how it could change the lives for people with certain types of blindness.

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Bill Gates Wants Energy Miracles

March 8, 2011 3:19 am

Bill Gates, well-known for being the founder and main proprietor of Microsoft for many years, now heads a foundation that invests in forward-thinking technology to help propel the world into a better future. As he explains in this talk, the key to solving the world's energy crisis isn't in making Americans use less, or taking away the services that we hold dear, but rather using technology that creates energy with little environmental backlash.

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The Light Bulb: More Complicated Than You Think

March 2, 2011 5:54 am

With incandescent bulbs on their way out, it's a good time to take a look back at the technology that has been almost ubiquitous for decades. Bill Hammack, a professor at the University of Illinois — Urbana, take a close-up view at the filament, which is much more complicated than many of us would have expected.

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Where Is Volvo Headed?

March 2, 2011 5:54 am

Now that Volvo is a Chinese-owned company, what does its future hold? CEO Stefan Jacoby says that the company's new focus is China, with U.S. and Europe coming in a distant second, with the new V60 plug-in hybrid leading the charge. If you’re having trouble watching this video, try downloading the latest version of Flash Player or contacting your IT department.

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Intel Pays Forward For Better Education

March 2, 2011 5:53 am

How can America retain its edge in the competitive world of technological research and innovation? MSNBC visits with Intel CEO Paul Otellini to discuss the various ways in which we're slipping. One of his primary concerns? Losing the educational battle with Asia, which will leave us without skilled workers for decades to come.

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Consumer Reports: Japanese Are On Top

March 2, 2011 5:52 am

Consumer Reports released its report of the best cars on the market, with the Japanese performing exceptionally well. Honda took the top spot, followed by Subaru and—perhaps surprisingly—Toyota. Ford represented Detroit well, but GM and Chrysler? That's another story entirely. Visit msnbc.

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Americans Get Too Tied Up In Gadgets

February 23, 2011 9:03 am

A new survey with MSNBC and Reader's Digest shows that more Americans than ever are inextricably connected to their gadgets. With more than 95 percent of respondents with access to a computer, it's clear that we're downing as much digital media as possible. Are we getting too connected? Visit msnbc.

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Hail Cannons: Pseudoscience Or Crop-Saver?

February 23, 2011 8:08 am

For decades, farmers have been using acetylene-powered "hail cannons" as a method to protect their delicate crops from the devastating effect of hailstorms. They function, on a basic level, by generating shockwaves that aim to break up falling hailstones. Now in smaller pieces, the fragments melt quickly and fall as rain.

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We Are All 'Makers'

February 23, 2011 8:07 am

At TED@MotorCity, Dale Dougherty, publisher of MAKE , talks about the American tradition of being "makers": the people who play, interact, develop, and innovate new technology, even if only for fun. We can't help but agree with the importance of being "makers." If more people were encouraged to be creative with technology, we wouldn't have the major skilled worker shortage in manufacturing, and we would better be able to continue technological innovation, which helps create jobs and business for the American public.

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Why Is Glass Transparent?

February 23, 2011 8:06 am

Why is glass transparent? Seems like a dumb question, right? Perhaps, but I would wager that most people don't know the real reason. Thankfully, Sixty Symbols  regular Professor Phil Moriarty is here to save us from our ignorance with an explanation that involves photons, electrons, and a little something known as the "electron gap.

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Americans Ask For Luxury, More Power

February 16, 2011 8:53 am

Horsepower, raw speed, and massive gasoline engines are all the rage at the Chicago Auto Show, where automakers from around the world are displaying their latest products. From a new convertible Camaro, to the incredibly-expensive Lexus LFA, and to a Cadillac that can get to 60mph in just four seconds, the show is all about who can go the fastest.

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