16 September 2008

Web exclusive: September Industry Newz, 2nd edition

ABB is providing technology to enable a unit of E.ON, Germany's biggest utility, to link the world's largest offshore wind farm (400-megawatts) to the German power grid at minimal impact to the environment. Located 130 kilometers from the coast in the North Sea, the wind farm is expected to save carbon dioxide emissions of 1.5 million tons per year by avoiding the need for additional fossil-fuel generation. ABB will connect the park using high-voltage direct current transmission technology. ABB helped TenneT and Stattnet, the Dutch and Norwegian transmission system operators, officially open a 580-kilometer power link between the two countries. As the first direct power link between Norway and the Netherlands, NorNed is the longest submarine cable link in the world and the most powerful, with a transmission capacity of 700 megawatts, and is part of the European Union's plan to improve cross-border power infrastructure, reduce blackouts, and help create more efficient power markets within Europe. ABB released its Reliability Fingerprint, a new consulting service, which includes a two-week assessment to improve site productivity, reliability practices, and maintenance costs. The service identifies and documents opportunities for enhancing overall equipment effectiveness, maintenance performance, and reliability culture.

Ametek Inc. completed an acquisition of the programmable power business of Xantrex Technology, Inc. for $120 million in cash. Based in San Diego, Xantrex's programmable power division deals in alternating current and direct current programmable power supplies used to test electrical and electronic products, with an annual sales of approximately $80 million.

Asigra Inc., a provider of agentless information recovery management to service-oriented businesses joined the VMware Technology Alliance Partner program, which helps technology vendors integrate products with VMware virtualization software.

Atos Origin, an international information technology services company, partnered with Apriso, a provider of adaptive manufacturing solutions to implement Apriso FlexNet, a software-based operations execution system to address manufacturers' needs for better real-time visibility and control over global operations.

Dellux Technologies Inc., Canada, an international LED tunnel lighting provider, has selected Golden Dragon LEDs from OSRAM Opto Semiconductors for the luminaires for installation in the Thüringer Schmücketunnel on the A71 in the German state Thüringen. The installation will mark the first tunnel in Germany and the longest in Europe to be illuminated by LED light.

GE Energy and Chevron El Segundo will work with GE's machinery and condition monitoring technology to help improve plant equipment reliability. The monitoring system will help ensure the smooth operation of its hydro-treating process unit at the Chevron El Segundo Refinery, located in Southern California. GE Fanuc Intelligent Platforms, a unit of GE Enterprise Solutions, will support MTConnect, a new communication protocol to link machine tools from varying suppliers around the world.

Honeywell will install and implement an integrated advanced planning and scheduling solution for Rabigh Refining & Petrochemicals Co.'s Petro Rabigh facility.  The site is a refining and petrochemical complex that is a joint venture between Saudi Aramco and Japan's Sumitomo Chemical Company. Honeywell is the choice for Korea-based SK Engineeringand Construction to design the integrated process control system for a major oil and gas expansion project in Kuwait. The agreement calls for Honeywell to provide process automation, safety, and operator training systems for the plant and integrate its technology with existing third-party systems.

Career Moves

Emerson Process Management's Bill Fitzgerald will direct a new business unit out of Marshalltown, Iowa, to meet the control valve needs of next generation nuclear facilities.

Huffman Corporation hired Michael Dulac from Scottsdale, Ariz., as west regional sales manager to address dress the growth in the gas turbine manufacturing, aerospace engine and medical markets.

Opto 22, a developer and manufacturer of hardware and software for industrial automation, remote monitoring, and data acquisition projects, will open a corporate office in Shanghai, China, under the leadership of new chief representative Surge Yu.

The Board of the Silver Crescent Foundation, a statewide organization committed to promoting manufacturing vitality and career opportunities in South Carolina, has named Karen Owens president. Foundation founder TonySmith will remain to serve as the organization's chief operating officer.

Metro Atlanta-based WIKA Instrument Corporation promoted key personnel: Steve McCullough, CPA, chief financial officer; Jim Zielinski, director of Supply Chain;  Kenneth Grams, product marketing manager; Harry Booth, regional sales manager, TRONIC East Region.