Head in the cloud: How disruptive technologies are affecting your plant
In this Big Picture Interview, Dan Miklovic explores asset performance management and the cloud.
Dan Miklovic is principal analyst with LNS Research. He is the author of LNS' Best Practices Guide: Asset Performance Management, and his primary focus is research and development in the asset and energy management practices. Dan has more than 40 years of experience in manufacturing IT, R&D, engineering, and sales across several industries, as well as more than 20 years of industry experience at companies such as Emerson Electric, Mallinckrodt Chemical, Weyerhaeuser, and Scott Products, as well as several consulting companies and software provider Aspen Technology.
PS: Are cloud technologies having a disruptive effect on asset management and condition monitoring?
DM: For asset management, rather than having a disruptive influence,…
What impact is the cloud having on asset management and condition-based maintenance?
The ongoing journey toward lubrication perfection
In pursuit of lubrication perfection
Lubrication plays a major role in Turkey’s energy production
Benchmarking to achieve organizational reliability
Make the cultural shift to failure-free operations.
The chemical manufacturing industry is undergoing a paradigm shift with regard to its view toward reliability. Recent trends show an emphasis on creating failure-free cultures where the goal is to detect potential plant and equipment failures before they occur. Making this shift requires the early detection of potential issues, which requires companies to become more proactive and less reactive. This proactive mindset can be cultivated through the use of reliability and maintenance performance-improvement programs that give organizations visibility into their internal structures from the inside out.
Developing a failure-free culture helps achieve what we call “organizational reliability”—an environment that fosters the needed…
Choose the right tool for vibration analysis
Combine vibration monitoring and ultrasound for more cost-effective predictive maintenance
Use vibration monitoring to improve PdM and prevent failures before they occur
Simple steps to accurate alignment
How vibration analysis can detect alignment problems
Thermal growth and alignment
How to use ultrasound to improve lubrication practices
How ultrasound technicians are improving reliability at your plant
Thermography heats up
Use thermography to diagnose electrical problems
IR technology offers a tool with multiple applications
A tale of 2 industrial plants
Regulate water temperature
Welding QC simple with real-time temperature readings
Reduce corrosion costs
Combat corrosive conditions with prevention and early detection
Perform system maintenance to slow degradation of rotating equipment
The truth about PdM: How your peers are really using predictive maintenance
Predictive maintenance survey reveals drivers, obstacles and the future
New technologies help avoid machine faults
Companies look to drones to boost safety
Dow Chemical is among those eyeing unmanned aircraft to help cut accident risk.
Anyone who’s seen the devastating footage from post-earthquake Nepal knows drones have already altered the way films and videos are shot. But the technology may soon transform a much less glamorous industry: safety.
Dow Chemical is among those companies that have requested permission from the FAA to use unmanned aircraft commercially, citing safety among their reasons for doing so.
Read the full story on TheNewOrleansAdvocate.com.
Remote monitoring through turbine retrofit
Work with IT to foster remote monitoring
Maintenance and reliability heats up in China
How wearable and mobile technologies extend the benefits of embedded BI
Real-time machinery evaluation leads to plant profitability
How to avoid paralysis through analysis.
Performance evaluation of rotating machinery in a refinery can provide many benefits to the plant engineering and reliability team. This case study deals with pumps; however, such an exercise can be applied equally to other major and critical pieces of machinery available in an operating plant. Centrifugal compressor monitoring can be done using such an approach to evaluate the operating context of the compressor. Variables such as the operating margin around the anti-surge line, compressor polytropic head and efficiency, and gas horsepower can be readily determined in real time giving valuable information on the condition of a particular asset. This approach also helps in cutting back heavy reliance on the OEM and utilizing on-site,…
Examine and break the cycle of pump repairs
Fluid handling tools you can use
Handle fluid with care
Pumps in peril?
Remote control crane operation: Heavy lifting made easy
Remote control and monitoring innovations are driving greater productivity, efficiency, and safety on crane systems.
Cranes are critical in a number of industries, including aircraft/aerospace, auto manufacturing, chemicals and minerals, pulp and paper, steel production, and utilities, as well as the grain industry, logging, rail yards, and ship loading.
Traditionally, industrial cranes have been operated by human operators sitting in cabs in the cranes. In such instances, the operator's actions are guided by the hand signals of a person outside of the crane. "In the past, cranes were operated by the cab operators," says Brad Robinson, president of Robinson Engineering, which has been offering remote control technologies since 1962. "The guy on the ground was hooking the chains, doing the loading, and having to wave his hands to direct the operator where…
Don't sacrifice safety for productivity
Material handling meets energy efficiency
Big data in the material handling industry: From supply chain to fulfillment
PM and PdM for electric motors
Build the right balance of predictive and preventive tactics to extend long-term operating service life.
We often hear the terms preventive maintenance (PM) and predictive maintenance (PdM) of electric motors, but far less often do we give consideration to the tasks associated with these methods of maintaining motor operation and extending operating service life. This article addresses some of the more common activities associated with PM and PdM, with the focus on three-phase squirrel cage motors.
Preventive maintenance activities
Preventive maintenance primarily consists of face value “snap-shot” assessments of motor health taken at planned and fixed intervals, and then making judgments on machinery condition usually based only on a single set of readings and observations. That is, a test or inspection is performed and evaluated based…
Are adjustable speed drives right for you?
Boost motor efficiency for a better payoff
Common sense management of EISA motor changes
13 ways to optimize your compressed air system
The best compressed air system efficiency occurs when both sides of the system are optimized at the same time by taking a holistic systems approach.
You may have heard that compressed air is one of the most expensive utilities in an industrial plant. It is a fact that compressed air is a poor way to transmit energy to an industrial machine or tool if you want superior efficiency. That being said, it is unlikely you will convert all your industrial tools and equipment to direct drive electric, just based on energy efficiency alone. Compressed air will never disappear from industrial plants; it is a very useful utility.
Compressed air system costs vary widely in industry. This is because the efficiency of systems is often ignored, as there often are more important issues in running a system, especially keeping the pressure at a constant reliable level and maintaining adequate air quality…
Calculate the life cycle cost of your compressed air system
What is your compressed air survey ROI?
Compressed air system solutions for deep surface mining
Back to basics: Getting to the bottom of leaks in your compressed air system
Video: Faster, stronger, cheaper - China's robotics project
ABB acquires Gomtec to expand collaborative robotics portfolio
What happens when factory robots are freed from their cages
Design, build, program a 120-pound robot; then do homework
3D land surveying and GIS: 3D is not just for printing parts
In this month's Technology Toolbox, explore how 3D tech is revolutionizing plant infrastructure management.
3D is not just for printing parts or modeling equipment. In the industrial space, three-dimensional perspectives in land surveying, spatial analysis, mapping, and GIS benefit many land and infrastructure management tasks. The latest 3D tools offer greater realism and accuracy, which improves efficiency as well as safety.
LiDAR and photogrammetry
Light detection and ranging (LiDAR) laser scanning and digital photogrammetry are two of the surveying techniques leveraged for 3D purposes. The Sanborn Map Company uses aerial LiDAR technology for its oil, gas, and utility clients to map utility corridors, conduct as-built surveys of the terrain and network assets, and simplify corridor maintenance by detecting vegetation and other right-of-way…
New study looks at 3D printing's accelerating global adoption
IFS World Conference 2015: Disrupt or be disrupted
Is manufacturing really new?
Real optimization in a virtual factory
New twists in turbines: How recent developments are delivering business benefits
Sheila Kennedy says reduced weight, minimal maintenance, and increased efficiency provide cost benefits.
Turbine designers are finding new ways to lower costs, increase efficiency and capacity, minimize maintenance requirements, and reduce the size and weight of the equipment. Recent developments are delivering business benefits, particularly in the renewables space.
Sheila Kennedy is a professional freelance writer specializing in industrial and technical topics. She established Additive Communications in 2003 to serve software, technology, and service providers in industries such as manufacturing and utilities, and became a contributing editor and Technology Toolbox columnist for Plant Services in 2004. Prior to Additive Communications, she had 11 years of experience implementing industrial information systems. Kennedy earned her B.S. at…
Contaminants’ impact on gas turbine operation
Mechanical or electrical trip system testing?
A failure to communicate can be the root cause of expensive machine breakdowns
In this installment of What Works, a customized, cloud-based reliability program helps Eastman Chemical close communications gaps and cut unplanned downtime.
Kingsport, Tenn.-based Eastman Chemical prides itself on having world-class maintenance and reliability teams, with experts in their fields helping the company serve customers in more than 100 countries worldwide and continually earn Eastman spots on "partner of the year" and "best places to work" lists. But frustratingly, Eastman found that communications breakdowns between these teams too often were at the root of expensive machine breakdowns.
"We knew that most of the problems that we had were communications issues," says Steve Powers, Eastman's reliability team lead. When it comes to optimizing maintenance planning, "It's hard to communicate everything that you need to do," he adds.
And from a maintenance and control perspective,…
Plant Services CMMS/EAM Software Review
Read David Berger's column, Asset Manager
Subscribe to the Asset Management E-News
Sign up for the 2015 asset managment webcast
Better analytics produces big savings for Dow Chemical
A global analytics tool helps Dow Chemical get a better handle on data gathered from sites worldwide.
Big data, indeed: With 188 manufacturing sites in 36 countries, Midland, Mich.-based Dow Chemical collects a lot of raw data on its equipment, processes and products. But different plants' use of different information systems to track everything meant that Dow found itself struggling to make sense of the reams of information it was gathering.
"We stored data in all different places," says Lloyd Colegrove, director of data services for Dow. And that made it difficult—and time-consuming—for people outside a given site to access the numbers they needed to be able to respond quickly to emerging asset issues and identify asset performance patterns.
The delay inherent in a process that revolves around downloading data from multiple sources…
3D plant imaging and modeling
Big data in the material handling industry: The NIST project
Improve plant productivity with communication, data gathering, and analysis
Smart manufacturing: A path to profitable growth
Small and medium-size companies in the $3 trillion U.S. manufacturing sector largely are missing out on smart manufacturing's benefits, Brian Kennell writes.
A bullet train is leaving the station, and it promises to transform and propel U.S. manufacturers who climb on board--in a wave of information technology known as smart manufacturing.
The big names are not just aboard, they're driving the train: IBM announced in March it will spend $3 billion in the next four years to create an "Internet of Things" unit and develop software to help customers do the same.
Read the full blog post on HuffingtonPost.com.
Remote condition monitoring technologies enable effective, efficient predictive maintenance
How the Internet of Things might change your plant
6 mistakes to avoid with EAM software
Bring-your-own-device policies put plant data in the palm of your hand
Tesla buys Michigan auto supplier
The acquisition of Grand Rapids-based Riviera Tool marks Tesla's first presence in Michigan.
Tesla Motors is acquiring a Grand Rapids, Mich.-based auto supplier, giving the Silicon Valley technology company a manufacturing presence in Michigan.
Tesla reached a deal to acquire Riviera Tool, marking the first acquisition for the burgeoning electric-vehicle and battery manufacturer, the Free Press has learned from a person familiar with the matter.
Read the full story on freep.com.
Top 5 ways to prevent arc flash
How to determine the best electrical safety practices for your plant
Do capacitor systems really save energy?
Electrical safety experts answer your questions
Bill aims to boost "green" jobs in manufacturing
Proposed legislation would provide grants to states for energy-efficient retrofits.
Sen. Jeff Merkley, D-Ore., and Rep. Matt Cartwright, D-Pa., announced Wednesday the introduction of the Job Creation through Energy Efficient Manufacturing Act in both the U.S. Senate and House.
The lawmakers said their bill would create jobs and save money for manufacturers by putting people to work retrofitting manufacturing facilities to be more energy-efficient.
Read the full story on KTVZ.com.
The puzzle of future oil pricing
Energy management motivation: Fighting mixed signals, misaligned goals and unpredictable resources
Track energy costs like you would operating costs
Establishing an energy management dashboard the right way
Overcome potential problems with power quality
Don’t let harmonic distortion, voltage transients, or grounding issues affect your production.
Power is a critical resource to an industrial plant, so power problems require power solutions. Many industrial facilities have their own on-site power-generation capabilities to reduce energy costs and to compensate for the potential of short-term utility outages. Power quality can have different kinds of impact on operations and production. There are just as many causes of poor power quality as there are options to solve them, and many of them are extremely affordable.
"Voltage imbalance is a huge issue with motors," says Dan Chamberlain, electrical PDG lead CCMNA for Cargill in Dayton, Ohio. "Allied Reliability Group has been working with all of Cargill's corn milling facilities for a number of years and always…
Harmonics and power quality: an overview
Turbine retrofit ups efficiency 13%
Select the correct blower technology for industrial wastewater treatment applications
This article discusses the advantages and limitations of each technology in various wastewater treatment applications.
Blower selection is an important decision when designing a new wastewater treatment plant or upgrading existing facilities. The proper selection of blower equipment for the application, as well as purchasing from a reputable supplier, can save thousands of dollars in energy, repairs and maintenance costs. This article provides an overview of the blower technologies available for wastewater treatment, and discusses the advantages and limitations of each technology in various wastewater treatment applications.
Take a look at a municipal wastewater treatment plant near a textile factory in Asia (Figure 1). Is there any question as to why we treat industrial wastewater? The use of blowers for aeration and mixing accounts for 40 to 75 percent…
Requirements for reciprocating compressors in refrigeration systems
Drive down your energy costs with heat of compression recovery
Compressed air systems' waste heat improves plant economics
Heat recovery — Great in theory, tough in practice
Cloud-based climate controls help keep your plant the perfect temperature
Sheila Kennedy says smart systems enable secure remote access, optimize energy consumption across facilities.
Cloud-based climate controls help keep your plant the perfect temperature
It can be difficult to optimize the climate of plant offices, maintenance shops, stockrooms and warehouses, particularly for multi-site or global organizations. New cloud-based systems facilitate transparency and control, reduce energy costs and consumption, and address security concerns.
The new Smart Cloud Climate Control System, developed collaboratively by SoftServe UGE and Panasonic Europe’s heating and cooling solution division, enables simultaneous control of the climate within multiple facilities from a single device. It allows centralized monitoring and one-click temperature optimization in all sites, and it permits the ability react quickly…
Ohio injection molding plant gets cooler and brighter
How to achieve better HVAC and dust collection
Reduced HVAC energy waste
Heat recovery and energy efficiency go hand in hand
Why you're not as lean as you think
Lean is not a static state; it’s a dynamic state of continuous improvement.
A European manufacturing company eager for affirmation of the success of its lean initiative invited in for a visit a renowned Toyota manager from Japan who had helped develop the Toyota Production System.
After a long day of going through every detail of the plant, everyone gathered in a conference room. The company’s chairman said, “Please, now tell us if you consider us to be world-class lean.” The answer was short and to the point: “It’s impossible for me to say,” the Toyota manager offered. “I wasn’t here yesterday.”
Lean is not a static state; it’s a dynamic state of continuous improvement. Continuous improvement is about engaging all employees in improving the efficiency and effectiveness of your processes every…
Improving your global production and logistics footprint
How to take your plant one step closer to lean
Implementing lean operating systems
Lean manufacturing leads to production gains
Perspective: It's time for manufacturers to start taking responsibility for suppliers
The faster a company can react to a supply-chain issue, the less harm comes to its customers, brand and bottom line. So why are businesses with massive supply chains using software based on 1990s paradigms?
Imagine: A single global supply-chain network that integrates different ERP systems, trading partners, and most importantly, data that moves between them. A car company wouldn’t have to rely on its tier-one suppliers to tell it — by a forwarded email — what its tier-two suppliers are doing. Instead, they’d get an update directly through their supply-chain platform, just like a Facebook notification.
Read the full post from Greg Johnsen, co-founder and CMO of GT Nexus, on recode.net.
Global manufacturing PMI data: U.S. is still the best
Integrate inventory management with your processes
How to use preventive maintenance to improve inventory management
What does vendor managed inventory mean for your plant?
Heard at IFSWoCo15: Four top takeaways
Panelists at IFS' World Conference 2015 share their predictions about the future of manufacturing.
Software vendor IFS, whose largest industry served is manufacturing, hosted its World Conference 2015 in Boston this week for customers, business partners and industry analysts. Disruptive technologies – from drones to driverless cars – and how they will affect businesses and the global workforce were a hot topic of conversation throughout the conference. We're incorporating automation into more and more tasks in our professional and personal lives, speakers and panelists noted – so what does the short-term and mid-range future likely hold for manufacturers?
Here, four key comments shared by some of the conference's prognosticators this week:
1. "I think we'll see the ubiquity of sensors." - Joshua Bellin, research fellow at…
Using gap analysis to monitor and maintain your Work Management Process
Management of change
What you need to know before implementing change management
Eight common misperceptions of management of change
Pass-along knowledge for the next generation of engineers and operators
In this Big Picture Interview, Robert Perez explores the role of the machinery reliability engineer.
Robert X. Perez is a machinery reliability engineer with more than 30 years of experience in the petrochemical industry. He earned a BSME degree from Texas A&M University, College Station, and an MSME degree from the University of Texas at Austin, and he’s a licensed professional engineer in the state of Texas. He has written extensively about machinery reliability and served on the Turbomachinery Symposium Advisory Committee for 10 years.
PS: What does a machinery reliability engineer do?
RP: A machinery reliability engineer, or MRE, is a subject matter expert in the field of process machinery, such as centrifugal compressors, centrifugal pumps, reciprocating compressors, reciprocating pumps, and steam turbines. As an MRE my job…
Mentoring the next generation of maintenance and reliability leaders
Fuel sealing systems testing
Evolving certification requirements impact oilfield service companies’ choice in material suppliers.
Oilfield service companies (OFS), the backbone of the oil and gas industry, are closely following the movements of such customers as Halliburton, Schlumberger, Cameron International, FMC Technologies, and Baker Hughes. These customers are also leveraging important trends for their customers simply because they have to in order to maintain their competitive edge.
One key trend that most oil and gas companies seem to be doing a pretty good job at is limiting their exposure to any one region by diversifying into multiple international markets. Experts point to how they have been counting on overseas business due to the better market conditions than in North America in the last few years. For instance, Schlumberger recently set up a joint…
Conveyor maintenance: Moving from preventive to predictive models
Seven tips for picking an outside contractor
Offshoring and outsourcing
The benefits of maintenance outsourcing
Cybersecurity: The ever-changing threat
Require safety compliance in your supply chain
How to measure the safety of your plant
Safety is everyone's job
TOP 5 WAYS TO PREVENT ARC FLASH
Safety is always a priority for plant managers, with the threat of arc flash weighing heavily on their minds. Here are the top 5 article you need to read to help prevent arc flash and ensure the electrical safety of your plant.
New OSHA rules on electric power generation, transmission, and distribution
What’s revised, why, and how much it will cost.
Are new OSHA rules on electrical safety regular or supersize?
2014 changes to the 1910.269 and 1926.960 rules.
How the electrical safety trifecta can reduce risk and increase reliability
Safe installations, safe work practices, and adequate electrical equipment maintenance come together.
Are new OSHA rules on electrical safety regular or supersize?
The history of electrical safety
How to lower your risk of arc flash
Got questions about arc flash? We've got answers.
Arc flash hazard experts answer your questions
Mitigate arc-flash risk
Objective and measurable techniques to determine best safety practices on electrical systems.
Frequently asked questions
I hire qualified electricians, why do I need to monitor their every move?
You likely were diligent to hire technically competent electrical workers. Qualification ensures they can recognize and avoid injury from electrical hazards. It is the employer’s responsibility to train workers on specific facility hazards, ensure understanding, and monitor compliance after training has been given. These three steps must be effective, timely, and documented to keep workers safe and for you to comply with regulations and standards.
You won’t be monitoring their every move all the time. NFPA 70E establishes “periodic monitoring” as at least once a year. That may not be enough to satisfactorily know they will work…
Electrical workplace safety training is the best insurance money can buy
How changes to the National Electrical Code will affect your plant
Change management to change the electrical safety culture in your plant
Ensure that your critical ICS data is protected
Cybersecurity is an ongoing journey that manufacturers need not take alone.
The threats to industrial control systems are real and alarming. Building an effective defense is something few companies can or should undertake single-handedly.
In a report released in March, 2015, the US DHS ICS-CERT (Industrial Control System Computer Emergency Response Team) cited 245 documented cyber attacks on industrial control systems in the period between October 1, 2013 and September 30, 2014. Keep in mind those were just attacks that were recognized and reported. One can only assume there were far more that were not even detected, and others where the victims did not feel disposed to making the incident public.
While this statistic can be analyzed and interpreted many ways, one thing is clear: industrial networks and control…
3D scanning: Measurement, made better and faster
The evolving automation architecture: The time to act is now
Are smart devices giving us too much information?
Industrial Internet of Things by any other name
Is IIoT really a new concept?
When Brian Sides heard about the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT), it really didn’t connect with him. That might seem strange for the director of technology at Okuma America, who also was one of the original architects of THINC-OSPcontrol, an open-architecture CNC.
IIoT didn’t resonate with Sides because he’d been familiar with machine-to-machine data monitoring already, but by a different name. “I started to realize the machining manufacturing environment was already doing this without the name,” explained Sides, who spoke in Orlando, Florida, at ARC Forum in February. “This is not two or three years down the road. It’s been five years in the making.”
To learn more about the Industrial Internet of Things, read “Is…
Is information software in your toolbox?
Mobile-device tools bring connectivity and collaboration
Control systems just got more maintenance-friendly
Changing control architecture
Industrial plant networks go wireless
Unlock energy efficiency potential with wireless automation systems
New predictive maintenance monitoring and diagnostics tools take charge
Electrical enclosure vents
Ventilation openings help maintain component temperatures and prevent catastrophic failures.
Ventilation openings help to maintain component temperatures inside the enclosure within certain design limits.
If these openings are blocked, either inadvertently or intentionally, overheating of the equipment may result.
A careful review of the standards and terminology is an excellent way to truly understand the various construction features used in electrical equipment enclosures and what exposure they create.
Electrical distribution equipment in all voltage classes often has ventilation openings to permit the circulation of air by convection within the enclosure. These ventilation openings help to maintain component temperatures inside the enclosure within certain design limits. If these openings are blocked, either…
Beware shiny objects: Why consumerism's creep should give manufacturers pause
In this Big Picture Interview, Clay Flannigan says consumer technologies are making their way rapidly into industrial manufacturing, and vice-versa.
Consumer technologies are making their way rapidly into industrial manufacturing, and vice-versa. But in this quickly evolving technology environment, manufacturers must maintain focus on solutions for the long term, says Southwest Research Institute's automation engineering manager.
Clay Flannigan is the manager for robotics and automation engineering at Southwest Research Institute, a not-for-profit research and development organization in San Antonio, Texas.
PS: For someone unfamiliar with Southwest Research Institute, how would you describe the work that you do?
CF: That’s always a difficult thing to answer because we are very diverse, but we’re characterized as an applied research and development institute. We’re nonprofit, and…
Will you be working for a robot in the future?
How much do you know about robots?
Running robots mean flowing profits
Video: The father of the PLC explains its birth
SCADA gets better, faster, stronger
Getting the right information from your devices
Thomas Wilk investigates how manufacturers are using intelligence effectively on the plant floor.
Since the birth of the smart transmitter in the early 1980s, manufacturers have chased a vision of using intelligent technologies to drive automated process and resource efficiencies on the plant floor.
The latest manifestation of this vision is the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT), also known as Industry 4.0. Both terms are often used as shorthand to describe the ways that connected machines can monitor physical processes and conditions, and then make decentralized decisions on how to optimize those processes. The potential exists for billions of linked smart devices to collaborate and communicate as part of the IIoT, and to enable customized solutions that help individual plants operate more safely, reliably, and efficiently.
Building for the future: Tooling, training and service under one roof
Enterprise asset management and field service management market expected to grow
Demand for smart meter products and services to increase
Setting the standard for IT best practices
Southwestern Illinois College Precision Machining Technology Program Renews National Accreditation from NIMS
This is the second time that SWIC has established itself as a NIMS-accredited training source
Keeping up with today’s standards, Southwestern Illinois College (SWIC) has renewed the NIMS Accreditation of their Precision Machining Technology Program as of May 6, 2015. This is the second time the college program has established itself as a NIMS-Accredited training source, as this national benchmark was first achieved in 2009. SWIC is celebrated for its continued commitment to meeting local employment needs, while maintaining national industry standards for machinist skills training.
Following a rigorous On Site Evaluation in early April at the college’s Granite City facility, NIMS Evaluator Terry Babb (President, Apextool & Mfg., Inc.) was very impressed with the Precision Machining Technology Program, noting that the…
Workforce development: Training veterans to fill the skills shortage
Are you making the right assumptions about the people you work with?
Raymond receives Diamond Award for course manager training program
Training operators and maintenance staff with 3D visualization
Do you know what young engineers are looking for?
Graduating engineers want more than just a good paycheck from prospective employers.
If you want to attract young talent, it's great—but not enough—to offer even the most fantastic set of technical resources, challenges and rewards. You also have to be able to prove that your process industry plant is a great place to work, and a responsible steward of the planet and the environment. If you can do that, you can attract talent pretty much no matter where you are—or what you make.
To learn more about attracting the right engineer, read “Attracting Good Young Engineering Talent Takes More than a Good Pay Package” from Control.
Is your plant suffering from poor engineering quality? You're not alone.
Implementing lubrication management training
5 key factors of operator training simulators
Students at a suburban Chicago high school are using leading-edge manufacturing technologies in their quest for robotics competition victory—and prospective employers are taking note.
For those who would shake their head about the future of the U.S. manufacturing workforce, an invitation: Next time you're in Chicago, swing out about 30 miles west of the city and drop in on a meeting of the Naperville North High School robotics club.
With a membership of 75 to 80 students, the club draws teens interested in engineering, fabrication, programming—even marketing (the club has its own media relations team). "We are almost a full corporation," says club co-sponsor Mark Rowzee, who worked in engineering for 10 years before becoming a physics teacher at his alma mater.
Consider this: The club, known as Huskie Robotics (@team3061), this year developed its own electric circuit board that it will market to other robotics clubs.
Girl power in the plant
Guess who has a STEM degree
Generation Y in the workplace
Arkansas governor: Manufacturing a 'national security' issue
Jobs rebound in U.S. plastics manufacturing
As demand grows, Midwestern colleges prep students to fly drones
Training and Career Center
Cultivate diversity to get original ideas from your team
White House aims to get more Americans plugged into tech jobs with new 'Tech Hire' initiative
Do you know who your prospective leaders are?
Maintenance Deathmatch: Predictive Service's Aerial Point software vs. Endress+Hauser's Liquiline transmitter
Watch as two industrial products fight to the death. Which one will win the title of product of the week?
Welcome ladies and gentlemen to Maintenance Deathmatch. This week’s matchup features two industrial heavyweights. In this corner, pinpointing roof problems, Predictive Service's Aerial Point software. And in this corner, accepting inputs from up to eight sensors, Endress+Hauser's Liquiline transmitter. Let’s have a good clean fight and remember, the product with the most votes by next week will be declared the winner.
Congratulations to Endress+Hauser, our new champion!
Predictive Service's Aerial Point software
Endress+Hauser's Liquiline transmitter
Where in the World Is Plant Services?: Ron Stallworth in Phoenix, Arizona
Manage contracted maintenance work as if it's your own
Proactive valve system maintenance
CMMS and EAM rise to the cloud
2008 Euromaintenance Conference
A Skill TV Special: Top industry leaders discuss key maintenance issues at the 2008 Euromaintenance Conference.
Advancing Maintenance in Europe
Joel Leonard interviews Hans Klemme Wolff, president of the European Federation of National Maintenance Societies, about the maintenance crisis.
France's Maintenance Angle
Joel Leonard interviews Claude Pichot, president of the French Association of Engineers, about France's approach to maintenance.
Maintenance as a strategic asset
Rockwell Automation's Tom Hetherington talks to Joel Leonard at the PEMAC conference about automation in the maintenance process.
Experiential Education Fills Engineer Pipeline
Experiential education helps to fill the pipeline of future engineers. Watch as pumpkins and trebuchets spark students' excitement about engineering.
Opportunities and Challenges for Maintenance Women
Joel Leonard interviews Susanne Peters from Mainnovation consultancy group about opportunities for women in the maintenance field.
What are Canadian Business Challenges?
Joel Leonard gets to the bottom of the maintenance challenges that Canadian businesses face.
The welder shortfall
Marine Chris Myers used the GI Bill to go to welding school and is now an instructor for Lincoln Electric. He demonstrates that the demand for welders is great even in a down economy.
Craftsmen of the Future
Chuck Kooistra, vice president of General Physics, talks to Joel Leonard about the importance of recruitment in the maintenance field.
Guiding students toward a career in maintenance
Rachel Gilles discusses how ATS is upgrading its current maintenance workers and developing its future workforce through educational efforts.
Moving to a predictive maintenance continuum
Don Johnson from ATS explains how outsourcing production maintenance can help factories run better.
Part 1: Council on Competitiveness
Part 1: Council on Competitiveness Senate workforce briefing
A Big Problem in the Skilled Trades
Bill Thrasher, vice president of PEMAC, talks about the consequences of not feeding the skilled worker pipeline in Canada.
Breaking Down the Stereotypes
Greensboro, N.C. Mayor Yvonne Johnson talks to Joel about skills versus gangs.
Part 4: Council on Competitiveness
Part 4: Council on Competitiveness Senate workforce briefing
Part 5: Council on Competitiveness
Part 5: Council on Competitiveness
Part 2: Council on Competitiveness
Part 2: Council on Competitiveness Senate workforce briefing
Part 3: Council on Competitiveness
Part 3: Council on Competitiveness Senate workforce briefing
Skill Shortfall Challenges Business Takeoff
Joel Leonard discusses with John Cawthron of Timco Aviation Services how the skills shortfall challenges businesses' hiring practices.
The 2008 Business Challenge Forecast
Joel Leonard discusses the 2008 Business Challenge Forecast with Joyce Gioia of the Herman Group.
Insight into the World Congress of Maintenance
Joel Leonard interviews Guido Walt, former president of the Swiss Maintenance Society, about European maintenance challenges.
N.C. rebounds from demise of legacy industries
Joel Leonard talks about the steps North Carolina took to recover economically from the demise of legacy industries that were once the engine of the state's economy.
MBA Education and the Maintenance Crisis
Len Middleton, an engineer and MBA, talks to Joel Leonard about how MBA education contributes to the maintenance crisis.
Many think to advance our society we must break away from the past. However, by preserving and maintaining yesterday's assets, we could be building tomorrow's treasures. Joel Leonard interviews Benjamin Briggs, executive director of Preservation Greensboro, to learn about this process.
The Value of Education
Former Michigan Gov. John Engler, who is now the president of the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM), shares his perspective on skills challenges at the 2008 National Summit on American Competitiveness in Chicago.
Changing Public Perception
Ted Natt, editor of Sandhills Business Journal, talks about the media bias against maintenance workers and what can be done to change the public's perception of skilled workers.
Not Just a Bunch of "Goobers"
Tim Pettigrew, a Mayberry Tribute Actor, also is a certified school bus mechanic. He reveals the complexities of modern transportation equipment and the growing need for qualified technicians.
World Economy Creates Opportunities for USA
Joel Leonard met with Council on Competitiveness President Deborah L. Wince-Smith at the 2008 National Summit on American Competitiveness. She says that as the world's economy grows, so do the opportunities available for American companies.
South Carolina and the Maintenance Crisis
South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford talks about the need for maintenance workers in his home state.
Maintenance Evangelist Meets Tech Evangelist
Maintenance Evangelist Joel Leonard and Technology Evangelist Robert Scoble discuss educational challenges and the need for schools to provide experiential education and hands-on training to fully engage students.
Maintenance at the University Level
Are maintenance and reliability taught at the university level? They are at the University of Tennessee at the Maintenance and Reliability Center under the direction of Tom Byerley.
Ricky Smith at UE World
Hear what advice reliability guru Ricky Smith would give President Obama on how to improve our nation's economic performance.
Skill TV Maintenance Crisis Video
Watch the maintenance crisis unfold before your eyes, to the tune of Joel Leonard's famous "Maintenance Crisis Song."
SkillTV: Saline Water Conversion Corp
A CEO who understands maintenance
Joel Leonard interviews a CEO who understands the value contribution of maintenance.
Business and reliability challenges in Russia?
Are there business and reliability challenges in Russia?
New CEO and the Wily Old Maintenance Manager
Skit: The new CEO encounters the wily old maintenance manager
Maintenance and money
Peter DeCleric illustrates how maintenance can contribute to the shareholder value of a company
Russ Read of the Biotechnology Workforce
New opportunities in biotech: Joel Leonard interviews Russ Read, executive director of the Biotechnology Workforce
SMRP Conference Expert Roundtable
Joel Leonard attends the SMRP Conference and interviews industry experts Terry Wireman, Wayne Vaughn and Kahn Ellis, all who currently work with Vesta Partners.
Welding through history and beyond
Lincoln Electric's Chris Ilcin and Dan Ziemnik give Joel Leonard a tour of their Euclid, Ohio-based headquarters.
Lincoln Electric's Carl Peters talks welding
Lincoln Electric's Carl Peters, director of training and technology, discusses the company's efforts to combat the maintenance crisis and skilled worker shortage
Welding in the virtual world
Lincoln Electric introduces students to welding in virtual reality to help with training
Welding student provides hands-on perspective
Welding student Seth Cogley talks about his experience in the Lincoln Electric welding program and his career prospects once he graduates
Improve operational effectiveness
Hamdan McDar of Saudi Aramco has implemented a variety of strategies to make his company more productive and more profitable.
Thirsty for reliability?
Millions of people in the Middle East live in a desert. Those who run and maintain the water desalination plants deserve praise and support for their efforts. Joel Leonard sat down with leaders of the Saudi Water Commission and Datastream Arabia to learn how they were able to implement EAM in three months.
Preventing inefficiencies and failures
Bart Winters explains how Honeywell is utilizing the Abnormal Situation Management Consortium and simulation training to stamping out failures.
Fighting the economic downturn with optimization
Don Morrison, Profit Suite Product Manager, explains how Honeywell is using real-time technology to optimize plant performance.
Automation services address the maintenance crisis
Jason Urso, Honeywell's VP of Technology, is helping businesses improve process safety, reliability and efficiency.
How to maintain automation performance
Honeywell's Jose Simon helps companies realize profit capabilities with automation.
Address financial challenges with efficiency
Noah Bethel, VP of product development at PdMA, discusses the role of technology in electrical reliability, focusing on cradle-to-grave motor reliability and troubleshooting motors with data analysis support from vendors.
Compressor technologies reduce costs
Patricia Del Buono of Atlas Copco Compressors explains that there are lots of opportunities to leverage compressor technologies to reduce costs and energy.
Preparing for failures with simulation technology
ABB's Shon Isenhour explains how new technology can help curb the skilled labor shortage.
Interacting with technology in the real world
Alan Morris of A3 Technologies brainstorms on possible real-world applications for 3-D technologies in inventory and warehouse management.
Align goals and strategies to improve efficiency
Paul Berberian of Alignment Supplies reveals that close to 50% of all rotating equipment failures can be traced back to misaalignment.
Virtual visualization technology in practice
FLIR's Jeff Dale demonstrates how thermal imagers can help companies uncover serious energy loss and other maintenance problems.
Address financial challenges with efficiency II
Noah Bethel talks about risk reduction and describes today's career opportunities in reliability.
An integrated approach to predictive maintenance
Craig Kelly, maintenance supervisor for Cargill Salt, explains how the company is preventing maintenance breakdowns.
Streamline inventory management control
Frank Murphy of IMS illustrates how a well-organized storeroom can help companies cut costs and save time.
Improving the frequency of plant communications
Ken Pirkle of Broadway Technologies explains how analog two-way radios can improve communication within a facility.
Necessary skills for green-collar jobs
Suri Ganeriwala explains how green-collar jobs and green technologies can be used to develop the future workforce.
Developing advanced training tools
Suri Ganeriwala's machine fault simulator helps students and trainees understand vibration analysis and prevent misdiagnosis.
Listening for costly leaks
Adrian Messer from UE Systems illustrates how ultrasound technology can help companies reduce operational costs.
Challenges, issues and opportunities
Ralph Pete Peters, author of Maintenance Benchmarking and Best Practices, explains how maintenance can contributes to the overall productivity of a facility.
Joel Leonard interviews Suzy Jamieson
Joel Leonard interviews Suzy Jamieson from the International Council for Machinery Lubrication
Hot Technology: Stockton Infrared
Hot Technology: Joel Leonard talks to Greg Stockton, president, Stockton Infrared
How to hear profit loss
How to hear profit loss with UE Systems
The Green Collar Payback: Enpulse Energy
The Green Collar Payback: Joel Leonard interviews Derrick Giles, president, Enpulse Energy, about the opportunities in green-collar jobs
Tour and history of Lincoln Electric
A tour of Lincoln Electric reveals the company's history and major projects it has worked on, including the bridge over the Grand Canyon
The Importance of Best Practices and Training
Bruce Warrick, maintenance manager for Longview Fibre Paper and Packaging, talks about the cultural challenges in his plant, and how best practices and training have helped improve the maintenance process.
The Challenge of Work Process
Think Reliability's Mark Galley discusses the importance of clarifying work process to help the plant achieve smooth work flow.
Keep Out Contamination
Des Case's Trigg Minnick talks filters and filtration systems to make sure your oil is as clean as it can be.
The Godfather of Maintenance
Jack Nicholas, dubbed the "Godfather of Maintenance," talks about condition-based and reliability-centered maintenance in the Navy, and the importance of best practices.
Reliability training in a virtual environment
Andy Ginder explains how ABB's online game, the Reliability Challenge, helps plant professionals explore maintenance and reliability practices.
Preserving compressor longevity with maintenance
Emmett Sills, service trainer for Atlas Copco, takes viewers on a guided tour of a compressed air system.
Performance technologies and training equipment
Emmett Sills from Atlas Copco explains how the Air Academy helps professionals optimize compressed air system performance.
Skill TV uncovers the benefits of YouthBuild USA
Joel Leonard met with Eric Gallegos, Grainger customer service representative. Eric got his job after graduating from YouthBuild's HVAC program.
Skill TV meets with YouthBuild HVAC students
Peter Lamantia, who was formerly homeless, explains why he loves the career opportunities that the YouthBuild program opened up for him.
YouthBuild HVAC student Cartlon Montgomery says he is anxious to get to work.
Julian Durr, who at the time this video was shot was in a work release program, is excited to have the opportunity to do something productive with his HVAC training.
HVAC student Lafayette Curtis shared his enthusiasm about contributing at a higher level and getting off of the streets.
Daniel Wynn works at night, and during the day he takes HVAC classes to learn the skills he needs to break away from past transgressions and to support his family.
Better Welding, Better Career - Part I
Maintenance Evangelist Joel Leonard interviews Ben Kaiser and Adam Ramthun, students at Lincoln Electric Welding School, about their career paths.
Better Welding, Better Career - Part II
Maintenance Evangelist Joel Leonard interviews Ashley Webel, an instructor at Lincoln Electric Welding School, about her career path.
Better Welding, Better Career - Part III
Maintenance Evangelist Joel Leonard interviews Jessica Huffman, student at Lakeland Community College, about her career path.
Lincoln Electric Automation Division integrates robotic arc welding equipment and automated welding systems to help you decrease manufacturing costs, increase weld quality, improve welding productivity and enhance your working environment. See more at www.LincolnElectric.com/automated-solutions.
The pool of skilled engineering and technical workers who can build and maintain critical infrastructure is dwindling, and we have to do something about it. SkillTV is dedicated to dissecting the issues, ramifications and opportunites brought on by the high-tech talent shortage.
This semimonthly e-newsletter is dedicated to dissecting the issues, remifications and opportunities brought on by the high-tech talent shortage.