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Posted May 18, 2018

WASHINGTON, D.C.-The Manufacturing Skill Standards Council (MSSC) positively reacted to President Trump’s State of the Union message, where he called upon the nation to “invest in workforce development” and “open great vocational schools.” In making this proposal, the President reinforced his recognition that robust national leadership is needed to upskill the American workforce. He also demonstrated the boldness of this commitment in his call for “new apprenticeships for millions of our citizens.”

Most importantly, the MSSC feels that the President’s tax bill has given industry the resources and incentives to greatly increase their share of the public-private resources critically needed to fund high-quality vocational schools nationwide. Corporations now have additional funds to build a robust pipeline of a higher skilled workforce able to keep pace with technological change.

Corporations will take full advantage of the remarkable provisions in the tax bill that now enable them to immediately deduct their purchases of equipment and software. These companies are the first to recognize that they require a higher skilled workforce to keep pace with technological change and secure an optimal return on these costly investments.

The President’s goal for apprenticeships can only be achieved through a much larger private sector investment. In the much-admired Swiss apprenticeship model, companies pay 45 percent of the costs for vocational training.

This skills gap remains a major barrier to the President’s goals of creating a manufacturing renaissance and attracting foreign direct investment in new plants in America. Fortunately, the manufacturing sector has developed the building blocks needed to close the manufacturing skills gap. However, these building blocks are fragmented and underfunded. They need to be integrated into a nationwide strategy and cohesive community supported by national leadership and sufficient private and public resources. MSSC feels that President Trump’s policies define that strategy.

Posted May 17, 2018

BRUSSELS, Belgium-In a move against Chinese steel, the European Union (EU) has set new import duties on corrosion-resistant steel from the country, citing unfairly low prices. The duties will apply for the next five years and range from 17.2 to 27.9 percent, similar to the tariffs already set in place.

The duties on the corrosion-resistant steel were put in place due to an investigation conducted by the European Commission in response to a complaint by EU steelmakers’ association Eurofer. As a result, the EU has 53 sets of measures in place on steel and iron products. Almost half of them are on products coming from China-27 in total.

China’s HBIS group, including Hesteel Co Ltd., is facing duties of 27.8 percent, with Shagan Group steelmakers facing duties of 27.9 percent. China’s share of the EU market in corrosion-resistant steel went from 10 percent in 2013 to around 20 percent in 2016. China’s Commerce Ministry has expressed dissatisfaction with the measure, noting that sector issues were the result of the joint action of all countries, not unilateral measures.

Posted May 15, 2018

WASHINGTON, D.C.-As required under the Frank R. Lautenberg Chemical Safety for the 21st Century Act, EPA has released its second annual report for chemical risk evaluations. The annual plan identifies the next steps for the first 10 chemical reviews currently underway and describes EPA’s work in 2018 to prepare for future risk evaluations.

EPA continues to make steady progress in meeting statutory requirements under amended TSCA. EPA will initiate prioritization for 40 chemicals, at least 20 Low-Priority and 20 High-Priority candidates, by the end of calendar year 2018. By December 22, 2019, EPA will have designated 20 substances as Low-Priority and initiated risk evaluations on 20 High-Priority substances. In order to support these risk evaluations and other key aspects of TSCA implementation, EPA will be proposing a draft TSCA Fees Rule in early 2018 which will provide estimates of the resources required to undertake risk evaluations.

To learn more about all these actions, read the full plan at https://www.epa.gov/assessing-and-managing-chemicals-under-tsca/2018-annual-report-risk-evaluations.

In addition, EPA is expected to issue proposed changes to the Chemical Data Reporting (CDR) rule in May, with changes to be adopted for the 2020 CDR reporting cycle. The agency will be looking to adjust the categories used for reporting under industrial, commercial, and consumer uses to achieve more refined use information and better estimates of exposure potential. Should changes be adopted, this will be the fifth modification of reporting for this rule in five reporting cycles.

Posted May 14, 2018

MCLEAN, Va.-Registration is now open for this year’s leading industrial manufacturing event, IMTS-The International Manufacturing Technology Show 2018. Manufacturing professionals across the globe will gather at Chicago’s McCormick Place on September 10-15 seeking technologies and innovations that will give their organization a competitive edge.

“With the US manufacturing sector expanding at its fastest pace since 2004 and capital equipment investment likely to follow, we anticipate that IMTS 2018 will be one of the busiest shows ever,” says Peter R. Eelman, vice president of exhibitions and business development at AMTThe Association For Manufacturing Technology, which produces IMTS.

Anticipating a stronger show in 2018, IMTS worked with McCormick Place to expand exhibit space, including securing E Hall. E Hall, which has been a successful part of IMTS’s history, will house the Machine Components/Cleaning/Environmental Pavilion and Tooling & Workholding Annex and will also provide easy and prominent visitor access and steady traffic throughout the show. Hannover Messe USA and its four co-located shows will also expand into the E Hall.

Recognized as one of the world’s preeminent stages for introducing and selling manufacturing equipment and technology, IMTS attracts visitors from every level of industry and more than 117 countries. For more info on the show and to register, visit www.imts.com.

Posted May 11, 2018

KANSAS CITY, Kans.-Polyurea coatings and linings firm VersaFlex and epoxy linings manufacturer Raven Linings have announced that they have merged effective January 1. The two coating suppliers are both known for their products designed to protect structures and substrates. The companies are both still committed to educating applicators, through VersaFlex’s Polyurea University program and Raven’s Certified Applicator Program.

Raven’s Broken Arrow facility is anticipated to be integrated into VersaFlex’s Kansas City, Kans., facility by the end of the year. VersaFlex products, primarily polyureas, include coatings for potable water, concrete sealers, flame-resistant coatings, and a small handful of epoxy coatings. Raven Linings’ products are primarily epoxies but include some polyureas and polyurethanes, cementitious coatings, primers, sealers, and fillers. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Posted May 10, 2018

FORT MILL, S.C.-Joining forces for the fifth year, the Association of International Metallizers, Coaters and Laminators (AIMCAL), Fort Mill, S.C., and the Society of Plastics Engineers (SPE), Bethel, Conn., will present the AIMCAL R2R Conference USA/SPE Flexible Packaging Conference 2018 on October 28-31 at the Wild Horse Pass Resort in Phoenix, Ariz.

Roll-to-roll processes such as metallizing, coating, and laminating are widely used in flexible packaging, and flexible packaging is a major market for suppliers of converting technology and equipment. The event aims to advance technology from film manufacture through packaged goods.

More than 400 attendees and over 80 exhibitors are expected to participate in the technical conference. The schedule features more than 100 presentations organized in tracks devoted to subjects such as web coating and laminating, vacuum web coating, web handling and winding, adhesives and coatings, flexible packaging designs, and market and application requirements.

To facilitate networking, the conference schedule includes two receptions in the tabletop exhibition area, the Dr. Bernard Henry Memorial 5k Fun Run, a golf scramble, and other local activities.

Posted May 9, 2018

MIDLAND, Mich.-Dow Performance Silicones, a business unit of DowDupont Materials Science Division, has introduced Dow Corning 904H Coating Additive, a silicone additive for architectural façade coatings that supports enhanced aesthetics for building exteriors. This new silicone additive is designed to help coatings reduce the snail trail effect commonly seen when surfactants and other water-soluble ingredients in coatings formulations leach to the surface. It can also improve water resistance, repellency, and beading in coatings by increasing their surface hydrophobicity. DowDuPont Materials Science combines science and technology knowledge to develop premier materials science solutions that are essential to human progress.

Posted May 8, 2018

TOWSON, Md.—Specialty chemicals distributor Dunleary Inc. has rolled out a new name and identity: The Terra Firma Company LLC. With the acquisition of DN Lukens and D&F last year, the three-company rebranding will serve 28 states and cover a variety of chemical markets. With a goal of providing stability for chemical suppliers and customers, Terra Firma works with markets including coatings, adhesives, sealants, and elastomers, as well as plastics, oil and gas, and construction, among others. Terra Firma, headquartered in Towson, Md., will still maintain service in Baltimore, Boston, and Dallas, the respective headquarters of the three companies, which will help ensure comprehensive coverage of these markets.

Posted May 7, 2018

ATLANTA, Ga.-The International Heating Equipment Association (IHEA) and Chemical Coaters Association International (CCAI) will co-host the International Thermprocess Summit (ITPS) and International Finishing and Coating Summit (IFCS). The events will be held July 30-August 1 at the Intercontinental Hotel in the Buckhead area of Atlanta, Ga.

This is the first-time IFCS will be held in conjunction with the established ITPS, providing expanded opportunities for participants due to the synergies between the two industries. The executive level summits will include joint general sessions covering advanced manufacturing technologies, international dynamics impacting business, and strategic business insights. Breakout sessions will address topics specific to industrial finishing and thermprocessing. A tabletop exhibition will supplement the program.

A series of networking activities is also planned, including a welcome reception. For more info on the event, visit www.ccaiweb.com and click on the Events tab.

IHEA is a voluntary trade association representing the major segments of the industrial heat processing equipment industry. CCAI is a technical and professional organization that provides information and training on surface coating technologies.

Posted May 4, 2018

TAYLOR MILL, Ky.-The Powder Coating Institute has announced its 2018 Board of Directors and Executive Officers. Serving as Executive Officers are: Chris Merritt, Gema USA, president; John Sudges, Midwest Finishing Systems Inc., vice president; Suresh Patel, Chemetall US Inc., secretary/treasurer; and Ron Cudzilo, George Koch Sons LLC, past president.

Serving on the Board of Directors are: Chris Beninati, Elcometer Inc.; John Cole, Parker Ionics; Craig Dietz, Axalta Coating Systems; Sue Ivancic, Nordson Corp.; Steve Kiefer, Powder Coatings N.A., AkzoNobel Powder Coatings; Mark Mortensen, All-Color Powder Coating Inc.; and PCI legal counsel David Goch of Webster, Chamberlain & Bean.

PCI is a nonprofit organization that represents the powder coating industry, promotes powder coating technology, and communicates the benefits of powder coating to manufacturers, consumers, and government.

Posted May 3, 2018

WASHINGTON, D.C.-OSHA recently released more than a dozen fact sheets related to the respirable crystalline silica standard for construction, with a focus on informing employers on how to properly implement controls, respiratory protection, and work practices.

The fact sheets cover more specific topics such as handling dust controls for crushing machines, dowel drilling rigs, and drivable saws. This feeds into the overall theme of these fact sheets, which is controlling silica dust in construction. The new fact sheets also include information on heavy equipment used during demolition, heavy equipment used for grading and excavating, small and large drivable drilling machines, rig-mounted core saws, vehicle-mounted drilling rigs, and walk-behind milling machines and floor grinders.

The revised fact sheets cover handheld and stand-mounted drills, handheld grinders for mortar removal and other functions, handheld power saws, handheld powered chipping tools, stationary masonry saws, and walk-behind saws. Controlling silica dust when it comes to crushing machines should involve the use of mist for dust suppression. Other wet spray methods can help reduce the silica exposure levels of those working near the machine. The crusher must also be maintained to manufacturer specifications for the best safety performance.

Posted May 2, 2018

WASHINGTON, D.C.-The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has released a preliminary list of chemical substances reported under the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) Inventory Notification (Active-Inactive) rule. This list includes substances reported to the EPA, and will be updated approximately once per month. Making this list available will help keep the stakeholder community informed of the status of reporting under the TSCA Inventory Notification (Active-Inactive) rule.

This list is for informational purposes only and does not excuse manufacturers from fulfilling any applicable retrospective reporting requirement. Substances identified on this list are not exempt from retrospective reporting by other manufacturers under the rule, unless a manufacturer has obtained a CDX receipt documenting EPA’s receipt of an NOA Form A from another person for the chemical substance. For a list of active substances that are exempt from reporting under the rule, the downloadable list is available at https://www.epa.gov/tsca-inventory/list-active-substances-exempt-tsca-inventory-notifications-active-inactive-rule.

TSCA, as amended by the Frank R. Lautenberg Chemical Safety for the 21st Century Act, requires the EPA to designate chemical substances on the TSCA Chemical Substance Inventory as either “active” or “inactive” in US commerce. To accomplish that, the EPA finalized the TSCA Inventory Notification (Active-Inactive) rule requiring industry reporting of chemicals manufactured, and allowing for reporting of chemicals processed, in the US during the 10-year time period ending on June 21, 2016. This reporting will be used to identify which chemical substances on the TSCA Inventory are active in US commerce and will be relevant to the prioritization of chemicals for risk evaluation. The reporting period for manufacturers (including importers) ended on February 7, and the reporting period for processors ends on October 5, 2018.

Posted May 1, 2018

THE WOODLANDS, Tex.-Jon Huntsman, founder of specialty chemical firm Huntsman Corp., died earlier this year at the age of 80, passing peacefully at his Salt Lake City home surrounded by family. Though best known for his work with Huntsman Corp., Huntsman entered the industry in the 1960’s after his invention, the first polystyrene foam egg carton, took off as part of a joint venture with Dow Chemical. He then founded Huntsman Container Corp., the company that developed the clamshell container still used today to hold fast-food burgers and other takeout food. It wasn’t until 1983 when he created the chemical company Huntsman Corp., which saw rapid growth and acquisitions, such as the $1.1 billion acquisition of Texaco Chemical. In December, Huntsman received the title of Chairman Emeritus and officially handed over the reins to his son Peter Huntsman, who had already been CEO.

In addition to his business, Huntsman (who had twice survived cancer) had also established the Huntsman Cancer Institute in 1995. More than $2 billion has gone into that organization for genetic research and treatment. The Huntsman Cancer Foundation is accepting donations in Huntsman’s memory.

Posted April 30, 2018

EAST LIVERPOOL, Ohio-Mason Color Works, a leading manufacturer of inorganic pigments, coatings, stains, and investment castings for 175 years, is pleased to announce its new Plastics Division. The new division is dedicated to high-performance plastic pigment technology for coatings, which provides heat resistance, UV durability, and chemical resistance. The new division will better serve the expanding needs of customers with new applications such as architectural finishes, coil coatings, cool coatings, exhaust parts, high solids coatings, military topcoats, powder coatings, and waterborne technology.

Posted April 27, 2018

WASHINGTON, D.C.-Federal workplace-safety regulators will continue to work with the National Association of Women in Construction (NAWIC) to safeguard women workers in the building trades. With the renewal of its alliance, OSHA and NAWIC will continue working together for the next 5 years, aiming to protect the health and safety of women in the construction industry, focusing especially on personal protective equipment selection, sanitation, and protection against intimidation and violence.

Personal protective equipment can often be too large to correctly fit women workers, workplace-safety experts say. Construction sites often don’t have sufficient restroom facilities, a factor that can adversely affect women in particular on a male-dominated site, and lead women workers to avoid properly hydrating in order to reduce the need for restroom facilities. Women workers are often subject to harassment or a hostile work environment, experts note, which can lead to distraction that may bring about a workplace injury.

According to NAWIC, women make up about 9 percent of the construction workforce in the US, with a total of 939,000 women in the industry in 2016. Of those, 423,000 worked in sales and office positions, with 293,000 in professional and managerial roles. Less than a quarter of women in the industry worked natural resources, construction, and maintenance jobs, about 196,000 total, while a small percentage worked service occupations and transportation and material moving jobs. NAWIC was formed in 1955 and offers education and career development for women in the industry.

Posted April 27, 2018

June 5-6: Powder Coating 202 Workshop. Wagner Systems, Plymouth, Minn. Sponsored by the Powder Coating Institute (PCI). Contact PCI at 859/525-9988; fax 859/356-0908; pci-info@powdercoating.org; www.powdercoating.org.

June 11-13: Essentials of Chemical Engineering for Non-Chemical Engineers. Houston, Tex. Sponsored by the American Institute of Chemical Engineers (AIChE). Contact AIChE at 800/242-4363; fax 203/775-5177; tinam@aiche.org; www.aiche.org.

June 12-14: Radiation Curing Technology. PRA Coatings Technology Centre, Melton Mowbray, Leicester, UK. Sponsored by PRA. Contact the PRA training team at +011-44-1664-501-212; training@pra-world.com ; www.pra-world.com/training.

June 18-21: Process Safety Boot Camp. Houston, Tex. Sponsored by the American Institute of Chemical Engineers (AIChE) and the Center for Chemical Process Safety (CCPS). Contact AIChE at 800/242-4363; fax 203/775-5177; tinam@aiche.org; www.aiche.org.

Posted April 26, 2018

GAINESVILLE, Tex.-Polychem Powder Coatings has launched a new powder coatings collection. The Camo Collection features 18 camouflage-inspired colors and textures, including desert sand, urban grey, and sage green, which sit alongside earthy browns, deep blues, and sandy beige. Created using Polychem’s signature polyester technology, the collection include solid shades, soft sparkles, and a range of textures and gloss levels. They are available in flexible quantities as low as 5 pounds, with free sample panels shipped out within 2 days. Polychem specializes in color and effect creation, with over 15,000 existing colors and 16 different color collections.

Posted April 25, 2018

STAMFORD, Conn.-Saint-Gobain North America, a global building materials manufacturer, was given the Corporate Citizenship Award by Chief Executive Group for its partnership with YouthBuild USA and its efforts in helping to educate and train disadvantaged youths. For the last seven years, Saint-Gobain and YouthBuild have provided young adults with the training and skills needed to secure careers in the manufacturing and construction industries following graduation from the program, providing them with a productive path forward while helping Saint-Gobain find skilled workers who are trained to install and work with their building materials

In addition to funding, the partnership includes a commitment to providing energy-efficient products, building science and technical expertise, and employee volunteer support. Through this partnership, thousands of students’ lives have been transformed and more than a dozen sustainable renovation projects have been completed. The program has also expanded internationally.

Posted April 24, 2018

FORT MILL, S.C.-Despite a last-minute change of venue due to damage wrought by Hurricane Irma, the AIMCAL R2R (roll-to-roll) Conference/SPE FlexPackCon concluded on a high note with recognition of six outstanding speakers. The event, which took place last October, drew several hundred attendees and 80 exhibitors and featured nearly 100 sessions about web coating, market trends, material advances, measurement technology, flexible packaging, printed electronics, and other converting topics.

Six presentations were recognized by the Association of International Metallizers, Coaters and Laminators (AIMCAL) and the Society of Plastics Engineers (SPE). Two honorees received a 2017 SPE FlexPackCon Best Paper Award: Matt Dingee of OnPoint2020, Lansing, Mich., for “Unleash E-Commerce with Packaging that Clicks” and Jesper Van Berkel of Synvina, Amsterdam, The Netherlands, for “BOPEF – A New Bio-Based High-Barrier Substrate Film for the Packaging Industry.”

AIMCAL presented two 2017 John Matteucci Awards for Technical Excellence and two Honorable Mentions. Aravind Seshadri of Roll-2-Roll Technologies LLC, Stillwater, Okla., won the 2017 AIMCAL John Matteucci Award for Technical Excellence in Web Coating with his paper, “Predicting and Preventing Issues in R2R Manufacturing Using Data Analysis Techniques.” Dr. Sang-Jin Lee of the Korea Research Institute of Chemical Technology, Daejeon, South Korea, took home the 2017 AIMCAL John Matteucci Award for Technical Excellence in Vacuum Web Coating for “New Results about Multi-Functional Plasma Polymer Thin Films Fabricated by Large Area R2R Sputtering Process.”

The 2017 John Matteucci Technical Excellence Honorable Mention in Web Coating recognized “Photonic Curing for Printed Electronics” by Dr. Aoife Celoria of NovaCentrix, Austin, Tex. The Honorable Mention in Vacuum Web Coating honored “In-Vacuum Flexo Topcoating on Metallized Film: Commercial” by Ameer Hamza of Celplast Metallized Products Ltd., Toronto, Ont.

For more info about the event, visit www.aimcal.org. AIMCAL represents converters of metallized, coated, and laminated flexible substrates and their suppliers. SPE is the largest, most well-known plastics professional society in the world.

Posted April 20, 2018

WASHINGTON, D.C.-The Toxics Release Inventory (TRI) has published the 2016 TRI National Analysis, EPA’s summary and interpretation of the most recent data on chemical releases and pollution prevention activities at more than 22,000 US industrial facilities. It shows a continued decline in the releases of TRI chemicals through the implementation of pollution reduction activities. To access the 2016 TRI National Analysis, including local data and analyses, visit www.epa.gov/trinationalanalysis.

The publicly available database shows that industrial facilities continue to reduce the releases of TRI chemicals through pollution reduction activities. The National Analysis increases the transparency of the TRI Program and promotes user engagement and exploration of the annual TRI data. This year, the interactive website includes expanded access to tribal information, a closer look at off-site transfers of TRI chemicals, highlights of the pharmaceutical manufacturing sector’s pollution prevention achievements, and a discussion of the TRI Program’s role as a model in the international community.

In 2016, 87 percent of the nearly 28 billion pounds of chemical waste was not released into the environment due to the use of preferred waste management practices such as recycling, energy recovery, and treatment. These industrial facilities also reported implementing 5,900 new source reduction activities that eliminated or reduced the creation of chemical waste. Coal- and oil-powered electric utilities and paper manufacturing facilities reported the greatest reductions, but nearly every sector reduced its air releases. Since 2006, air releases of TRI-listed chemicals fell 58 percent (at industrial facilities submitting data to the program).

Hydrochloric acid, sulfuric acid, toluene, and mercury were among chemicals with significantly reduced air releases. This trend is helping protect millions of families and children from these harmful pollutants. During the ten-year period, combined hydrochloric acid and sulfuric acid air releases declined more than 573 million pounds, and mercury and mercury compounds declined more than 89,000 pounds at TRI-covered facilities.

Under the Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act (EPCRA), facilities must report their annual releases of TRI chemicals for the prior calendar year to EPA by July 1. EPA, states, and tribes receive TRI data from facilities in industry sectors such as manufacturing, metal mining, electric utilities, and commercial hazardous waste management. The Pollution Prevention Act also requires facilities to submit information on pollution prevention and other waste management activities of TRI chemicals.

Posted April 19, 2018

PHILADELPHIA, Pa.-Axalta Coating Systems worked diligently behind the scenes to provide coatings that are designed to protect and beautify ski equipment at the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang County, South Korea. Axalta is a global leader in the coatings industry, providing customers with innovative, colorful, and sustainable coatings solutions.

This is not the first time Axalta’s coatings have proven themselves at a global sporting event. Many of the skiers at the “Alpine World Ski Championship 2017” in Sankt Moritz, Switzerland, raced on skis coated with Axalta’s high performing coating materials. In fact, eight of the ten gold medal recipients won wearing skis coated by Axalta. Axalta’s Stollpox, Aquapox, Cellonit, and Aquacryl Special Primer, Printing Paint, and Clearcoats in solventborne and waterborne formulations have continued to make a name for themselves in the sporting goods market with major ski manufacturers.

Posted April 17, 2018

AMERICUS, Ga.-TCI Powder Coatings, a subsidiary of RPM International Inc., opened its new Product Development Laboratory in Americus, Ga., last year. The lab’s primary functions include developing innovative products, improving current technologies, and producing rapid color matches. Other lab features include analytical work, corrosion testing, environmental research and testing, manufacturing, and customer support.

State-of-the-art color matching equipment and software combined with an upgraded database of improved pigments provide for unparalleled color matching capabilities and quick turnaround times. A styling room is available for critical color matching/styling work and spaces designed for customer collaboration and employee training were included in the design. The lab also has FTIR and DSC capabilities. TCI manufactures and develops thermoset powder coatings.

Posted April 16, 2018

CHICAGO, Ill.-Mitchell Metal Products, Merrill, Wis., received the first National Reshoring Award in recognition of its efforts to bring manufacturing back home to the US from overseas. The award, given by The Reshoring Initiative and PMA, honors a company that has successfully reshored products, parts, or tooling made primarily by metalforming, fabricating, or machining. Mitchell Metal Products was selected after using reshoring to produce more end products with less lead time. In 2016, the company manufactured a cultivator handle subassembly product, increasing production volume from 4,500 made overseas to 30,000 made in Wisconsin.

Posted April 12, 2018

WASHINGTON, D.C.-President Donald J. Trump has announced his nominee for Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health. Trump has tapped Scott A. Mugno, the vice president for safety, sustainability and vehicle maintenance at FedEx Ground. While Mugno’s stances aren’t set in stone, reports indicate he shares the Trump administration’s views on regulations. At a 2006 US Chamber of Commerce discussion, Mugno was quoted as saying safety should start consistently with employees while noting that some current regulations have reached their limit.

Posted April 11, 2018

BEVERLY, Mass.-Auburn Systems and FilterSense have merged to create the world’s leading provider of particulate monitors and intelligent controls for filtration systems and related material flow processes.

Auburn Systems invented triboelectric particulate flow monitoring, and FilterSense has been a pioneer in advancing particulate monitoring and intelligent filtration control. The new company, Auburn FilterSense LLC, will apply over 60 years of combined experience and application knowledge from over 75,000 installations to bring unmatched technology and support to help customers worldwide prevent emissions and improve operations. The merger is growth orientated with all employees, product brands, and sales channels remaining.

Posted April 10, 2018

LAS VEGAS, Nev.-An amazing sculpture honoring the victims of the mass shooting on the Las Vegas Strip on October 1, 2017, is looking for a permanent home. Jay Rockow began the project about two weeks after the tragedy. He wanted to create a permanent memorial to the victims where others could pay their respects. It took countless hours of welding and more than 20 hours of laser cutting on three huge pieces of steel. Then the piece had to be powder coated before it was finished. Rockow incorporated a fenced area around the sculpture where he says people can place locks in remembrance and leave a piece of themselves behind. He donated his welding skills, the laser cutting was donated by Ramsey and Son, and the powder coating was donated by Rand Proline.

Posted April 9, 2018

NEWHAVEN, UK-Vantablack, the world’s blackest material, took the stage at the 2018 Winter Olympics in South Korea, and was used in an architectural design meant to emulate the night sky. Even though it was originally designed and intended for satellite-borne blackbody calibration systems, the manmade substance has fascinated the world over with its ability to seemingly render any 3D object 2D. The trick? Vantablack absorbs 99.96 percent of all light that hits it.

British architect Asif Khan used the material on a building he designed, which greeted visitors as they entered the Olympic park. The design itself includes four curved walls, but from a distance it looks like a black slit. Each façade features thousands of tiny lights, meant to look like stars in the nighttime sky. The architect hopes that, in contrast with the Olympic winter games’ whiteness, the building gave visitors an impression of a “void of infinite depth and possibility.”

According to Surrey NanoSystems, the original developer of Vantablack, the composition of Vantablack makes the substance ideal for light-suppression and light-management problems. The manmade material is akin to a forest of millions of very small tubes made of carbon, also known as carbon nanotubes. Each nanotube is around 20 nanometers in diameter, about 3,500 times smaller than the diameter of the average human hair. Each nanotube ranges from 14 to 50 microns long.

Posted April 6, 2018

CAMDEN, S.C.-Manufacturing locally in the US has been a high priority for Nordic Air Filtration, and it has now become a reality with its new production facility in Camden, S.C. The company has been procuring the right manufacturing equipment and setting up in Camden for the past year. The new facility offers convenience, availability and short delivery times for US customers. The company will keep its sales office and warehouse facility in Chicago. Nordic Air Filtration, which is owned by Hengst Filtration, is a high-technology filter manufacturer, supplying filters to resellers, end users, and OEMs.

Posted April 5, 2018

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind.-Echo Engineering and Production Supplies Inc. has introduced shower caps as a new standard catalog product. The shower caps add protection for manufacturers looking to cover large openings or intricate parts at a low rate. Because of the elastic band in the cap, they wrap tightly around the part to ensure the component is clean from unwanted dirt, debris, and moisture. They are available in eight sizes and are made from 0.05-millimeter-thick clear polyester.

Although shower caps are new to the catalog, they’re not new to the company. For the last few years, Echo has supplied custom shower caps for multiple manufacturers to keep their products clean throughout the manufacturing line, shipping, and storage. Echo provides masking, hanging, and protection solutions as well as rubber and plastic OEM components.

Posted April 4, 2018

PITTSBURGH, Pa.-SSPC has honored the student-participants in its annual poster sessions, with executive director Bill Worms presenting honors to the top three entries at a short ceremony held during SSPC’s annual trade show.

Saiada Fuadi Fancy, a Ph.D. student from Florida International University, was awarded first place for her research piece, “Corrosion Performance of a Nanoparticle-Enriched Zinc Coating on Steel with Deficient Surface Preparation.” Fancy’s poster described research in which she compared the pull-off strength and corrosion-mitigation properties of a nanoparticle-enhanced zinc-rich primer with those of a regular zinc-rich primer, especially on poorly prepared steel surfaces such as those contaminated with salts. Fancy used electrochemical impedance spectroscopy to analyze the corrosion mitigation of the coatings.

Kien Nguyen, a student from the University of Kansas, rated second this year for his poster, “Numerical Simulation of Welding and Galvanizing Processes on Steel Bridge Girders.” Nguyen used finite element modeling to analyze the thermal and mechanical effects of welding and hot-dip galvanizing on steel bridge girders. He found that increasing the web thickness of a steel beam could offset the potential effects of the hot processes on the stability of the steel, while increasing the flange thickness exaggerated the distortion they brought on.

Alexandra Ivey, a student from the University of Southern Mississippi, took home third-place honors for her poster, “Management in Protective Coating Systems.” Ivey looked at the creation of hydrogel materials that could potentially be incorporated into anticorrosion coatings. By changing the polarity of the hydrogel particles, Ivey altered properties of the materials, which she proposes to add to thermoplastic or thermoset coatings to help control corrosion.

Posted April 2, 2018

TAYLOR MILL, Ky.-Operating under the mantra “Powder Coating Done Right,” the Powder Coating Institute (PCI) has launched its reengineered and expanded Certification Programs that support the entire powder coating marketplace by assessing a company’s capability to produce quality parts.

PCI Certification is an extensive audit program that evaluates the candidate’s business practices, process elements, equipment, maintenance practices, and quality control capabilities. Certified coaters can show, through demonstrated audit performance measurement, that they have the capabilities to correctly clean, coat, and cure products to produce quality coated parts.

The program offers two certification types: PCI 3000 Certification is available to custom coaters, while PCI 4000 Certification is specific to original equipment manufacturers (OEMs).

Powder coaters achieving PCI certification are afforded a number of benefits. PCI Certification allows a company to differentiate themselves from other coaters and can provide access to business opportunities requiring the use of a PCI Certified powder coater. They are able to use the audit as a basis to create a continuous improvement process for enhancing their powder coating operation. In addition, they have access to the PCI Certified logo to promote their certification status.

PCI Certification is offered to all companies who apply powder coatings, including PCI members as well as nonmembers. To learn more, visit www.powdercoating.org and click on the Resources tab.

Posted March 26, 2018

May 1-3: 52nd Western States Corrosion Seminar. California States Polytecnic University, Pomona, Calif. Sponsored by NACE International. Contact NACE at 281/228-6223; fax 281/228-6300; firstservice@nace.org; www.nace.org.

May 8-9: ASTM Corrosion Testing: Application and Use of Salt Fog, Humidity, Cyclic, and Gas Tests. Akron Polymer Training Center, Akron, Ohio. Sponsored by ASTM International. Contact ASTM at 610/832-9585; fax 610/832-9555; service@astm.org; www.astm.org.

May 22-24: Polymer Compounding, Formulating, and Testing of Plastics, Rubber, Adhesives, and Coatings. Akron Polymer Technology Services (APTS), Akron, Ohio. Sponsored by the University of Akron. Contact the training center at 330/972-8303; apts@uakron.edu; www.uakron.edu/apts.

Posted March 22, 2018

TAYLOR MILL, Ky.-Over the past several years, the Chemical Coaters Association International (CCAI) has awarded scholarship money from the CCAI Matt Heuertz Scholarship Program to students who are currently enrolled in programs that could lead to a career in the finishing industry. The primary objective of this program is to encourage advanced education in finishing technologies. Shown in the photo are recipients from the 2017 scholarships.

CCAI’s National Office is now accepting applications for the 2018 Matt Heuertz Scholarship Program. Awards will be announced in June at CCAI’s 2018 Annual Meeting in Sarasota, Fla.

Education is the foundation of CCAI’s mission. The scholarship program attracts bright new talent to the industrial finishing and surface coating technologies industry. The scholarship program is sustained by the National CCAI and donations from CCAI Chapters. CCAI also created a Careers in Finishing Guide for anyone interested in learning more about the variety of opportunities available in the industry. The Guide can be downloaded from CCAI’s website.

“CCAI is actively investing in our industry’s future,” states Anne Goyer, CCAI executive director. “We have had an outstanding group of students who have received CCAI scholarships over the past several years and many have found employment in the finishing industry. We’re committed to continuing to support students and leading them to a career in finishing.”

To view the criteria and selection process and to submit an application, visit www.ccaiweb.com, click on the Education tab, and then scroll down to Scholarship Program. Students must complete a CCAI National scholarship application and provide a transcript or other grade verification as well as a resume with photo. The application deadline is April 2.

Posted March 15, 2018

TAYLOR MILL, Ky.-The Powder Coating Institute (PCI) is accepting applications for its 2018 PCI Scholarship Program. Designed to award students studying in areas that advance powder coating technologies, the program includes the PCI General Scholarship and two corporate member-sponsored scholarships, the PCI/Gema Scholarship and the PCI/Nordson Builds Scholarship.

To qualify, a candidate must be enrolled in chemistry, polymer science, chemical engineering, mechanical engineering, corrosion engineering, manufacturing technologies, or similar technical disciplines. The area of study must be in a technology area useful for a career in the powder coating industry. The candidate must be enrolled in an accredited 2- or 4-year technical school, 4-year university, or graduate program that offers degrees that can service the powder coating industry. The candidate must maintain a grade point average of 2.5 or above and must be a citizen or permanent resident of the US, Canada, or Mexico. Special consideration will be given to applicants that demonstrate an interest or previous experience in powder coatings.

Candidates must complete the online application and supporting documents by April 1. Interested applicants should go to www.powdercoating.org/scholarship to submit the required information. Scholarship winners will be notified in May.

Posted March 9, 2018

CONROE, Tex.–Global coatings manufacturer Hempel has launched Hempadur Avantguard 860, an activated zinc primer that protects against corrosion at the level of an inorganic zinc silicate, with the application benefits of an epoxy. Avantguard 860 is specifically formulated for the protection of steel structures in highly corrosive environments. The coating has a recoat interval time of one hour, and can be applied in temperatures as low as 14°F with no restrictions in regard to relative humidity. A three-coat system using the new primer can be applied in a single shift, with no need for a mist coat.

Posted March 8, 2018

WASHINGTON, D.C.–The National Association for Surface Finishing (NASF) has presented several industry awards, recognizing volunteer leaders whose service, commitment, and contribution has advanced both the association and the industry.

Michael Kelley, Asko Processing Group, received the Presidential Award, which focuses on the extraordinary service put forth by an NASF member who is actively participating on the national level, going above and beyond the capacity of most. Rick Delawder, SWD, received the Silvio Taormina Memorial Award, which is given to an individual who has performed outstanding service to the finishing industry over the years. Waasy Boddison, American Plating Power, received the August P. Munning Award, which recognizes a member who has significantly contributed to the future well-being of the NASF/AESF and who exemplifies Munning’s traits. Dr. Per Møller, Technical University Of Denmark, was honored with the Scientific Achievement Award, given to persons who have contributed to the advancement of the theory and practice of electroplating, metal finishing, and the allied arts.

In addition, Awards Of Merit were given to Betty Lou Mueller, Florida Finishers Corp.; Frank Dunigan, A Brite Co.; and Nancy Zapata, Control Electropolishing. Awards of Merit are given to members of the industry who show meritorious service and achievement on both the local and national levels.

The NASF Fellow award recognizes outstanding service, contribution, and longstanding commitment to the NASF/AESF for the advancement of the best interest of the surface finishing industry. Receiving the award this year are: Ling Hao, Lacks Enterprises; Yinlun Huang, Wayne State University; David Marsh, Marsh Plating Corp.; J. Kelly Mowry, Gull Industries; Dr. Alan Rose, Corrdesa LLC; Donald Snyder, retired; Jerry Wahlin, AAA Plating & Inspection; and Joelie Zak, Scientific Control Labs Inc.

Posted March 7, 2018

ROCHESTER HILLS, Mich.–FANUC America Corp. has introduced four new national training certifications for robotics and advanced automation manufacturing. The certifications are the first-ever for robot operations, programming, and integrated vision.

The industry-education certifications are the result of an 18-month collaboration of more than 150 subject matter experts from FANUC America, industry, automation system integrators, and leading advisors and instructors from high schools, community colleges, and universities. Participants focused on the need to prepare a talent pipeline of workers who possess the core competencies and automation technology skills to work in high-tech manufacturing.

Since 2010, FANUC has lead the effort to address the critical challenge caused by a shortage of skilled workers, and helped change the perceptions of careers in manufacturing. The new industry-leading certifications provide students and companies with measurable skill sets aligned with today’s advanced automation technologies, increasing workforce readiness at all levels.

The new national certification classes will be taught at secondary and post-secondary schools and training institutions offering the FANUC CERT (Certified Education Training) program. Currently, there are over 640 education providers offering the CERT program, which represents the largest network of schools providing hands-on applied technology in manufacturing automation.

FANUC America, together with Nocti Business Solutions (NBS), developed the four industry-recognized national certification programs, which include two levels of FANUC Certified Robot Operator (FCR-O1 & FRC-O2) and two levels of FANUC Certified Technician (FCR-T1 & FCR-T2). FANUC America provides industry-leading robotics, CNC systems, and factory automation. NBS serves the needs of business and industry in high-stakes occupational competency testing services as a job skills assessment company.

Posted March 5, 2018

HERZLIYA, Israel–SolCold, an Israel-based startup firm, has announced it has developed a coating that keeps roofs cool with the help of an unexpected source: the sun. The product’s basic principles involve laser cooling and applying that idea to the spectrum of sunlight.

Unlike other coatings used to try to cool buildings and road surfaces, SolCold’s paint can actively cool, rather than simply reducing the heat absorbed by these surfaces. On simulations of buildings that might use the paint, the top floors were cooled up to 50°F. These principles fall under the umbrella of laser cooling, which involves hitting specially designed materials with a laser, cooling them by up to 302°F. This process works due to these materials absorbing photons of light that are at one frequency, while reemitting higher-frequency photons more spontaneously. This results in the loss of energy, and therefore a lowering in temperature.

Instead of using a laser, SolCold reworked the coating to use sunlight instead. Unlike a laser, however, the sun’s spectrum is wide, so SolCold had to engineer a coating that could use scattered light. What resulted was a two-layered paint: an outer element that filters out some of the sun’s rays, while the inner converts heat to light, which results in coolness below the ambient temperature.

Lab testing has been successful thus far, demonstrating that the coating is more effective on metal roofs than concrete, especially over rooms with low ceilings. The long-term impact would be something of a trickle-down effect. There is also hope that SolCold’s coating could be used in space to ward off heat that results from the lack of air. The coating could also disperse heat away, making it a more practical solution than fabrics and heat exchangers.

Posted March 2, 2018

PHILADELPHIA, Pa.–Less than two weeks after a potential deal between Axalta Coating Systems and Nippon Paint Holdings Co. Ltd., Osaka, Japan, was first broached, talks ended with no agreement. Nippon’s attempt to acquire Axalta was part of a move to expand into sales for automotive manufacturers as well as increase its US footprint.

In its talks with Axalta back in November, Nippon made an all-cash bid that totaled $9.1 billion. Axalta noted that it would pursue such a transaction only if its Board of Directors determines that it is in the best interest of Axalta to do so.

The failed talks came on the heels of AkzoNobel’s recent bid to acquire the company, which also fell through. They had entered in a discussion of a merger of equals, but ultimately were unable to reach mutually agreeable terms.

Axalta stated that it will continue to pursue other value-creating alternatives. Axalta is a global leader in the coatings industry, providing customers with innovative, colorful, and sustainable coatings solutions.

Posted March 1, 2018

CHICAGO, Ill.–With more than 750,000 square feet of exhibit space, FABTECH 2017 organizers say the show provided attendees with access to the industry’s leading companies, latest innovations, and insight into current and future trends. The four-day expo included the most extensive education programming in its history, as well as a stacked lineup of expert-led panels and keynote presentations. The show hosted more than 1,700 exhibiting companies and almost 45,000 attendees from 120 countries to celebrate manufacturing’s industrial evolution.

The expo also put on special events that attracted large audiences, along with sparking further discussions about featured topics such as workplace collaboration, innovation, and creativity. Highlights included a new keynote format, “FABx Tech Talks” given by visionary leaders, the unveiling of the Albert Paley-Jesse James metal sculpture project, and an industry night event held at Soldier Field.

Posted February 28, 2018

HANNOVER, Germany–The 15th edition of the parts2clean show for industrial parts and surface cleaning was the biggest in its history, and also ranked among the best in terms of attendance. The next edition of the show, parts2clean 2018, will be held October 23-25 in Germany.

Held in Stuttgart, Germany, in late October, the show featured 253 exhibitors from 16 nations. Its displays filled more than 78,500 square feet of space, making it the biggest parts2clean ever in terms of booked space. The end-of-show tally shows that it was also a major success in terms of attendance. Over its three-day run, it attracted some 4,900 trade visitors, nearly 20 percent more than the 2015 show.

The facts and figures only tell half of the story, the other half being the high level of exhibitor satisfaction generated. Moreover, a very pleasing 87 percent of the visitors were professionals who play a major role in their organizations’ purchasing decisions.

Posted February 27, 2018

WASHINGTON, D.C.–Beginning January 2, to account for inflation, the US Department of Labor increased civil penalties for violations of standards and regulations that fall under the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) by two percent. OSHA is one of several regulated areas to affect an increase in civil penalties.

The DOL indicated in a Federal Register notice that the agency was increasing 2018 penalties in order to comply with the Federal Civil Penalties Inflation Adjustment Act Improvements Act of 2015. The act requires that certain department divisions keep monetary civil fines in step with the rate of inflation. Modifications must be made by January 15 of every year.

The DOL raised OSHA fines by 78 percentthe first increase in 26 years at the time of the mandate. This move was part of the Obama-era budget bill of 2016. OSHA penalties now sit at a maximum of $12,934 for other-than-serious and serious violations. For repeat and willful violations, the fines now top out at $129,336. While the penalty increase applies to federal OSHA states, the agency expects state-operated health and safety organizations will also follow suit with their own penalty structures.

Posted February 26, 2018

THE WOODLANDS, Tex.–Global chemical companies Huntsman Corp. and Clariant, Muttenz, Switzerland, have announced that they will not continue to pursue their $20 billion merger plan, after receiving pressure from activist investors who expressed concerns about the deal’s value for Clariant. Huntsman and Clariant first announced the proposed merger last May, noting that they expected it to close before the end of 2017. Both companies are major suppliers of raw materials for coating formulation.

In July, activist investor White Tale began acquiring shares of Clariant, pressuring the company to look at other options for value creation. The firms said the merger with Huntsman would not create ideal value for Clariant investors. In September, White Tale raised the stakes, increasing its stock in Clariant to more than 15 percent and penning an open letter to the company’s board in which it confirmed its opposition to the Huntsman merger.

Clariant said at the time that the merger would create more than $3.5 billion in value through cost and tax synergies and complementary product portfolios, and noted that while Huntsman’s president and CEO, Peter Huntsman, would become CEO of the new company, there would be no ceding of operational control along with the deal.

According to reports, White Tale’s stake in Clariant is now more than 20 percent. That increased stake, along with other investors expressing concerns about the deal, reportedly led the company to be unsure whether a shareholder vote on the deal would result in the two-thirds “yes” votes needed to move forward.

Posted February 22, 2018

TAYLOR MILL, Ky.–New and innovative programming will be featured at the Powder Coating Institute’s POWDER COATING 2018 Technical Conference. The event, which will be held March 12-15 at the JW Marriott in downtown Indianapolis, Ind., will feature four days of powder coating education, tabletop exhibits, general sessions, and social gatherings.

Featured sessions include Raising the Quality Bar; Determining True Applied Costs; Building a Business Case & Planning for a New Finishing System Installation; Minding Your Business; Safety: It’s Everyone’s Responsibility; Creating A Comprehensive Finishing Specification; Troubleshooting Your Batch Powder Coating Operation, IIoT & Advanced Automation, and more. For more info, visit www.powdercoating.org/powder-coating-2018.

Posted February 21, 2018

April 3-5: Essentials of Chemical Engineering for Non-Chemical Engineers. New York, N.Y. Sponsored by the American Institute of Chemical Engineers (AIChE). Contact AIChE at 800/242-4363; fax 203/775-5177; tinam@aiche.org; www.aiche.org.

April 16-19: Paint Technology. PRA Coatings Technology Centre, Melton Mowbray, Leicester, UK. Sponsored by PRA. Contact the PRA training team at +011-44-1664-501-212; training@pra-world.com ; www.pra-world.com/training.

April 17-18: Heat Exchanger Design and Operations. New Orleans, La. Sponsored by the American Institute of Chemical Engineers (AIChE). Contact AIChE at 800/242-4363; fax 203/775-5177; tinam@aiche.org; www.aiche.org.