News from Toshiba, Siemens, ABB, Schneider, and more…
Names familiar to EA readers have caught headlines recently, for a multitude of reasons. Here’s a summation of recent activity that includes some of the more recognizable names in the industry.
ABB inks offshore project with Statoil off Norway. The company has signed a “project specific agreement” for the safety and automation system that will be part of the Johan Castberg field in the Barents Sea, it announced February 6 in Oslo. Reduced capital expenditure is expected.
Schneider to supply mass solar for Indian projects. The French-based electrical solutions virtuoso has been pushing hard into sustainability and renewable energy efforts. Its latest salvo is a 2.5 GW solar equipment deal slated for India in 2017. Schneider will supply 20% of all equipment used for Indian solar projects in 2017.
Acoustiblok achieves speech privacy. Acoustiblok, makers of sound proofing and noise-cancelling materials used for industrial applications, recently had success when testing its products in a doctor-patient privacy setting. The experiment used a psychiatrist’s office to determine the effectiveness of its new model of noise-cancellation material. When sound travels from room to room, confidentiality is impossible. A practicing psychologist in Toronto concerned about patient confidentiality engaged Pro-Tech Solutions to soundproof the business office. After a thorough assessment of the acoustic conditions and the structure, Acoustiblok material “was installed and successfully took care of the problem.” The company gained a level of zero interference and endorsement from the doctor.
Toshiba gets temperamental. Toshiba didn’t have the loveliest Valentine’s Day. The conglomerate announced February 14 that it expected to book a $6.3 billion hit to its U.S. nuclear unit, resulting in elimination of shareholder equity and a full-year loss.
However, in the week that followed, it executed a potential resuscitation, selling its medical equipment leasing unit to Canon on Wednesday for $28 million and then watching its shares jump to record highs—a 22 percent climb amid heavy trading turnover—due to optimism about prospects for selling its lucrative memory chip business for prices speculated at around $8.8 billion.
It’s important to note here that Toshiba’s motors and drives businesses have remained largely unaffected by these moves occurring in other vessels of the mammoth corporation.
Siemens rolls out CNC training program. Also on Valentine’s Day, Siemens announced the launch of a new workforce development program for secondary and technical schools across America called L.E.A.P. — the Lifelong Educational Advantage Program. Made available through Siemens Cooperates with Education, the effort is designed to give high school and technical school graduates a basic-to-advanced machine tool knowledge that will benefit them in their future careers as CNC (Computer Numerical Control) machinists.
ALL-TEST PRO finds VFD abnormality. In a recent—if not entirely unique—case study, Connecticut-based ALL-TEST PRO discovered abnormalities with improperly serviced variable frequency drives (VFDs) while working with Easy Tool, an Italian condition monitoring solutions provider, and a local Italian food packaging company located in Fabiano. The study found what some may already know, that variable frequency drives need to be set correctly. Improper programming of VFDs can reduce motor life through incorrect operation over time, and consistent condition monitoring is critical for preventing equipment failure.
Wichita outfit stamped as a distributor for Grundfos. C&B Equipment, of Wichita, Kan., signed a renewable distribution agreement with Grundfos February 20. C&B will now be able to provide a broader supply of pumps and additional solutions for customers who need their pumps serviced. The company also launches a 24-7 service for Grundfos owners within its Kansas territory (which includes areas west of Manhattan and out to Independence). According to Grundfos, the company’s pumps are especially reliable due to stainless steel construction and advanced electronics.