GE, Cisco, Intel, IBM and AT&T have formed a consortium that they hope will break down technology barriers to allow better access to big data, with improved integration of the physical and digital worlds. The open-membership Industrial Internet Consortium (IIC) will help organisations to connect and optimise their assets, operations and data, to drive agility and to unlock business value across all sectors of industry.
Global sales of belt and chain drives were worth $8.8bn in 2013 and will climb to $10.57bn by 2018, according to a new analysis by Frost & Sullivan.
ABB is selling its Thomas & Betts’ HVAC (heating, ventilation and air-conditioning) business to US-based Nortek for $260m in cash. ABB says it is divesting the business – which it acquired when it bought Thomas & Betts for $3.9bn in 2012 – because of limited synergies with its core portfolio. ABB will continue to supply motors, drives and LV products to the HVAC industry.
GE (General Electric) has formed a partnership with a US-based open-source hardware innovator called Local Motors, to launch a new model for manufacturing.
The Brazilian motor manufacturer WEG has acquired a German electric motor and gearbox company called Württembergische Elektromotoren. Württembergische manufactures three-phase, single-phase and DC motors up to 1kW as well as gearboxes and fractional servomotors.
The International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) has published a new standard which, for the first time, officially defines IE4 Super Premium efficiency motors, as well as eight-pole motors with outputs from 0.12kW to 1MW for operation on 50Hz and 60Hz supplies.
Asia will overtake the Americas this year to become the world’s second-largest regional market for machine-safety components, according to a new analysis by IHS.
Schneider Electric has confirmed it is in talks to sell a majority stake in its Custom Sensors and Technologies (CST) business, which includes the brands BEI, Crouzet, Crydom, Kavlico, Newall and System Donner Inertial.
ABB’s venture capital arm, ABB Technology Ventures, has invested in a US company, Persimmon Technologies, which is developing a 3D deposition technology for producing motor components.
Beama – the trade body that represents the electrotechnical industry in the UK – has secured clarification on a recently published European Commission amendment to its Ecodesign regulations that lay down minimum efficiency levels for low-voltage electric motors sold in Europe.
During February, the US manufacturing sector achieved its biggest improvement in business conditions for 45 months, according to the latest Purchasing Managers’ Index. The February PMI was 57.1 – a significant improvement over the January figure of 53.7 – indicating that business has bounced back following a weather-related slowdown in January.
Manufacturing in the Eurozone region experienced a slight slowdown in its rate of expansion during February, from January’s 32-month high, but continued to recover for the eighth successive month. The latest Markit PMI (Purchasing Managers’ Index) for manufacturing in the Eurozone, reports an expansion in six of the seven nations in which data is collected (the Greek PMI is released later).
US President Barack Obama has announced two new public-private manufacturing innovation institutes – one, in Chicago, that will focus on digital manufacturing and design technologies; the other, in Detroit, that will focus on advanced lightweight metals – as well as a competition for the first of four more institutes aimed at boosting advanced manufacturing in the US. The two new institutes will together be supported by $140m of federal funding, combined with more than $140m from the private sector, universities and other organisations.
The global market for miniature circuit-breakers (MCBs) and residual current devices (RCDs) will be worth nearly $10bn by 2018, according to a new report from IHS.
The global demand for industrial robots reached an all-time-high in 2013, with around 168,000 being sold, according to the latest statistics from the International Federation of Robotics (IFR). The figure represents a 5% increase on 2012.