05302016Mon
Last updateMon, 30 May 2016 5pm

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Trends & Forecasts

Cyber-Update: Attacks on Utilities and Manufacturers

The Winter 2016 issue of VALVE Magazine featured an article in which the very real threat posed by cyber criminals to infrastructure security was discussed. Many of the experts quoted in that article said it is not a matter of if, but when, an attack would be made. So it came as no surprise when a recent article in the U.K.’s Register revealed a report by Verizon Security Solutions that a "hacktivist" group with ties to Syria compromised a water company’s computers after exploiting unpatched web vulnerabilities in its internet-facing customer payment portal.


Five Solutions to the Skills Gap

“Over the next decade, nearly three and a half million manufacturing jobs will likely need to be filled, and the skills gap is expected to result in 2 million of those jobs going unfilled.”

That is the conclusion of a recent report commissioned by The Manufacturing Institute. According to this report, many industries, not just manufacturing, are having trouble filling these jobs. And, despite the fact that common wisdom decrees that young people have stellar computer skills, executives surveyed for this report considered deficiencies in technical and computer skills being their biggest concern when hiring. This is followed by a lack of problem solving skills, basic technical training, and math skills.

Forecast for U.S. Valve Industry: No Growth Expected

2016 magnifying glassFor the first time since 2009, U.S. industrial valve shipments are predicted to have almost no growth in 2016, according to the annual forecast of the Valve Manufacturers Association (VMA). VMA’s forecast indicates shipments will be up just $3 million over 2015 to be about $4.5 billion total.

“Our industry crested in 2008 at about $4 billion before taking a tumble from the recession. We’ve been slowly gaining ground ever since, but this is the first year we’re predicting little to no growth,” says VMA President Bill Sandler.

Is Your Company Ready for The New Reality?

Is Your Company Ready for The New Reality 1Since August, 2015, when VMA’s 2016 Market Outlook event was held, there have been a few more bumps in the economic road for valve, actuator and control manufacturers, their suppliers, distributors and end users. In our ongoing efforts to keep readers apprised of situations that could have an impact on the valve industry, we’ve assembled a summary from recent reports and summits that may help companies prepare for the impact of lower oil and gas prices and other market influences over the next 18 months.

Improving Control Valve Maintenance with the Industrial Internet of Things

Improving Control Valve Maintenance with the Industrial Internet of ThingsBy connecting previously stranded data from smart sensors, equipment, and other industrial assets with advanced applications and predictive analytics in the cloud, the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) is becoming a strategic enabler to improve manufacturing performance. Despite initial concerns, many companies now realize that, when properly implemented, internet and wireless technologies can provide appropriate security and availability of services across multiple plants and facilities. This helps further meld plant floor and enterprise systems, creating an opportunity to transform manufacturing operations through IIoT strategies.

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