FEATURED ONLINE ARTICLE
Hope for a Challenged Economy
Subpar growth persists in the U.S. partly due to the continuing recession and weakness through much of the Eurozone. “While globalization has brought many rewards, it also produces risks," said Cliff Waldman of the Manufacturers Alliance for Productivity and Innovation (MAPI). "If the U.S. can confront its own fiscal problems, it stands the best chance of all the major economies for returning to trend growth and dynamism and that might be the best path to renewed strength for the world economy."
While Waldman's presentation “A Chastened World, Bereft of Dynamism” grabbed the attention of attendees at the recent VMA Finance Leaders Seminar, his tempered optimism left no doubt much work is still to be done on the economic front. MORE
Metso Increases Valve Manufacturing Capacity in China
Metso has entered into an agreement to sell its shares of its joint venture company Shanghai-Neles Jamesbury Valve Co., Ltd (SNJ) to Shanghai Electric International Economic & Trading Co., Ltd, which is the other joint venture partner. Metso will move its Jamesbury valves production from SNJ to Metso Technology Center in Shanghai. MORE
Allagash International Named SBA Small Business Exporter of the Year MORE
Powell Valves Names Tim Fries as Vice President Sales & Marketing MORE
Flowserve Signs Collaborative Agreement with Advanced Diamond Technologies MORE
END USER INDUSTRIES
Fertilizer Plants Likely to be Delayed
April’s explosion at a Texas fertilizer plant may cause delays of $22 billion worth of North American fertilizer production projects. Analysts believe that increased regulatory scrutiny and concerns from the communities affected by the plants could not only slow new projects, but force others in populated areas to relocate. MORE
Government Blames Chevron for 2012 Richmond Refinery Fire MORE
API: Investment in U.S. Shale Well Drilling Surged in 2011 MORE
West Virginia Judge Recognizes Trespass by Hydraulic Fracturing MORE
North Dakota Breaks Ground on First New U.S. Refinery Since 1976 MORE
Cactus Crude Oil Pipeline Being Constructed in West Texas MORE
MANUFACTURING & THE ECONOMY
First Quarter GDP Growth Falls Short of Expectations
Real gross domestic product (GDP) increased at an annual rate of 2.5% in the first quarter of 2013 (that is, from the fourth quarter to the first quarter), according to the "advance" estimate released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis. Economists were predicting GDP growth north of 3%. MORE
Markit Manufacturing PMI at Six-Month Low MORE
Orders for Durable Goods Down 5.7% in March MORE
MIT Report Suggests Manufacturing “Skills Gap” May be Overstated MORE
The Expanding Reach of Plastic Valves
Although plastic valves are sometimes seen as a specialty product—a top choice of those who make or design plastic piping products for industrial systems or who must have ultra-clean equipment in place—assuming these valves don’t have many general uses is short-sighted. In reality, plastic valves have a wide range of uses as the expanding types of materials and good designers who need those materials mean more and more ways to use these versatile tools. MORE
Coming in the summer issue of VALVE Magazine…
The Latest on Shale Gas
Because of its potential to change the nature of supply and demand in North America, shale gas is on the minds of anyone involved in energy markets. VALVE Magazine addresses the nature of the market, what the regulatory environment is like at present and focuses on the valve and automation devices that are instrumental in shutting down production or flow to avert disasters and keep operations and the environment safe.
The Great Brain Drain
In 2006 VALVE Magazine published an article titled “Who Will Run Tomorrow’s Plants?” Despite the passage of many years, the tenets of that article remain the same: The STEM (scientific-technical-engineering-manufacturing) fields do not have enough trained workers to replace retiring baby boomers. It was the publication of this article that ultimately led VMA in 2009 to form "Valve Ed," an education and training program for newcomers to the valve industry and the many industries that use valves and related products.
VMA’s Valve Ed program continues and grows, with three seminars on the agenda for 2013 (see below), along with the development of the Valve Basics Online Training (VBOT) program, scheduled for release in the third quarter. Watch VMA.org for further announcements.
AFPM (American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers) Reliability & Maintenance Conference & Exhibits features VMA’s 101 course on May 21, 9 am to 5 pm, at the Marriott Orlando World Convention Center. The program and registration information are on the AFPM.org website.
Valve World Americas Expo & Conference has scheduled a one-day 101 course for June 24, 9 am to 5 pm at the George R. Brown Convention Center in Houston. Program and registration is on the Valve World Americas website.
Valve Basics Seminar & Exhibits, Nov. 6-7, in New Orleans. Registration for VMA's first two-full-day 101 program opens Monday, May 6 on VMA.org. In addition to covering valves and actuators, the expanded program includes lessons on solenoids, positioners and related accessories.