Robots will build robots in $150 million Chinese factory

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Swiss firm ABB is investing big money to conquer the Chinese robotics market.

Swiss robotics company ABB has revealed that it’s spending $150 million to build an advanced robotics factory in Shanghai — one that will use robots to build robots. The company will rely on its YuMi single-arm robots, which it once used to conduct an orchestra, for small parts assembly. It also plans to make extensive use”of its SafeMove2 software in the facility, which it says will allow its YuMi models and other automated machines to safely work in close proximity with human employees.

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Exoskeletons debut at Ford factories

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Staff will now be augmented by exoskeletons in Ford factories across the world.

Following successful trials, Ford will now offer employees the use of exoskeletons to reduce the strain of factory work.

Despite the emergence of Industry 4.0, smart factories, sensors, and data analytics, much of the heavy-duty operations of today’s industrial and manufacturing still rely heavily on human input.

Over time, the physical demand of such work can cause injury, muscle stress, and accidents.

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Chinese factory run almost exclusively by robots, production soars

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One of the greatest fears in the technology industry is the fear that someday almost all of our jobs will be replace by robots. That fear is sometimes laughed off as something that will happen in the far future. But, the truth is that it is actually happening now.

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Ocean Spiral – an underwater ocean floor factory connected to a floating sea base via a spiral tower

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Ocean Spiral

They have built terminal 3 of Singapore’s airport and the The Tokyo Bay Aqua-Line aka Trans-Tokyo Bay Highway. Aqualine is a bridge–tunnel combination across Tokyo Bay in Japan. It connects the city of Kawasaki in Kanagawa Prefecture with the city of Kisarazu in Chiba Prefecture, and forms part of National Route 409. With an overall length of 14 km, it includes a 4.4 km bridge and 9.6 km tunnel underneath the bay—the fourth-longest underwater tunnel in the world.

 

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Toshiba’s new vegetable factory to bring perfect produce to Japan

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Toshiba plant factory

When you hear the name Toshiba, you probably think about electronics products like televisions and computers. Thanks to its CT and other diagnostic imaging machines and technology, Toshiba has made a name for itself in the healthcare industry, too. Now, the company wants to go further to promote their healthcare initiatives, by introducing 100 percent pesticide-free vegetable factories in Japan.

 

 

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Unions are being left behind as manufacturing bounces back from the recession

American factories are hiring again, but they’re not hiring union members.

Factory workers had a good month in July in Anderson, Ind., where a Honda parts supplier announced plans to build a new plant and create up to 325 jobs. But in the Cleveland suburbs it was a grim month, where an industrial plastics firm told the state of Ohio it was closing a plant and laying off 150 people.

 

 

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The insourcing boom – bringing manufacturing jobs back to the U.S.

New refrigerator factory at GE’s Appliance Park.

General Electric’s storied Appliance Park, in Louisville, Kentucky, for much of the past 10 years, appeared less like a monument to American manufacturing prowess than a memorial to it.

But after  years of offshore production, General Electric is moving much of its far-flung appliance-manufacturing operations back home. It is not alone. An exploration of the startling, sustainable, just-getting-started return of industry to the United States.

 

 

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BMW Opens New Car Plant Where the Workforce is All Aged Over 50

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An employee at BMW rests between shifts at the plant in Dingolfing.

Its name is a byword for providing drivers with every comfort – and now it seems BMW is taking the same approach with its workforce.  A section of the luxury car manufacturer’s works at Dingolfing in Southern Bavaria has been nicknamed ‘Altstadt‘ – German for Old Town – by the grateful employees who say they might otherwise be on the job scrapheap. (Pics)

 

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Microsoft’s Chinese Factory Workers Treated Like ‘Prisoners’

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Some of the workers making computer accessories for Microsoft at a Chinese factory

Showing Chinese sweatshop workers slumped over their desks with exhaustion, it is an image that Microsoft won’t want the world to see.  Employed for gruelling 15-hour shifts, in appalling conditions and 86f heat, many fall asleep on their stations during their meagre ten-minute breaks. (Pics)

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New Design Makes Nuclear Reactors Cheaper and Faster To Build

New Design Makes Nuclear Reactors Cheaper and Faster To Build

A 4.5-meter-wide, 23-meter-long nuclear reactor designed to fit on a railcar for shipping to the site of a power plant. 

A new type of nuclear reactor that is designed to be manufactured in a factory rather than built at a power plant could cut construction times for nuclear power plants almost in half and make them cheaper to build. That, in turn, could make it possible for more utilities to build nuclear power plants, especially those in poor countries. The design comes from Babcock and Wilcox, a company based in Lynchburg, VA, that has made nuclear reactors for the United States Navy ships for about 50 years.

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Skin From A Factory

Skin From A Factory 

Skin from a factory — this has long been the dream of pharmacologists, chemists and doctors.

Skin from a factory – this has long been the dream of pharmacologists, chemists and doctors. Research has an urgent need for large quantities of ‘skin models’, which can be used to determine if products such as creams and soaps, cleaning agents, medicines and adhesive bandages are compatible with skin, or if they instead will lead to irritation or allergic reactions for the consumer. Such test results are seen as more meaningful than those from animal experiments, and can even make such experiments largely superfluous.

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