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8:53 pm
July 11, 2016
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High-Amp Meltric CS1000 Series Devices Get UL 1691 Approval

Screen Shot 2016-07-11 at 2.50.15 PMFranklin, WI-based Meltric Corp. has announced that its CS1000 Series of High Amperage Single Pole Plugs and Connectors is now approved for listing in accordance with UL 1691, the component certification standard for Single Pole Locking-Type Separable Connectors.

Devices in the company’s CS1000 Series are typically specified in Non-Load Break applications up to 400A at 600VAC, 600VDC (in North America), and 1000 VAC/1500 VDC (in Europe – CE rated). Meltric notes that these items offer a high level of safety, usability, reliability, performance, and durability in harsh operating conditions.

Features and capabilities include:

  • Solid silver-nickel contact material provides superior performance and corrosion resistance
  • Spring-loaded, butt-style contact technology ensures optimal contact pressure and withstands over 2000 operations
  • IP66/IP67 environmental protection for wet, corrosive environments
  • IP2X finger protection that protects users from live parts
  • Mechanical keying system prevents insertion of the wrong phases
  • Locking pin that prevents accidental disconnection, and a plug/receptacle that accepts different cable sizes.

For more information on the Meltric’s CS1000 Series, CLICK HERE.

More About Meltric
Meltric Corp. (Franklin, WI) manufactures a complete line of industrial plugs and receptacles, including UL/CSA switch-rated plugs and receptacles. The company is the North American manufacturer and distributor of Marechal Corp.’s industrial duty plugs/receptacles that were first designed in the 1950s to eliminate the safety hazards posed by pin and sleeve devices. 


8:03 pm
July 7, 2016
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Industrial Growth Partners Acquires Des-Case Parent

Screen Shot 2016-07-07 at 2.15.47 PMIndustrial Growth Partners (IGP), a San Francisco-based private equity firm, has acquired the parent company of  lubricant-contamination-control leader Des-Case Corp. (Goodlettesville, TN).

With a 20-yr. history in the industrial sector, and $2.2 billion in capital raised since inception, IGP has extensive experience building global manufacturing businesses. According to the company, it concentrates  on leading niche manufacturers of engineered products used in critical applications, and partners with their management teams to pursue strategic initiatives focused on achieving long-term shareholder value.

Screen Shot 2016-07-07 at 2.19.40 PMFounded in 1983 when it brought the first desiccant breather to market, Des-Case now provides an array of  fluid-cleanliness products, services, and training that improve equipment reliability and extend lubricant life in industrial plants around the globe. It, in fact, has enjoyed the growth-opportunity benefits of private-equity investments since 2013, when it was acquired by Pfingsten Partners L.L.C.

Screen Shot 2016-07-07 at 2.20.35 PMIn 2014, Des-Case announced its own acquisition of the visual-oil-analysis line of ESCO Products Inc., the well-known, family-owned, Houston-based manufacturer of various  fluid-monitoring technologies and distributor of Copaltite and Dow Corning products. The acquired portfolio included ESCO’s 3-D BullsEye Viewport, oil sight glasses, indicators and level monitors.

“I am honored and excited to be a part of writing the next chapter in the Des-Case growth story alongside our valued customers, partners and investors,” noted company president and CEO Brian Gleason. “IGP has over two decades of experience investing in the industrial sector with a proven track record of building world-class global businesses. We are looking forward to the partnership.”

Other than the report that Des-Case’s management team has retained a substantial ownership stake in the company, terms of the July 6, 2016 transaction haven’t been disclosed.

For more information on Des-Case, CLICK HERE.

To learn more about Industrial Growth Partners, CLICK HERE.


5:04 pm
July 5, 2016
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Expanded EnviroGear G Series Trounces Liquid-Transfer Pump Ills

Screen Shot 2016-07-05 at 10.29.06 AM
Grand Terrace, CA-based EnviroGear Pump (part of PSG, a Dover company) PSG Group, has announced the release of  G Series models G1-82, G1-133 and G1-222 (3-in, 4-in., and 6-in.) metal-sealed internal gear pumps.

Well suited, according to the manufacturer, for the most challenging and demanding transfer applications (thin and viscous fluids), the G Series lineup is available in cast iron, carbon steel, and stainless steel models. Delivering flow rates up to 500 gpm, they’re offered with both packing and mechanical seal options, and can be used for a wide range of application types, i.e. chemicals, adhesives, paints, coatings, food & beverage, and heat transfer, among others,

Features and Capabilities
G Series pumps provide positive, non-pulsating flow, and can operate equally in both directions. Features include enlarged bearing housings at the backside of the units that allow for convenient drive-end access to the shaft seal and single-point end-clearance adjustment.

EnviroGear notes that members of its G Series family are interchangeable with up to 95% of existing internal gear pumps on the market, with no modifications to piping, driver, coupling, or baseplate required. The pump casing can be easily rotated for multiple liquid porting positions, making for simple installation in existing applications.

For more information, CLICK HERE.




11:29 pm
June 28, 2016
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Analytics Drive Energy Costs Down

“Listen to your Machines and Find Real Savings with Energy Analytics” was one of the first presentations offered at the Siemens 2016 Automation Summit, held June 27 to 30 in Las Vegas. The core of Stephan Ihmels’ presentation was a case history involving a discrete-manufacturing facility in the Chicago area.

Ihmels is business-development manager, Plant Data Services, Siemens Industry Inc. Digital Factory division, Alpharetta, GA.

Management at the Chicago manufacturer was looking to reduce costs. Their goal was a 10% reduction in energy costs, while improving efficiency and productivity. They also wanted to realize a payback of less than 2 yr. and to be able to allocate energy use to different departments.

They decided to reach their goals by using the Siemens Energy Analytics Platinum package, a subscription software and analysis service that carried, for this application, a $3,000/month fee. The service offers custom online dashboards, analytics, and diagnostic support. The payoff is delivery of specific energy-reduction actions and implementation consulting and coaching from Siemens experts.

The system too some planning and setup, but it started making a difference the first month. An analysis of the manufacturer’s compressed-air system showed that 36% of the air consumption was caused by leaks (an ideal level is less than 10%). Tackling that problem resulted in a $16,900 savings the first year.

Electricity monitoring indicated that 14.4% of electricity was consumed during non-productive hours. Now that that is straightened out, they are realizing $45,000 in annual savings.

Overall, they had no problem reaching their 10% utility-reduction goal and have realized an annual energy savings of $70,000. Their ROI for the project was less than a year, way ahead of their 2-yr. goal.

When implementing a system such as this, Ihmel recommended that you focus your initial efforts on applications/processes where savings will be achieved quickly. Also, make full use of the extensive data and reporting generated by the system by making sure the web dashboard is viewed, shared, and analyzed by everyone involved, including management.–Gary L. Parr, editorial director

Learn more about the Siemens Energy Analytics service at


8:32 pm
June 21, 2016
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CMMS Drives Culture


“Using Your CMMS to Influence Culture,” a webinar presented June 21, 2016, by Roy Rothwell, senior consultant, professional services at eMaint Enterprises, Marlton, NJ, focused on understanding your operation’s culture and how it can make or break CMMS success. Rothwell presented an engaging discussion about both sides of the CMMS/culture marriage and the impact success can have on overall reliability.

While the presentation was educational, the real highlight was the resources that Rothwell offered. Each of them, by themselves, is valuable, but the combination is a powerful toolkit for anyone trying to implement a CMMS, understand/change company culture, and make significant progress toward reliability. A survey of attendees revealed that most can benefit from those resources:

  • 13% of attendees have no CMMS in place
  • 34% are just getting started with a CMMS
  • 45% have a CMMS in place and are tracking data
  • 9% are actively track and measure data for continuous improvement.

The backbone of Rothwell’s presentation was the information found in Stephen Thomas’ book, The Workbook for Improving Maintenance and Reliability Through Cultural Change, April 2005, Industrial Press Inc., New York. The book is $30 and the link is to

One of the standout items in the book was Thomas’ discussion about the cultural infrastructure in companies. He describes it as the hidden hierarchy of people and communication processes that binds an organization together and the unofficial manner in which information (valid or invalid) flows throughout that organization.

A second source was a column written by our own Bob Williamson in the June 2013 issue of Maintenance Technology. That column, titled “Reliability is more about People than Machines,” talks about the success factors for reliability improvement:

  • Data
  • Focus
  • Process
  • Constraints
  • Causes
  • Mindset.

A third resource comes from the eMaint people. It’s titled “Ten Keys to CMMS Success.” The document is just a graphic, but they offer a webinar on the subject. See it here.

My favorite bullet point from the entire webinar came from the Champion Effect segment: “A born-again skeptic is your best ally.”

Click here to hear the recorded webinar.

Click here to download a pdf file of the presentation.

If you’re looking to implement a CMMS or have one an aren’t sure what to do with it, start with this webinar and the resources it offers. At minimum, you’ll build a good foundation.–Gary L. Parr, editorial director



3:07 am
June 13, 2016
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Schneider Electric Urges Caution with Electrical Equipment after Severe Weather Events

Screen Shot 2016-06-12 at 9.14.13 PMEnergy-management giant Schneider Electric, manufacturer of Square D products, is reminding businesses to be especially careful with electrical equipment in the aftermath of severe weather. The recent devastating storms and floods in Texas and the impact they’ve had on operations are a case in point.

The most frequently occurring severe-weather events in the U.S. involve water in the form of hurricanes and storms with subsequent flooding. According to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), 40% of businesses do not reopen after a disaster¹. Following a natural disaster, quickly and efficiently assessing the damage is key.

To ensure personnel safety and avoid costly damage to physical equipment and financial losses associated with prolonged shutdowns, Schneider Electric encourages sites to heed the following precautions: 

Wet Electrical Equipment
Electrical equipment that has been submerged or come into contact with water must be replaced, though there are exceptions to this rule for larger equipment, which may be able to be reconditioned by trained factory service personnel.

Equipment that may be reconditioned includes:

  • Switchboard enclosures and certain bus structures
  • Switchgear
  • Low-voltage power circuit breakers
  • Medium-voltage circuit breakers
  • Low-voltage bolted-pressure switches
  • Medium-voltage switches
  • Motor control center enclosures and bus structure
  • Panel-board and load-center enclosures
  • Liquid-filled power transformers
  • Cast-resin transformers
  • Busway: epoxy-coated bars

Attempting to dry out equipment (in many cases) leaves portions of the current-carrying parts with damp or wet surfaces. These surfaces may be in contact with insulators or other materials that prevent them from being properly dried out and cleaned of debris.

Residual debris or wet surfaces may result in a loss of dielectric spacing within the equipment, and could present a hazard upon re-energization.

Equipment that must be replaced in its entirety includes:

  • Miniature and molded case circuit breakers
  • Molded case switches
  • Multi-metering equipment
  • Safety switches (AC and DC)
  • Load centers or panelboard interiors;
  • Dry-type transformers
  • Busway: mylar wrapped bars
  • Solid state components
  • Programmable logic controllers
  • Fuses
  • Electromechanical relays, contactors, starters, push buttons, limit switches, and other input logic and output controls
  • Solid state motor starters
  • Adjustable speed drives
  • Motor control center components

Equipment with Field-Replaceable Interior Components
Generally, this type of replacement is limited to a load center or panel-board type of product where the entire assembly can be removed and replaced as a unit. In this case, there is a possibility that enclosures can be reused if they have not been subjected to physical damage and if they have been properly cleaned of all debris and foreign materials.

Cleaning Agents and Abrasives
Do not apply cleaning agents, particularly petroleum-based cleaners, to the current-carrying portions of electrical equipment to remove foreign debris, residues and other substances. Some cleaning and lubricating compounds can cause deterioration of the non-metallic insulating or structural portions of the equipment. Do not use abrasives such as sandpaper or steel wool to clean current-carrying parts of the equipment. These materials may remove plating or other conductive surfaces from the parts, which could result in a hazard when the equipment is re-energized.

Non-Submerged Equipment in Flooded Areas
This situation requires careful inspection by a qualified person to determine if moisture has entered the equipment enclosures. If any signs of moisture or damage exist, the equipment should be replaced or repaired.

Relevant Codes and Standards
Businesses should reference relevant industry codes and standards to ensure they are taking the safest possible route to recovery. NFPA 1600 is the overarching standard and primary document on disaster recovery, emergency management, and business continuity. For workplace safety and planning, OSHA references NFPA 70E, Standard for Electrical Safety in the Workplace. NFPA 70B, Recommended Practice for Electrical Equipment Maintenance now includes a chapter on electrical disaster recovery in the 2013 edition. In addition, the National Electrical Manufacturer’s Association (NEMA) has published “Evaluating Water-Damaged Electrical Equipment” and “Evaluating Fire- and Heat-Damaged Electrical Equipment.”

For more information, CLICK HERE.

Additional Resources

  • Getting Back to Business at the Opry Mills Mall (Schneider Electric Repair Project to the Severely Flood-Damaged Opry Mills Mall, Maintenance Technology, July 2011)
  • NEMA Standard AB 4-2003, Guidelines for Inspection and Preventive Maintenance of Molded Case Circuit Breakers Used in Commercial and Industrial Applications
  • NEMA Standard BU 1.1-2000, General Instructions for Proper Handling, Installation, Operation, and Maintenance of Busway Rated 600 Volts or Less
  • NEMA Standard PB 1.1-2002, General Instructions for Proper Installation, Operation, and Maintenance of Panelboards Rated 600 Volts or Less
  • NEMA Standard PB 2.1-2002, General Instructions for Proper Handling, Installation, Operation, and Maintenance of Deadfront Distribution Switchboards Rated 600 Volts or Less
  • NEMA Standard ICS 1.1-2003, Industrial Control and Systems: Safety Guidelines for the Application, Installation, and Maintenance of Solid State Controls


¹ FEMA, Protecting Your Businesses, 2013



2:38 am
June 7, 2016
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KSB-USA Operations Challenge Team Takes Gold at International Wastewater Technology Championship

Maintenance Technology's Contributing Editor Michelle Segrest (center) with all-star Operations Challenge Team KSB-USA that bested 36 other teams at the third Open Germany Wastewater Technology Championship in Munich, Germany.

Contributing Editor Michelle Segrest (center) with members of the all-star, gold-medal-winning Operations Challenge Team KSB-USA that bested 36 other teams at the third Open Germany Wastewater Technology Championship in Munich, Germany, during IFAT 2016.




Operations Challenge Team KSB-USA has brought home the gold from Munich, Germany, as the overall winner of the third Open German Championship in Wastewater Technology. This all-star, U.S.-based team competed against 36 teams from six countries as part of IFAT 2016, the world’s leading trade fair for water, sewage, waste and raw materials management that ran from May 30-June 3.

Organized by the Water Environment Federation (WEF) and sponsored by pump and valve manufacturer KSB, Inc. (Richmond, VA), the U.S. team included Coach Dave Vogel (CH2M, Lanesborough, MA) and members Dale Burrow (TRA CReWSers, Dallas, winner of 5 Division 1 Operations Challenge Championships); Donnie Cagle (Terminal Velocity, Wake Forest, NC, winner of 10 Division 1 Operations Challenge Championships); and Steve Motley (Terminal Velocity, Virginia Beach, VA, winner of 5 Division 1 Operations Challenge Championships).

“We are so proud of Team KSB-USA and congratulate all of the participants of this fantastic international competition,” said WEF Executive Director Eileen O’Neill. “It was our great honor to have been invited to be a part of IFAT and the Open German Championship, which along with WEF’s own Operations Challenge competition, showcases the incredible dedication, professionalism, and outstanding skills of our operations personnel.”

The 37 teams were judged in five core competencies of wastewater operations during the intense two-day competition. Team KSB-USA accumulated the most combined points from each individual discipline to take first place, followed by two German teams: second-place winner Nuremberg – Die Drei Wreckla, and third-place winner Stadt Stuttgart Pumpis.

Screen Shot 2016-06-06 at 9.34.51 PMMore About Operations Challenge
The popular, long-running Operations Challenge program is designed to put a spotlight on the often unsung heroes of the wastewater treatment arena. According to the Water Environment Federation (WEF), the best wastewater collection and treatment personnel in the world display their skills at these competitions.

Each team is sponsored by a WEF Member Association or recognized Operator Association. Winners are determined by a weighted point system for five events (collection systems, laboratory, process control, maintenance and safety), each designed to test the diverse skills required for the operation and maintenance of wastewater treatment facilities, their collection systems and laboratories.

Operations Challenge 2016 will take place this fall in New Orleans. as part of WEFTEC 2016, WEF’s 89th annual technical exhibition and conference running from Sept. 24-28, at the Morial Convention Center. For more information, CLICK HERE.


2:45 pm
June 6, 2016
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AspenTech Acquires Fidelis Group LLC

aspentech_logoAspen Technology Inc., Bedford, MA, a provider of software and services to the process industries, announced it has acquired Fidelis Group, LLC of Lake Jackson, TX. Fidelis is a provider of asset-reliability software that process-industry companies use to predict and optimize asset performance.

Fidelis Group offers two asset reliability software products, Fidelis Titan 2 and Fidelis WST:

  • Owner-operators in chemicals, upstream, refining and power use Fidelis Titan 2 as a discrete event-simulation tool for asset reliability modeling, to optimize designs, debottleneck existing assets, and increase availability. Engineering and construction companies also use Titan 2 to evaluate process reliability and availability required to meet their design guarantees. Customers using Titan 2 can achieve capital expense savings by optimizing redundancy systems and intermediate storage, while ensuring high plant availability.
  • Fidelis WST is a Warehouse Spare Part Sufficiency Tool that optimizes parts stocking strategies to ensure high availability, while reducing spare-part inventory costs that can represent tens of millions of dollars in capital expense.

The aspenONE® suite provides process engineering, manufacturing, and supply-chain optimization capabilities. The addition of Fidelis Group asset-reliability capabilities will eventually enable AspenTech to offer the process industry’s first process optimization software that includes reliability modeling.