Archive for February 7th, 2013

Higher education leads to bigger paychecks over the course of a career, but not all degrees amount to the same earnings. A new study sheds light on the best paying jobs for two-and four-year degrees, and several engineering occupations are named. Read more

Credit: Aloxe

The U.S. government today announced the availability of $150 million in new tax credits for clean energy projects and energy-efficient manufacturing. The new measure could provide a financial boost to a wide range of companies across the country. Read more

Credit: gego2605

In the second part of a series on boosting American manufacturing, the Brookings Institution makes the case for a nationwide initiative to improve and expand the skilled industrial workforce. Read more

Credit: Durr Systems.

Durr uses its knowledge of solvent elimination to produce heat reclamation systems. Credit: Durr Systems.

Across the globe, manufacturing companies are looking for ways to produce quality products while also reducing their environmental impact. And the routes many companies are taking to achieve this show the level of innovation and dedication that makes manufacturing a strong, vibrant industry.

Not all manufacturers make products that are inherently “green.” But forward-thinking businesses are finding ways to get there using core competencies. At a preview event to the Hannover Messe trade show (April 8 to 13) in Hannover, Germany, many companies were touting their eco offerings. For some, like Mennekes and H-TEC, cleantech is their core business. Others looked deeper within their knowledge and skills base to find ways of providing products that help minimize the overall impact manufacturing has on the environment. Here are three examples worth learning from. Read more

person with charging station1

E.U. will implement 8 million EV charging stations by 2020. Credit: Mennekes.

If the electric vehicle market is ever going to take off in the U.S., it will require a thorough infrastructure of charging stations. However, there are those who claim the current lack of charging stations is due mainly to poor EV sales. The challenge, it appears, is a little bit of chicken-and-egg syndrome.

The E.U. is leading the charge (no pun intended) by executing a massive, multi-country plan to build out the charging station infrastructure in a bid to help put more EVs on European streets. It’s a bold move, considering that a little over 11,500 electric vehicles were sold in Western Europe in 2011.

Read more


H2 Cities across the globe are striving to increase the portion of their energy that comes from renewable sources, such as wind, solar, and ocean tides. But these sources have shortcomings, as we noted last month. “The problem with renewable energy is that sometimes the sun is not shining or the wind isn’t blowing,” said Ake Johnsen, marketing director for H-TEC Systems GmbH.

At Hannover Messe, April 8 to 12, 2013 in Hannover, Germany, Johnsen and colleagues will showcase solutions that specifically address this challenge. H-TEC is a subsidiary of GP JOULE, a German manufacturer of biomass power plants. GP JOULE launched H-TEC in 1997 to develop compact hydrogen generation systems.

It’s important to realize that hydrogen is not truly a fuel “source.” The reason is that it takes a tremendous amount of energy to separate the oxygen from the hydrogen in water molecules. Therefore, it’s more like a form of chemical energy storage. That’s how H-TEC sees it as well. Read more

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