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|"Check your hard hat" urges brain injury charity||21/09/2020|
Construction sites without the correct protection can potentially be very dangerous places, especially when it comes to head injuries. This is why Headway – the brain injury association and leading safety manufacturer Centurion are working together to raise awareness of using and maintaining hard hats while on site.
Together, the organisations have partnered to create Hard Hat Awareness Week which runs from 21st-27th September and will see a series of activities designed to drive awareness of brain injury and encourage best practice around safety equipment.
The results of a survey conducted by the brain injury charity which explored the use of hard hats in the construction industry and understanding of concussion were published at the start of the awareness raising week.
Shockingly, statistics revealed that among those who experienced a head injury at work:
More worryingly, 15% of 486 respondents stored their hard hat in an unsuitable way, such as in direct sunlight or extreme temperatures, whilst over half (58%) painted, marked or applied decals or labels to their helmet which could cause a chemical attack and reduce its durability.
Almost a quarter (24%) were unaware that exceeding the expiry date of a hard hat can reduce the level of protectivity and 28% did not know where to find their helmet’s expiry date or were unaware it even had one.
Peter McCabe, chief executive of Headway, said: “Brain injury is more common than you think, and its impact can be life-changing for both the injured person but also their wider family. Ensuring your head protection is worn and cared for correctly is key to remaining safe.
“To all those working on site or in the construction industry, we urge you to always wear your hard hat.”
Chris Tidy from Centurion Safety Products said: “We want people to understand the devastating effects of brain injury. It’s not just the individual that’s impacted, a brain injury can change the lives and futures of partners, family members and friends.
“Centurion and Headway want to drive the awareness of brain injury but also help wearers of safety helmets and hard hats to understand the possibly lifesaving piece of PPE they are wearing.
“We would like a week dedicated every year going forward for all wearers to audit their safety helmet or hard hat for signs of wear and tear, make sure it is in date, remove any unchecked stickers and sanitise/clean this piece of safety equipment whilst in a safe environment. We would like to challenge other safety helmet manufacturers to get involved and publicise this event going forward.
“We also want wearers to understand that 30% of head injuries occur from slips, trips and falls from the same level where the wearer could suffer a rotational injury. We would like to educate the wearer on the risk of concussion and give them a concussion recognition tool that will help them to understand the early warning signs, showing the person may be at risk so they can seek medical attention.”
Headway and Centurion are holding a Hard Hat Awareness Week raffle, the proceeds of which will go towards helping Headway deliver its frontline services and improve life after brain injury.
Prizes include a Milwaukee Cordless 6 Piece Kit (worth £1000), a Bosch Combi Hammer Drill & Dewalt Cordless Pole Saw Kit (worth £400) and a Bosh Combi Hammer Drill (worth £150).
To be in with a chance of winning, donate £3 by texting HARDHAT to 70331. Closing date for entries is 11:59pm on Sunday 27th September 2020.*
Several leading names in the construction sector have already pledged their support for the initiative including amey utilities, HSE network, Skanska, Costain, Strabag and CHAS and everyone within the industry is invited to take part by sharing images of their audited hard hats on social media using the hashtag #hatwise.
*Fundraising, payments and donations will be processed and administered by the National Funding Scheme (Charity No: 1149800), operating as DONATE. Texts will be charged at your standard network rate. For Terms & Conditions, see www.easydonate.org
|All-composite EV wheel moves to next phase||16/09/2020|
ACRIM-Wheel, the world’s first commercially viable, low cost, lightweight, all composite wheel for niche and electric vehicle applications, moves to the next phase of development with the manufacture of fifty wheels by the end of the year
Additionally, three full vehicle sets are destined for proving on MOTIV, a unique and versatile autonomous mobility vehicle using Gordon Murray Design’s iStream Superlight technology, and two sets of world-first overmoulded RTM wheels are headed for qualification testing.
The consortium delivering the wheel, comprising Carbon ThreeSixty, Far-UK, Composite Integration and CNC Robotics, alongside Bitrez Ltd as the preferred resin formulator, have completed the second phase of the programme - development and validation of proof-of-concept ACRIM wheels - which confirmed the feasibility of achieving significant cost reductions over existing global market offerings.
The work being undertaken will enable wider access to key lightweighting technologies for the lower volume niche automotive manufacturers. The product development consortium previously made a number of key findings, with a highlight being that the modular concept of ACRIM offers unrivalled flexibility in the styling and configuration of lightweight all-composite wheels. This puts it firmly on track to reduce the weight of, for example, a 15” wheel by 50%, which would deliver 5% fuel savings or a 5% CO2 reduction when retrofitted to a petrol or diesel fuelled vehicle.
For the next phase, which kicked off this summer, the consortium aims to decrease manufacturing cost and cycle time with a multi-strand approach. Avenues include processing of a three-component epoxy resin system with an in-mould release agent, piston pump technology to deliver repeatable and higher quality lamination through increased control and monitoring of the preconditioning of resin prior to injection (metering, mixing, pre-heating and degassing) and a mould pressure closed loop control system to improve yield.
The production scale-up project also aims to prove that robotic machining can be sufficiently accurate and repeatable for secondary machining and final trimming, with fast and flexible operation that opens the door to reduced skilled labour content.
The product is evolving too - the consortia are optimising the design of the part to minimum weight and cost with an automatic analysis of manufacturability, particularly CFD material flow. Linking these to analytical techniques will be a powerful step forward. It also plans to prove the manufacturing robustness of the novel overmoulding process for a high reliability structural component.
The modular concept enables the creation of wheels ranging from a “traditional” two-piece bolted metallic centre, albeit with a composite barrel (mature, low risk architecture) through to an overmolded all composite wheel.
Demonstration of SMC over-moulded centre into continuous fibre RTM’d barrel offers early indication of high volume capability and short route to manufacture. The ACRIM modular platform also enables a tiered approach to OEMs in specifying lightweight wheels depending on their appetite for disruptive innovation.
Lead project partner, Edward Allnutt, managing director at Carbon ThreeSixty, which specialises in the design and manufacture of advanced composite structures, said: “The world’s first all-composite wheel for electric and niche vehicles has moved a major step forward, and we can confidently say it has the ability to deliver huge cost savings over anything on the market. It can also be manufactured in volume and gives OEMs huge flexibility in what they can specify. This is truly a quantum leap in wheel design and manufacture.”
“Far-UK is pleased to see this project progressing. We are convinced that the skills of the consortium will help the project progress to a fully carbon fibre wheel that customers want to use for the weight saving and that makes good economic sense to use as well,” said Dr Kevin Lindsey, director, Far-UK.
“The ACRIM II project is a great opportunity to demonstrate the benefits of using robots for secondary operations, including trimming and drilling, of composite components,” said Philippa Glover, Managing Director at CNC Robotics. “Robots can offer a more cost-effective alternative to conventional machine tools in these applications and so can contribute to lower overall manufacturing costs for these types of part.”
“Bitrez welcomes the opportunity to maintain our involvement as the preferred sub-contract resin supplier for the ACRIM II project, building on the successful collaboration as a full project partner in ACRIM I, where our custom formulated Epoxy system provided both the high performance and cost targets required by the project” said Dominic Hopwood, Resin Sales Manager – Composites at Bitrez Limited.
“Gordon Murray Design are pleased to be associated with the ACRIM II project. The main focus of our iStream technology is vehicle lightweighting, particularly important for electric vehicles such as MOTIV and other autonomous driven platforms. The opportunity to evaluate commercially viable, lightweight carbon wheels will be invaluable for future projects” said Andy Smith, R&D Director at Gordon Murray Design.
The world’s first commercially viable, low cost, lightweight, all-composite wheel for electric and niche vehicles such as driverless cars, last mile delivery vehicles, road sweepers and next generation of agricultural vehicles could now soon be a reality.
Previously seen to be purely performance driven for racing and high-performance applications, lightweight carbon wheels are now being investigated by electric and niche vehicles and OEMs to further reduce fuel consumption, emissions, extend vehicle range and increase payload.
To find out more, visit www.carbonthreesixty.com, www.cncrobotics.co.uk, www.composite-integration.co.uk, or www.far-uk.com.
|New assurance first for plastic pollution reduction||04/09/2020|
BUSINESSES IN the manufacturing sector can now take significant verifiable steps to manage plastic waste and its impact on the environment, thanks to the launch of the world’s first best-practice standard for Responsible Plastic Management (RPM).
According to the Pew Foundation, the flow of plastic into the world’s oceans will nearly triple to 29 million metric tonnes per year by 2040 if no action is taken. This could increase even further with single-use masks, gloves and aprons used to fight COVID-19 transmission now littering beaches and polluting our waters along with vast amounts of other plastic debris.
Now, by signing up to the RPM Standard and Program, organisations can demonstrate their commitment to taking proactive steps to better measure, reduce and re-use the plastic coming into – and going out from – their businesses.
Once companies have completed the five-step RPM programme, an assessment by independent global assurance company Lloyd’s Register will enable successful organisations to be certified and listed publicly in the RPM online directory.
RPM was founded as a not for profit, international organisation, by experienced assurance and sustainability specialists Peter Marshall and Dave Garforth. Peter comments: “Consumer awareness of plastic pollution has never been higher and we wanted to help organisations understand how they can play an important role in ensuring that waste is mitigated and out of the oceans and environment.
“One of the current issues facing the industry is that there is no official standard which helps organisations create an effective management plan. So, while we may hear that companies have committed to reducing their plastic waste, it’s unlikely that these plans will have been independently verified. Let’s be honest – it’s a lot easier to say you’re doing something if you’re not actually held accountable by a third party. The new RPM programme will help organisations drive real change by providing a framework for improvement – and then measuring them on progress.”
Certified organisations can access the RPM Trust Mark to illustrate their commitment to tackling this issue of plastic pollution to buyers, stakeholders and external parties.
Complementing existing best practice industry standards – including ISO 14001 for environmental management – the RPM programme starts with an audit of existing policies and processes, which can take place either onsite or remotely. From there, an organisation’s credentials will be verified and a manageable, tiered programme will be officially implemented. Annual reviews will take place to ensure companies are on track to meet commitments in the avoidance, reduction, re-use and recycling of plastics and to ensure continued compliance.
Kimberly Carey Coffin, Global Technical Director – Supply Chain Assurance at Lloyd’s Register, commented: “Unfortunately, the COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in many plastic management programmes taking a backseat, but the news of PPE pollution further emphasises the long-term importance in addressing plastic responsibility. Whilst it is accepted that the preventative measures necessary to protect our communities are essential at present, the generation and irresponsible management of more plastic is not the answer.
“The launch of RPM is an important step for socially and environmentally conscious companies across the globe and we urge them to take their first steps in reducing plastic waste. The system is the perfect journey for businesses to take, allowing them to truly understand their actions in manageable steps. More importantly, it helps to drive measurement and effectively demonstrates how certain actions can make a positive impact on the environment.”
|Managing your business and supply chain COVID-19 responsibilities||09/09/2020|
WHEN THE easing of lockdown measures began in mid-May, many businesses began a journey to assess the Coronavirus risks that applied to their workplaces. To make sure their working environments were COVID Secure, they went on to develop additional physical and procedural measures, says Dale Jones
When the easing of lockdown measures began in mid-May, many businesses began a journey to assess the Coronavirus risks that applied to their workplaces. To make sure their working environments were COVID Secure, they went on to develop additional physical and procedural measures.
Businesses are becoming more familiar with the nature of the risks from virus transmission and how to apply the applicable controls for the activities performed on their site. However, there is still confusion on how to manage contractors during the ongoing pandemic.
More and more stalled plans are back online as businesses work hard to increase their operational efficiency. The availability and usage of contractors sitting within the organisation’s supply chain is slowly returning to pre-COVID levels. For example, the easing of lockdown brought a 25% increase in the number of assessments submitted for audit, indicating an increase in business activity as they prepare to re-start operations and win new work.
Who holds the responsibility for managing the risks of COVID transmission when working with contractors and is there anything new the procuring client should be doing?
The basic principles typically followed when looking to engage with contractors within the supply chain hasn’t changed since the start of the pandemic.
The client holds overall responsibility for safety at their location, however, the contractors undertaking work on the project will need to manage their individual COVID-19 responsibilities appropriately.
Dale Jones is technical director at Alcumus SafeContractor
|Machine overspeed protection||01/09/2020|
Renowned in the field of monitoring and protection systems for rotating machinery, Meggitt SA is entering the market for overspeed protection by broadening its vibro-meter portfolio.
The new SpeedSys300 is a state-of-the-art SIL 3 capable electronic overspeed detection system. Designed using the latest technology and standards, including advanced self-monitoring and diagnostics, the SpeedSys300 is fundamentally simple, reliable and robust – resulting in a 10 year proof test interval. In addition, the system is versatile and its modular architecture enables low-impact retrofitting for any critical application.
The safe, reliable and efficient operation of critical turbomachinery and other high-value rotating equipment requires both vibration and overspeed monitoring and protection. Vibration and speed measurement are similar in nature as both use comparable sensors to generate dynamic signals that require advanced real-time signal processing. So it is a logical step to take vibro-meter extensive knowledge and expertise from the world of vibration and apply it to speed applications.
One of the major drivers of change within the machinery protection market today is the global adoption of international safety standards. End-users, OEMs, insurance providers and the standards themselves demand suppliers align their product offerings with industry standards and expect solutions that allow them to meet and maintain appropriate safety levels.
This requires new systems and architectures that suit the technical and economic environments of both large and small rotating machinery. Vibro-meter portfolio expansion respond to this demand with its fully certified and modular system that fits critical applications whilst ensuring the highest level of certification – SIL 2 and SIL 3 capable by design.
|New industry appointments||02/09/2020|
Camloc Motion Control, Enginuity, FPE Seals, Make UK and RS Components all announced new appointments in August.
Leicester-based gas spring and damper manufacturer Camloc Motion Control has strengthened its customer-facing team with the appointment of experienced sales manager, Ian Sinclair. Ian has extensive sales expertise gleaned from 17 years in the military and automotive sectors, and from working with Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs), distributors and export customers in the UK, Europe, Australia and the US. He is now looking to grow Camloc’s customer base while ensuring that existing customers continue to receive the best possible service and quality products that meet the needs of specific applications.
Senior union figure Tony Burke has joined the board of Enginuity, which works to equip UK engineering with the skills required to generate the economic recovery. Tony, who will become a trustee of Enginuity, is an assistant general secretary at Unite, president of the Confederation of Shipbuilding and Engineering Unions, vice-president of IndustriALL Europe and a member of the TUC Executive Committee leading on employment and union rights. He is chair of the Campaign for Trade Union Freedom and a member of the Board of the Peoples Press Printing Society. Ann Watson, CEO of Enginuity, said: “We are delighted to welcome Tony onboard – especially at such a pivotal moment in terms of ensuring the nation has the skills it needs to fuel the economic recovery. He brings a wealth of knowledge and expertise having worked across many years at senior level in the union and labour movement.”
FPE Seals, a worldwide distributor and manufacturer of polymeric seals and hydraulic cylinder parts, has appointed Steve Ellis as its new managing director. Steve assumes the role following the recent retirement of Nick Davies after four successful years at FPE. Steve joined FPE Seals from the LoneStar Group, a global manufacturer and distributor of high-performance fasteners, sealing products and precision-engineered components to the world’s energy markets. There, he was responsible for group purchasing before moving, first, to Ningbo, China as managing director of LoneStar PHIT, and then to Houston, Texas where he was managing director of LoneStar Fasteners and LoneStar Sealing Technologies. Steve commented: “I am honoured be to be leading FPE Seals into the next stage of its future growth. I look forward to working with the team and developing new solutions that will bring added value and satisfaction for our customers.”
Make UK CEO Stephen Phipson (pictured) has been appointed to a new Trade Advisory Group, which will oversee business engagement with manufacturers and help inform the UK’s ambitious trade negotiations. The Automotive, Aerospace and Marine Trade Advisory Group is one of 11 such groups established by the Department for International Trade representing key sectors across the economy. Its advice will help inform the Government’s negotiating position and deliver key asks for industry that will benefit manufacturers across the UK. Stephen brings a wealth of overseas trade experience, having worked in industry for 35 years before becoming head of the Defence and Security Organisation within UKTI, prior to being appointed chief executive of Make UK.
RS Components has announced the promotion of Pete Malpas from president of Northern Europe to the role of president EMEA, reporting to Mike England, COO of Electrocomponents. Pete, a qualified engineer, will be responsible for accelerating performance across EMEA. He will lead the commercial operation and business transformation of the region, driving a more aligned and consistent go-to-market approach and value proposition. He will work closely with the presidents of Asia Pacific and the Americas, sharing best practice and bringing consistency in the ways of working across the global business. Pete will continue to lead Northern Europe until his successor has been appointed.
|Processing and packaging industry event goes digital||02/09/2020|
The PPMA Group of Associations is hosting an online meeting hub on 7 September to connect buyers with industry suppliers who would otherwise have met at the PPMA Show, which has had to be postponed because of the Covid-19 pandemic.
The hub is free to access and, according to the PPMA Group of Associations, it provides a gateway to more than 1,500 brands from some 300 PPMA Show 2020 exhibitors. It is described as the largest single gathering of processing equipment, packaging machinery, robotics and industrial visions companies in the UK.
David Harrison, chief operating officer of the PPMA Group of Associations, said: “The Meeting Hub is an extension of our PPMA Show. The Hub has been designed with simplicity and ease-of-navigation in mind. It’s not a replacement for our annual flagship event, but it is a valuable tool for those looking to browse and invest in the latest innovations to improve business efficiencies.”
There is no need to register for the Hub. Simply visit: www.ppmashow.co.uk
|Ecolab ramps up production to help NHS fight infection||02/09/2020|
Ecolab, the provider of water, hygiene and infection-prevention solutions and services, has announced it is to supply the NHS with five million litres of hand sanitiser, Skinman Soft Protect FF, by the end of the year.
Ecolab says it has been a long-term supplier to the NHS Supply Chain, providing infection-prevention solutions, combined with service and training, to help ensure cleaner and safer healthcare environments. Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the demand for infection-prevention solutions has surged, and Ecolab says it has worked closely with NHS Supply Chain to help ensure the right products are delivered where they are needed most across the NHS and health and social care.
The company says it has increased manufacturing capacity by 700 per cent across Europe to help meet demand. To supply this record quantity of hand sanitiser, it has mobilised its Weavergate production plant in Northwich, Cheshire. The manufacturing team set up a new mixing and filling line in six weeks to locally produce alcohol-based hand rub for professional use in large quantities. The first bottles were filled and delivered in early July, and Ecolab says further enhancements will help produce a quarter of a million bottles per week from September. Twenty new associates have been hired locally to support the production team of more than 50 full-time workers.
The five million litres of Skinman Soft Protect FF will be delivered in one-litre bottles. Ecolab describes the product as a liquid, alcohol-based hand rub with a unique, skin-friendly formulation, with full virucidal efficacy in 30 seconds according to EN 14476. Ecolab adds that it has also been supplying a wider range of hand-hygiene and high-level surface disinfection products compliant with EN 14476 or that have limited-spectrum activity against vaccinia virus according to EN 14476.
Miranda Gordon, head of Category, Wound Care and Infection Control at NHS Supply Chain, commented: “Ecolab has been a reliable partner at the heart of the crisis. Their healthcare team has always been a phone call away and have proven great resilience to help supply disinfection products. Now that the peak has passed, we are building new stock of critical products to ensure our preparedness, whatever may come. We are grateful to Ecolab for the continuous support.”
To find out more, visit www.ecolab.com
|Forklift fleet management and maintenance||27/08/2020|
A forklift truck fleet, of any size, is a significant investment that should be appropriately assigned to the tasks at hand, efficiently put to good use, regularly maintained and managed productively across the whole life of a contract.
That’s according to Ross Farquhar, strategic planning manager at Rushlift, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Doosan Industrial Vehicles. Farquhar says the company works closely with fleet owners over the entire length of a contract, to maximise the overall performance of the fleet: from specifying and recommending the most appropriate trucks for the duties to be performed to providing full, regular servicing, fast breakdown call-out and on-site meetings to review fleet performance.
He adds that Doosan has an extensive range of forklift trucks comprising more than 200 models of counterbalance, reach and warehouse trucks, with capacities spanning 1.3 tonnes right up to 25 tonnes, in electric, gas and diesel-powered versions. However, Farquhar points out that Rushlift will always specify the best truck for a customer’s task and can provide any other equipment required, regardless of the manufacturer.
According to Farquhar, Rushlift has service centres located across the UK and more than 130 highly qualified field engineers on the road at any one time, enabling the company to issue a guarantee that an engineer will be on site within four hours. In addition, the company has just introduced a fleet of 90 brand-new service vans, fully kitted out and replenished every night with parts by an in-the-night courier service.
Rushlift’s UK Parts Distribution Centre in Northampton is said to carry in excess of £1.2 million worth of stock for next-day delivery. With a 4.30 pm cut-off for orders – one of the latest in the industry, according to the company – Rushlift customers get the best possible support, all from within the UK.
Further information on Rushlift’s full service offering can be found at www.rushlift.co.uk
|Online training on compressed air and fluid technology||27/08/2020|
Motion-control and fluid-technology specialist Norgren has created a suite of free online training modules covering all aspects of compressed air as an energy source and fluid technology within an industrial setting.
The company says the extensive set of short video modules, available on YouTube, covers everything from the basics of understanding the role of compressed air and the use of filter regulator lubricators, through to the functional purpose of actuators and control valves that can help optimise manufacturing production performance in many industries. More advanced topics, such as building a pneumatic circuit, actuator standards and advice on product selection are also covered.
Norgren’s Ciarán Crowley comments: “We are delighted to make this essential online training programme available to customers. Covering a wide range of topics, the videos provide a helpful refresher for users already familiar with pneumatics, and a useful introduction for those wishing to learn more. As well as explaining the role of the various parts of a compressed-air system, the modules cover many helpful ancillary areas, such as component selection and building more complex system solutions.
“For customers with bespoke requirements, Norgren’s technical experts are also on hand to guide users through system specification and build.”
Click here to access the YouTube video suite: www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLOhMgjguwnkvSgv51bq-I0MVie7nj5y0-