Local Equipment Dealers Step Up to Help After Irma


Only twice in United States history have two major Hurricanes made landfall back-to-back on the mainland, according to the National Hurricane Center. Over the past few weeks, Hurricanes Harvey and Irma brought that number up to three. On Aug. 25, Harvey made landfall and devastated southeast Texas, dumping more than 50 inches of rain with maximum sustained wind gusts reaching 130 mph….


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For the word of the Lord is right and true; he is faithful in all he does.

SkillsUSA WorldTeam Meets Top Education Officials Prior to International Competition


The SkillsUSA WorldTeam traveled to our nation's capital Sept. 12 to meet top officials at the U.S. Department of Education. The team will represent the United States at the upcoming WorldSkills Competition Oct. 14 to 19 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. “The SkillsUSA WorldTeam will compete with young workers from all around the globe, and I know our team will represent the United States very well,” explained Tim Lawrence, executive director of SkillsUSA….


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The Lord your God is with you, the Mighty Warrior who saves. He will take great delight in you; in his love he will no longer rebuke you, but will rejoice over you with singing.

Bennett Spring State Park – Lebanon, Missouri

Bennett Spring State Park - Lebanon, Missouri

Construction on the new fish hatcheries.

Posted by Adventurer Dustin Holmes on 2010-11-26 18:21:25

Tagged: , Bennett Spring , State Park , Bennett Springs , State Parks , Missouri , MO , Laclede County , Dallas County , CAT , 325B , Construction , Heavy Machinery , Heavy Equipment

Heavy Construction photos – Bennett Spring State Park – Lebanon, Missouri – #heavy #construction #photos #pics and #images for you.

Surely the righteous will never be shaken; they will be remembered forever.

Harnessing these imperfections could have implications for computer memory and energy conversion — ScienceDaily

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Sometimes things that are technically defects, such as imperfections in a material’s crystal lattice, can actually produce changes in properties that open up new kinds of useful applications. New research from a team at MIT shows that such imperfections in a family of materials known as insulating metal oxides may be key to their performance for a variety of high-tech applications, such as nonvolatile memory chips and energy conversion technologies.

The findings are reported this week in the journal Physical Review Letters, in a paper by MIT Associate Professor Bilge Yildiz, Professor and Associate Provost Krystyn Van Vliet, and former postdoc Mostafa Youssef.

These metal oxide materials have been investigated by many researchers, Yildiz says, and “their properties are highly governed by the number and the kind of defects that are present.” When subjected to strong driving forces, such as strong electric fields, “the behavior of such defects had not been well-understood,” she says.

Researchers do have a well-established theoretical understanding of how perfectly structured versions of these insulating metal oxides function under a variety of conditions, such as in strong electric fields, but there was no such theory to describe the materials when they contain common types of defects, according to Yildiz. Understanding these effects quantitatively is important in order to develop this promising family of materials for potential applications including new types of low-energy computer memory and processing devices, electrically based refrigeration, and electro-catalytic energy-conversion devices such as fuel cells.

The team demonstrated a theoretical framework and showed how the stability and structure of a point defect is altered under strong electric fields. They took a common defect called a neutral oxygen vacancy — a place where an oxygen atom should appear in the lattice but instead two electrons are trapped. Their results have quantified the polarization behavior of the material with this defect, in an electric field.

“The oxygen vacancies in particular are very important in electronic and electrochemical applications,” says Yildiz, who holds joint appointments in the departments of Nuclear Science and Engineering and Materials Science and Engineering.

In many of these applications, she says, there can be an internal voltage gradient created within the thin-film material, and this “electric potential” gradient causes strong electric fields. Understanding the effects of those fields is essential for the design of certain new devices.

“Most of the work in this area is experimental,” Yildiz says. “You take a thin film, you put it in an electric field, and you do measurements.” But in such experiments, the effects of the local electric potential and the electric field are convoluted, making it very hard to understand the results. “It’s impossible to resolve them from each other, so you need to have a theory” to account for the effects, she adds.

The researchers have now devised a new theoretical framework that allows them to isolate the electric field effect from the electric potential effect, and quantify both independently. This allowed them to make very specific predictions that are different from those produced by classical theory and should make it possible to validate the new model experimentally within a year, Yildiz says.

The findings should help enable the development of some important potential applications, she says. One is in a new type of computer memory device known as resistive switching memory, which provides fast switching speeds using very little energy. These memory devices rely on the presence of defects.

“The way they switch their resistance state [to record data] depends on the defect type, content, and distribution,” she says. “In order to model the device behavior, you should be able to model how the applied strong electric fields alter the defect structure, concentration, and distribution.” That’s what this new work enables: “If you know quantitatively the effects of both the potential and the field, then you can design your operating conditions to benefit from these effects.”

Understanding these effects is also important for other applications such as splitting water molecules to produce hydrogen at solid-liquid interfaces, electronic devices that rely on oxide-oxide interfaces, or other electrochemical processes using these materials as catalysts, where defects serve as the sites that enable the interactions.

The materials the team studied belong to a class known as alkaline-earth-metal binary oxides, whose constituents are “among the most abundant class of materials on Earth,” Yildiz says. “[This class is] cheap, abundant, and has tunable properties,” making it promising for many applications. But she adds that the theoretical approach they took will now be applied much more broadly, to many other kinds of oxide materials and to other kinds of defects within them besides the neutral oxygen vacancies.


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In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters.

Fed keeps rates steady, to start portfolio drawdown in October

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. Federal Reserve left interest rates unchanged on Wednesday but signaled it still expects one more increase by the end of the year despite recent weak inflation readings.

New economic projections released after the Fed’s two-day policy meeting showed 11 of 16 officials see the “appropriate” level for the federal funds rate, the central bank’s benchmark interest rate, to be in a range between 1.25 percent and 1.50 percent by the end of 2017.

That is one-quarter of a point above the current level. Financial markets were barely moved by the Fed decision and the new economic projections and based on the immediate market reaction it looked as if the Fed was right when it said that the portfolio runoff would be as exciting as “watching paint dry”.

“The labor market has continued to strengthen … economic activity has been rising moderately so far this year,” the Fed said in its policy statement. It added that the near-term risks to the economic outlook remained “roughly balanced” but that inflation was being watched “closely.”

The interest rate outlook for next year remained largely unchanged, with three hikes envisioned. But the U.S. central bank slowed the pace of projected monetary tightening from there.

It forecasts only two increases in 2019 and one in 2020. It also lowered again its estimated long-term “neutral” interest rate from 3.0 percent to 2.75 percent, reflecting concerns about overall economic vitality.

The Fed, as expected, also said it would begin in October to reduce its approximately $4.2 trillion in holdings of U.S. Treasury bonds and mortgage-backed securities by initially cutting up to $10 billion each month from the amount of maturing securities it reinvests.

That action will start a gradual reversal of the three rounds of quantitative easing the Fed pursued between 2008 and 2014 to stimulate the economy after the 2007-2009 financial crisis and recession.

The limit on reinvestment is scheduled to increase by $10 billion every three months to a maximum of $50 billion per month until the central bank’s overall balance sheet falls by perhaps $1 trillion or more in the coming years.

The U.S. dollar rose against a basket of currencies .DXY after the release of the Fed’s policy statement. U.S. stocks extended losses while yields on U.S. Treasuries rose slightly.

FILE PHOTO – A police officer keeps watch in front of the U.S. Federal Reserve building in Washington, DC, U.S. on October 12, 2016. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque/File Photo

Fed Chair Janet Yellen is scheduled to hold a press conference at 2:30 p.m. ET (1830 GMT).

BALANCING ACT

The policy statement and accompanying projections showed the Fed still in the middle of a balancing act between an economic recovery that has kept U.S. unemployment low and is gaining steam globally and a recent worrying drop in U.S. inflation.

Three of the hawkish policymakers appeared to move their expected policy rate down to account for only one more hike by the end of 2017, leaving a core 11 clustered around a likely December increase. The Fed has raised rates twice this year.

The Fed noted that the recent hurricanes in the United States would affect economic activity but are “unlikely to materially alter the course of the national economy over the medium term.”

Forecasts for economic growth and unemployment into 2018 and beyond were largely unchanged. Gross domestic product is now expected to grow at a rate of 2.4 percent this year, 2.1 percent next year and 2.0 percent in 2019.

The unemployment rate is forecast to remain at 4.3 percent this year before falling to 4.1 percent next year and remaining there in 2019.

Inflation is expected to remain under the Fed’s 2 percent target through 2018 before hitting it in 2019.

There were no dissents in the Fed’s policy decision.

(For a graphic on the legacy of the QE era, click tmsnrt.rs/2xh1v4Q)

Reporting by Howard Schneider; Editing by Paul Simao and David Chance

Our Standards:The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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For the grace of God has appeared that offers salvation to all people. It teaches us to say “No” to ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives in this present age.

Patten Cat Names Machine Sales Representative :: Story ID: 36455 :: Construction Equipment Guide

📅   Wed September 20, 2017 – Midwest Edition #19

Brent Annen

Brent Annen


Patten Cat recently announced the promotion of Brent Annen as the company’s newest machine sales representative covering both Kane and DeKalb counties in Illinois.

In his new role, which he assumed Aug. 14, Annen is responsible for the entire Caterpillar construction equipment line. His past positions as a machine technology specialist and an industrial, waste and technology specialist have prepared him well for his new responsibilities. According to Annen, his solid understanding of machine control and construction technology should prove useful as technology-enabled machines are becoming increasingly commonplace.

“I’m excited for this opportunity and look forward to establishing long-term, mutually beneficial relationships with my customers,” said Annen.

Brian Serio, sales manager of Patten Industries, said that the overall expectation for the role is to provide unparalleled products and solutions that the company’s customers have learned to expect.

Patten Cat carries the full line of Caterpillar heavy and compact construction equipment, which is available to purchase, rent or lease. In addition, Patten Cat also provides parts and service to support this full product line.

For more information, visit PattenCat.com.

CEG


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Dear children, let us not love with words or speech but with actions and in truth.

Toshiba selects Bain group as buyer of its memory chip business: sources

TOKYO (Reuters) – Japan’s Toshiba Corp (6502.T) has selected a group led by U.S. private equity firm Bain Capital to buy its prized memory chip unit, three people with knowledge of the talks said on Wednesday, the latest dramatic twist to a highly contentious auction.

The decision was made by Toshiba’s board and will be announced later on Wednesday, two sources said. The people declined to be identified as they were not authorised to speak on the matter.

Toshiba declined comment. A representative for Bain was not immediately available for comment.

The auction of the world’s No. 2 producer of NAND semiconductors has been marked by a slew of revised bids, changing alliances among suitors, as well as legal wrangling from chip joint venture partner Western Digital Corp (WDC.O) – a threat that still hangs over the sale.

Three separate sources had told Reuters late Tuesday that Toshiba was shifting back towards selling the unit to a group backed by Western Digital.

But one of people speaking on Wednesday said Western Digital had failed to agree on limits to the U.S. firm’s future stake in the chip business that had been demanded by Toshiba.

A representative for Western Digital was not immediately available for comment.

The embattled Japanese conglomerate has little time to waste and has been under pressure from its lenders to clinch a deal this month to ensure enough time for regulatory reviews so that it can finish the sale by the end of the financial year.

If it doesn‘t, it won’t have the funds to plug a huge hole in its finances and could be delisted. Even without that problem staring it in the face, the semiconductor business requires huge amounts of investment and Toshiba’s chip unit runs the danger of losing its competitive ability as rivals roll out big capital spending plans.

Bain has partnered with South Korean chipmaker SK Hynix Inc (000660.KS) and has also brought in U.S. tech firms such as Apple Inc (AAPL.O) and Dell Inc [DI.UL], both buyers of Toshiba chips, to bolster its offer, which sources have said is worth some $22 billion.

SK Hynix declined to comment.

But a deal is likely to face fierce opposition from rival bidder Western Digital, which argues any pact will need its consent.

The U.S. firm has already taken the dispute to the International Court of Arbitration to prevent the sale and a source with knowledge of the matter has said it is prepared to seek an immediate court injunction.

Reporting by Taro Fuse and Kentaro Hamada; Additional reporting by Makiko Yamazaki, Junko Fujita, Tom Wilson in Tokyo and Joyce Lee in Seoul; Writing by Makiko Yamazaki; Editing by Edwina Gibbs

Our Standards:The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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And every tongue acknowledge that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

One-way track for microwaves based on mechanical interference — ScienceDaily

Heavy Construction Photos

Devices that allow to route microwave signals are essential engineering tools. In particular, isolators, which let signals flow in one direction but block them in the other, are needed to protect sensitive equipment from harm. Now, scientists at EPFL and the University of Cambridge have demonstrated a new principle for developing such tools by harnessing the motion of microscopic drums. The study is published in Nature Communications.

The work was carried out by the lab of Tobias Kippenberg at EPFL, with theoretical support from the group of Andreas Nunnenkamp from the University of Cambridge. All samples were fabricated in the Center of MicroNanoTechnology (CMi) at EPFL. The demonstrated device consists of two resonant superconducting microwave circuits that are linked through a shared a capacitor. The top metallic membrane of this capacitor floats freely and supports mechanical oscillations, acting like a micro-drum, only 30 microns in diameter.

The vibrations modify the resonance frequencies of the microwave circuits and modulate the signals. Conversely, the electric field of signals exerts a force that changes the motion of the drum. This bi-directional interaction enables the conversion of signals from one microwave circuit to the other; the incoming signal is first converted to a vibrating motion, and then the motion itself is converted to a second signal emerging from the other circuit.

In the experiment, two different modes of oscillation of the micro-drum motion are used. These represent two paths for the microwave signals to be converted from one circuit to the other, resulting in interference, which, surprisingly, is not symmetrical in either direction of signal conversion.

The system can be tuned in such a way that positive interference occurs in one direction, while destructive interference occurs in the other. This realizes a microwave isolator that lets signals propagate only in a chosen direction, and the parameters can be modified on the fly, allowing dynamically reconfigurable use of the isolator, instantly changing its direction.

While commercial microwave isolators are common, they typically rely on magnetic ferrite materials and strong magnetic fields. This makes them impractical to use with superconducting qubits, which are becoming the leading candidates to use as building blocks for a quantum computer. But the lifetime of the fragile quantum states of the qubits is easily disturbed by magnetic fields, meaning that the ferrite isolators must be heavily shielded to prevent magnetic field leaking that can limit their use. For this reason, there has recently been substantial research activity to develop alternative technologies. The optomechanical isolator created at EPFL joins other prototypes — such as those using Josephson junctions — that might form a new platform to build such devices in the future.

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Materials provided by Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne. Note: Content may be edited for style and length.


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Since you are precious and honored in my sight, and because I love you, I will give people in exchange for you, nations in exchange for your life.

Unusual fluorescent materials could be used for rapid light-based communications systems — ScienceDaily

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Two-dimensional materials called molecular aggregates are very effective light emitters that work on a different principle than typical organic light-emitting diodes (OLEDs) or quantum dots. But their potential as components for new kinds of optoelectronic devices has been limited by their relatively slow response time. Now, researchers at MIT, the University of California at Berkeley, and Northeastern University have found a way to overcome that limitation, potentially opening up a variety of applications for these materials.

The findings are described in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, in a paper by MIT associate professor of mechanical engineering Nicholas X. Fang, postdocs Qing Hu and Dafei Jin, and five others.

The key to enhancing the response time of these 2-D molecular aggregates (2DMA), Fang and his team found, is to couple that material with a thin layer of a metal such as silver. The interaction between the 2DMA and the metal that is just a few nanometers away boosts the speed of the material’s light pulses more than tenfold.

These 2DMA materials exhibit a number of unusual properties and have been used to create exotic forms of matter, known as Bose-Einstein condensates, at room temperature, while other approaches required extreme cooling. They have also been applied in technologies such as solar cells and light-harvesting organic antennas. But the new work for the first time identifies the strong influence that a very close sheet of metal can have on the way these materials emit light.

In order for these materials to be useful in devices such as photonic chips — which are like semiconductor chips but carry out their operations using light instead of electrons — “the challenge is to be able to switch them on and off quickly,” which had not been possible before, Fang says.

With the metal substrate nearby, the response time for the light emission dropped from 60 picoseconds (trillionths of a second) to just 2 picoseconds, Fang says: “This is pretty exciting, because we observed this effect even when the material is 5 to 10 nanometers away from the surface,” with a spacing layer of polymer in between. That’s enough of a separation that fabricating such paired materials in quantity should not be an overly demanding process. “This is something we think could be adapted to roll-to-roll printing,” he says.

If used for signal processing, such as sending data by light rather than radio waves, Fang says, this advance could lead to a data transmission rate of about 40 gigahertz, which is eight times faster than such devices can currently deliver. This is “a very promising step, but it’s still very early” as far as translating that into practical, manufacturable devices, he cautions.

The team studied only one of the many kinds of molecular aggregates that have been developed, so there may still be opportunities to find even better variations. “This is actually a very rich family of luminous materials,” Fang says.

Because the responsiveness of the material is so strongly influenced by the exact proximity of the nearby metal substrate, such systems could also be used for very precise measuring tools. “The interaction is reduced as a function of the gap size, so it could now be used if we want to measure the proximity of a surface,” Fang says.

As the team continues its studies of these materials, one next step is to study the effects that patterning of the metal surface might have, since the tests so far only used flat surfaces. Other questions to be addressed include determining the useful lifetimes of these materials and how they might be extended.

Fang says a first prototype of a device using this system might be produced “within a year or so.”

Story Source:

Materials provided by Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Original written by David L. Chandler. Note: Content may be edited for style and length.


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The crowds that went ahead of him and those that followed shouted, “Hosanna to the Son of David!” “Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!” “Hosanna in the highest heaven!”

We Get It. There’s a Trades Shortage. But Why? And What Now? :: Story ID: 36410 :: Construction Equipment Guide

Practical strategies for employers to attract young talent in a dwindling workforce.

📅   Mon September 18, 2017 – Edition
Jeremiah Rizzo, Construct-Ed

It seems like everyone is talking about the “skilled labor” shortage these days. If you're an employer reading this, you've probably felt the pain first hand as you struggle to keep your workforce at the right number.

It seems like everyone is talking about the “skilled labor” shortage these days. If you’re an employer reading this, you’ve probably felt the pain first hand as you struggle to keep your workforce at the right number.


This article was written by Construct-Ed, an online learning community geared toward the construction industry. The opinions in this, and any other post written by our network of bloggers, do not necessarily reflect those of Construction Equipment Guide.

It seems like everyone is talking about the “skilled labor” shortage these days. If you’re an employer reading this, you’ve probably felt the pain first hand as you struggle to keep your workforce at the right number.

For the few reading this that may not be aware of this issue, this basically means that there are large job openings in skilled trades industries waiting to be filled.

Everyone from residential contractors to commercial companies are struggling to find young employees that are either skilled, or willing to learn. Many would settle for “willing to learn,” but are struggling to improve their work force.

Actually, we just came across a comment online where one contractor says he’s thinking about offering $50 just to show up to the interview! So yeah, it’s gotten that bad.

So how did we get here?

If you didn’t know better, you might think that the reason there are so many unfilled jobs in construction is because millennials are just lazy or unwilling to enter the workforce. Actually, that’s not really the case. There are a number of factors that have contributed to the situation the industry finds itself in.

Here’s a brief look at just a few of them:

1. The housing bubble hurt many construction businesses and halted development, causing many individuals to leave the industry.

After the housing bubble burst in 2008, many contractors and construction professionals were left suffering and struggling to find work. Business declined, and many decided to leave the trades and go into a different profession. It’s great that building and construction is trending right now, but since so many left the industry in 2008, there just aren’t as many professionals to do the work that’s available.

2. The building economy is growing.

Dodge Data & Analytics says that new construction in 2017 will increase 5 percent. Not only that, but it’s expected to continue to rise. Add to that Green Building. And by “green,” we mean both in energy and finances. Politics aside, more homeowners and businesses are going to build “green.” According to the USGBC, “by 2018…green construction will account for more than 3.3 million U.S. jobs – more than one-third of the entire U.S. construction sector – and generate $190.3 billion in labor earnings.”

3. Experienced pros retired (and are currently retiring).

Essentially, experienced professionals are retiring and taking their knowledge and expertise with them. In many situations, the companies they worked for didn’t preserve their knowledge, or have a system in place to pass it down.

4. Our culture has long had a poor view of the trades.

For a long time, blue collar work was culturally viewed by many as “less important” or “less intelligent”. College was seen as the only way to make a decent living. The point is that our culture has not been kind to the trades.

What can we do from here? More important, what practical things can companies do right now to help them find more talent?

Now, the above list is by no means exhaustive. There are other reasons why we are where we are. But the question now is, “what do we do about it?” Well, if there was one simple answer, there wouldn’t still be a labor shortage. But we want to humbly make a few suggestions…

1. Show youth there are actual careers in the trades that can help them meet their life goals.

It’s no secret that millennials have different values than baby boomers or prior generations. But that doesn’t mean they’re lazy. They simply value quality of life, traveling, time with family and doing something meaningful. Many just don’t understand that this can be found in honest, hard, steady work, where they get to produce something tangible and valuable. So if your company can show them how working for you helps them achieve those things, you’ll do better than you would by just expecting them to show up and serve you.

And you at least have this on your side: the gig’s up about college. Everyone now sees that entering college means thousands of dollars of debt, only to earn $40,000 — $50,000 upon entering the workforce. Contrast that to the trades, which may offer $30,000 — $40,000 to start — and allow employees to earn more as they progress in skill and experience: no debt necessary.

The key is showing youth various career potentials. Not many people want to enter the trades as a laborer, with no path to earning more or progressing in their career. But if they know that they can start at $15 per hour, and in 5 years (with hard work and dedication) be earning between $50,000 and $60,000, we think they’ll be much more likely to consider the trades as a viable career option.

Of course, all this assumes that your company is able to offer competitive rates, which we address in #2…

2. Offer competitive pay, step up your perks, and improve company culture.

Besides showing prospective employees that they can actually make a career out of the trades, it’s important to put your money where your mouth is by offering competitive pay. And that doesn’t necessarily mean you need to pay 20 percent more than your competitors. In fact, according to recent studies by Harvard Business Review and Glassdoor, (younger) employees are desiring perks more than a pay raise.

Now obviously almost all (if not all) the jobs listed in those articles are soft-skills jobs: jobs like coding, HR, design, etc. But we wonder if there’s something construction employers can take away from this.

You may not be able to pay $5 per hour over your competitor, but can you offer paid paternity leave, and 2 weeks’ vacation (instead of 1) to start? Or, are there other ways you can streamline your operations and cut costs to be able to offer a more competitive salary?

The point is that millennials value work-life balance and flock to jobs that help them have a life outside of work. You’d be amazed how far even little things (like donuts and coffee or verbal affirmation of the work your employees are doing) can go to creating a culture where employees want to stick around.

Simply put, the “old school” mentality of little vacation time, paying the bare minimum, no time off when employees have new children and zero perks, just won’t fly. You can cling to that system as long as you want, but if you do, you might be seriously hurting for employees in a few years, if you aren’t already.

So yeah, we get it, you aren’t a tech company. You only make money when the workers are working. But get creative.

Can you include company reimbursement for chiropractic visits to keep your employees feeling better and healthier? Can you offer free lunch once a week? Can you pay even $1 an hour higher, or more than the bare minimum? Can you give additional vacation time?

And perhaps the hardest: Can you create a culture in your company where employees invite friends to work there, and where they stick around a long time? Encouragement, a positive work force, cultivating a team that respects one another and actually enjoys working together, these are the hardest things for construction companies to cultivate.

Don’t start with the assumption that you can’t. Take a look at what companies in other spaces are doing and focus on what you can adopt from them.

3. Create an in-house apprentice program.

Many companies have experienced the frustration of constant employee turnover. You work hard (and spend money) to get employees in the door, only to see them turn around and leave one day, week or month later.

Of course, part of reducing employee turnover is the things we already discussed: creating a good culture, paying good wages and helping prospective employees see that there’s a future at your company. But at the end of the day, you also need to help them get there.

Compare these two companies:

Company A spends a few hours running new hires through the necessary safety talks, gets them set up with their gear and sends them out to the field. They don’t follow up except every 6 months for an employee “review” (if that!). The new hire gets thrown into a crew without really knowing they’re doing. They try to learn, but the bulk of their learning experience comes from getting yelled at or mocked from others on the crew. Once they’ve mastered their first task (say, debris management), they want to learn more — but there’s no one to teach them. Six months later, they’re still in the dumpster. They see no light at the end of the tunnel and they leave. Time for Company A to find another employee.

Company B creates an apprenticeship program. New hires are assigned to designated trainers or employees in the company, who then walk them through the job step by step. There’s a set track: the employee spends 3 to 6 months at level 1, the next 6 months at level 2, and after 1 year is promoted to the next rank. That employee sticks around, because they see progression and growth in their career. They know where they are, what the next step is, and see that someone is helping them get there. Meanwhile, the company benefits because they’ve retained the employee and have another skilled worker to add to the workforce who may someday become a foreman or superintendent.

4. Pay for employee development.

If your employees show initiative and want to take their management, leadership or trade skills to the next level, see if there’s a way you can pay for further education. And no, this doesn’t necessarily mean a local college course. There are tons of online courses available or 2 day expos and conferences you can send them to.

Investing in your employees, and helping them better themselves and their knowledge will show that you care, and your company will benefit as they bring their newfound skills to bear on projects moving forward.

There’s no easy solution, but there is hope.

At the end of the day, there’s no quick answer to fix this issue. The reality is that you’re only in control of part of the solution. You can’t change how the culture views the trades, and you can’t prevent housing bubbles or control massive economic growth.

So do what you can:

  • Take care of your employees, show that you care, and work hard to create an awesome culture and a team that enjoys working together.
  • Give what perks you can, and don’t pay bottom dollar.
  • Show employees how working for you aligns with their goals to do meaningful work and live a fulfilled life.
  • Help your employees develop. Show them a career path. Apprentice them, and help them develop as people and as workers.
  • We humbly suggest that these things are practical steps you can begin today toward building a healthier workforce, even in times like these.


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    I can do all this through him who gives me strength.

    NJPA Awards Morbark LLC Second Four-Year Contract :: Story ID: 36359 :: Construction Equipment Guide

    📅   Fri September 15, 2017 – Northeast Edition #19


    The National Joint Power Alliance (NJPA) has awarded Morbark LLC with a four-year contract to provide NJPA members with grounds maintenance equipment. The contract (#062117-MBI), which officially began Aug. 18, 2017, also covers related attachments, accessories and services.

    “We are extremely proud to hold this new contract and the partnership we have been able to cultivate with the NJPA since being awarded our first contract in 2015,” said Kevin Cotter, governmental sales manager.

    “This relationship allows us to supply NJPA member municipalities and non-profit organizations with the quality Morbark equipment they need at very competitive prices.”

    The NJPA is a municipal contracting agency for government, education and non-profit organizations throughout the United States and Canada. The NJPA goes through a 12-step procurement process that includes identifying member needs, researching solutions, drafting and posting solicitations, evaluating proposals and awarding vendors. By consolidating the efforts of numerous individually prepared solicitations and contracts to one cooperative process, the NJPA can help members save time and offer access to a broad range of exceptional product and equipment options with aggressive and competitive pricing.

    Morbark’s contract with the NJPA includes the complete lines of Beever brush chippers, stump grinders, horizontal and tub grinders, and whole tree chippers, as well as Boxer mini-skid steers, attachments, and dedicated trenchers.

    Morbark has a network of approximately 300 North American dealer and distributor locations, as well as nearly 500 Morbark employees.

    “After examining the proposals the NJPA evaluation team received in response to our solicitation, it was evident that Morbark had all the qualities we were searching for,” said Scott Carr, NJPA contract manager of Morbark’s award. “Their excellent products, sizeable dealer network, comprehensive marketing plan, and dedication will serve our members well. We’re excited to continue this mutually beneficial partnership with one of the world’s most widely respected equipment manufacturers.”

    For more information, visit

    www.morbark.com.


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    Dishonest money dwindles away, but whoever gathers money little by little makes it grow.

    Volvo CE Fuels Development in North America, Participates in SkillsUSA :: Story ID: 36346 :: Construction Equipment Guide

    📅   Fri September 15, 2017 – Northeast Edition #19

    (L-R): Ryan Flood, vice president of Highway Equipment & Supply; Tyler Breon, student at Pennsylvania College of Technology; Ryan Peck, operator training program instructor at Pennsylvania College of Technology; Brian Hoffman, account representative at Highway Equipment & Supply; Makenzie Witmer, student; and Justin Beishline, assistant dean of the School of Transportation & Natural Resources Technologies at Pennsylvania College of Technology.

    (L-R): Ryan Flood, vice president of Highway Equipment & Supply; Tyler Breon, student at Pennsylvania College of Technology; Ryan Peck, operator training program instructor at Pennsylvania College of Technology; Brian Hoffman, account representative at Highway Equipment & Supply; Makenzie Witmer, student; and Justin Beishline, assistant dean of the School of Transportation & Natural Resources Technologies at Pennsylvania College of Technology.


    Volvo Construction Equipment (Volvo CE) is continuing its support for the construction industry and helping to address the skills gap. Over the summer, Volvo CE donated an excavator to support operator training programs at Pennsylvania College of Technology, and participated in SkillsUSA and Skills Compétences Canada’s annual competitions.

    “In the U.S., an estimated 600,000 manufacturing jobs went unfilled in 2011 and could grow to over two million in ten years, according to a report from the Manufacturing Institute and Deloitte,” said Chuck Wood, vice president, Human Resource Management and Administration, Sales Region Americas, Volvo CE. “That’s a vast skills gap we could face, which is why it’s important for us, as an industry leader, to help support the future of our industry.”

    Teaming up with its dealer Highway Equipment & Supply, Volvo CE donated equipment, including an EC220D excavator, to the operator training program at Pennsylvania College of Technology. Both companies have spent more than a decade supporting Pennsylvania College of Technology with equipment donations and other training resources. Ryan Flood, vice president with Highway Equipment, also serves on the program’s advisory council. Located in Williamsport, Pa., the college is affiliated with the Pennsylvania State University and has more than 5,000 students.

    “The coursework at Penn College is more involved. We are learning the basics behind how to approach a job, as well as GPS technology and grading,” said Makenzie Witmer, a student of the program.

    Demand is high for students who complete the college’s degree in heavy construction equipment technology with an operator emphasis.

    “The placement rate of our operator program is around 96 percent. The demand is large, as a lot of our older generation of operators is retiring,” said Ryan Peck, operator training program instructor at Pennsylvania College of Technology.

    Supporting the Future

    Volvo CE also participated in SkillsUSA and Skills Compétences Canada’s annual competitions, which took place in Kentucky, U.S., and in Manitoba, Canada, respectively. During the events, Volvo CE and its partners — American dealer Rudd Equipment Company and Canadian dealer Westcon Equipment & Rentals Ltd. — exhibited equipment, offered students simulator training, and participated in panels discussing skills students needed to stay competitive in the industry.

    “It was very rewarding to share the exciting changes happening in our field of expertise with the younger generations and to encouraged them to start a career in the industry,” Wood said. “The energy in the experienced professionals who served as judges and exhibitors was also high, and it’s refreshing to see them transferring expertise and skills knowledge to young students.”

    Even though new technologies are making jobs faster and easier, Wood advised that students should continue to develop and hone in on basic skills to maintain competitiveness.

    “For example, a pilot should be able to navigate a plane smoothly even if the autopilot is not available,” Wood said. “Good skills not only lead to jobs, but also serve as the foundation from where you grow to achieve greater career success.”

    The SkillsUSA National Leadership and Skills Conference attracted more than 15,000 students, teachers, education leaders and representatives from more than 600 national and regional corporations, trade associations and labor unions. About 6,000 state contest winners competed in 100 different trade, technical and leadership fields at this national event.

    The Skills Canada National Competition attracted 7,500 students from across Canada. More than 500 students from secondary or post-secondary schools were tested on their skills in six different sectors, including construction, manufacturing and engineering, employment, information technology, transportation and service.

    Based in Louisville, Ky., Rudd Equipment provides complete equipment sales and service support to the mining, construction and associated industries in America.

    Headquartered in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Westcon Equipment & Rentals Ltd. supplies products and services to the construction, aggregate, road building and forestry markets in Canada.

    Below is a video about Volvo CE’s partnership with Pennsylvania College of Technology.

    For more information, visit volvoce.com.


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    Construction to Begin 24/7 on Iconic Structure :: Story ID: 36372 :: Construction Equipment Guide

    Following demolition and construction of the elevated lift, work will continue with the installation of a gantry crane on the tower’s roof to hoist thousands of pounds of materials.

    📅   Fri September 15, 2017 – National Edition

    The Space Needle, one of the most recognized landmarks in the world, today announced the official start of construction for the Century Project, a multi-year venture focused on preservation and renovation of the 55-year-old icon.

    The Space Needle, one of the most recognized landmarks in the world, today announced the official start of construction for the Century Project, a multi-year venture focused on preservation and renovation of the 55-year-old icon.


    The Space Needle, one of the most recognized landmarks in the world, today announced the official start of construction for the Century Project, a multi-year venture focused on preservation and renovation of the 55-year-old icon. A project several years in the making, the Century Project aims to reveal the historic tower’s internal structure and harken back to the original conceptual sketches, all while expanding and improving the Space Needle’s iconic views and guest experience.

    Beginning this month, crews will be onsite 24 hours a day, seven days a week working through the first of several phases of construction. It’s estimated that between 100 to 170 workers in 18 different categories of trade work will be onsite any given day. Initial work will begin with the demolition and removal of materials from the restaurant level, as well as the construction and raising of an elevated lift platform. Commonly used for work on bridges, the elevated lift platform will, uncommonly, be carefully hoisted into place 500 ft. in the air using 12 independent cables and motors. Over the course of a few weeks, an enclosure will be built, creating a safe, elevated workspace separate from guests. From there, crews will take a unique approach, working on the structure in 1/6th pie-shaped segments, addressing all levels of the Space Needle’s Tophouse at one time.

    “This project is truly unmatched in its complexity,” said Ron Sevart, president and CEO, Space Needle LLC. “We’ve asked a lot of our more than 200 partners to get us to this point. It’s humbling every day to see the creativity everyone has brought to the table. It’s that extra effort that will allow us to keep the Observation Deck open during this process, and to let our visiting guests get a firsthand view of the renovation.”

    Following demolition and construction of the elevated lift, work will continue with the installation of a gantry crane on the tower’s roof to facilitate the hoisting of thousands of pounds of materials. At least 176 tons of glass will be added to the Observation Deck and restaurant level, expanding the iconic views by more than 25 percent. With 10 different varieties of glass, and panels that are 11 ft. high, 7 ft. wide and weigh 2,300 lbs., getting them up to the Tophouse presents challenges. Fortunately, creativity is again on display as teams have constructed special carts and lifts to move materials.

    “This is a historic time for the Space Needle and city of Seattle,” said Karen Olson, CMO, Space Needle. “When the Space Needle was first constructed the community was involved and engaged throughout the process, and we’ve approached this project the same way. We’ve worked hard to create an approach that allows us to remain open during construction, offering guests the unprecedented experience of seeing the renovation of an icon.”

    Guests visiting during the construction phase will be able to see the work in progress, including the new sections of the Observation Deck as they are completed. The Space Needle is also offering free school group tours and has created a website that offers a behind-the-scenes look at the process – www.seewhatsup.space. The Century Project marks the third major renovation in the Space Needle’s history. The SkyLine event space at the 100-ft. level was added in 1982, and the new Pavilion entrance and expanded retail were added in 2000. The project aims to achieve LEED Silver certification.


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    My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry.

    Doosan Bobcat to Donate Equipment to Help Hurricane Relief Efforts :: Story ID: 36376 :: Construction Equipment Guide

    📅   Fri September 15, 2017 – National Edition

    “Our support and prayers go out to those affected by Hurricane Harvey and Hurricane Irma,” said Rich Goldsbury, president of Doosan Bobcat North America.


    Doosan Bobcat announced it will donate over $325,000 worth of Bobcat equipment and Doosan Portable Power light towers and generators to assist with Hurricane Harvey and Hurricane Irma relief efforts.

    The company is also providing financial assistance to affected Doosan Bobcat North America dealership employees and their families, and Doosan Bobcat North America employees will direct annual charitable drives toward assisting those impacted by Hurricanes Harvey and Irma.

    In the days before Hurricane Harvey made landfall in Texas, Doosan Bobcat expedited equipment and attachment deliveries to impacted areas in an effort to be immediately prepared for clean-up efforts. Doosan Bobcat also took steps to expedite equipment deliveries to southern Florida in preparation for Hurricane Irma.

    “Doosan Bobcat has been on the scene helping communities recover from natural disasters for more than 50 years,” said Rich Goldsbury, president of Doosan Bobcat North America. “We have a ready-response program that ensures Bobcat equipment and other assets are readily available to help out local communities, our dealerships and their employees. Our support and prayers go out to those affected by Hurricane Harvey and Hurricane Irma.”

    For more information, visit www.doosanbobcat.com/en.


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    My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry.

    UH researchers discover new form of stretchable electronics, sensors and skins — ScienceDaily

    Heavy Construction Photos

    A team of researchers from the University of Houston has reported a breakthrough in stretchable electronics that can serve as an artificial skin, allowing a robotic hand to sense the difference between hot and cold, while also offering advantages for a wide range of biomedical devices.

    The work, reported in the journal Science Advances, describes a new mechanism for producing stretchable electronics, a process that relies upon readily available materials and could be scaled up for commercial production.

    Cunjiang Yu, Bill D. Cook Assistant Professor of mechanical engineering and lead author for the paper, said the work is the first to create a semiconductor in a rubber composite format, designed to allow the electronic components to retain functionality even after the material is stretched by 50 percent.

    The work is the first semiconductor in rubber composite format that enables stretchability without any special mechanical structure, Yu said.

    He noted that traditional semiconductors are brittle and using them in otherwise stretchable materials has required a complicated system of mechanical accommodations. That’s both more complex and less stable than the new discovery, as well as more expensive, he said.

    “Our strategy has advantages for simple fabrication, scalable manufacturing, high-density integration, large strain tolerance and low cost,” he said.

    Yu and the rest of the team – co-authors include first author Hae-Jin Kim, Kyoseung Sim and Anish Thukral, all with the UH Cullen College of Engineering – created the electronic skin and used it to demonstrate that a robotic hand could sense the temperature of hot and iced water in a cup. The skin also was able to interpret computer signals sent to the hand and reproduce the signals as American Sign Language.

    “The robotic skin can translate the gesture to readable letters that a person like me can understand and read,” Yu said.

    The artificial skin is just one application. Researchers said the discovery of a material that is soft, bendable, stretchable and twistable will impact future development in soft wearable electronics, including health monitors, medical implants and human-machine interfaces.

    The stretchable composite semiconductor was prepared by using a silicon-based polymer known as polydimethylsiloxane, or PDMS, and tiny nanowires to create a solution that hardened into a material which used the nanowires to transport electric current.

    “We foresee that this strategy of enabling elastomeric semiconductors by percolating semiconductor nanofibrils into a rubber will advance the development of stretchable semiconductors, and … will move forward the advancement of stretchable electronics for a wide range of applications, such as artificial skins, biomedical implants and surgical gloves,” they wrote.

     

    Story Source:

    Materials provided by University of Houston. Original written by Jeannie Kever. Note: Content may be edited for style and length.


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