OSHA's Silica Rule Compliance Deadline Looms — Is Your Company Ready?

Reminder: OSHA will begin enforcement on its crystalline silica standard Saturday, Sept. 23. The agency said it plans to offer compliance assistance in the first 30 days to employers who are making a “good faith effort” to comply with the new rule, with a particular emphasis on helping employers use the new Table 1 way of measuring exposure levels….

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Keep this Book of the Law always on your lips; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful.

1988 Caterpillar EL300 excavator for sale | sold at auction October 23, 2014

SOLD! Construction Equipment Auction
This asset was for sale and sold for a contract price of $9,900 in an absolute, no-reserve Internet auction by Purple Wave on October 23, 2014
View a detailed listing of this item at http://purplewave.co/I5780

1988 Caterpillar EL300 excavator
8,064 hours on meter
Caterpillar 3306 six cylinder diesel engine
206 HP
Hydrostatic transmission
13'4″ stick length
31.5″W track pads
68,700 lbs. base operating weight
Bucket is not included
Throttle cable needs replaced
New cable included
Hydraulic cylinder and hydraulic fittings have leaks
Serial 4NF00333

It was located in Osawatomie, KS, and we sold it to the highest bidder for $9,900.

Purple Wave makes all auction prices available on our auction results page at http://www.purplewave.com/sold

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He replied, “Blessed rather are those who hear the word of God and obey it.”

Cyber attack, hurricane weigh on FedEx quarterly profit

(Reuters) – Package delivery company FedEx Corp (FDX.N) said on Tuesday a June cyber attack on its Dutch unit slashed $300 million from its quarterly profit, and the company lowered its full-year earnings forecast.

The company said the cyber attack slashed 79 cents per share from its profit – nearly 40 times the 2 cents per share caused by deadly Hurricane Harvey, which brought catastrophic flooding to southeastern Texas.

FedEx joins a string of companies that reported big drops in earnings due to the NotPetya virus, which hit on June 29, crippling Ukraine businesses before spreading worldwide to shut down shipping ports, factories and corporate offices.

“The impact of the cyberattack on TNT Express and lower-than-expected results at FedEx Ground reduced our first-quarter earnings,” said FedEx Chief Financial Officer Alan Graf. “We are currently executing plans to mitigate the full-year impact of these issues.”

Shares of the Memphis-based company, often considered a bellwether for the U.S. economy as are those of rival United Parcel Service Inc (UPS.N), dipped more than 2 percent in after-hours trading.

FedEx reported net income for its fiscal first quarter ended Aug. 31 of $596 million or $2.19 per share, down more than 16 percent from the year-ago $715 million or $2.65 per share.

Excluding one-time items, the company reported earnings per share of $2.51. Wall Street analysts had expected earnings per share of $3.09.

Excluding the impact of the cyber attack and Hurricane Harvey, FedEx said it would have posted EPS of $3.32, above analysts’ expectations.

Most services of the Dutch TNT Express unit resumed during the quarter and systems had been restored, but TNT Express volume, revenue and profit still remained below pre-attack levels, the company said.

FedEx did not have insurance in place that covered the impact from the cyber attack.

FedEx also said higher shipping rates across its operating units were more than offset by the cyber attack, costs related to the integration of its TNT unit, higher costs at its FedEx ground, and a higher tax rate.

The company’s operating margin fell to 7.3 percent from 8.6 percent.

FedEx lowered its forecast for fiscal 2018 earnings per diluted share to a range of $11.05 to $11.85, from a previous range of $12.45 to $13.25. Analysts forecast earnings of $13.01 per share for the full year.

Overall revenue rose to $15.3 billion from $14.7 billion in the year-ago period. Analysts had expected 15.35 billion.

FedEx said on Monday it will increase its Express, Ground, and Home Delivery shipping rates by an average of 4.9 percent on Jan. 1.

FedEx and UPS usually unveil price increases for the coming year around this time.

Reporting by Eric M. Johnson in Seattle, Nick Carey in Detroit and Jim Finkle in Toronto; Editing by Joe White and Matthew Lewis

Our Standards:The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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Your word is a lamp for my feet, a light on my path.

A self-contained soft actuator three times stronger than natural muscle, without the need of externals, signals a breakthrough in soft robotics — ScienceDaily

Heavy Construction Photos

Researchers at Columbia Engineering have solved a long-standing issue in the creation of untethered soft robots whose actions and movements can help mimic natural biological systems. A group in the Creative Machines lab led by Hod Lipson, professor of mechanical engineering, has developed a 3D-printable synthetic soft muscle, a one-of-a-kind artificial active tissue with intrinsic expansion ability that does not require an external compressor or high voltage equipment as previous muscles required. The new material has a strain density (expansion per gram) that is 15 times larger than natural muscle, and can lift 1000 times its own weight.

Their findings are outlined in a new study.

Previously no material has been capable of functioning as a soft muscle due to an inability to exhibit the desired properties of high actuation stress and high strain. Existing soft actuator technologies are typically based on pneumatic or hydraulic inflation of elastomer skins that expand when air or liquid is supplied to them. The external compressors and pressure-regulating equipment required for such technologies prevent miniaturization and the creation of robots that can move and work independently.

“We’ve been making great strides toward making robots minds, but robot bodies are still primitive,” said Hod Lipson. “This is a big piece of the puzzle and, like biology, the new actuator can be shaped and reshaped a thousand ways. We’ve overcome one of the final barriers to making lifelike robots.”

Inspired by living organisms, soft material robotics hold great promise for areas where robots need to contact and interact with humans, such as manufacturing and healthcare. Unlike rigid robots, soft robots can replicate natural motion — grasping and manipulation — to provide medical and other types of assistance, perform delicate tasks, or pick up soft objects.

To achieve an actuator with high strain and high stress coupled with low density, the lead author of the study Aslan Miriyev, a postdoctoral researcher in the Creative Machines lab, used a silicone rubber matrix with ethanol distributed throughout in micro-bubbles. The solution combined the elastic properties and extreme volume change attributes of other material systems while also being easy to fabricate, low cost, and made of environmentally safe materials.

After being 3D-printed into the desired shape, the artificial muscle was electrically actuated using a thin resistive wire and low-power (8V). It was tested in a variety of robotic applications where it showed significant expansion-contraction ability, being capable of expansion up to 900% when electrically heated to 80°C. Via computer controls, the autonomous unit is capable of performing motion tasks in almost any design.

“Our soft functional material may serve as robust soft muscle, possibly revolutionizing the way that soft robotic solutions are engineered today,” said Miriyev. “It can push, pull, bend, twist, and lift weight. It’s the closest artificial material equivalent we have to a natural muscle.”

The researchers will continue to build on this development, incorporating conductive materials to replace the embedded wire, accelerating the muscle’s response time and increasing its shelf life. Long-term, they will involve artificial intelligence to learn to control the muscle, which may be a last milestone towards replicating natural motion.

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

Liebherr USA Hosts Welcome Reception for Customers at New California Facility :: Story ID: 36378 :: Construction Equipment Guide

📅   Fri September 15, 2017 – National Edition

The new Liebherr facility in Lodi, Calif.

The new Liebherr facility in Lodi, Calif.

Liebherr USA, Co. held an opening reception at its new sales and service center in Lodi, California on Sept. 12.

The event took place at the facility located at 880 South Beckman Road. Attendees included local customers and guests as well as Lodi city officials. During the event, Liebherr USA, Co. showcased its newest technologies, product range and service capabilities across the United States for Mobile and Crawler Cranes and the Foundation Equipment divisions. Guests had an opportunity to tour the facility, operate the crane simulator, participate in the human power crane obstacle and view a variety of machines and components.

This new location will serve as the sales, service and repair facility for Liebherr USA Co.’s Mobile and Crawler Cranes and Foundation Equipment divisions in the western region. The opening of the Lodi location is the latest development in support of the manufacturer’s rapid growth in the United States under the newly formed mixed sales organization.

The integration of the divisional activities allows Liebherr to expand and increase the presence of its diverse product portfolio in the U.S market and is a tremendous benefit to customers, providing access to Liebherr parts, services and equipment.

For more information, visit www.liebherr.com

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These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up.

Boss Reveals Innovations in Snow, Ice Control for ’17-’18 :: Story ID: 36357 :: Construction Equipment Guide

📅   Fri September 15, 2017 – Northeast Edition #19

SK Box Plows from Boss are designed to put the full force and maneuverability of a skid steer into getting the pavement back to black. Now available in a 12-ft. model.

SK Box Plows from Boss are designed to put the full force and maneuverability of a skid steer into getting the pavement back to black. Now available in a 12-ft. model.

Boss Snowplow has introduced an arsenal of new products and accessories to help snow and ice professionals perform at their best when Mother Nature is at her worst. With a focus on technologies and innovations that maximize performance of Boss products, the new Pre-Wet System, Pro-Lid and D-Force are now available as optional equipment to help contractors prepare for the 2017/2018 winter season. Further expanding the lineup, Boss now offers a line of walk behind spreaders for smaller jobs and new plow options, like the skidsteer SK12 box plow and tractor plows, for those bigger jobs.

“We know the market and its challenges,” said Mark Klossner, marketing vice president of Boss Snowplow. “Boss engineers are focused on designing the tools necessary to make managing snow and ice storms easier, safer and more profitable for contractors in the field.”

Pre-Wet System

With the new Pre-Wet System, Boss makes its first entrance into the liquid de-icing category with a system that allows contractors to pre-wet solid de-icing materials as they are distributed. The Pre-Wet System activates the de-icing material to melt through snow and ice faster at low temperatures. It also reduces material bounce for improved material placement and efficiency. Equipped with a 60-gal. tank capacity, the Pre-Wet System is available as an accessory on all new VBX and FORGE spreaders.


Boss designed a new hard cover polyethylene system for Boss VBX spreaders with an ergonomic, easy open lid design that allows operators to remain on the ground while opening the cover doors. The Pro-Lid also has a secure weather seal to protect the de-icing material inside the spreader. The Pro-Lid is available as an option on VBX spreaders and can be retro-fitted to existing Boss VBX Hopper Spreaders, with the exception of the VBX3000.


The Boss D-Force is a down force system that allows truck plow operators to maintain a consistent hydraulic pressure through the use of a hydraulic accumulator for improved scraping performance. The D-Force is now an available option on select new straight-blade plow models including super-duty, standard duty, and HTX straight-blade plows. To complement D-Force, Boss also now offers a back drag edge as another new product option, that works with D-Force to improve scraping performance when back dragging.

Walk Behind Spreaders

In addition to these equipment accessories, Boss also introduces two new professional grade, walk-behind spreaders for ice control on sidewalks and smaller jobs. The stainless-steel walk behind spreader features a conical auger to minimize clumping of de-icing material. With a 100-lb. capacity, the rugged stainless steel frame and hopper has enclosed metal gears and solid steel linkage for full gate control.

For contractors who prefer poly, this walk behind spreader is available with a 100-lb. capacity poly hopper with the rugged stainless steel frame. All of the walk behind spreader models feature adjustable front and side baffles for pattern control and can spread up to 100 lbs. of your preferred de-icing material, from partially assembled salt to ice melt and halite.

New Heavy Equipment Plow Options

The SK12 is the newest addition to the Boss skid-steer box plow family. The SK12 is a trip-edge box plow that excels at moving large amounts of snow with each pass. A self-adjusting hitch allows the blade to adjust to any terrain and rugged support struts add structural strength, stability and long-term reliability.

Expanding the equipment applications for plows, Boss now offers tractor plows in straight-blade and v-plow options for select John Deere and Kubota tractor models. A complete plow package includes blade crate, plow box, tractor undercarriage and control kit.

For more information, call 800/286-4155 or visit www.bossplow.com.

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For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me will save it.

Scrap Metal Recycler Works Hard to Succeed in Current Down Market :: Story ID: 36347 :: Construction Equipment Guide

📅   Fri September 15, 2017 – Northeast Edition #19

The DX300LC-3 has the power to handle substantial loads of scrap metal.

The DX300LC-3 has the power to handle substantial loads of scrap metal.

When David Feinberg, a veteran in the scrap metal industry, formed a partnership in 2011 with Eric Bell, an industry newcomer, the outlook for their new venture looked solid.

The young company — Philadelphia Metal and Resource Recovery — had an excellent location near Interstate 95, in an industrial section of Philadelphia. Feinberg previously operated a similar business at the same 4-acre site and was well known among a large group of buyers and sellers. The market for ferrous and non-ferrous metals was strong. To get the enterprise off to a good start, the owners purchased a new Doosan crawler excavator that proved to be a hard-working, durable machine.

Everything pointed to the company becoming a serious player in the scrap metal and recycling business in southeastern Pennsylvania, southern New Jersey and Delaware. That is exactly what happened. Five years later, Philadelphia Metal is one of the area’s premier metal-broker processing firms — in spite of how the market has evolved and how metal prices tumbled.

During the time the company has been in business, prices for all commodities have dropped, some as much as 75 percent, according to Feinberg. Philadelphia Metal, like other firms in the industry, has reduced operating hours and staff.

“So far, that is all we have been forced to do,” Feinberg said. “Hopefully, better times are ahead.”

Philadelphia Metal is a full-service enterprise that purchases, processes, packages, brokers and sells all grades of metal. Some ferrous materials are sold to steel mills, others to exporters. Non-ferrous materials are sold to either larger brokers or directly to consumers.

The company is a big believer in intelligent resource management and reusing metals, as a way to protect the planet’s natural resources, divert metals from sanitary landfills and help customers’ recycling efforts.

“Our industrial clients like the fact that we aid in managing their scrap in a way that they can realize some profit,” Feinberg said. “We are always looking for any reusable materials that can be sold.”

Excavator Choices

Several months before starting the new company, the partners decided a new crawler excavator was necessary to execute their strategic plan that focused on service. They wanted to get customers in and out efficiently; sort and process materials fast and move them out quickly.

“While evaluating several different machines, I learned that some others in our business had good success with the Doosan brand,” Feinberg said. “I knew from previous experience that the local dealer had a good reputation. Eventually we focused our research on Doosan crawler excavators, specifically the DX300LC-3. It was very price-competitive and, from everything we could tell, it was comparable in quality to other leading similar-size products.”

For Feinberg and Bell, the excavator had to excel in durability and cost of operation. The DX300LC-3 was the perfect fit, and so was the second DX300LC-3 they purchased a year later. The company also owns a Doosan DX210W wheel excavator that is located at a satellite operation.

“We need machines that can survive — and thrive — in a dirty, rugged environment,” Feinberg said. “Those two DX300LC-3s have been dependable workhorses. They load trailers, process and separate scrap throughout the day. That’s all they do and they do it well.”

Cost-of-operation items — such as fuel efficiency, maintenance and parts expenses, and downtime — are critical factors that help the owners of Philadelphia Metal evaluate the value of their equipment.

“The Doosan excavators have lived up to our expectations,” Feinberg said. The DX300LC-3 has easy access to key checkpoints, cooling system and other critical components, which according to Feinberg, makes daily preventive maintenance easy. Both are paired with a grapple attachment to lift and sort material delivered to the facility, and they are outfitted with special guarding on the front and top of the cab for additional protection.

All of the equipment was purchased through Doosan financing programs, a process Feinberg said was “very easy to work with.”

The DX300LC-3 crawler excavator stands out in a lineup of 25 to 30 ton (28 to 33 t) machines. The unit has the power to handle substantial loads of scrap metal, an important factor at the Philadelphia Metal facility.

“We try to focus our efforts on providing a good customer experience,” Feinberg said. “That means competitive pricing, easy access to our yard and no waiting for traffic or equipment. Our two Doosan excavators keep moving materials around our location so space is always available for the next load coming through the gate.”

ISRI: Organization “Helpful” to Scrap Metal Recycling Members

Even though David Feinberg has been involved in the scrap metal and recycling business for more than two decades, he is always eager to keep up-to-date about the industry. One of the best sources of information, he says, is the Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries (ISRI), a Washington D.C.-based trade association.

“It is a great organization,” said the co-owner of Philadelphia Metal and Resource Recovery. “Over the years, they have been helpful and, as a member, I have benefited from their good educational programs and publications. They provide top-notch representation in Washington and their trade shows are outstanding. Overall, it is very worthwhile to be a member.”

The ISRI membership consists of manufacturers and processors, brokers and industrial consumers of scrap commodities, including ferrous and non-ferrous metals, paper, electronics, rubber, plastics, glass and textiles. Associate members include equipment and service providers to the scrap recycling industry.

The association represents more than 1,600 for-profit firms — ranging from small, family-owned businesses to large, multi-national corporations — operating at more than 1,500 facilities in the United States and 34 countries worldwide.

For more information about ISRI, visit the organization’s website: www.isri.org.

This story was reprinted with permission from Doosan’s DoMORE Magazine, Winter 2017 edition.

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He who testifies to these things says, “Yes, I am coming soon.” Amen. Come, Lord Jesus.

Understanding process that creates complex crystals important for energy applications — ScienceDaily

Heavy Construction Photos

Many seashells, minerals, and semiconductor nanomaterials are made up of smaller crystals, which are assembled together like the pieces of a puzzle. Now, researchers have measured the forces that cause the crystals to assemble, revealing an orchestra of competing factors that researchers might be able to control.

The work has a variety of implications in both discovery and applied science. In addition to providing insights into the formation of minerals and semiconductor nanomaterials, it might also help scientists understand soil as it expands and contracts through wetting and drying cycles. In the applied realm, researchers might use the principles to develop new materials with unique properties for energy needs.

The results, published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences in July, describe how the arrangement of the atoms in the crystals creates forces that pull them together and align them for docking. The study reveals how the attraction becomes stronger or weaker as water is heated or salt is added, both of which are common processes in the natural world.

The multinational team, led by chemists Dongsheng Li and Jaehun Chun from the Department of Energy’s Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, explored the attractive forces between two crystal particles made from mica. A flaky mineral that is commonly used in electrical insulation, this silicon-based mineral is well-studied and easy to work with because it chips off in flat pieces with nearly-perfect crystal surfaces.

Forces and faces

Crystallization often occurs through assembly of multi-faceted building blocks: some faces on these smaller crystals line up better with others, like Lego blocks do. Li and Chun have been studying a specific crystallization process called oriented attachment. Among other distinguishing characteristics, oriented attachment occurs when smaller subunits of fledgling crystals align their best matching faces before clicking together.

The process creates various nonlinear forms: nanowires with branches, lattices that look like complicated honeycombs, and tetrapods — tiny structures that look like four-armed toy jacks. The molecular forces that contribute to this self-assembly are not well understood.

Molecular forces that come into play can attract or repel the tiny crystal building blocks to or from each other. These include a variety of textbook forces such as van der Waals, hydrogen bonding, and electrostatic, among others.

To explore the forces, Li, Chun and colleagues milled flat faces on tiny slabs of mica and put them on a device that measures the attraction between two pieces. Then they measured the attraction while twisting the faces relative to each other. The experiment allowed the mica to be bathed in a liquid that includes different salts, letting them test real-world scenarios.

The difference in this work was the liquid setup. Similar experiments by other researchers have been done dry under vacuum; in this work, the liquid created conditions that better simulate how real crystals form in nature and in large industrial methods. The team performed some of these experiments at EMSL, the Environmental Molecular Sciences Laboratory, a DOE Office of Science User Facility at PNNL.

Twist and salt

One of the first things the team found was that the attraction between two pieces of mica rose and fell as the faces twisted relative to each other, like when trying to make a sandwich out of two flat refrigerator magnets (go on, try it). In fact, the attraction rose and fell every 60 degrees, corresponding with the internal architecture of the mineral, which is almost hexagonal like a honeycomb cell.

Although other researchers more than a decade ago had predicted this cyclical attraction would happen, this is the first time scientists had measured the forces. Knowing the strength of the forces is key to manipulating crystallization in a research or industrial setting.

But other things were abuzz in the mica face-off as well. Between the two surfaces, the liquid environment housed electrically charged ions from salts, normal elements found during crystallization in nature. The water and the ions formed a somewhat stable layer between the surfaces that partly kept them separated. And as they moved toward each other, the two mica surfaces paused there, balanced between molecular attraction and repulsion by water and ions.

The team also found they could manipulate the strength of that attraction by changing the type of ions, their concentration, and the temperature. Different types of ions and their concentrations changed electrostatic repulsion between the mica surfaces. The size of the ions and how many charges they carried also created more or less space within the meddling layer.

Lastly, higher temperatures increased the strength of the attraction, contrary to how temperature behaves in simpler, less complex scenarios. The researchers built a model of the competing forces that included van der Waals, electrostatic, and hydration forces.

In the future, the researchers say, the principles gleaned from this study can be applied to other materials, which would be calculated for the material of interest. For example, manipulating the attraction might allow researchers to custom-build crystals of desired sizes and shapes and with unique properties. Overall, the work provides insights into crystal growth through nanoparticle assembly in synthetic, biological, and geochemical environments.

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He has saved us and called us to a holy life—not because of anything we have done but because of his own purpose and grace. This grace was given us in Christ Jesus before the beginning of time.

FTC probes Equifax; top Democrat likens it to Enron

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. Federal Trade Commission said on Thursday it was investigating Equifax Inc’s (EFX.N) massive data breach, a rare public confirmation, as a top Democrat suggested the credit-monitoring company’s corporate leaders might need to resign.

Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer also compared Equifax to Enron, a U.S. energy company that was consumed in scandal after revealing in 2001 that it engaged in widespread accounting fraud.

“It’s one of the most egregious examples of corporate malfeasances since Enron,” Schumer said, calling Equifax’s treatment of consumers afterward “disgusting” and its inability to protect data “deeply troubling.”

Shares of Equifax tumbled to a more than two-year low as criticism of its cyber security practices piled up after it confirmed a fixable web server vulnerability was exploited in the hack, but the stock later recovered somewhat.

“The FTC typically does not comment on ongoing investigations,” spokesman Peter Kaplan said in a brief email statement. “However, in light of the intense public interest and the potential impact of this matter, I can confirm that FTC staff is investigating the Equifax data breach.”

Schumer said Equifax’s chief executive officer and board might need to resign if the company does not take concrete steps within the next week to protect consumers and agree to testify before lawmakers and federal regulators.

FILE PHOTO: Credit reporting company Equifax Inc. corporate offices are pictured in Atlanta, Georgia, U.S., September 8, 2017. REUTERS/Tami Chappell/File Photo

“We need to get to the bottom of this – the very bottom, the murky bottom, the dirty bottom,” he added.

Confirming what many cyber security experts expected, Equifax said late on Wednesday that hackers used a flaw in its open-source Struts software, distributed by the nonprofit Apache Software Foundation, to break into its systems. A patch for the vulnerability was issued in March, two months before Equifax said hackers began siphoning data.

Equifax shares touched $89.59, their lowest since February 2015, but later regained most of the day’s losses to trade at $97.80, down 1.2 percent.

Equifax representatives did not immediately respond to requests for comment on the FTC probe.

The company disclosed the breach on Sept. 7, saying thieves may have stolen the personal information of 143 million Americans in one of the largest hacks ever. It learned of the hacking on July 29.

Nearly 40 states have joined a probe of its handling of the breach. Equifax CEO Richard Smith is expected to testify on Oct. 3 before a U.S. House of Representatives panel.

Reporting by Dustin Volz, Susan Heavey, Diane Bartz, Jim Finkle and Dan Burns; Editing by Jeffrey Benkoe and Lisa Von Ahn

Our Standards:The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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But for that very reason I was shown mercy so that in me, the worst of sinners, Christ Jesus might display his immense patience as an example for those who would believe in him and receive eternal life.

RIDOT Completes South Kingston Road Repairs Early :: Story ID: 36337 :: Construction Equipment Guide

📅   Thu September 14, 2017 – Northeast Edition #19

Department of Transportation Director Peter Alviti Jr. during a ribbon-cutting ceremony for the completion of the High Street and Kingstown Road improvement project.
(Michael Derr photo)

Department of Transportation Director Peter Alviti Jr. during a ribbon-cutting ceremony for the completion of the High Street and Kingstown Road improvement project.
(Michael Derr photo)

The Rhode Island Department of Transportation (RIDOT) joined with state and local officials to celebrate the early completion of the High Street and Kingstown Road Improvements project in South Kingstown. The much-needed repair for 1.3 mi. of roadway in the villages of Wakefield and Peace Dale finished in August, approximately two months ahead of schedule and about $300,000 under budget.

“I’d like to congratulate our project management team for their diligent work that allowed us to finish this work early while staying on budget,” said Peter Alviti Jr., RIDOT director. “And thanks to the funding provided by the RhodeWorks program, we can check two more roads off the list of bad roads in Rhode Island.”

These two roads had historic street flooding problems, which contributed to deteriorated pavement conditions. The driving surface had gotten so poor that following the severe winter of 2015, RIDOT had to invest $81,500 to patch large sections of pothole-ridden roadway to keep it passable until this project could begin.

“The town of South Kingstown is truly appreciative of the state’s efforts in bringing the High Street and Kingstown Road Improvements project to fruition,” said Stephen A. Alfred, South Kingstown town manager. “These critical arterial/collector roads have suffered poor pavement and drainage conditions for many years. We applaud RIDOT’s entire project team that, under the leadership of Director Alviti, worked tirelessly in seeing that these much-needed improvements were completed, all for the betterment of the entire community — residents, businesses and visitors alike.”

In addition to drainage improvements, the $6.5 million project focused on pavement replacement; Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)-compliant sidewalk installation; and the addition of new signing and striping. Work also included the installation of school zone flashing signs to call more attention to the school zone for passing motorists during normal school hours at the Wakefield Elementary School.

The project area encompasses 1 mi. on High Street, from Main Street to Route 108 (Kingstown Road), and 0.3 mi. on Route 108 (Kingstown Road) from High Street to North Road.

This fall, RIDOT expects to wrap up work on an additional project design to minimize the impact of stormwater runoff from these roads into the nearby Saugatucket River. This $715,000 project involves the installation of three stormwater treatment areas in the Saugatucket River watershed, and is on budget and on schedule, set to finish in November. These improvements will result in a net improvement in water quality around the river, which flows through the heart of South Kingstown and into Point Judith Pond.

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Then he said to them all: Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross daily and follow me.

New manufacturing process for SiC power devices opens market to more competition — ScienceDaily

Heavy Construction Photos

Researchers from North Carolina State University are rolling out a new manufacturing process and chip design for silicon carbide (SiC) power devices, which can be used to more efficiently regulate power in technologies that use electronics. The process — called PRESiCE — was developed with support from the PowerAmerica Institute funded by the Department of Energy to make it easier for companies to enter the SiC marketplace and develop new products.

“PRESiCE will allow more companies to get into the SiC market, because they won’t have to initially develop their own design and manufacturing process for power devices — an expensive, time-consuming engineering effort,” says Jay Baliga, Distinguished University Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering at NC State and lead author of a paper on PRESiCE that will be presented later this month. “The companies can instead use the PRESiCE technology to develop their own products. That’s good for the companies, good for consumers, and good for U.S. manufacturing.”

Power devices consist of a diode and transistor, and are used to regulate the flow of power in electrical devices. For decades, electronics have used silicon-based power devices. In recent years, however, some companies have begun using SiC power devices, which have two key advantages.

First, SiC power devices are more efficient, because SiC transistors lose less power. Conventional silicon transistors lose 10 percent of their energy to waste heat. SiC transistors lose only 7 percent. This is not only more efficient, but means that product designers need to do less to address cooling for the devices.

Second, SiC devices can also switch at a higher frequency. That means electronics incorporating SiC devices can have smaller capacitors and inductors — allowing designers to create smaller, lighter electronic products.

But there’s a problem.

Up to this point, companies that have developed manufacturing processes for creating SiC power devices have kept their processes proprietary — making it difficult for other companies to get into the field. This has limited the participation of other companies and kept the cost of SiC devices high.

The NC State researchers developed PRESiCE to address this bottleneck, with the goal of lowering the barrier of entry to the field for companies and increasing innovation.

The PRESiCE team worked with a Texas-based foundry called X-Fab to implement the manufacturing process and have now qualified it — showing that it has the high yield and tight statistical distribution of electrical properties for SiC power devices necessary to make them attractive to industry.

“If more companies get involved in manufacturing SiC power devices, it will increase the volume of production at the foundry, significantly driving down costs,” Baliga says.

Right now, SiC devices cost about five times more than silicon power devices.

“Our goal is to get it down to 1.5 times the cost of silicon devices,” Baliga says. “Hopefully that will begin the ‘virtuous cycle’: lower cost will lead to higher use; higher use leads to greater production volume; greater production volume further reduces cost, and so on. And consumers are getting a better, more energy-efficient product.”

The researchers have already licensed the PRESiCE process and chip design to one company, and are in talks with several others.

“I conceived the development of wide bandgap semiconductor (SiC) power devices in 1979 and have been promoting the technology for more than three decades,” Baliga says. “Now, I feel privileged to have created PRESiCE as the nation’s technology for manufacturing SiC power devices to generate high-paying jobs in the U.S. We’re optimistic that our technology can expedite the commercialization of SiC devices and contribute to a competitive manufacturing sector here in the U.S.,” Baliga says.

The paper, “PRESiCE: PRocess Engineered for manufacturing SiC Electronic-devices,” will be presented at the International Conference on Silicon Carbide and Related Materials, being held Sept. 17-22 in Washington, D.C. The paper is co-authored by W. Sung, now at State University of New York Polytechnic Institute; K. Han and J. Harmon, who are Ph.D. students at NC State; and A. Tucker and S. Syed, who are undergraduates at NC State.

The work was supported by PowerAmerica, the Department of Energy-funded manufacturing innovation institute that focuses on boosting manufacturing of wide bandgap semiconductor-based power electronics.

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Give to everyone who asks you, and if anyone takes what belongs to you, do not demand it back.

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

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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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But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.

Brazil police detain JBS CEO Batista on suspicion of insider trading

SAO PAULO (Reuters) – Brazil’s federal police detained JBS SA Chief Executive Officer Wesley Batista on Wednesday, as an investigation escalated into the role played by him and his younger brother in suspected insider trading ahead of a plea bargain deal with prosecutors.

The brothers’ lawyer, Pierpaolo Bottini, and JBS confirmed media reports of the arrest.

While JBS had no further details, Bottini lashed out at the detention, calling it “unjust, absurd and regrettable.”

Earlier in the day, police issued a preventive arrest order against both Wesley and Joesley Batista, citing the alleged use of insider information in financial market dealings ahead of their May plea deal.

Joesley Batista has been in temporary detention since Sunday after recordings suggested he tried to take advantage of prosecutors and conceal details during negotiations that led to the plea deal. He has strongly denied this.

The insider trading case involving JBS (JBSS3.SA) and the Batistas follows probes by securities markets regulator CVM on trades both made before a plea deal between the brothers and prosecutors was announced in mid-May.

The disclosure of their plea bargain testimony, which involved key politicians, led to Brazil’s biggest market selloff in at least a decade.

According to a person with knowledge of the matter, who asked for anonymity because of the sensitivity of the issue, police investigators suspect both brothers gained an unfair advantage in trading shares of JBS, while helping the company build abnormal positions in currency futures and forwards in April and May.

The detention of Wesley Batista comes as his plea deal with prosecutors is unraveling due to alleged omissions in their plea bargain testimony. Some minority shareholders seek his removal from the world’s largest meatpacker.

“The Brazilian state is using all means to promote revenge against those who cooperated with justice,” Bottini said in a statement.

The police said two detention orders were also issued against executives at the Batista family-owned FB Participações SA and JBS, without elaborating.

The scheme helped “manipulate markets in a way that all shareholders incurred some of the losses that FB Participações would have otherwise had to absorb alone,” a police statement said.

Reporting by Guillermo Parra-Bernal; Additional reporting by Pedro Fonseca in Rio de Janeiro; Editing by Catherine Evans, Daniel Flynn and W Simon

Our Standards:The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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Your word is a lamp for my feet, a light on my path.

Big-D Names Will Hopkins Veep of Jackson, Wyo., Office :: Story ID: 36316 :: Construction Equipment Guide

📅   Wed September 13, 2017 – West Edition #19

Will Hopkins

Will Hopkins

Big-D Construction recently named Will Hopkins vice president of the Big-D office located in Jackson, Wyo.

Hopkins’ focus will include managing/developing new customer bases for Big-D’s Signature Group, a division of the company that focuses on the construction of high-end residential and resort projects. He also will support existing relationships, and manage and assemble strong internal management teams to provide superior processes for existing and new customers’ building needs.

A 30-year veteran of the industry, Hopkins built his construction career on a foundation of hard work and hands-on experience — starting in the industry as a laborer and then as a carpenter apprentice. His leadership ability on diverse projects and deep roots as a builder allows him to add value at many levels. He most recently served as a vice president at Big-D Construction’s headquarters in Salt Lake City.

“With Will’s 30 years of construction experience and leadership, he will be a huge asset to our team. He will help us to grow the Jackson office and take it to the next level,” said Mike Kerby, senior vice president of Big-D Signature.

For more information, visit big-d.com.

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“He himself bore our sins” in his body on the cross, so that we might die to sins and live for righteousness; “by his wounds you have been healed.”

Exclusive: EU regulators have concerns over Luxottica-Essilor merger – source

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – EU anti-trust regulators will meet Luxottica (LUX.MI) and Essilor (ESSI.PA) this week to express concerns about their plan to merge into a 46 billion-euro ($55.12 billion) global eyewear powerhouse, a person familiar with the matter said on Monday.

The move suggests the European Commission wants concessions to address their concerns and that they could open an in-depth investigation if these are not given or seen as insufficient.

Italy’s Luxottica is the world’s largest maker of spectacles, owning brands such as Ray-Ban and Oakley, and has 9,000 retail stores. France’s Essilor is the world’s top lens-maker.

Luxottica declined to comment. Essilor was not immediately available for comment.

EU Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager told Reuters this month that the deal would require careful vetting given the size of the two companies’ market shares. The commission is seeking views from all interested parties.

Some retailers fear being undercut by an Essilor-Luxottica group able to offer famous brands and prescription lenses at prices they could not hope to match without hurting margins.

“This is a significant development which will result in huge supply-chain and retail implications for the industry and consumers worldwide,” Specsavers, an international retail partnership, said in a statement emailed to Reuters.

FILE PHOTO – The Luxottica name is reflected in a pair of sunglasses in this photo illustration taken in Rome February 4, 2016. REUTERS/Alessandro Bianchi/File Photo

Specsavers, which says it has 1,700 stores in 10 countries, and some others in the industry have said they doubt the merger would be felt immediately by consumers.

In the first regulatory ruling on the merger, New Zealand’s competition regulator approved the deal last week, saying Luxottica-Essilor would “be sufficiently constrained by the presence of existing competitors with the ability to expand at all levels of the supply chain and in all relevant markets”.

Lens-makers, too, are watching developments closely, given that Essilor will have access to Luxottica’s retail chains spanning the Americas, Europe and the Asia-Pacific.

Essilor, in its half-year earnings briefing in July, referred to “a challenging market reaction” to the merger. It acknowledged that some of its customers had switched away from Essilor, but said there had been no major sales impact.

“The eyeglass market is competitive. Customers have choices,” Essilor Chief Operating Officer Laurent Vacherot said.

Japanese lens-maker Hoya Corp (7741.T) expects the effect to be felt on the high street rather than on its own core business, with retailers pressured to lower prices by a few percentage points annually, said a source familiar with the matter.

Hoya expects the pressure to be felt most keenly in the United States, which accounts for about a third of Hoya’s global business, the source said. Hoya sells mostly to independent stores and wants to channel more of its sales via chain stores.

($1 = 0.8345 euros)

Additional reporting by Valentina Za in MILAN, Charlotte Greenfield in WELLINGTON, Naomi Tajitsu in TOKYO, Tom Westbrook in SYDNEY and Matthias Blamont in PARIS, editing by Larry King

Our Standards:The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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You, my brothers and sisters, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the flesh; rather, serve one another humbly in love.