Manufacturing excellence

Quality manufacturing is the sum of its thousands of parts, both human and mechanical. The best of both were on display at the Plant Engineering Manufacturing Summit, March 31 and April 1, at the Hotel Sofitel in Chicago.


Quality manufacturing is the sum of its thousands of parts, both human and mechanical. The best of both were on display at the Plant Engineering Manufacturing Summit, March 31 and April 1, at the Hotel Sofitel in Chicago.

Ramsay Corp. wins Grand Award
The best new manufacturing products from around the world were honored Monday, March 31, at the 20th annual Plant Engineering Product of the Year dinner. At a breakfast on Tuesday, April 1, three manufacturing facilities received the 2007 Top Plant awards.

Built around those two awards events were in-depth discussions on three of the key issues facing manufacturers in the U.S. today: energy and sustainability, data management and workforce development. The two-day event put product managers in the same room with plant managers and industry leaders to discuss some of the key issues facing the plant floor.

One of those leaders was Dr. Bernhard Haas, vice president of manufacturing for Deere and Co., who delivered the keynote address at the Product of the Year dinner. More than 160 people attended the gala dinner.

Gold, silver and bronze trophies were handed out to the products judged as the best new products of 2007 by Plant Engineering readers.

Ramsay Corporation’s Online Testing System was presented with the prestigious Grand Award , having received the single highest reader vote total.

On Tuesday, representatives from the Global Engine Manufacturing Alliance, SEW Eurodrive and Spirax Sarco received the 2007 Top Plant award . Those three companies were honored for their commitment to manufacturing excellence, and in particular, their efforts to run fully sustainable, Lean manufacturing plants.

The sessions at the Manufacturing Summit amplified the the issues facing manufacturers today. Representatives from companies including IBM, which was the platinum sponsor of the Manufacturing Summit, discussed software and hardware innovations that help plant managers better gather data to understand how their plant floor is operating.

But these leaders also stressed the importance of acting on data to achieve measurable changes, and to create strategic plans to deliver real change in manufacturing.

The issue of workforce development was also a key topic. Presenters emphasized that an aging workforce requires new strategies to capture the knowledge of older workers, and to create innovative programs to develop the next generation of plant workers.

Manufacturing Summit sponsors included IBM, Schneider Electric, Square D, Ahlborn Equipment, and Molex.

Product of the Year Winners

Category Name Award Manufacturer Product
GRAND AWARD Ramsay Corporation Online Testing System
Automation and Control GoldCognex Corp. Checker 200 Series Inspection Sensors
SilverCooper Bussmann InVision Downtime Reduction System
SilverEaton Corp. HMi Operator Interface
BronzeProSoft Technology Ethernet IP Communications Module
Compressed Air GoldSULLAIR Corp. SRC Cycling Dryers
SilverHitachi DSP Single Stage Oil Free Rotary Screw Air Compressor
BronzeFluid Metrics, LLC Compressor Oil Purifier
Construction, Buildings and Grounds GoldJLG Industries Fork-Mounted Work Platform
SilverCooper Crouse-Hinds Space Saver EMT Raintight Compression Connector
BronzeDL Manufacturing Cable Cop
BronzeEricson Mfg. Company e-Cart
BronzeUltraTech International Ultra-Inlet Guard
Electric Motors, Drives and Controls GoldWoodhead Industries PROFIBUS USB Adapter
SilverBaldor Electric Co. Brushless Servo MTS
SilverSICK STEGMANN DFS 60 Incremental Encoder
BronzeElectro Static Technology SGR Bearing Protection Ring
BronzeSiemens Energy & Automation H-compact PLUS SH710 Motors
Electric Power GoldEaton Corp. Powerware 9395 UPS
SilverSchneider Electric/Square D PowerPact Electronic Motor Circuit Protectors
BronzeSchneider Electric/Square D PowerLogic PM750 Power Meter
Environment, Safety and Health GoldAndax Industries LLC Spill Preparedness Control Center
SilverLPS Laboratories EVR Clean Air Solvent
BronzeFrommelt Products Corp. PitMaster Under-Leveler Seal
Fluid Handling GoldNew Pig Corp. Waste Collection & Pumping Center
SilverWilden Pump PX 1500 Diaphragm Pump
BronzeITT Goulds Pumps X-DUCER Pumping Technology
HVAC GoldGoodway Technologies TFC-100 Tower Wash
SilverAPC InfraStruXure InRow RP Air Conditioning Unit
BronzeAERCO Intl. Benchmark 3.0 Low NOx Boiler
Instrumentation GoldIDEAL Industries Inc. VoltAware Non-Contact Voltage Tester
SilverPurafil OnGuard 3000
BronzeIDEAL Industries Inc. Voltage Performance Monitor
Lighting GoldWoodhead Industries 400-Watt High Bay Light
SilverPhilips Philips T8 Lamps with ALTO II Technology
BronzeWatt Stopper/Legrand Wall Switch Occupancy Sensors
Maintenance Products GoldInpro/Seal Co Articulating Air Mizer-PS
SilverNeptune Research, Inc. Trident-Seal
BronzeHilti, Inc. RE 500-SD Epoxy Anchor
Maintenance Software GoldCommtest Inc. Ascent 2007 Vibration Analysis Software
SilverSyclo Smart Task Tracker
BronzeYokogawa FieldMate
Maintenance Tools and Equipment GoldLUDECA, Inc. Optalign Smart
SilverRIDGID SeeSnake micro Inspection Camera
BronzeHawk IR International Ex CAM AP Pro
BronzeLoggerHead Tools, LLC Pro-Gear Bionic Wrench
Manual Material Handling GoldThe Raymond Corp. Model 4200 Lift Truck
SilverEriez ProSort
SilverNew Pig Corp. PIG Drum Filling Shelf
BronzeHarrington Hoists, Inc. CX Mini Hand Chain Hoist
Material Handling Systems GoldGorbel Inc. Gforce Q+iQ units
SilverToyota Industrial Equipment 8-Series lift truck
BronzeRite-Hite Corporation FasTrax Door
Power Transmission GoldGates Corporation Poly Chain GT Carbon belt
SilverBaldor, Dodge, Reliance Right Angled Motorized Torque-Arm
BronzeBaldor, Dodge, Reliance MagnaGear
Productivity Software GoldGE Fanuc Automation Proficy HMI/SCADA Cimplicity 7.0
SilverInvensys Process Systems InFusion Condition Manager
SilverSchneider Electric/Square D PowerView Power Management Software
BronzeGE Fanuc Automation Proficy Tracker
Training/Education Products GoldNew Standard Institute Three Phase AC Motor Training Software

The Top Plant program honors outstanding manufacturing facilities in North America. View the 2015 Top Plant.
The Product of the Year program recognizes products newly released in the manufacturing industries.
Each year, a panel of Control Engineering and Plant Engineering editors and industry expert judges select the System Integrator of the Year Award winners in three categories.
Doubling down on digital manufacturing; Data driving predictive maintenance; Electric motors and generators; Rewarding operational improvement
2017 Lubrication Guide; Software tools; Microgrids and energy strategies; Use robots effectively
Prescriptive maintenance; Hannover Messe 2017 recap; Reduce welding errors
The cloud, mobility, and remote operations; SCADA and contextual mobility; Custom UPS empowering a secure pipeline
Infrastructure for natural gas expansion; Artificial lift methods; Disruptive technology and fugitive gas emissions
Mobility as the means to offshore innovation; Preventing another Deepwater Horizon; ROVs as subsea robots; SCADA and the radio spectrum
Research team developing Tesla coil designs; Implementing wireless process sensing
Commissioning electrical systems; Designing emergency and standby generator systems; Paralleling switchgear generator systems
Natural gas engines; New applications for fuel cells; Large engines become more efficient; Extending boiler life

Annual Salary Survey

Before the calendar turned, 2016 already had the makings of a pivotal year for manufacturing, and for the world.

There were the big events for the year, including the United States as Partner Country at Hannover Messe in April and the 2016 International Manufacturing Technology Show in Chicago in September. There's also the matter of the U.S. presidential elections in November, which promise to shape policy in manufacturing for years to come.

But the year started with global economic turmoil, as a slowdown in Chinese manufacturing triggered a worldwide stock hiccup that sent values plummeting. The continued plunge in world oil prices has resulted in a slowdown in exploration and, by extension, the manufacture of exploration equipment.

Read more: 2015 Salary Survey

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