Reader Forum

Product of the YearWelcome to our annual Product of the Year issue. This issue showcases 150 of the finest products from the last year. You, the reader, get to be a part of the competition. By using the ballot in this issue, you can vote for the best new product in each of our 15 categories. Your votes determine the winners of our Gold, Silver, Bronze, and Grand Awards.


Product of the Year
Articles that work for the entire family
Basics of Belt Drives revisited
Deserving a mention

Product of the Year

Welcome to our annual Product of the Year issue. This issue showcases 150 of the finest products from the last year. You, the reader, get to be a part of the competition. By using the ballot in this issue, you can vote for the best new product in each of our 15 categories. Your votes determine the winners of our Gold, Silver, Bronze, and Grand Awards. Turn to p 40 and start voting for the best new products of 2001!

Articles that work for the entire family

I really appreciate your including "How Things Work" in your magazine. After reading the article on torque, I went to the web site and was very impressed. I haven't had time to look at more than a couple of items, but after seeing the article on "How Work, Power, and Energy Work," I am definitely going to make time to visit the site again. The articles are so well-written that I intend to go there with my children. Please keep running this article, as it is short, well written, and very educational. I also enjoy "Human Side..."Management Side." Keep up the good work. — Michael R. Donn, Scientific Technologies Inc.

Basics of Belt Drives revisited

I was very impressed with your article on "The Basics of Belt Drives." On the other hand, I was very disappointed to see that you failed to mention the Goodyear Eagle PD drive system even though you pictured them on the cover. This is the only belt that I currently am using here at my plant, and the rules outlined in your article do not exactly apply to the Eagle PD belts. Having Kevlar built into the belt makes the installation stretching entirely different. I initially over-stretched the belt when installed and found myself with a few broken shafts. Lesson learned: Eagle PDs do not stretch like other drive belts. Plus, the alignment is even more critical than a standard V-belt. All this aside, I am most impressed by the low-level noise, cleanliness, and the preventive maintenance that will be cut in half. Thanks for letting me vent. Other than that, I loved the article and your magazine. Keep up the good work. — Russell Wilson

Deserving a mention

The editors of PLANT ENGINEERING apologize for failing to acknowledge the contribution The Gates Rubber Co. made to the September cover story on belt drives.


"HowStuffWorks" in the September issue of PLANT ENGINEERING contained an error. The text stated, "If we use 1 kWh of power, a kilowatt-hour of energy lasts 2 hr." The text should have stated, "If we use 1 kW of power, a kilowatt-hour of energy lasts 1 hr." Also, the text stated, "If we use 10 kW of power, we use the kilowatt-hour of energy for just 6 min." The text should have stated, "If we use 10 kW of power, the kilowatt-hour of energy will last for just 6 min."

Top Plant
The Top Plant program honors outstanding manufacturing facilities in North America.
Product of the Year
The Product of the Year program recognizes products newly released in the manufacturing industries.
System Integrator of the Year
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.
June 2018
2018 Lubrication Guide, Motor and maintenance management, Control system migration
May 2018
Electrical standards, robots and Lean manufacturing, and how an aluminum packaging plant is helping community growth.
April 2018
2017 Product of the Year winners, retrofitting a press, IMTS and Hannover Messe preview, natural refrigerants, testing steam traps
June 2018
Machine learning, produced water benefits, programming cavity pumps
April 2018
ROVs, rigs, and the real time; wellsite valve manifolds; AI on a chip; analytics use for pipelines
February 2018
Focus on power systems, process safety, electrical and power systems, edge computing in the oil & gas industry
Spring 2018
Burners for heat-treating furnaces, CHP, dryers, gas humidification, and more
April 2018
Implementing a DCS, stepper motors, intelligent motion control, remote monitoring of irrigation systems
February 2018
Setting internal automation standards

Annual Salary Survey

After two years of economic concerns, manufacturing leaders once again have homed in on the single biggest issue facing their operations:

It's the workers—or more specifically, the lack of workers.

The 2017 Plant Engineering Salary Survey looks at not just what plant managers make, but what they think. As they look across their plants today, plant managers say they don’t have the operational depth to take on the new technologies and new challenges of global manufacturing.

Read more: 2017 Salary Survey

The Maintenance and Reliability Coach's blog
Maintenance and reliability tips and best practices from the maintenance and reliability coaches at Allied Reliability Group.
One Voice for Manufacturing
The One Voice for Manufacturing blog reports on federal public policy issues impacting the manufacturing sector. One Voice is a joint effort by the National Tooling and Machining...
The Maintenance and Reliability Professionals Blog
The Society for Maintenance and Reliability Professionals an organization devoted...
Machine Safety
Join this ongoing discussion of machine guarding topics, including solutions assessments, regulatory compliance, gap analysis...
Research Analyst Blog
IMS Research, recently acquired by IHS Inc., is a leading independent supplier of market research and consultancy to the global electronics industry.
Marshall on Maintenance
Maintenance is not optional in manufacturing. It’s a profit center, driving productivity and uptime while reducing overall repair costs.
Lachance on CMMS
The Lachance on CMMS blog is about current maintenance topics. Blogger Paul Lachance is president and chief technology officer for Smartware Group.
Electrical Safety Update
This digital report explains how plant engineers need to take greater care when it comes to electrical safety incidents on the plant floor.
Maintenance & Safety
The maintenance journey has been a long, slow trek for most manufacturers and has gone from preventive maintenance to predictive maintenance.
IIoT: Machines, Equipment, & Asset Management
Articles in this digital report highlight technologies that enable Industrial Internet of Things, IIoT-related products and strategies.
Randy Steele
Maintenance Manager; California Oils Corp.
Matthew J. Woo, PE, RCDD, LEED AP BD+C
Associate, Electrical Engineering; Wood Harbinger
Randy Oliver
Control Systems Engineer; Robert Bosch Corp.
Data Centers: Impacts of Climate and Cooling Technology
This course focuses on climate analysis, appropriateness of cooling system selection, and combining cooling systems.
Safety First: Arc Flash 101
This course will help identify and reveal electrical hazards and identify the solutions to implementing and maintaining a safe work environment.
Critical Power: Hospital Electrical Systems
This course explains how maintaining power and communication systems through emergency power-generation systems is critical.
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