PLANTS, CENTERS, AND FACILITIES
US’s first floating offshore wind research array moves forward
The U.S. Bureau of Ocean Energy Management announced it would move forward on reviewing plans for the nation’s first floating offshore wind research array in federal waters, located 29 miles off the coast of Maine.
Queensland to build $75m vanadium, rare earth processing facility
The Queensland government will invest $75 million (US$53 million) to expand a critical minerals demonstration facility in Townsville, Australia. The facility, slated for operations in 2025, is part of a growing push in Australia to develop battery materials industries beyond simply mining.
Seven Refractories extends production plant
Just six years after its founding, Seven Refractories celebrated a significant expansion of its main plant in Divaca, Slovenia. With an additional capacity of 9,000 tonnes of refractory materials per year, the plant is now more flexible when responding to short-term orders.
Iron flow, sodium-sulfur battery tech at airport and space station energy storage projects
Ground operations for the aviation and space exploration sectors will be powered with the help of nonlithium battery technologies in the Netherlands and Japan. The Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency’s ground station was equipped with a sodium-sulfur battery-based energy storage system. Ground operations at Amsterdam’s Schiphol Airport will now include a flow battery energy storage system from U.S. tech provider ESS Inc.
Orion sharply reduces air emissions with new technology at plant in Borger, Texas
Orion Engineered Carbons, a global specialty chemicals company, said it will sharply reduce air emissions at its plant in Borger, Texas, with new control technology. The $60 million project also involved upgrading the site’s cogeneration system, which takes heat created by the carbon black production process and converts it to electricity.
Arctic Swedish mine poses threat to indigenous Sami
The indigenous reindeer-herding Sami people in northern Sweden say they are facing an existential threat from an iron-ore mine billed as a pivotal shift toward the European Union’s green transition.
ACQUISITIONS AND COLLABORATIONS
Holcim acquires US aggregates business
Holcim acquired the sand and aggregates quarries of Pioneer Landscape Centers, a major supplier of construction aggregates for the Denver, Phoenix, and Colorado Springs markets. The transaction includes thirteen quarries and complements Holcim’s December 2022 acquisition of aggregate reserves in Greeley, Colorado.
Castel Group acquires African glass facility
Condor Electronics sold Algerian glass facility Alver to French beverage company Castel Group. With existing glass factories in Cameroon, Angola, and Morocco, Castel Group plans to expand production capacity, increase sales of bottles in Algeria, and use the country as a base for exporting to West Africa, Europe, and the West.
Glass furnace provider makes Italian acquisition
Spanish furnace builder Hornos Industriales Pujol acquired the glass division of the Italian company Teknokilns, which has ceased activity. The agreement includes the incorporation of the entire client portfolio, as well as the services, know-how, and engineering for the manufacture and development of thermal tempering furnaces of the Italian company.
Lithoz signs sales partnership with Wendt India to accelerate business in India
Lithoz GmbH announced its sales partnership agreement with Wendt Ltd., strategically extending operations to India’s fast-growing 3D printing market. The cooperation with Wendt, known for their work in the field of super abrasive grinding wheels and machines, will enable both companies to further expand and develop their business in India.
NASA and Boeing partner to develop sustainable aircraft
Aerospace giant Boeing secured an award from NASA to develop and test a fuel-efficient aircraft. As part of the deal, NASA will invest $425 million into Boeing’s Sustainable Flight Demonstrator project over the next seven years. The project has an estimated budget of $725 million and testing is expected to be completed in the “late 2020s.”
NIST joins alliance to promote open wireless technologies and supply chains
The National Institute of Standards and Technology joined the O-RAN Alliance, a nonprofit organization made up of mobile network operators, vendors, and academic and government institutions working to make radio access network technologies more open, intelligent, and interoperable.
Argenta Cerámica plans ‘The Essential Tile Meeting’ for February
Under the slogan “The Essential Tile Meeting,” Argenta Cerámica will bring together its customers, distributors, architects, and interior designers from all around the world at its headquarters. The meeting takes place February 20 to March 10 and will be held in the Heart showroom, which has more than 2,000 m2 of exhibition space.
Jun Kawakami succeeds Toshiyuki Ikeda as Rigaku CEO
Rigaku Corporation, Japan’s leading manufacturer of X-ray analysis, measurement, and testing instruments, announced that Toshiyuki Ikeda will resign as president and CEO of Rigaku effective Jan. 31, 2023, and that Jun Kawakami will be his successor.
Nonexecutive director changes at Vesuvius plc
Vesuvius plc, a global leader in molten metal flow engineering and technology, announced the appointment of Carla Bailo as a nonexecutive director of the company with effect from Feb. 1, 2023. The company also announces that Jane Hinkley will step down as an independent nonexecutive director from the close of the 2023 Annual General Meeting.
SCHOTT Pharma with strong financial performance in fiscal year 2022
In fiscal year 2022, SCHOTT Pharma generated sales of EUR 821 million, marking a 27% increase compared to the previous year. SCHOTT Pharma saw increased demand for prefillable glass and polymer syringes, as well as ready-to-use containment solutions.
Exports take off at MLC Machinery Portugal
Having built a solid reputation with home market customers over the past 25 years, Alcobaça-based MLC Machinery entered the export market in the last couple of years—and in just this short period has signed contracts worth in excess of €3.5 million. Clients already include world-leading brands in Brazil, Turkey, France, Mexico, and the U.K.
‘World-first’ trial could open up vehicle-to-everything technology to all EVs
Energy software platform Kaluza announced the launch of Inflexion, a vehicle-to-everything bidirectional charging program that it hopes will open up vehicle-to-everything technology to all electric vehicle models. Kaluza also announced a “world-first” trial that marks the first real-world use of bidirectional charging with combined charging systems.
Asteroid-mining startup AstroForge to launch first space missions this year
Asteroid-mining startup AstroForge plans to launch its first two missions to space this year. The first launch, scheduled for April 2023, will test AstroForge’s technique for refining platinum from a sample of asteroid-like material. The second, planned for October, will scout for an asteroid near Earth to mine.
Science policy in 2023: Ten stories to watch
FYI presents its annual list of 10 science policy stories to watch in the year ahead, including how a divided Congress will affect science funding and initiatives, research security after the China Initiative, and an equity push unfolding across science agencies.
What Mexico’s planned geoengineering restrictions mean for the future of the field
Mexico announced plans to ban geoengineering experiments following a startup’s attempt to release reflective particles into the stratosphere. Mexico may be one of the first nations, if not the first, to announce such an explicit ban on these types of experiments.
These simple design rules could turn the chip industry on its head
For years, the chip industry has relied on a variety of proprietary instruction sets. Lately, though, many hardware and software companies worldwide have begun to converge around a publicly available instruction set known as RISC-V, which could shake up the tech sector’s power dynamics. An MIT Technology Review article investigates.
GPI President Scott DeFife says glass bottles are a sustainable packaging choice for wine
On Wednesday, Jan. 25, Glass Packaging Institute president Scott DeFife spoke at the Unified Wine & Grape Symposium regarding the U.S. production and shipments of glass, and provided insight into why glass bottles are the sustainable choice for wine.
Vietnam sets ceiling price of $0.0502/kWh for ‘transitional’ PV projects
Vietnam’s Ministry of Industry and Trade introduced new ceiling prices for solar and wind projects that sell electricity to Electricity of Vietnam. The ceiling price for ground-mounted solar was slashed from $0.0709/kWh to $0.0502/kWh, threatening the financial viability of large-scale solar projects.
Water jet tech to recover glass from end-of-life solar panels
Shintora Kosan, a Japanese water jet product supplier, developed a novel water jet technology to recover glass from end-of-life photovoltaic modules. It says it can pulverize the solar cells and the backsheets without damaging the glass.
Noon Energy secures $28m to scale carbon-oxygen battery for energy storage
Noon Energy Inc. announced $28 million in Series A financing to commercialize its ultralow-cost, high-energy-density carbon-oxygen battery technology for long-duration energy storage. The funding will enable Noon Energy to grow its engineering, product, and business development teams.
Northrop Grumman brings carbon fiber 3D printing to the hypersonics arms race
Northrop Grumman developed what it is calling Scalable Composite Robotic Additive Manufacturing Carbon/Carbon, a patented process that relies on a robot arm featuring a combination of material extrusion and automated fiber placement to create carbon fiber structures with high-temperature materials.
L&L: Dual-chamber electric box furnace for heat-treating shop in manufacturing facility
The L&L Special Furnace Co. model QDS124 has two chambers: the top chamber rated to 2,350°F is used for heat-treating various steels and other nonferrous materials; the bottom chamber rated to 1,250°F includes a recirculation fan and baffle for tempering, stress relieving, or preheating.
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