ABB agrees to buy General Electric’s industrial business unit for $2.6 billion

 

ABB has finalised a deal to buy General Electric’s industrial solutions business unit for $2.6 billion.

The deal would result in ABB taking over the part of GE’s business which supplies circuit breakers and other electrical equipment to industry.

GE Industrial Solutions is said to have deep customer relationships in more than 100 countries and an established installed base with strong roots in North America, ABB’s biggest market.  Continue reading ABB agrees to buy General Electric’s industrial business unit for $2.6 billion

Itron buys Silver Spring Networks for close to a billion dollars

 

Energy technology company Itron is to acquire industrial internet of things company Silver Spring Networks for more than $800 million.

The two companies have signed a definitive agreement for Itron to acquire all outstanding shares of Silver Spring for $16.25 per share in cash.

The transaction is valued at approximately $830 million, net of $118 million of Silver Spring’s cash.  Continue reading Itron buys Silver Spring Networks for close to a billion dollars

Siemens to establish global robotics research and development centre in China

Engineering giant Siemens is establishing a robotics research and development centre in China. 

The company says the facility will be a global research centre in autonomous robotics, and is part of its innovation strategy to “master technology fields that are critical for future success”.

Worldwide, Siemens is planning to spend $6 billion this year on R&D, and China is likely to represent a significant portion of that budget.

Siemens says the global research community in its China R&D centre will comprise experienced experts from around the world will focus on:

  • the research and development of new mechatronics systems,
  • human-robot collaboration; and
  • the application of artificial intelligence in robotic controllers.

Continue reading Siemens to establish global robotics research and development centre in China

Ericsson and Zenuity to create network for self-driving cars

Networking company Ericsson is partnering with Zenuity, an automotive software development joint venture between Autoliv and Volvo, to develop a connectivity platform for cars.

Ericsson says the “end-to-end” platform will be for connected safety, advanced driver assistance systems, and autonomous driving software and functions.

In the first phase of the collaboration, Ericsson and Zenuity will work closely together to develop the Zenuity Connected Cloud – powered by Ericsson internet of things accelerator.  Continue reading Ericsson and Zenuity to create network for self-driving cars

‘World’s first’ fully automated port terminal opens in Melbourne

The Port of Melbourne is the site of what is said to be the world’s first fully automated container handling terminal.

The system was developed and delivered by Kalmar, part of Cargotec, and Navis, part of Kalmar Business Area within Cargotec.

The automation solution is called OneTerminal, and was supplied to International Container Terminal Services Incorporated at the Port of Melbourne, Australia.  Continue reading ‘World’s first’ fully automated port terminal opens in Melbourne

Offshore drilling company Nabors acquires Robotic Drilling Systems

Nabors Industries, an oil and gas drilling company, has acquired Robotic Drilling Systems, a provider of automated tubular and tool handling equipment for the onshore and offshore drilling markets.

This transaction integrates the RDS team and product offering with the technology portfolio of Canrig, Nabors rig equipment subsidiary, and strengthens the development of its drilling automation solutions.

The RDS modular systems are applicable both in onshore and offshore markets, on new builds as well as retrofits.  Continue reading Offshore drilling company Nabors acquires Robotic Drilling Systems

Huawei and Festo link up for smart manufacturing and robotics as a service based on 5G slicing

Huawei has partnered with Festo to jointly explore the 5G network application of manufacturing and to promote the digital transformation of the manufacturing industry with 5G slicing technology.

5G slicing refers to the practice of segmenting a portion of the 5G network for a specific client or requirement – it’s like what cloud computing is to the internet.

The agreement between Huawei and Festo is based on 5G cloud robotics to test the “robot as a service” concept, or RaaS, which is part of the manufacturing digital transformation that supports the shift from mass production to mass customizing and offers value-based services in smart factories.  Continue reading Huawei and Festo link up for smart manufacturing and robotics as a service based on 5G slicing

Kuka wins multi-million-dollar order to supply robotic work cell to make batteries for electric vehicles

Industrial robotics and automation company Kuka Industries has received an order from what it says is “a leading European manufacturer in the automotive industry” to supply a battery production system. 

Kuka Industries, which is part of Kuka, would not say which company it was which placed the order, but it has supplied the same company before with a similar system, and now the customer seems to be selling or expecting to sell more electric cars, or maybe battery systems for electric vehicles.

Kuka says the order value lies in the “mid-double-digit million euro range” and was booked in the second quarter of 2017. Start of production is planned for mid-2019.  Continue reading Kuka wins multi-million-dollar order to supply robotic work cell to make batteries for electric vehicles

General Electric resumes talks to sell its industrial solutions business to ABB

General Electric has resumed negotiations to sell its industrial solutions business to ABB, according to a report on Reuters.com. 

The US conglomerate’s industrial solutions business includes products such as circuit breakers, relays, panel boards and other technologies for sectors including power generation, telecommunications and mining.

Swiss company ABB had previously talked to GE about possibly purchasing the business, and the price it offered was said to be $2 billion.  Continue reading General Electric resumes talks to sell its industrial solutions business to ABB

Billion-dollar industrial estate to feature data centre infrastructure as part of its offering

In what might be a sign that traditional industry is increasingly becoming digital, the developer of an industrial estate is making telecommunications and data processing a fundamental component of its offering. 

Traditionally, the priority for industrial estates have been to provide good road and other transport networks. Nowadays, data networks are sometimes even more important to companies of all types – including those in the manufacturing sector.

Bannon Investment Group, which is developing the 85-acre Elk Grove Technology Park near Chicago O’Hare Airport, says the estate will one of the largest of its kind in the US.  Continue reading Billion-dollar industrial estate to feature data centre infrastructure as part of its offering

Industrial internet technical standards groups form alliance

Two of the leading industrial internet technical standards groups have formed an alliance which is likely to accelerate the development of technologies in the sector.

The Industrial Internet Consortium and the Edge Computing Consortium have signed a partnership agreement – technically a memorandum of understanding – to advance the industrial Internet and edge computing.

Under the agreement, the consortia say they will work together to “maximize interoperability and portability for the industrial Internet”.  Continue reading Industrial internet technical standards groups form alliance

Opec and big oil eyeing electric cars with trepidation, says Bloomberg

The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries, Opec, and big oil companies around the world are looking at the growing popularity of electric cars anew, and revising their forecasts, according to a new report by Bloomberg New Energy Finance

The prospect of a massive trend that shows consumers turning away from petrol-driven vehicles would have huge implications for the oil industry.

Petrol-driven vehicles account for almost half of oil production demand, according to the US Department of Energy, while other sources say it’s more than 50 per cent.  Continue reading Opec and big oil eyeing electric cars with trepidation, says Bloomberg

Earth-digging robot could make laying underground cables much easier and cheaper

A robot developed by the MIT university could help bring down the enormous costs of laying underground and undersea cables. 

The machine is being called RoboClam – because it was based on how clams behave – is a relatively small device and it’s been called “the Ferrari of underwater diggers” because it’s particularly good at digging through soft, watery soil, or sand.

It was developed by MIT’s Department of Mechanical Engineering, along with Bluefin Robotics, and the team was led by Anete Hosoi.  Continue reading Earth-digging robot could make laying underground cables much easier and cheaper

China’s electric car market given a jump-start by government and looks set to boost lithium industry

The market for electric cars in China is huge already and it’s growing at almost an exponential rate annually. 

Commentators in the country include electric cars in the category called “new energy vehicles”, which also refers to hybrid energy vehicles, and are saying the market will be further accelerated as a result of government backing.

Edward Tse, CEO of Gao Feng management consultancy, says: “With the issuance in April 2017 of the Automotive Industry Mid to Long Term Development Plan, the Ministry for Industry and Information Technology provides guiding principles for the development of China’s auto industry for the next decade.  Continue reading China’s electric car market given a jump-start by government and looks set to boost lithium industry

Fujitsu extends product portfolio with connectors from Neltron

fujitsu connectors

Fujitsu Electronics Europe is extending its line card portfolio to include products from Neltron Industrial.

The Taiwan-based company manufactures ROHS compliant connectors of various types. With this partnership, FEEU is seeking to widen the range of its offerings and to create new synergies between them, strengthening its role as a Value Added Distribution Partner for the EMEA market.

Neltron offers a broad range of connector types, including board to board, wire to board, wire to wire, FPC/FCC, IDC connectors, shrouded header, USB connectors and jumpers.  Continue reading Fujitsu extends product portfolio with connectors from Neltron