2008 Archives

The Future of Turbines

The Future of Turbines

Everyone knows about wind turbines and how they are increasingly popping up around the world as another enviro-friendly way to create energy. But did you know that scientists are currently developing and testing a new turbine that you will never see, but that can create limitless, constant energy? That is because the turbine will be bound to the ocean floor with its blades whirling about 40 feet below the surface. Scientists are developing these underwater turbines with the goal to harness the energy of the Gulf Stream current off the Floridian coast. You can read specifics of this interesting concept here. The article tackles questions like, “Won’t fish get chopped up?” and “Will large ships be able to navigate around them?” These are legitimate questions that need real answers before underwater turbines can become a justifiable plan, but tapping into ocean currents could become a key component in acquiring sustainable energy on a planet with dwindling natural resources.





South Carolina Corporate Moves

South Carolina Corporate Moves

DuPont Dips $500 Million into Cooper River In December, DuPont announced its Cooper River plant, located 30 miles north of Charleston, SC, will receive a $500 million investment to drastically expand production of high-performance Kevlar® para-aramid fiber for industrial and military uses. The multiyear, multiphase expansion will increase the global production capacity for Kevlar by more than 25%, making it the single largest investment in the fiber since it was introduced in 1965. Construction to expand the existing facility began in January and required 400 contractor jobs at the project’s peak. Scheduled for start-up in 2010, the plant will bring 100 permanent jobs to the Cooper River factory, which opened in 1973. The plant currently has 60 employees and primarily produces Hytrel® thermoplastic polyester elastomer for the automotive industry. “I can’t say enough about what [DuPont] brings to our entire region,” says Dan Davis, supervisor of Berkeley County, where the Cooper River plant is located. “Not only do they provide excellent jobs for our citizens, they are also stellar corporate citizens. This is definitely a win-win announcement for us all.” The new facility will allow DuPont to further refine Kevlar to improve its ballistic performance, providing lighter-weight protective apparel for law enforcement and military personnel. Among various other enhancements, it will also produce gloves with higher dexterity to allow more freedom of movement while still protecting hands from cuts. “The new plant at Cooper River, together with our other global assets, will help DuPont meet strong and growing global demand for Kevlar,” says Thomas G. Powell, vice president and general manager of DuPont Advanced Fiber Systems. Between 2000 and 2006, DuPont successfully completed four Kevlar fiber expansion projects at its Richmond, VA and Maydown, Northern Ireland facilities. DuPont also operates manufacturing plants in Japan and Spain. Kraft Creates 1,000 New Jobs in Newberry In December, Kraft Foods announced that it will expand its Louis Rich plant’s manufacturing space in Newberry, SC by 75,000 square feet. The growth will also create 1,000 new jobs. Kraft currently has about 1,700 employees at its Newberry facility, up from 1,260 at the start of 2007. The anticipated job surge will support the increased volume of new products. The Louis Rich plant currently produces Oscar Mayer sliced luncheon meats, turkey bacon, deli-shaved meats, chicken breast strips and cuts, and ground turkey. These goods are distributed throughout the country or shipped for further processing to other Kraft plants. Lyle Olson, Kraft plant manager, says the expansion project “demonstrates the company’s confidence in our team of employees […]


Illinois Corporate Moves

Illinois Corporate Moves

Canadian Company Opens U.S. Headquarters Imperial Manufacturing Group, a Canada-based maker of equipment for the heating, air conditioning, ventilation and building products industries, officially opened its new U.S. headquarters in Alton, IL last year in July. The facility has so far generated 86 jobs, with more expected in the future. The Illinois Opportunity Returns program made the move possible by granting a $655,000 business investment package to Imperial. “The size of the new facility in Alton will help increase production and efficiency of sales as well as benefit the community with new job opportunities,” says Bradley Spencer, Imperial’s vice president, U.S. sales and operations. Imperial Manufacturing Group currently occupies just over half of the 222,400-square-foot Alton Center II, with 5,000 square feet of office space, a 30,000-square-foot manufacturing area, and approximately 87,400 square feet of warehouse and distribution space. The Alton Center Business Park is a 150-acre, mixed-use development located at the foot of the Lewis and Clark Bridge at the intersection of Illinois Route 143 and Broadway. It was a 2001 Phoenix Award winner for Community Impact at the National Brownfield Conference. Local Manufacturer Gets Big State Support The state of Illinois is investing $560,000 in Fabritech Inc., an aerospace manufacturing and maintenance, repair and overhaul business that specializes in rotor-wing aircraft. The money will go toward expanding the company’s existing operations at the St. Louis Regional Airport in Bethalto, IL. The company, which is making an almost $1.7 million investment, will create 26 new full-time jobs within two years and retain 46 jobs. Governor Rod R. Blagojevich also announced the certification of a boundary expansion for the Riverbend Enterprise Zone to include Fabritech’s expansion; zone status will give the company income and job creation tax credits. This support comes as a part of Opportunity Returns, the governor’s comprehensive economic development strategy to continue create jobs and expand the economy of Southwest Illinois. Fabritech, Inc. was incorporated in 1992 and currently operates a 25,000-square-foot facility at the St. Louis Regional Airport. The company’s expansion project calls for not only refurbishing and remodeling its existing facility, but also doubling the size of the facility. The expansion is expected to be completed by the end of 2008. Chicago Keeps a Hot Company In February, the Chicago Development Commission approved a plan by CareerBuilder, one of the highest-profile employment services and Internet media companies in the world, to keep and grow its corporate headquarters in Chicago. The plan includes the rehabilitation and reconstruction of office space in order to consolidate some of […]