Industry News for 04/2016

NanoMech announced that it has secured $10 million in capital for leading its Series C Financing round from Saudi Aramco Energy Ventures (SAEV), the corporate venturing subsidiary of Saudi Arabia’s national oil company. This capital infusion and new global customer relationship with the largest producer of oil in the world will significantly accelerate NanoMech’s manufacturing of the most advanced nanoengineered and nanomanufactured lubricants, coatings and specialty chemicals, addressing major industries such as energy, transportation, aerospace, manufacturing, automotive, racing, agricultural equipment and military.
The Berghoff Group, a German manufacturer, recently announced plans to open its first U.S. plant, which will be located in Auburn, Ala. The company reportedly will invest $30 million to open the manufacturing facility, which is expected to create 100 precision-machining jobs over the next 5 years, according to a news release from the Alabama Department of Commerce.
Once word got out that PTooling, a self-described small, family-owned machine shop in Amherstburg, Canada, had added a Lasertec 65 3D laser deposition welding and milling machine to its arsenal, major aerospace manufacturers began knocking on its door. 
Standing in front of a ma-chining center, waiting for the drilling cycle to end so you can squirt some tapping compound into the holes is a big waste of time. But with challenging materials, such as Hastelloy or Inconel, it’s the only way to avoid a broken tap. Or is it?
Doug Wetzel, managing director at contract manufacturer Protomatic, Dexter, Mich., is finding business to be slower than he wishes. Like many other U.S. job shops, the 45-year-old company is experiencing a slowdown caused by tumbling oil prices and worldwide political and economic uncertainty. The difference is Wetzel isn’t too worried. His advice to fellow manufacturers is to not let market uncertainty paralyze them from seeing a slowdown’s silver lining— namely, time to prepare for the inevitable upturn.
General Motors officials are expected to make a "positive plant manufacturing announcement" at the Bay City Powertrain factory this week.
In America’s factories, jobs are inevitably disappearing. But despite the political rhetoric, the problem is not mainly globalization. Manufacturing jobs are on the decline in factories around the world.
MachiningCloud GmbH, a product content provider for cutting tools, CNC machines and workholding, today announced partnerships with Mitsubishi Materials and Destiny Tool to make product data from both companies available through its web-based platform, according to an announcement from MachiningCloud issued today.
David A. Dornfeld, mechanical engineering professor, founding faculty director of the Jacobs Institute for Design Innovation and a leader at the College of Engineering, died of a heart attack on March 27. He was 66. Dornfeld was a renowned manufacturing expert, widely admired as a teacher and well-regarded as a thoughtful leader.
Ceramics Expo takes place April 26-28, 2016, in Cleveland and is dedicated to providing a marketplace for all raw materials, equipment, machinery and technology used within the ceramic manufacturing supply chain. Ceramics Expo is attended by technical leaders, production directors, engineers, project leaders, buyers and senior executives interested in exploring the latest ceramic manufacturing innovations.
German toolholder maker Haimer GmbH recently agreed to license its Haimer Safe-Lock System to the Melin Tool Co., a cutting tool manufacturer based in Cleveland. Melin Tool will offer its endmills to the U.S. market with the Haimer Safe-Lock System, according to a recent Melin Tool news release.
The Gleason Corp., Rochester, N.Y., recently donated $300,000 to establish two doctoral fellowships that will be incorporated into the engineering program at the Kate Gleason College of Engineering at the Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT).
Mahr Federal, Providence, R.I., will feature the MarShaft SCOPE 250 plus and MarCator Wireless Digital Indicators at Mfg4 2016, which is set for May 3-5 at the Connecticut Convention Center in Hartford, Conn. Look for Mahr Federal at booth No. 1605.
Jet Edge Inc., a manufacturer of ultra-high pressure waterjet technology based in St. Michael, Minn., in February launched an aftermarket waterjet parts division, Choice Waterjet Parts Inc. Choice Waterjet Parts supplies ultra-high pressure (UHP) waterjet components for major brands of waterjet cutting systems, including Flow, Omax, KMT, Bystronic and WSI. Genuine Jet Edge parts will continue to be supplied exclusively by Jet Edge, according to a recent company news release.
Mastercam 2017 is now in public beta, which means the next version of the software is available for testing by “currently maintained” Mastercam customers, according to a recent news release from CNC Software. “Shops all over the world, from small job shops to Fortune 100, get a chance to test Mastercam 2017 before it is released, and provide valuable feedback that helps shape the final product,” the company announced. “Participants in the Public Beta get an early look at the new streamlined workflow and optimized interface that Mastercam 2017 delivers, along with dozens of powerful new tools for simple to complex jobs.”
Gilman Precision, Grafton, Wis., recently launched a web-based product configuration tool Intended to improve the process of viewing and adjusting product specifications. The Gilman 3D Linear Products CAD Configurator will serve engineers and other prospects by allowing them to select, view and insert Gilman 3D CAD models and 2D drawings directly into their own CAD systems, according to the company. 
An item in the April 1 issue of The Kiplinger Letter suggested that a tough business climate for makers of various products will spur mergers and acquistions among companies looking "to consolidate forces to keep going." And judging from the spate of mergers and acquisitions announced since the beginning of this year, it would appear the prediction was no April Fool's Day joke.