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The Great Fuel Cell Challenge: Will Toyota’s 5,600 Free Patents Change the Green Car Game?

Posted by Paul Tate on Jan 20, 2015

Fuel_Sensor.jpgJust when you'd got used to the idea of plugging your new electric car into a charging station for an hour or so before electro-gliding into the wild blue yonder, along comes another fuel-efficiency paradigm for the future of the auto industry that threatens to upset the electric vehicle bandwagon.

Or will it?

Earlier this month, at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas, Japan’s Toyota, the world’s largest vehicle maker, announced that it will allow royalty-free use of around 5,680 patents relating to its hydrogen fuel cell technology for the development of next generation, environmentally-friendly cars.

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The Great Fuel Cell Challenge: Will Toyota’s 5,600 Free Patents Change the Green Car Game?  in Sustainability

Just when you thought you were getting used to the idea of plugging your new electric car into a charging station for an hour or so before electro-gliding into the wild blue yonder, along comes another fuel-efficiency paradigm for the future of the auto industry that threatens to upset the electric vehicle bandwagon. Or will it? Read More →

Posted by Paul Tate on Jan 20, 2015
Views: 880
dbrousell
The Benefit of the Sony Cyber Attack  in Cybersecurity

If nothing else, the recent cyber attack, apparently by North Korea, against Sony for producing the satiric film “The Interview” should serve to raise to the highest level the issue of cyber protection on the agendas of every board of directors in the manufacturing industry. Read More →

Posted by David Brousell on Jan 13, 2015
Views: 944
jmoad
Manufacturing Renaissance: Reality or Hype?  in Manufacturing Advocacy

Is all the talk in the popular media about a “manufacturing renaissance” actually working against the manufacturing industry? A report issued this week by the Washington, DC-based Information Technology and Innovation Foundation think tank concludes that, not only is the popular “manufacturing renaissance” narrative hurting manufacturing in the U.S., it’s largely untrue. Read More →

Posted by Jeff Moad on Jan 13, 2015
Views: 1891
jmoad
Manufacturing Trends to Watch in 2015  in The Adaptive Organization

As the new year begins, the editorial team at the Manufacturing Leadership Council offers its predictions for the year ahead: Read More →

Posted by Jeff Moad on Jan 06, 2015
Views: 6729
PTate
What’s the Truth About Reshoring?  in Redefining the Supply Chain

Much has been said and written over the last few years about the importance of the so-called reshoring trend – returning manufacturing operations back to domestic sites rather than offshoring to Asia and other overseas locations – as a way to ensure the future health of Western manufacturing sectors, boost local employment opportunities, and accelerate economic growth. But what’s the truth? Is reshoring really changing global industry dynamics? What types of manufacturers are actually bringing production home? Why? And is this trend really having a significant impact on U.S. manufacturing fortunes? Read More →

Posted by Paul Tate on Dec 16, 2014
Views: 5670
dbrousell
In Northwest Ohio, a Mixed Picture on Jobs  in Next-Generation Leadership and the Changing Workforce

William J. Bernard, Jr., president and chief executive of Surface Combustion, Inc., a 111-employee manufacturer of thermal processing equipment in Maumee, in northwest Ohio, is proud to be in manufacturing and is optimistic about the future of the industry in the U.S. Read More →

Posted by David Brousell on Dec 16, 2014
Views: 885
dbrousell
Lexmark Plant Tour: Big Data Discussion Centers on Business Rationale  in Transformative Technologies

In the third of a series of plant tours and round table discussions held this year, members of the Manufacturing Leadership Council gathered at Lexmark International’s Boulder, CO, plant to see how printer toner and photoconductor drums are made and to discuss one of the hottest, and most controversial, technology topics of the day – Big Data. Read More →

Posted by David Brousell on Dec 09, 2014
Views: 2485
dbrousell
Should Manufacturers Support New Environmental Initiatives?  in Sustainability

As members of the United Nations gather this week in Lima, Peru, to try to reach an accord on cutting greenhouse gas emissions, the Obama Administration is pursuing plans of its own to cut ozone emissions in the U.S., one in a series of environment initiatives the administration has undertaken this year that would affect manufacturers large and small and in every industry sector. Read More →

Posted by David Brousell on Dec 03, 2014
Views: 3022
jmoad
As Production Wages Fall, Manufacturers Emphasize High Tech Jobs  in Next-Generation Leadership and the Changing Workforce

Ask most people what comes to mind when they think about manufacturing, and they will conjure the image of masses of semi-skilled workers toiling away on loud, dirty assembly lines. Never mind that this image bears little resemblance to today’s reality of clean, highly-automated production environments in which fewer people are surrounded by more computers and machines. But it’s hard to change such deeply ingrained, culturally-reinforced perceptions, particularly because most of the people who subscribe to them have never had cause to experience a modern plant in action. Read More →

Posted by Jeff Moad on Nov 25, 2014
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Views: 4220
PTate
Manufacturing and Millennials: Why Closing The Generation Gap Is Critical  in Next-Generation Leadership and the Changing Workforce

You must have been asleep if you haven’t noticed the global indicators over the last few months showing the U.S. manufacturing sector enjoying a much-welcomed period of sustained growth. But continued expansion for U.S. companies in the longer term will depend on more than just boosting production capacity, investing in new automation, and increasing operational efficiency. It will also require a critical pool of both skilled and unskilled employees who can help drive fast-growing companies forward. Without new skill sets and fresh young employees for the future, how long can the current growth trend continue? And whose fault is it that the next generation is not rushing to manufacturers’ doors looking for an exciting and rewarding career? Read More →

Posted by Paul Tate on Nov 18, 2014
Views: 13365

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jmoad
U.S. Manufacturers to Increase Hiring, Capital Spending  in Manufacturing Advocacy

Inspired by what they see as an improving economy, U.S. manufacturers say they plan to increase hiring and spending on capital equipment and operations. Read More →

Posted by Jeff Moad on Jan 23, 2015
Views: 74
dbrousell
Participate in the Council’s Big Data Research Project  in Transformative Technologies

In order to better understand one of the hottest and most controversial technology topics of the day – big data and analytics – the Manufacturing Leadership Council has launched a research study on the topic. Read More →

Posted by David Brousell on Jan 20, 2015
Views: 710
PTate
Which 3D Printer And Materials Do You Need? New 3D Printing Database May Help  in Factories of the Future

For many manufacturing companies hoping to harness the power of new 3D printing technologies in their prototyping or production operations, identifying the right machines and materials to use can be a complex exercise and a major constraint to adoption. Read More →

Posted by Paul Tate on Jan 13, 2015
Views: 1471
PTate
New Innovation Hub Aims To Slash Composite Materials Production Costs by 50%  in Factories of the Future

The Obama Administration launched its latest U.S. Manufacturing Innovation Hub last week focusing on the development and production costs of next-generation composite materials. Read More →

Posted by Paul Tate on Jan 13, 2015
Views: 1170
jmoad
Can the Middle East Become a Manufacturing Hub?  in Redefining the Supply Chain

Looking to diversify their economies, oil-dependent Middle Eastern states—particularly Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates--are reportedly investing in efforts to convince global manufacturers to establish manufacturing plants in their countries. Read More →

Posted by Jeff Moad on Jan 07, 2015
Views: 1168
jmoad
Are Makers a Threat to “Real” Manufacturers?  in The Adaptive Organization

Like a lot of people, I’ve been trying to understand what implications the burgeoning “maker” movement might have for industrial-scale manufacturing enterprises such as those that make up our Manufacturing Leadership Council. Sure, individual maker enthusiasts are gaining lots of experience with 3D printers and new additive manufacturing materials, experience from which “real” manufacturers might learn. But do makers really represent a completive threat to “real” manufacturers? Read More →

Posted by Jeff Moad on Dec 08, 2014
Views: 2844
PTate
Brooklyn’s Heights Of Fashion: New Manufacturing and Innovation Hub Gets $3.5m Boost  in The Innovative Enterprise

Down by the waterfront in Brooklyn, NY, stands the Liberty View Industrial Plaza in Sunset Park. Some of its floors are currently unoccupied. But not for long. By this time next year, they could be swathed in brightly colored fabric, bristling with wearable tech, and humming to the sound of radically new designer clothing being prototyped on cutting-edge 3D printers. Read More →

Posted by Paul Tate on Dec 08, 2014
Views: 1966
jmoad
Exosuit Robots Are Taking the Next Step  in Transformative Technologies

Manufacturers could benefit from current U.S. military testing of advanced exosuit robotics that, advocates say, will cut a wearer’s exertion level by 25% when carrying a 100-pound load while reducing injury and enhancing stamina. Read More →

Posted by Jeff Moad on Dec 03, 2014
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Views: 2366
PTate
Global Manufacturing: U.S. Shows Strong November Growth; But Europe At A Standstill and China Dips  in Manufacturing Leadership Community

Business conditions continued to spur U.S. manufacturing last month but there are warnings that slower export orders, which fell for the first time since January, may be a worrying factor for the future. By contrast, China’s November data signalled a further loss of momentum in the country’s manufacturing economy with output declining for the first time since May. Eurozone manufacturing growth, meanwhile, has also come to a halt, helping to push global manufacturing performance growth indicators to their lowest rate of expansion for 15 months. Read More →

Posted by Paul Tate on Dec 01, 2014
Views: 3126
PTate
Cybersecurity: Manufacturing Malware On The Rise  in Transformative Technologies

Recent revelations about the so-called “Regin” spying virus, plus new potential cyber threats to energy and national infrastructure systems, are pushing cybersecurity firmly back to the top of the manufacturing industry’s worry list. Read More →

Posted by Paul Tate on Nov 25, 2014
Views: 4659