Protective-gear maker Paulson Manufacturing has increased daily production of goggles and face shields by tenfold to fulfill orders from Chinese hospitals treating people with coronavirus. The company has relied on UPS to get the products to China quickly, CEO Roy Paulson says.
Tesla will start manufacturing battery cells in a pilot project in Fremont, Calif., according to reports. The company's acquisitions of Maxwell and Hibar spurred discussion of Tesla getting into battery cell manufacturing.
Only about 10% of Foxconn workers have returned to two important Chinese factories that make Apple iPhones, although Foxconn says it expects to ramp up production this month to half its previous level as the company reopens factories that were closed because of the coronavirus outbreak. Many factories for companies including Under Armour and Qualcomm remain closed, while General Motors says it will reopen an assembly plant this weekend.
Lidar vendors are beginning to see significant business in the industrial world, where custom robots use the technology, and the automotive sector is expected to be the next big market. Velodyne still dominates the industry a decade after debuting the modern three-dimensional lidar, but Ouster is competing on price with comparable technology, and many others are angling for a slice of the market.
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The coronavirus outbreak has affected China's raw materials markets, leading to falling production and higher prices as buyers look for alternate sources. Thermal coal, ferrovanadium and manganese are among raw materials that have become more expensive.
Startup Drishti Technologies helps manufacturers optimize employee productivity and quality by using machine learning, computer vision and real-time data. The company works with auto-parts supplier Denso and has clients in medical devices and electronics.
Manufacturers should think small when devising safety improvement plans for this year and focus on efforts they can easily accomplish, writes Terry Mathis. Strategy, culture, leadership and serious injuries and fatalities are four areas to address, Mathis writes.
Bioengineering company Genomatica has create a way to produce the building blocks of nylon-6 using microorganisms, which could lead to production of sustainable nylon. The company is working with nylon producer Aquafil to potentially supply the material to consumer fashion brands.