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Control Techniques goes back to its roots to rebuild

Six months after he was appointed president of the Welsh drives-maker, Control Techniques, Tony Pickering is not mincing words. The company is half the size it was before its previous owner, Emerson, acquired it in 1994. CT which, in its heyday, held more than 30% of the UK drives market, is now down to around 2%. “People are asking: are you still in business?,” Pickering reports.

Drives & Controls’ circulation is now fully requested

Every copy of Drives & Controls is now going to someone who asked for it. The latest figures published by the independent Audit Bureau of Circulations (ABC) show that 87% of the 20,004 copies printed of each issue are going to people who have asked for their own individual copies, with the rest going to companies or organisations who have asked to subscribe.

Service offers free support to users of larger drives

ABB has launched a service for users of its medium- and high-power drives, giving them complimentary access to a series of support functions during a VSD’s warranty period. After registering a drive to activate the service – called ABB Initial Care – they will receive access to on-site repairs, rapid exchange of faulty parts, telephone support during office hours, and technical query escalation.

£7.5m advanced manufacturing facility opens in Belfast

Queen’s University Belfast has opened a £7.5m advanced manufacturing technology facility, as part of a new Centre for Intelligent Autonomous Manufacturing Systems (i-AMS), which will lead innovation in new technologies for advanced manufacturing. Researchers spanning the disciplines of engineering, computer science, applied mathematics and psychology, will work together in i-AMS to tackle challenges faced by industry and to help make Industry 4.0 a reality.

European network aims to deliver ‘best Brexit’ for industry

Euris, the umbrella group of industrial trade organisations that together represent more than 25% of the UK’s imports and exports, has set up an advisory body to help deliver the best outcome from Brexit for the industrial product supply sector.

UK manufacturing is twice as big as usually thought

Manufacturing accounts for nearly a quarter of the UK economy and more than 7.4 million jobs depend on it – far more than usually thought – according to new research commissioned by the Manufacturing Technologies Association (MTA).

Oxlee is Drives & Controls’ new sales director

Damien Oxlee has been appointed director of sales for Drives & Controls magazine, the Drives & Controls Exhibition and associated products. He is taking on the role in addition to his existing position of director of sales for DFA Media’s Plant & Works Engineering Division.

Drives & Controls Show is another record-breaker

The recent Drives & Controls Show, held at the Birmingham NEC, set a new record for visitor attendance. By the time, the three-day exhibition had ended, it and the other events organised by DFA Media – Plant & Asset Management, Fluid Power & Systems, Air-Tech and the new Smart Industry Expo – had attracted a total of 13,518 visitors through the doors. This represents an increase of more than 3% on the attendance at the previous event in 2016.

Sewtec aims to double turnover to £32m and workforce to 120

The West Yorkshire robotics and automation specialist Sewtec has announced plans to double its turnover to £32m within five years, following a management buyout in August last year. This would also entail a doubling of the number of skilled personnel in the company, taking its workforce to more than 120 people.

Stamp-sized 5kW servodrive wins innovation award

The Israeli manufacturer Elmo Motion Control has won the technical innovation of the year award in the 2018 Motion Control Industry Awards (MCIA), for its tiny Gold Twitter servodrive, which packs 5kW of “qualitative” power into a footprint the size of a stamp. Elmo, which set up a UK operation last year, was one of ten contenders for the award, which was announced at a ceremony at the National Conference Centre in the same week that the Drives & Controls Show was held at the nearby NEC. Elmo has recently announced a 10kW version of the Gold Twitter that weighs 33 grams.

35-tonne truck rolls into the Drives & Controls show

With two weeks to go before the 2018 Drives & Controls Show opens its doors at the Birmingham NEC, there has been a last-minute flurry of exhibitors snapping up the last remaining stands in Drives & Controls and the new Smart Industry Expo.

Siemens invests £27m in UK 3D printing facility

Siemens is investing up to £27m in a 3D printing factory in Worcester, UK, to create a global centre of excellence for additive manufacturing. The facility, due to open September, will generate about 55 high-quality jobs and allow Siemens to increase its fleet of high-tech 3D printing machines from 15 to 50 over the next five years.

Banks to run Siemens' Integrated Drive Systems in the UK

Siemens UK & Ireland has appointed Phil Banks to be head of strategy for its Integrated Drive Systems (IDS) business. As part of his new role, he will be responsible for developing and implementing a business strategy to drive further growth for IDS.

Danfoss Drives appoints Baird as UK and Ireland manager

Danfoss Drives has appointed Alan Baird as its new country manager for the UK and Ireland, following John Martin’s move to the position of head of sales. Baird will be responsible for all aspects of the company’s activities in the region, including sales, marketing, drive solutions, technical and aftermarket support.

UK motor-maker has won more than £50m of orders in 2018

A Northumberland manufacturer of axial-flux electric motors has won more than £50m of new business for its motors since the start of this year, with export orders to Germany, Poland, Spain, the US and Asia already in the pipeline for 2018. The company, Avid Technology, is currently focussing on the EV (electric vehicle) market and claims that its motors have one of the highest power and torque densities of any EV drive motor, making them suitable for high-performance drivetrains. The motors are also attracting interest from the robotics and aerospace sectors.