Flash Facts

Flash Facts – Oct. 14


Cat to research metal fatigue in machines, structures
Caterpillar will receive funding from the U.S. Department of Commerce to help develop technology designed to improve the durability of large structures and machines. The $9 million project will focus on creating wireless sensor technology that provides “real time” analysis of the impact of metal fatigue in large fabricated structures. Data from the project could reduce the costs of manufacturing large machines, aircraft, ships, buildings and bridges by using fewer metals than required by today’s design standards, Cat said in a press release. The company also said it anticipates the technology could lead to more efficient, lighter machines capable of carrying heavier loads. Motorola is providing wireless technology for the project and Native American Technologies will supply software and design services.

Cummins to consolidate engine assembly and testing
Cummins said Wednesday it will consolidate heavy-duty engine assembly and test operations into the company’s Jamestown, N.Y., engine plant. Assembly and testing at the Columbus, Ind., engine plant will be consolidated into existing assembly operations at the Jamestown facility. The action is not connected to current market conditions, said Joe Loughrey, president of Cummins’ engine business. Approximately 200 positions in the heavy-duty business will be eliminated as a result of the consolidation, which will be completed by the first quarter of 2003. Loughrey said the Jamestown plant has the flexibility and capacity to meet all customer requirements for Cummins’ 11-litre and 15-litre engines more productively and cost-effectively than any other alternative.

Cat removes diversified products division
Caterpillar said Thursday it will eliminate its diversified products division as a result of the planned retirement of three longtime company executives. Vice presidents David McKie and A.J. Rassi along with controller Kenneth Zika will retire Dec. 31. Responsibility for the diversified products division, which handles equipment ranging from mining trucks to road pavers and graders, will be distributed among several other divisions. Cat said the move will streamline operation and improve efficiency.


Second Volvo Rents opens in Atlanta area
Atlanta Construction Equipment Services, the Volvo Rents franchisee in Atlanta, has opened a new equipment rental facility in nearby Kennesaw, Ga. The new rental center is the second independently owned and operated rental franchise under the Volvo name for Atlanta Construction Equipment Services in the Atlanta area. The company’s first rental center was opened in February in Alpharetta. Atlanta Construction Equipment Services was the first franchise in the new Volvo Rents program. In addition to Volvo construction equipment, the new Volvo Rents center will carry a comprehensive line of essential equipment and tools for the construction, commercial, industrial and homeowner markets.


Jeff Bust resigned Friday as chief executive of Grove Worldwide and executive vice president of Manitowoc Crane group. While the Manitowoc-Grove deal was going through regulatory procedures, Manitowoc appointed its chief financial officer Glen Tellock head of the cranes division. Once the deal was complete, day-to-day control of Grove was passed to John Wheeler, Bust’s number two at Grove, and Bust was put in charge of a team managing the transition process of integrating Grove into Manitowoc. Bust said he has completed that task. Bust was president and CEO of Grove Worldwide before Manitowoc took over Grove in August. Before joining Grove four years ago he had been general manager of Manitowoc Cranes.

Caterpillar has named Christiano Schena vice president of the component products and control systems division, effective Jan. 1. Schena is currently managing director of BCP Europe in the company’s building construction products division, and will replace David McKie, who has been a Caterpillar employee since 1964 and is retiring Dec. 31.

Donald Western, now vice president of Caterpillar’s large power systems division, will replace A.J. Rassi, who is retiring Dec. 31, as vice president of the track-type tractors division. Rassi has worked for Caterpillar since 1959.

David Burritt, head of Caterpillar’s quality control program, will replace Kenneth Zika as controller. Zika joined Caterpillar in 1978 and is retiring Dec. 31.

Multiquip last week announced the promotions of Kevin Day to national sales manager and Wil Maiorano to national field sales manager. Prior to their appointments, Day and Maiorano served as western and eastern division managers, respectively, for Multiquip’s general construction equipment division. Day joined Multiquip in 1990 as inside sales coordinator while Maiorano began in 1993 as a region manager.