Though crude oil producers boosted rig counts in early June for a few weeks, creating a thousand jobs in North Dakota’s Bakken Oil Field, the uptick hardly offset 17,725 U.S. energy jobs lost in July – mostly attributed to the oil and gas industry according to CNBC. The good news is, crude oil prices have increased from May to June, and the Energy Information Administration (EIA) expects the hemorrhaging to begin leveling off in 2017 in the lower 48 states. And, natural gas production continues to expand in U.S., with working inventories 20% higher than in 2015 (see page 16).
As the U.S. state and federal governments attempt to bail out failing nuclear and coal entities, other forms of truly clean energy continue to grow. The wind energy industry is the fastest growing new source of electricity in the U.S. with 8,600MW of generating capacity in 20 states, outpacing natural gas by 20% and solar by 26%. USA Today reports this industry gained 8,000 jobs at the beginning of 2016, a 20% increase since 2015 (http://goo.gl/KJ85vd). This growth is arguably due in part by Congress’s recent extension of favorable tax treatment for renewable energy sources, and the EIA predicts continued growth in this sector with or without the Clean Power Plan (see page 16). At IMTS, I will be interested to see how this is affecting manufacturers and designers, and how they are tailoring or altering their activities to anticipate this growth shift.
On the eve of my first International Manufacturing Technology Show (IMTS) I am met with many emotions – but mostly excitement and fear I won’t find the most comfortable shoes. I’ve been briefed about long days, elaborate displays, and the massive machines presented within the 1.3 million square feet of show floor space in previous years. I’m eager to report on industry trends and innovations presented at this year’s show, and luckily I have a few tricks up my sleeve to guide me and to share. This issue is dedicated to keeping you up to speed on this market and what IMTS 2016 has to offer.
Navigating the show
With 114,000 buyers and sellers from more than 112 countries; 15,000 new machine tools, controls, software, components, systems, and processes; various conferences; and co-located shows, IMTS 2016 can seem overwhelming, and you don’t want to waste your time. Fortunately, GIE Media has put together some valuable resources to help you navigate the show. Our Quick Guide attached with this issue will be your map through the show. The guide groups exhibitors based on industries served with detailed information from leading companies. In addition to the Quick Guide, the IMTS 2016 Conference Guide (http://goo.gl/nplDiv) will help you select the best conferences to attend to network with industry leaders and gain useful knowledge to grow your business. The Guide offers detailed information about each conference track, including sessions from the Integrated Industries Conference and the National Fluid Power Association Conference.
I wish you the best in your endeavors at IMTS 2016. Make sure you stop by GIE Media’s Today’s Technology Center in booth #W-20 to get a close look at cutting edge manufacturing techniques and product designs in the aerospace, automotive, medical, and energy industry. — Arielle