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Address: 11223 Cornell Park Drive Suite 301, Blue Ash Ohio 45242

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What Does Design Have to do with Green Building Consulting?

Designer Spotlight

Sure, we keep telling you that 10,000 design professionals receive Blink annually, and the online catalog is available to over 50,000 art specifiers, but what kinds of people is this list really compiled of?

Today, we spotlight 5 of these designers and what it is they really do…


KNA Design | Residential & Hospitality

Complementing KNA’s award-winning design talent is sound technical expertise, as well as a practical approach to project management. During each phase of the project, from initial concept, through design development, to final installation, KNA seeks to distinguish their work through rigorous attention to detail, high standards and meticulous follow-through.

Bradley Design 1

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Process Equipment Marketing: Buying Equipment vs. Finding Solutions

(Great article in the recent issue of POWDER BULK ENGINEERING by Dwight Rider, SWECO Global Product Manager for round separation. Every good process equipment marketer knows that if you take the time to educate a person new to the industry, they will remember you when they are looking for solutions to their problems.)

There is more to providing a solution for your application than simply purchasing new equipment. Purchasing a piece of equipment is easy: all you need is money and someone to sell it to you. However, the cost of purchasing the wrong equipment can exceed the money you spend on the equipment itself. Before you go and tens of thousands of dollars on capital equipment, there are many factors that need to be considered.

Testimonials alway tell the best story about your process equipment marketing and the editors can’t get enough of them!

In the case of separation equipment, some types of machinery can last decades. Buying the wrong equipment can have long-term consequences in the cost of consumables, lack of production, downtime, and other factors. For example, the amount of money spent on consumables alone could exceed more than half the cost of the unit. Separation equipment is typically integrated into a large system. By choosing the wrong separation equipment, you could be inadvertently creating a bottleneck that affects the productivity of the overall system. Quite often, the low-cost equipment option may be the costliest in the long run.

Round separators are one of the more common types of separation equipment. Aside from the obvious influences of equipment quality and performance, two of the more important attributes when considering an equipment manufacturer are application experience and local support.

Every separation application is different even if you are screening the same product. Application experience cannot be overlooked when determining which manufacturer you choose. If you expect to get optimum performance from your equipment, there are factors that must be considered, such as machine diameter, screen mesh type, number of screen decks, types of self-cleaning devices, proper surface finish, spout heights and sizes, and many more.

Unit selection and sizing for a particular application can be both science and art, and experience is critical to achieving satisfactory results. The manufacturer should come to your facility, review the application in person, and provide services such as on-site testing with a small demo unit if needed. If larger scale testing is required the manufacturer should be able to provide lab testing and detailed test reports to aid in equipment selection.

For applications similar to an existing one, the manufacturer should be expected to review the process on-site to ensure optimum efficiency of the separation process. New applications should be sourced from existing reference data for similar applications that can be used as guidelines. The equipment needs to be customized to be optimized for both performance and integration into the larger system. Finally, engineering drawings, structural loading information, 3D CAD models, and detailed customized operating manuals need to be available to the customer.

Installation, start-up, commissioning, and on-going support are major factors to consider when choosing a manufacturer. If these elements are not available to the customer, complications could arise from the start. It is extremely important to have an expert readily available in case problems arise not only in the beginning stages, but also through the life of the equipment.

The manufacturer’s local support can also provide equipment training for operators and maintenance personnel. Dynamics such as motor lubrication and change-out, screen changing techniques, electrical interface, start up and shutdown procedures, emergency shutdown, and proper separator clearances and just a few items that the users will need to know. Another function provided by local support is recommending spare parts and how to care for those parts. Spare screens are critical to the process, as they will have a big impact on minimizing downtime.

There are plenty of round separator manufacturers from which to choose, and there are a lot of factors to consider when making the choice. Simply buying the equipment based upon a selling price alone may cost you more in the long term. You need to be sure to consider the factors discussed, so you are finding an application solution rather than simply buying equipment. When you need aftermarket parts, technical service, or assistance with the next application, be sure to choose equipment from a practiced manufacturer who has the knowledge, experience, and support you will need to get the job done right.

Doug Rider is the global product manager for round separation for SWECO, Florence, Kentucky, USA. He has been with SWECO for 15 years in various roles, including manufacturing engineer, product engineer, and design engineering manager.

Learn more at the SWECO Technical Library,

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One Hour Green Building Marketing Tour of Cincinnati

Cincinnati Ohio has one of the most concentrated LEED building collections in the world. A quick one hour tour will show you who’s a part of this movement.

William_Manning_CplusRA1-300.jpgThe tour starts at the Fire Station No. 9 in Avondale. After your breakfast at Sugar N Spice, step out side and notice the gleaming white concrete blocks that keep the building cool in the summer. The solar shades on the south side also help along with the concrete parking areas. The grounds have native and adaptive landscaping. The polished concrete floors are stained blue in the living quarters. We have used the community room for classes to pass the LEED AP exam. The only problem is that you have to evacuate if the house gets a call requiring all the trucks to leave! Green Cincinnati Education Advocacy hosted an educational event for the opening of the station. Mayor Mark Mallory came and addressed the attendees.

North_Avondale_School_-_2-300.jpgAs we travel south on Reading Road to the North Avondale Cincinnati Public School we’ll discuss how Ginny Frazier, a teacher at CPS who couldn’t catch a breath in the new schools CPS was building, partnered with Joel Stout, president of the local chapter of the U.S. Green Building Council, to convince CPS to build to LEED standards and along the way got legislation passed in Ohio to require all educational funds reach LEED standards. North Avondale has an active after school green mentoring program run by Ginny Frazier and her Alliance for Interconnection and Connectivity non-profit enviromental advocacy organization. Ohio Leads the Nation with 100 LEED-Certified Public Schools and Hundreds More in the Pipeline,“Ohio is the recognized nationwide leader in sustainable school design, with more than 300 total schools either registered or certified through LEED. On average, Ohio’s first 100 certified schools have been designed to use 35 percent less energy and an average of 37 percent less water than comparable buildings constructed and operated to traditional standards. In addition, these schools provide healthier indoor environments conducive to learning.”

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Would you pay $200,000 for this tiny house?, Green Building Marketing


The developer of Cincinnati’s first tiny houses is getting ready to start construction on the homes in Over-the-Rhine.

Brad Cooper, who launched Start Small Homes after he received a $100,000 grant from People’s Liberty, expects construction to begin soon on the two small homes. Cooper’s project explores tiny homes as a solution to affordable housing, working to create a market-rate solution for diversely affordable home ownership opportunities.

One of the homes will be sold at market rate, with a list price of $200,000. Going by the usable square footage, that’s about $690 per square foot.

But Cooper said it’s not fair to compare the tiny house’s price on the traditional per-square-foot measurement since it requires all of the infrastructure of a full-sized house.

The other home will be sold to a low-income household rate. Cooper said he is still working out the details on pricing for that home.

Cooper, who is a trained architect, originally wanted to price the homes at $70,000 each. The homes also were originally designed to be smaller with a total of 200 square feet of living space. But he still says at $200,000, a buyer would be getting the tiny home at a good value.

During events held throughout the summer, about 75 people have showed up to learn more about the tiny houses.

Each two-story tiny home has a kitchen and living space on the first floor complete with a refrigerator, butcher block counter and cabinets, and the second floor has a bathroom and the bedroom.

People’s Liberty, a philanthropic lab that invests directly in individuals, has helped Cooper through the process. Jake Hodesh, vice president of operations at People’s Liberty, said they have been working to understand all the processes that go along with building a tiny house.

“We’ve learned alongside Brad what it means to build a tiny home,” Hodesh said. “We’re investing in projects that haven’t been done before.”

The homes, located at 142 and 144 Peete St., will have solar panels and are designed to take advantage of passive cooling. Cooper expects utilities to cost about $50 per month.

Cooper doesn’t have additional sites for more tiny homes at this point, but he has learned ways to bring the prices down. By building more tiny houses at one time, as well as getting smaller lots or building multiple tiny homes on the same lot, he believes he would be able to bring prices down.

Demeropolis covers commercial real estate and development.

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Best Practices in Process Equipment Marketing – Short Courses for the Bulk Materials Handling Industry

(We love educational material. It’s getting rarer and rarer for universities to offer classes on industrial processes. They are usually left to teach theory and let the greenhorn learn on the job. We’re writing a size reduction systems article for ROCK PRODUCTS. If you have any resources we can use, please send them on.)

From the Bulk Inside newsletter Dec 7, 2015

Short-Courses-for-the-Bulk-Materials-Handling-Industry-300-1.jpgCHATHAM, KENT – A range of very popular and useful short courses designed specifically for the powder and
 bulk materials handling industry.

Our range of short courses is designed to equip delegates with the means to identify and overcome difficulties that may arise, saving time and increasing productivity.

Our experts’ in-depth knowledge as specialists in powders and bulk solids is complemented by their experience across all industries including, but not limited to, renewable energy, pharmaceuticals, process and chemical engineering, recycling, food processing and mining.

In order to meet Industry’s changing needs, we continually update the range of courses to reflect current trends, hence the introduction of 3 new courses this year.

The courses are all held at our site in Kent, on the University of Greenwich campus.

2016 Course calendar
2 – 3 Feb:    Advanced Course: Pneumatic Conveying System Design
4 Feb:    Rotary Valves; Design Selection and Operational Issues
10 Feb:    Electrostatics in Powder Handling
24 Feb:    Powder and Dust Containment in the Process Industry
9 March:    Network Security of Industrial Control Systems in the Process Industry  – ** new course
15 – 17 March:    Storage and Discharge of Powders and Bulk Materials; includes optional practical session
6 April:    Dust Explosions – How to Demonstrate DSEAR/ATEX Compliance
13 April:    Caking and Lump Formation in Powders and Bulk Solids
26 – 27 April:    Advanced Course: Design of Equipment for Storing and Discharging Bulk Materials
10 – 12 May:    Pneumatic Conveying of Bulk Materials; includes optional practical session
24 May:    Undesired De-blending and Separation in Processes and Equipment
7 – 8 June:    Introduction to the Processing of Dry Solid Materials  – **new course
28 – 29 June:    Measurement of the Properties and Bulk Behaviour of Particulate Materials
5 July:    Handling and Storage of Waste and Recycled Bulk Materials – **new course
11 – 13 Oct:    Overview of Particulate Handling Technology; includes optional practical session
22 – 24 Nov:    Pneumatic Conveying of Bulk Materials; includes optional practical session
13 – 14 Dec:   Biomass Handling, Feeding and Storage

For full course details, course fees and terms and conditions, please visit Discounts are available for group bookings and repeat attendances.

Enquiries and Bookings

• + 44 20 8331 8646

© The Wolfson Centre for Bulk Solids Handling Technology

This article is published by The Wolfson Centre for Bulk Solids Handling Technology
“Providing Cost-Effective Solutions to Industrial Problems”

The Wolfson Centre for Bulk Solids Handling Technology is part of the School of Engineering at The University of Greenwich at Medway, Kent, UK and has specialised in solving materials handling problems since 1973.  

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How can I convince my boss to send me to training? Process Equipment Marketing Best Practice

Thanks to Balluff, Sensortech 

Posted on by 

trainingWith responsibilities expanding, resources declining, and margins narrowing, companies today must scrutinize every dollar spent. Bad decisions are often based on bad data. An informed decision, on the other hand, can be defended in the light of the facts. In this article, we examine three misconceptions –  misconceptions which too often lead to poor decisions about training.

  1. If I train my people, they will leave.

In today’s companies where people change positions frequently, training is seen as a risky investment.  The correct perspective is seeing the risk involved in NOT training your people.  Do you really want your people making costly mistakes by the trial-and-error method of on-the-job training? Lack of training does not just affect the untrained person. Those that have been trained and are doing the job correctly often get pulled aside to explain procedures to the untrained. The bottom line is that people are going to be trained one way or another. What is the most efficient way to do this?

  1. I can’t afford the downtime to send my people to training.

Tools need to be sharpened.  This means they can’t be “productive” 100% of the time.  “Productivity” needs to be seen as a totally different thing from being “busy.”   Once a tool is sharpened, it is far more productive.  A dull tool can be “busy” 100 % of the time accomplishing nothing of value.  The correct perspective then is that you can’t afford the loss of productivity caused by a lack of training.

  1. All training offered out there is basically the same, so just take the cheapest one.

Training is not a one-way dump of information.  Training means that a change has taken place in a cognitive domain, an affective domain, or a psychomotor domain.  For automation companies, these three domains are intricately linked.  For example, it is not enough to just sit through a safety presentation:  you need to know the safety regulations (cognitive), you need to be passionate about why these are important (affective), and you need the skill necessary to implement these regulations by specifying, configuring, and integrating systems (psychomotor).

The best way to train in the psychomotor domain is through hands-on training.  Students learn skills best by practicing those skills.  For many companies who offer training, training is just a presentation of ideas without the necessary opportunity for participants to try anything for themselves. At Balluff, we have made a substantial investment in equipment, an investment in writing courseware properly, and an investment in training those who conduct the training with platform skills, adult learning skills, and teaching skills.  These investments make world-class, performance-based training available to our customers.

To see all that Balluff has to offer in Automation Training, click on our training web page link:

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FORECAST FOR 2016 – Construction Equipment Marketing


(The economy is booming, be sure you focus on the markets that are growing. Take Donald Trump’s advice, “Don’t get into an industry in decline.” Or don’t make the mistake we did, getting into Green Building Marketing right at the downturn. No problem, now we’re prepared. Chuck Lohre)

By Phillip Perry, The Electrical Distributor Magazine (TED) Dec 2016

“WE EXPECT 2016 WILL BE A GOOD YEAR, WITH INCREASED consumer spending driving economic growth,” said Sophia Koropeckyj, managing director of industry economics at the research firm Moody’s Analytics. Why the sunny outlook? Economists point to a number of conditions favoring businesses: Higher employment, lower consumer debt, greater credit availability, and trimmed gasoline prices all lead to a more robust American economy. All should do their part to help en – courage stronger growth over the coming 12 months.


Performance in the retail sector is a critical driver for the American economy in general—and one in which economists see an improving picture in 2016. “We expect core retail sales to grow 5.5% in 2016,” said Scott Hoyt, senior director of consumer economics for Moody’s Analytics. That growth rate is notably faster than the 4.2% rate anticipated when 2015 sales are finally tallied. The 2015 experience was slightly better than the 3.9% growth of 2014. If Moody’s Analytics is accurate in its forecast, businesses can rejoice, as the anticipated rate is not that far off the roughly 6% increases retailers commonly enjoyed during the robust decade of the 1990s—as well as the period they fondly remember just prior to the Great Recession. What will drive the anticipated retail sales increase? Primarily higher wages, fueled by the growing number of people gainfully employed.



Businesses depend on a healthy economy to support strong sales. And one of the most important drivers of that is a robust housing construction sector that employs more people and generates more disposable income. “The ever-tightening market for new homes will likely spur stronger construction activity in 2016,” said Sophia Koropeckyj, managing director of industry economics at Moody’s Analytics. Indeed, housing starts are expected to rise 29.5% for the year, a considerable improvement over the 14.5% figure expected for 2015 when final numbers are tallied. (The rate for 2014 was 5.8%.) Why the spike in construction? According to Koropeckyj, the nation’s inventory of new homes has been falling steadily to the point where builders are now expected to perceive solid economic benefits in gearing up into higher production. The decline in inventory over the past year came about as builders held back from constructing new homes, concerned that consumer demand had not met expectations. That demand, in turn, was soft because, said Koropeckyj, “many young families saddled with mountains of student debt were opting to continue renting.” Granted, some conditions will have to be met before the housing rebound occurs. “The tightening housing market by itself does not guarantee a resumption of singlefamily construction,” noted Koropeckyj. “Household debt burdens will still have to fall significantly before buyers of new homes start to return to the market in strength. Even so, the U.S. recovery, with some outside help from low gasoline prices and consequently low inflation, is pulling that date forward.” The expected housing rebound should have a related effect: Home prices are expected to increase by only 2.9% in 2016, a deceleration of the 6.3% expected for 2015.


Of special importance to all businesses is the performance by one subset of the larger corporate world: manufacturers. Any growth in that sector has a dramatic effect on employment—and therefore on the economy in general—because manufacturing is heavily dependent on a skilled labor force. It seems that manufacturers are looking ahead to a 2016 that will match or exceed what has been a reasonably good 2015. “Conditions are positive but not robust or booming,” said Tom Palisin, executive director of the Manufacturers’ Association ( “Manufacturers are doing slightly better than they were a year ago. They are reporting low to moderate growth, solid orders, and a good backlog.” Low energy prices are favorable for the sector. Looking to 2016, Palisin said, “Members are cautiously optimistic.” A telling indicator of that optimism is a new initiative to bolster the workforce. “One significant change is a move by many companies to invest more in their training budgets,” said Palisin, adding that manufacturers are doing so in response to a number of conditions: an improving economy, several years of cost cutting that has led to a lean workforce, and a lack of available skilled talent combined with low unemployment. “Employers now seem more eager to retain the employees they have by investing in training of their existing workforce,” Palisin added. That will translate into higher salaries and still more disposable income in consumers’ wallets. Manufacturers will be helped by a growing availability of credit, which has loosened considerably since the tight years of the Great Recession. “Rates are low and banks are willing to invest,” said Palisin. “However, there has not been much demand for commercial loans because many companies have sufficient cash on hand to finance their growth needs.” Others, he said, have delayed capital investment due to economic uncertainty and a tough regulatory environment.


The most important contributing factor to a more robust marketplace, said Koropeckyj, is the growing health of the labor force. “Wage gains are now materializing across a number of industries and regions,” she said, noting that consumers will have more disposable cash to spend. Moody’s reported that unemployment fell to 5.1% in late 2015, a full percentage point decline over the level 12 months previous and a rate nearly identical to the 5% economists believe represents a condition of “full employment.” “While there is still slack in the labor market, it is declining quickly,” said Scott Hoyt, senior director of consumer economics for Moody’s Analytics. “At some point in 2016 the labor market should become tight, which should translate into faster growth in wages and consumer spending.” Indeed, Moody’s expects the nation to reach full employment by mid-2016 and the average unemployment rate during the fourth quarter of that year to be 4.8%. Gains in employment nationwide have helped create a population more confident of the future – and therefore more prone to spend. “Consumers have been feeling reasonably well,” said Walter Simson, principal of Ventor Consulting. Economists expect consumer confidence to continue to rise over the coming 12 months in response to a brighter employment picture.


So just how good is “good” for 2016? That depends on how much consumers and businesses spend nationwide on goods and services. The faster the rise in that figure—the GDP—the healthier the economy. For 2016, Moody’s expects GDP to grow 3.25%. That’s considerably higher than the expected 2015 rate of 2.5%. The 2015 results, to be confirmed when the year’s sales numbers are tallied, were just slightly higher than 2014’s 2.43% growth rate. One big driver of the rise in GDP is expected to be an improving performance by large employers. Businesses of all sizes benefit when major corporations rack up healthy profits. Good earnings stimulate business expansion and an attendant investment in buildings and equipment. That generates still more business for suppliers, along with more employment and disposable income for consumers. In this area, again, the future looks rosy. “Corporate profit growth is expected to accelerate some 9.2% through 2016,” said Koropeckyj. That’s a considerable improvement over the results for 2015, when profits actually declined slightly as a result of the strong dollar (which weakened exports) and a decrease in energy revenues following a drop in commodity prices. Why the rebound? Moody’s is looking to a recovery in global economies, along with a diminished drag from the dollar, to help turn things around. Several factors, though, could cause a delay. “Our narrative rests on the assumption that wages and productivity will rise in lockstep,” said Koropeckyj. “But this may not hold. Productivity growth has been weak, allowing even modest wage gains to push unit labor costs higher.” Wage growth is likely to grow faster than productivity, she added, noting, “This would further compress margins and lower the outlook for corporate profits.”


Challenges remain. Businesses should keep an eye out for further developments in lingering issues such as the softening of European and Chinese economies, a volatile American stock market, and political gridlock in Washington. “Businesses prefer stability and consistency,” said Tom Palisin, executive director of the Manufacturers’ Association ( “Right now, we have anything but that.” Even so, signs point to continuing marketplace strength. “We think the economy should weather the current uncertainties,” said Hoyt. “A lot of our optimism centers on the strength in the labor markets.” A healthy jobs picture, then, should make all the difference in 2016. “Early in the year businesses should watch what is happening with wages,” said Hoyt. “If the labor market tightens as expected, that will lead to higher wages and more consumer spending.” 􀀀

Perry is a business journalist based in New York City and a three-time winner of the “Value to the Reader” award from the American Bar Association. Reach him at [email protected].

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Lohre Cincinnati Industrial NewsletterTips, Pointers, and News for Cincinnati-Area Industrial Leaders

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