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The Center for Innovative Grouting Materials and Technology (CIGMAT) Research Center was established in 1994 at the University of Houston, Houston TX. CIGMAT’s goals are to foster improved understanding of grouting and coating materials under various applications. Also of interest are other competing and complementary materials and technologies to grouting and coatings used in the construction and rehabilitation of civil infrastructure and offshore pipelines.

Staking University announces the release of its utility locator training video Locating Unlimited. This 113-minute video focuses on two concepts: how locating instruments work and how to operate locating instruments. By covering those two concepts, without dependence on a particular brand of equipment, the video is a timeless resource of information about locating pipes and cables.

For horizontal directional drilling, the first “D” in the acronym HDD is the key to the success of this versatile trenchless technology -- without the directional capability, HDD could never have achieved the impact in utility construction that it has over the last 20-plus years.

Failing sanitary sewer systems are confronting American cities of all sizes. Many systems are operating beyond capacity and old underground infrastructure is crumbling with infiltration causing overflows following heavy rains and leaking sewage contaminating groundwater. Many systems are operating under U.S. Environmental Protection Agency consent decrees in which customers ultimately pay for correcting serious deficiencies.

Europe, like the United States, is struggling to upgrade its infrastructure. In Poland, for example, over 1,000 wastewater treatment plants need to be constructed or upgraded in order to meet European standards which take effect in 2015. Warsaw, the capital and largest city in Poland, has many planned upgrades, including a recent two-year-long project which will provide added capacity and decrease overflows.

The Plastics Pipe Institute (PPI) has completed its analysis on the potential effects of disinfectants on potable water supply polyethylene (PE) pipe. The findings are available at http://www.janalab.com/pdf/disinfection.pdf.

Louis Keller, 87, of Edgeley, ND, died July 11. Keller and his brother, Cyril, invented the skid-steer loader, which in 1958 was bought by the Melroe Manufacturing Co., Gwinner, ND, which would later become the Bobcat Co. More than 750,000 Bobcat skid-steer loaders have been produced.

The Associated General Contractors of America (AGCA) announced August 31 that according to its analysis of federal employment data, construction jobs dropped in 276 out of 337 metro areas between July 2009 and 2010. Chicago and Flagstaff, Arizona lost the most jobs, while Prince Georges-Calvert-Charles counties, MD and Eau Claire, Wisconsin topped the list of areas adding jobs.

Case Construction Equipment announced August 30 that it will be a platinum-level sponsor of the 16th Annual National Gas Rodeo. The competition will be held Sept. 17-18, 2010, in Fairview Heights, Ill. Case will be the exclusive provider of construction equipment for the event, which includes loader/backhoes and compact excavators.

The Big Texas Road Show, a seven-stop tour of Ditch Witch® dealerships in Texas, wrapped up in June after having showcased a wide range of Ditch Witch equipment to approximately 800 customers and potential customers.