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Eaton Corp. building solar for "show and tell," new jobs in western PA

Eaton Corporation has two solar installations underway in western Pennsylvania, and has recently completed a third to power its own facilities, provide an opportunity for research and development and "help spread the solar message," says Dan Carnovale, a company executive.
 
Construction has just begun on a 1.3-megawatt solar array adjacent to Eaton's 500,000-square-foot plant in Vanport Township in Beaver County. The project, which will be the largest in western Pennsylvania, will incorporate more than 10,000 solar panels, Eaton's solar inverters and the heavy-duty circuit breakers manufactured at the plant.  When complete, the installation will help power the factory.
 
A much smaller, 250-kilowatt rooftop installation is being built atop Eaton's Moon Township building, headquarters for the company's electrical group, which Carnovale notes accounted for half of the company's $16 billion in 2011 sales. In Warrendale, Eaton has built a small under-50-kilowatt demonstration facility, including vehicle chargers, for testing and as a "show and tell kind of thing," says Carnovale. "The point is to do some testing and demonstrate these [products] that we offer."
 
Eaton, based in Cleveland, has a Pennsylvania workforce of about 2,000, out of 73,000 worldwide. Carnovale expects that the large Vanport Township array will bring with it several ongoing maintenance and monitoring jobs.
 
Source: Daniel Carnovale, Eaton Corp.
Writer: Elise Vider

Pittsburgh hiring: Nearly 300 jobs at Industrial Scientific, Highmark, Bayer, Sprout Fund, more

Pop City's weekly roundup of hiring in Pittsburgh features a wide range of jobs at Industrial Scientific, Highmark, Bayer, the Allegheny Conference, The Sprout Fund, The Pittsburgh Foundation and Landesberg Design.
 
Industrial Scientific in Pittsburgh has more than 40 job openings in Pittsburgh. Positions range from engineering, manufacturing, product management, service operations, software development, supply chain and customer service.  
 
Highmark has 166 jobs posted for a diverse range of positions in IT, business analyst, management, managed care, finance and accounting, marketing, purchasing and professional staff.
 
Bayer currently has eight jobs openings in the areas of project manager mergers and acquisitions, IT Analyst, senior human resources, and compensation and cost specialists.  
 
The Allegheny Conference is looking for a Workplace project manager. The position provides research, communications and direct project support to the Conference’s Workplace program. 
 
The Sprout Fund is hiring a development officer, a new full-time position that will plan, manage, and execute all of Sprout’s fundraising efforts for its Annual Campaign, with a principal focus and responsibility on revenue received from individual donors and individually-directed gifts from companies and personal/family foundations.

The Pittsburgh Foundation is hiring a development officer to work with other members of the team to attract, cultivate and maintain strong relationships with new donors and current donors for purposes of accomplishing the donor’s philanthropic objectives as well as building the foundation’s assets.

Landesberg Design is seeking a graphic designer for its Pittsburgh office. The company is considering candidates with 3 to 10 years of experience in print and web. Inventive, articulate, perceptive, playful, typographically sensitive, culturally literate. 

WYEP is looking for a Morning Mix Co-Host/Digital Services Coordinator for 91.3 WYEP to assist in hosting a weekday morning show from 6 to 10 a.m. and is responsible for the direction and implementation of all social and interactive media content. This is a full-time position.
 
Check out previous job listings in Pop City.

Writer: Deb Smit

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Who's hiring in Pittsburgh? American Eagle, Matrix Solutions, GTECH

Each week Pop City posts the latest job openings in the region. Businesses and companies are invited to send their career postings to debrsmit@gmail.com.
 
American Eagle Outfitters has 18 job openings at its corporate office in the South Side. Positions range from merchandisers and buyers to positions in marketing, finance, human resources, planning and allocation, graphic design and IT.

Matrix Solutions is has three openings: software developer, customer support manager and senior sales executive. As a provider of sales strategy management software for the media sales industry, Matrix is in business to meet the unique advertising demands of newspapers, TV stations, radio and cable. 

AT&T has openings for 26 people in Pittsburgh. While many of the positions are for full and part-time retail sales consultants, AT&T is seeking those with experience or degrees in engineering, finance, and management. Among the jobs is a Director Technology and Strategy, which requires at least 10+ years of relevant experience. 

GTECH is hiring an office manager to provide administrative, marketing, and bookkeeping support.  The position entails a combination of administrative duties as well as marketing tasks. Energetic personalities with a good sense of humor who can work in a fast-paced environment are sought.
 
One of Pittsburgh’s premier sustainable initiatives, the nonprofit aims to help Pittsburgh grow by transforming vacant land, connecting people to the green economy, and using green strategies to provide economic and community development opportunities.

Let’s Move Pittsburgh is looking for a program director to lead its Southwestern Pennsylvania chapter. Modeled after First Lady Michelle Obama’s Lets Move! Campaign, the local chapter is a collaboration of organizations here committed to addressing childhood obesity.

The program director reports directly to the executive director of Phipps Conservancy and Botanical Garden.  Prospective candidates should have a bachelor’s degree in a health-related field, master’s degree preferred.

To see previous postings for ShowClix, Deep Local, Google and more, go here.

Source: AE, ATT&T, GTECH, Matrix Solutions, Phipps
Writer: Deb Smit

Photo of AEO in the South Side courtesy of AEO

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Pittsburgh hiring: ShowClix, DeepLocal, Pitt and Chorus Call post openings

Here's a roundup of companies hiring this week in Pittsburgh: ShowClix, Deeplocal, Chorus Call, Pitt’s Swanson School of Engineering, Gigapan, and the Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy. 
 
ShowClix is hiring seven and is on the lookout for a software engineering intern. 
 
Positions include mobile software engineer, front end software engineer, applications engineer, account manager, account executive and a customer care rep. 
 
ShowClix is the region’s premiere online ticketing company, working with venues and performers to offer the latest software and apps for online ticket sales.
 
Deeplocal is hiring a programmer/software engineer and a creative to join their team, someone who can work with clients, engineers and designers and has excellent communication skills. 
 
With Nathan Martin at the helm, the company has spent the last 10 years redefining the world of media through its “gutter technologies,” creating real world experiences that blur the boundary between technologies, digital space and the human spirit.
 
Chorus Call has three jobs in Pittsburgh for an audio conference specialist, video conference specialist and software engineer. The company, based in Monroeville, is raising the bar on video and audio teleconferencing technologies.
 
Pitt’s Swanson School of Engineering is posting nine jobs for faculty positions. Jobs are in the Center for Energy, Center for Medical Improvement, Chemical and Petroleum Engineering, Electrical and Computer Engineering and Mechanical Engineering and Material Sciences.
 
Gigpan is hiring a web developer and QA engineer for its Pittsburgh satellite office at the CreateLab at CMU. 
 
Gigapan Systems makes interactive high-resolution imaging, hardware and digital services products for creating and displaying images in large formats. The company is based in Portland and serves customers like National Geographic, Major League Baseball, the BBC, and the Discovery Channel.
 
And finally, Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy is looking for a full time marketing manager. Job seekers should Email info@pittsburghparks.org.
 
Writer: Deb Smit

And from previous weeks...

Google is hiring for a variety of technical positions, engineers all, including software engineers, data scientists and evaluators, product managers, system engineers and technical program managers. Also a human resources business partner.

PNC is posting 340+ jobs across all sectors, everything from mortgage and technical specialists to business bankers and systems analysts. 

Sierra w/o Wires reports this week the hiring of eight people, everything from experienced engineers to an entry level support analyst. 

PNC is posting 340+ jobs across all sectors, everything from mortgage and technical specialists to business bankers and systems analysts. 
 
Aquion Energy is hiring more than 20 people including a director of research and development. In fact, the company, which plans to establish a manufacturing center in Pittsburgh, is always on the lookout for intelligent, committed innovative thinkers to join their world-class team of scientists, engineers and business people. 
 
Avere Systems, developers of high performance storage solutions for data enterprise centers, is at 75 and continues to grow. The company has 10 job openings including: product marketing manager, technical writer, regional sales manager, inside sales rep and various engineers. 
 
The Pittsburgh headquarter of ANSYS in Canonsburg is always hiring, the company reports. Currently the developer of engineering simulation software has more than a dozen postings for its home office, including software developers, engineers and human resources.

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Pittsburgh's Sierra w/o Wires, the IT company for IT companies, hiring

Sierra w/o Wires is a fast-growing company that has gone from a handful of people to 26 employees since it opened its doors officially in 2006.
 
With offices in Robinson, the firm has gained traction in 34 states and four countries as an IT company for IT companies. Clients range from small non-profits to billion dollar organizations who rely on Sierra’s “cloud team” to streamline and improve operational efficiencies, reliability and security.
 
With current revenues of $4.5 million, Sierra projects a growth rate of 25% going forward and expects to hire eight additional employees this year. 
 
It’s all through word-of-mouth referrals, insists CEO Bruce Freshwater. Freshwater worked for the U.S. Airforce and Alyeska Pipeline before starting Sierra, which had a few starts beginning in 2003 under several different names before morphing into the present day company. 
 
A company that embraces personal marketing through a strong social media presence—Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn—as well as an open culture that offers “flex” time and a casual dress code, Sierra’s success has been rewarded with a number of accolades.
 
The company was named 2012 PA Technology Company of the Year and has received several DATA (Design, Technology and Art) nominations from the Pittsburgh Technology Council, as well as a nod in the Tech 50.  
 
The firm is a family affair of sorts, admits Freshwater, father of four. His wife Stacy is the company CFO. The company was named for his younger daughter, Sierra. 
 
“Our big push for last year is custom portal solutions, anything you need on a web interface for your business. whether a scheduling site or billing solution, we can take care of it,” says Freshwater.
 
Source: Bruce Freshwater, Sierra w/o Wires
Writer: Deb Smit

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The robotic future is here: Thanks to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania is second behind only California

An online survey of robotic start-ups companies finds that Pennsylvania has one of the largest such clusters in the world, right up there with  Silicon Valley, Boston, Tokyo and Stockholm. In fact, PA ranks second, with 11 robotics startups, behind California (17)
 
Writing on the Robot Report, a blog that covers "everything robotic," editor/publisher Frank Tobe reports that most of the concentration is around Pittsburgh which, like the other clusters "correspond with the locations of notable government or university sponsored robotics research facilities. Each of those areas have ongoing entrepreneurial assistance programs for technology projects and provide nurturing and social get-togethers with prospective investors and fellow inventors and roboticists."
 
The Robot Report identified 130 start-up companies, defined as a company "established to develop a concept or product or robotic-related services for sale but doesn't yet have it all together. They have established a business and are in motion towards their goals but haven’t made any sales or aren't fully funded or haven't finished developing the product."
 
Among the companies on the Robot Report list are: Astrobiotic Technology,  Bird Brain Technologies, Blue Belt Technologies,  Bossa Nova Concepts,  Butterfly Haptics,  Carnegie Robotics, Interbots, Origami Robotics, all in Pittsburgh; Neya Systems in Wexford, Humanistic Robots in Bristol and KMel Robotics in Philadelphia.
 
Source: The Robot Report
Writer: Elise Vider
 
 

Tiversa buys building in downtown Pittsburgh and launches a music division, hiring

When it comes to the business of security, owning the building you work in is critical, says Robert Boback.

The company's CEO is moving Tiversa, a homegrown P2P intelligence services company, to downtown Pittsburgh and doubling in size from 25 to 50 people this year.

It's just the beginning of exciting developments to come for the former Cranberry firm. Tiversa provides patented technologies to security-driven businesses and government entities--think Goldman Sachs and the FBI--keeping the most sensitive of online information secure. 
 
The company purchased the 606 Liberty building, near PNC and the Fairmont, for $2.6 million and plans to use 25,000 square feet of the 48,000 square-feet of space to grow the  four separate businesses: government, enterprise, consumer applications and identity theft protection and—a twist—a media relations business that is attracting famous artists in the recording industry.
 
The new business, called Dreya, will provide artists with information to help them identify their fan-base, pinpointing geographical areas where they are most popular, which will in turn help them market themselves and tour more efficiently. It’s information that has become unattainable in this age of digital downloading, says Boback.
 
 “This is the most exciting side of the business,” says Boback. “We’re in ongoing discussions with multiple celebrities, very well known people. We can’t reveal anything yet.” 
 
It won’t be the first time Tiversa has surfaced on the national radar. Just last year Tiversa was conducting investigative searches for U.S. agencies when it uncovered some key evidence on WikiLeaks.  In March of 2009, Tiversa discovered a security breach involving compromised blueprints of President Obama’s helicopter.
 
Founded in 2003 by Boback, CEO, and partner Sam Hopkins, who recently retired, Tiversa has managed its growth with only one round of funding. The firm has additional consultants in DC and Los Angeles. 
 
Hires will be in the area of engineers and administrative and finance.
 
In file sharing world, we don’t encounter competition, says Boback. We have 23 patents issued and 70 still pending, a patent strategy that gives us competition-proof positioning.
 
Source: Robert Boback, Tiversa
Writer: Deb Smit

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Growth in mobile has Pittsburgh's Branding Brand expanding, hiring

The future is mobile. To survive we need an effective tool that connects us with the consumer revolution. In other words, a mobile phone, says Branding Brand CEO Chris Mason.
 
Founded in 2008, the South Side company has grown from three CMU friends and grads--Chris Mason, Joey Rahimi and Christina Koshzow--to 62 people today. The expansive growth is credited, in part, to the company's success in mobile app and website development.
 
It was Dicks Sporting Goods that gave Branding Brands an opportunity to show the world what it could do in the emerging social media and mobile space. Today clients are local, national and international, including Sephora, American Eagle and GNC. 
 
Nearly 25% of all the commerce coming to a company’s website today is through the mobile phone. Our growth is a reflection of confidence in Branding Brand’s ability to successfully connect with an important segment of the buying population through mobile and social media, says Mason.

Branding Brand recently moved into a new space, 14,000 square feet near the Birmingham Bridge, below Schell Games, in a former pool hall. In addition to a soon-to-be-announced round of funding, the company is in hiring mode and plans to be up to 70 people soon.
 
There are job openings in several areas including software engineering, account managers, project managers and technical writing, says Mason. 
 
In addition to retail, Branding Brand is talking with the transit sector about mobile needs for subway systems. A new billboard campaign is also driving growth.
 
Being in Pittsburgh gives us a competitive edge, Mason says. The local universities offer access to talented computer science graduates. 
 
Retailers used to think of the consumer in a compartmentalized sense, says Mason. Business was seen as being generated by the store, catalogues and online store. 
 
Mobile creates ubiquity. It has that Apple effect of just working, Mason says. This translates to billions of dollars going through mobile POS systems. These seamless experiences are part of what’s changing the world. 
 
“Everyone who is slow to the gate will suffer,” he adds. 
 
Source: Chris Mason, Branding Brand
Writer: Debra Smit
 

Hormann Flexon opens door to at least 35 new jobs with new Washington County plant

The door is open to double the jobs at a new plant under construction in Burgettstown, near the Ohio border.
 
Hörmann Flexon,  a huge German door manufacturer, broke ground earlier this month on a 68,000-square-foot facility at Starpointe Business Park. Alice Permigiani, the company's marketing director, says the state-of-the-art plant will open next summer and will eventually employ about 65, up from 30 at Hörmann's Leetsdale plant, which will close. The new plant could eventually grow as large as 220,000 square feet, accommodating a workforce of 100.
 
Gov. Tom Corbett spoke at the July 9 groundbreaking, along with Washington County Commissioner Lawrence O. Maggi who the Pittsburgh Business Times quoted as noting, "People think we're ground zero here for oil and gas, but we want to be ground zero for manufacturing as well."
 
August Hörmann began making steel doors in his metalworking shop in Germany before World War II. Today the company is a fourth-generation family business with operations around the world. In 2007, Hörmann acquired Flexon, a maker of industrial doors and related products in Leetsdale since 1979.
 
Hörmann Flexon's Pennsylvania operation manufactures high-perfomance industrial and commercial doors, Permigiani says. Last year, the company implemented a new visual management program that has boosted productivity by 30 percent. Earlier this year, the company rolled out four, new, high-speed, roll-up doors designed to meet the needs of specialized industries, including clean rooms, coolers and food processing areas.
 
Source: Alice Permigiani, Hörmann Flexon
Writer: Elise Vider

New Castle's Epiphany towards a solar solution to fracking waste

One environmental challenge of extracting natural gas from the Marcellus Shale has been treatment of the "flowback water" that rises to the surface during the fracking process.
 
Now CONSOL Energy,  based in Pittsburgh, has made an initial $500,000 investment to acquire a minority stake in Epiphany Solar Water Systems, a small company in New Castle. CONSOL will also provide one of its Marcellus gas well locations in Greene County to test Epiphany's proprietary, solar-powered, water purification system. Epiphany has doubled its staff to 10 to accommodate the project.
 
"During this pilot test," says Tom Joseph, Epiphany's founder and CEO, "Epiphany will work to determine the potential of our technology to lower the cost of energy needed to process wastewater by using alternative energy, reduce the risk of waste disposal by processing water on-site and recovering the resultant water, salt, minerals and disposable waste materials, minimize the volume of materials that must be transported off-site for safe disposal, and reduce the amount of truck traffic associated with this aspect of development."
 
"This is the tip of the iceberg," says Epiphany's Jaclene Joseph. "Although huge in terms of specific industry potential, Epiphany's technology is applicable to virtually all facets of water supply regardless of industry."
 
Founded in 2009, Epiphany's goal is to make solar cost-competitive with conventionally powered water purification systems. Epiphany also runs Project Eviive, a non-profit whose mission is to provide water desalination/purification systems throughout the developing world.
 
"Growth in the commercial sector," says Joseph, "will allow funding of units for deployment to underserved, underdeveloped nations."
 
Source: Jaclene Joseph, Epiphany Solar Water Systems
Writer: Elise Vider
 
 

Seegrid's business is booming, hiring 20-30 this year; Castle Co-Packers expands

Seegrid’s CEO Anthony Horbal can’t say enough about the company’s accelerating trajectory and commitment to Pittsburgh.
 
“In talking with friends in business, my observation is that the economy is far better in the U.S. than the media would lead us to believe,” says Horbal. “From Seegrid’s perspective, we have sold more machines this year than in the last two to three years combined.”
 
The developer and manufacturer of industrial forklifts expects to add 20 to 30 people this year, bringing the total company to between 90 and 100 people. Seegrid is looking to hire electrical, mechanical and software engineers and plans to expand its sales force. Truck drivers are also in demand.
 
Driving growth is a partnership with Raymond Corp., a subsidiary of Toyota, and another European partner, two of the largest manufacturers worldwide of industrial trucks, tractors, forklifts and pallet jacks, machinery that is used indoors, often in warehouse settings.
 
The company also hopes to establish a presence in Asia and possibly China, but more hiring needs to take place first, Horbal says.  The company will be shipping to three continents out of Pittsburgh. 
 
Founded in 2003, Seegrid’s robotic technology was developed by Dr. Hans Moravec, a professor at CMU, considered a godfather of artificial intelligence.  The company remains committed to Pittsburgh.  
 
“The point is we have to do more to invest in ourselves globally here,” says Horbal. “We have to feed the fires that are burning in the local economy and keep the jobs here.”
 
The biggest challenge is finding enough good workers, he adds. It’s a systemic issue that goes back to how we educate students. To address this, Seegrid is supporting STEM (science, math, technology and engineering) curriculums in schools and has begun offering a scholarship to students pursuing an education in robotics.
 
In other business growth, Castle Co-Packers has purchased the former Le-Nature’s plant in Latrobe. The company reportedly paid Giant Eagle subsidiary Chestnut Ridge Beverage Co. $3.4 million for the property. 
 
The 230,000-square-foot, seven-acre property will be the company’s second beverage bottling plant. It recently expanded a similar-sized plant in New Kensington, said Brian Dworkin, president of Castle Co-Packers.
 
Castle Co-Packers, at 122 people, will add 10 to 15 new staff to Latrobe. The New Kensington plant will began making vintage sodas, including Boylan Birch Beer.
 
Source: Anthony Horbal, Seegrid; Brian Dworkin, Castle Co-Packers 
Writer: Deb Smit

Johnstown's Concurrent Technologies Corporation adding dozens of jobs thanks to large Navy contract

Concurrent Technologies Corporation (CTC) has landed a five-year defense contract to provide sophisticated communications systems for the Navy. The $230 million contract, awarded to CTC and three other organizations, will involve CTC’s experts and labs in Johnstown and could add more than 60 high-tech jobs at the company nationwide over the next six to 12 months, says Lou Mondello, program director for CTC's Special Missions Solutions.
 
The overall project is to provide “Naval Networking and Joint Base Services” for the U.S. Space and Naval Warfare Systems Center Atlantic in Charleston, South Carolina.The center is one of three major Navy acquisition commands, delivering high-end information technology products and services to naval fleets and other Defense Department stakeholders.
 
CTC’s role willinclude fabrication and/or materials evaluation and testing, which will involve experts and labs in Johnstown.  Also, CTC will support the Navy’s information dominance and cyber strategy initiatives by providing experts in Command, Control, Communications, Computers, Combat Systems, Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance [or C5ISR, as the military calls it],” says Mondello.
 
CTC is a non-profit organization whose mission is to undertake applied scientific research and development activities in the public interest. The company was founded in 1987 as Metalworking Technology Inc., a subsidiary of the University of Pittsburgh Trust. It became CTC in 1992 and became independent of the University of Pittsburgh Trust in 1994. Today CTC employs more than 1,400 at offices throughout the U.S. and Europe.

The other three awardees are General Dynamics Information Technology, Scientific Research Corp., and Science Applications International Corp. 

Source: Lou Mondello, Concurrent Technologies Corporation
Writer: Elise Vider
 


Pittsburgh hiring and funding: Invivodata adds jobs, Cohera Medical raises $8.4M

South Side Pittsburgh-based Invivodata is expanding, adding 28,000 square-feet of space to its office in the Commerce Court building in Station Square. Hiring is underway.

The rapidly growing tech company delivers scientific consulting and direct-from-the-patient data collection services to the global pharmaceutical and medical device industry. 

In other regional job and venture capital news:

*Cohera Medical has raised $8.4 million from private investors in a series D round to support clinical trials for its TissueGlu product in the U.S. as well as the development of several new products in the pipeline.

Net Health Systems in the Strip, a provider of clinical information systems for the rapidly growing field of wound care, is hiring following the news of a significant investment from Spectrum Equity. Net Health declined to offer specifics on the round of funding.

Aquion Energy’s plans to establish a state-of-the-art manufacturing center in Pittsburgh advanced this month with the help of $15 million in venture funding from Horizon Technology Finance Corp. and Silicon Valley Bank. 

Lucas System, Inc., a provider of voice-directed logistics solution assisting retailers, wholesale distributors and manufacturers is hiring software support engineers, project managers, customer support managers and software engineers.

Since 2008, its revenues have grown more than 50 percent as it has added new marquee customers, created partnerships with leading supply chain and warehouse management system providers, and established an international presence in Europe and the Pacific Rim.

Hormann Flexon, LLC, German-based manufacturer of high-performance, industrial doors, is building a 68,000 square-foot facility in Washington County in the Starpoint Business Park near Burgettstown. Construction is expected to begin in late summer 2013. The company will hire about 100 people to start. 

The facility has room to eventually expand to 220,000 square feet. Hormann Group employs more than 6,000 employees worldwide and had sales of more than $1.2 billion last year.

* Audio-visual company Mendtronix Inc. and its subsidiary, Projector Doctor, announced it would open a facility in Latrobe that would employ at least 25 workers. The 15,000-square-foot facility would have a warehouse and repair shop for digital signs, projectors and kiosks serving the New York, Chicago and St. Louis markets. Mendtronix has offices in Atlanta and San Diego.

Newton Consulting, a provider of information technology and human resources management consulting services, has hired five new employees. The company has grown from 25 to 61 people in the last few years. 

* Smart grid technology company BPL Global has opened an office in India as part of the company's on-going efforts to serve the global smart grid market.

Source: Invivodata, Aquion Energy, Hormann Flexon, Mendtronix, Lucas Systems and BPL Global
Writer: Deb Smit

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NAS picks Pittsburgh as pilot site for Science & Engineering Program focusing on energy

Pittsburgh was selected as the pilot site for a unique Science & Engineering Ambassador Program--with an initial focus on energy--by the National Academy of Sciences and the National Academy of Engineering.
 
The region was chosen because of its reputation as the center for energy debate over coal, natural gas, nuclear, solar and wind power. Another strength is some of the nation's top scientists, engineers and universities are located here; the region also has a strong network of museums and other cultural outlets.
 
The program's stated goal is to raise scientific awareness around energy issues. From there it will expand to address technology and medicine in an effort to close the gap between the public's lack of scientific understanding and scientists who are unable or unwilling to share their research with the public.
 
The project also hopes to make teachers, business leaders and members of the local media comfortable in discussing and explaining energy topics and assessing the validity of others' claims and conclusions.
 
"Great engineers and scientists worked hard to build our region's energy innovation economy," says Christina Gabriel, president of the region's University of Energy Partnership.  "The more broadly we can share their inspiration with all of our region's citizens, the more successful we will be in meeting the nation's newest energy transition challenge."
 
Gabriel is one of several ambassadors appointed to the project. The ambassadors include two CMU and two University of Pittsburgh professors as well as Kathryn Jackson, chief technology officer and senior vice president of Westinghouse Electric Co. Two younger scientists or graduate students will be recruited as well. 
 
Source: Christina Gabriel, NAS and NAE
Writer: Debra Smit
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TechShop bringing industrial tools to Pittsburgh's tinkerers and entreprenuers

TechShop, the perfect father's day gift for the man who doesn't have everything as in powerful, industrial-grade tools.
 
The Menlo Park-based workshop is coming to Pittsburgh, bringing with it a playground of heavy duty tools for artists, craftspeople and entrepreneurs of all genders. If you've ever wanted to try 3-D printing, a milling machine or a laser cutter, here's your chance.
 
"It's for everybody," says Mark Hatch, CEO who has seen everyone from fashion designers to musicians launch companies from the shop. "Sixty-four percent of all Americans want to make something for themselves. Everyone hangs together and makes things."
 
Membership-based, TechShop allows clients to pay for a short-term project or longer. Members gain access to equipment and computer-controlled tools, educational training programs and the ability to interact with other builders, artisans and entrepreneurs.   
 
An accomplished musician from Detroit designed and made his own string bass. An young female entrepreneur launched a unique cupcake business from her time at TechShop.
 
TechShop is looking for 20,000 square feet of space in the East End. A grant from DARPA will provide 300 free memberships plus training to veterans as well. 
 
"Right now we're at a place where the amateur can learn to produce master quality work in a very short time," says Hatch. "It's always good time to learn a skill that leads to a vocation."
 
Listen to TechShop member stories.
 
Source: Mark Hatch, TechShop
Writer: Deb Smit

Image courtesy of TechShop
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