Once again, business trips led me to Florida and Michigan. A recent Thursday and Friday were spent in Lake Buena Vista, FL, and on Monday I was back at the airport at dawn for my flight to Detroit.

While in Florida, I had the opportunity to see some new products showcased, and also to drive a racecar. The product demonstrations were interesting, and the drive frightening, but I made it home alive (as did the spectators), so it all worked out.

Then I went to Sterling Heights, MI, to seeQuality’s2008 Plant of the Year. The Van Dyke Transmission Plant of Ford Motor Co. aims to be the most advanced and the most cost and environmentally beneficial transmission plant in the world today. So while Michigan may be experiencing an economic slowdown, this is certainly not affecting everyone equally. (To learn more, see the management article inQualitythis month.)

For information on how you can improve your processes-and perhaps become a future Plant of the Year-our firstQualityNDT conference also is on its way. It will be held at the Marriott Suites Clearwater Beach on Sand Key, Clearwater, FL, April 28 to May 1, in conjunction with theQualityMeasurement Conference 2008 (formerly MMCW), now in its 10th year.

The program is a two-day workshop featuring 50-minute presentations. In addition, suppliers will showcase their products and services through tabletop exhibits. TheQualityNDT Conference will have workshops and presentations about technology advancements, case studies and operational management concepts related to a myriad of NDT topics, including in-line NDT, basic NDT training for the shop floor, eddy current testing, ultrasonic inspection, crack and weld testing and inspection, X-ray inspection and computed tomography, in-line leak testing strategies, using UV inspection, thickness measurement, flaw detection, and aerospace test and inspection strategies.

Those interested in aerospace also have an opportunity for a behind-the-scenes tour of quality in action at Lockheed Martin on May 1. Lockheed Martin’s MS2 Tactical Systems facility in Oldsmar, FL, provides full-service manufacturing to Department of Defense design agents across the United States. Their full-service manufacturing includes producibility and testability evaluations for their customers and design agents, supply chain management, material requirements planning, electronic manufacturing and testing, Environmental Stress Screening (ESS) and life cycle support.

For more information, visit http://bnpevents.com/NDT.

This month’s NDT section covers magnetic particle inspection, flaw detection, videoscopes, and computed tomography, along with a leak testing showcase, news, products and two application articles. Visit www.ndtmag.com to learn more.

Next month will bring liquid penetrant testing, portable imaging and eddy current, along with radiography and tensile testing. If you would like to contribute to NDT in the future, please send me an e-mail at [email protected].

Of course, any offers to sponsor my fledgling racecar career would also be appreciated.