Westinghouse Air Brake Technologies Corporation (WAB) has been in business since 1869. Now it operates as Wabtec Corporation, which was created in 2009 with the merger of Westinghouse Air Brake Company and MotivePower Industries Inc. In the early days, George Westinghouse showed potential customers in the railroad industry the first air braking system for railcars. Three years later, he invented the first automatic air braking system, which would engage if a railcar got separated from the train. The first installation of this innovative technology was in 1872 on a Pennsylvania Railroad passenger train. The rest is a history of growth. According to the company, its third quarter of 2013 saw sales grow 7.5% to $631.4 million, while earnings grew an impressive 17.4%. With virtually every railcar in North America using some of the companys products, its strongest growth in the most recent quarter was in remanufacturing, overhauling, and build services. One interesting thing about this business is that its not just a domestic operation. The company operates in more than 19 countries and in the first three months of 2013, 49% of its total revenues came from customers outside the U.S. The latest trend in the railway industry is for more green (i.e. environmentally friendly) locomotives. The company recently signed a $63.0-million contract to sell new engines that meet Tier 4 emission standards (an 85% reduction in diesel particulate emissions and 75% reduction in mono-nitrogen oxide emissions compared to current models) to Metrolinx, a government agency in Ontario, Canada. According to the company, the locomotives will be designed and built at its Boise, Idaho facility, with delivery expected in 2016. Metrolinx previously gave the company an order to repower 11 locomotives with the new engines.

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