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Kelso Technologies Inc. has completed the development of its new tank car bottom outlet valve (BOV) featuring ceramic components that are designed to increase valve life and reliability. Kelso received approval from the Association of American Railroads for the field service trials of the BOV design. The ceramic BOV is an evolution of the company's stainless steel design currently in service trials. Most general service tank cars carrying hazardous or nonhazardous commodities are equipped with a BOV through which the tank car is emptied. Current valve designs utilizing stainless steel components have "well-known shortcomings" when the commodity is abrasive or has corrosive characteristics, Kelso officials said in a press release.Phoenix Contact USA has entered into a strategic partnership with exida LLC to provide functional safety and cyber security assessments. Through the partnership, exida will provide Phoenix Contact with an extensive assessment offering aimed at helping customers improve their business. exida specializes in recognizing and implementing solutions to meet the latest industry standards for mitigating risks, Phoenix Contact officials said in a press release.The National Railroad Construction and Maintenance Association (NRC) appointed Rick Ebersold to temporarily serve on the organization's board. Ebersold is president of Herzog Services Inc., which he joined in 1973. He started out as the company's first full-time foreman, NRC officials said in a press release. Ebersold previously served as the association's secretary-treasurer, vice chairman, and chairman. His new term on the board will end Dec. 31, 2016.Parsons has appointed Michael Johnson as president of its infrastructure business unit. He takes over for Donald Graul, who has held the position on an interim basis and will continue his role as president of Parsons' construction business unit. The infrastructure unit provides full-service engineering and management services in the rail and transit, aviation, transportation-related systems, and bridge and tunnel markets. Johnson will be responsible for the unit's worldwide operations in his new role. He has more than 25 years of experience with Parsons and has held a succession of positions with increasing responsibilities.