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San Diego, CA, United States

Solar Turbines Incorporated, a wholly owned subsidiary of Caterpillar Inc., designs and manufactures industrial gas turbines for on- and off-shore electrical power generation, for marine propulsion and for producing, processing and transporting natural gas and oil. Solar Turbines is one of the world's leading producers of industrial gas turbines up to 30,000 horsepower . There are more than 13,900 Solar Turbines gas turbine systems installed in 98 countries worldwide that have collectively logged more than 1.7 billion hours of use.Founded in San Diego, California, United States in 1927 as Prudden-San Diego Airplane Company, the company initially designed, manufactured and sold airplanes.After the departure of its founder, George H. Prudden, the company changed its name to Solar Aircraft Company in 1929.The Great Depression of 1929 forced Solar Aircraft Company to re-focus its efforts into manufacturing aircraft components for other manufacturers. The company grew considerably during World War II and was forced to diversify into non-aircraft products due to the steep drop in business after the war.Solar Aircraft Company's expertise in hard-to-manufacture parts able to withstand high-temperatures led to contracts to produce jet engine components. Solar Aircraft began to design and manufacture completed turbine engines for the United States military for applications such as auxiliary power units. Solar Aircraft continued to expand its product line and grow its business until it was purchased by International Harvester Company in early 1960, becoming the Solar Division of International Harvester in 1963.In 1973 the Solar Division of International Harvester exited the aerospace industry to focus solely on industrial turbines. In 1975 the development and manufacture of the Solar Division's radial engines was moved into a newly formed Radial Engines Group, renamed the Turbomach Division in 1980.Solar Turbines Incorporated became a wholly owned subsidiary of Caterpillar Tractor Co. after Caterpillar purchased the assets of the Solar Division and the Turbomach division from International Harvester on May 31, 1981. In 1985, Caterpillar sold the Turbomach Division to Sundstrand Corporation. Wikipedia.

van Roode M.,Solar Turbines Inc.
Journal of Engineering for Gas Turbines and Power | Year: 2010

Ceramic gas turbine development that started in the 1950s has slowed considerably since most of the large-scale ceramic gas turbine development programs of the 1970s-1990s ended. While component durability still does not meet expectations, the prospect of significant energy savings and emission reductions, potentially achievable with ceramic gas turbines, continues to justify development efforts. Four gas turbine applications have been identified that could be commercially attractive: a small recuperated gas turbine (microturbine) with ~35% electrical efficiency, a recuperated gas turbine for transportation applications with ~40% electrical efficiency with potential applications for efficient small engine cogeneration, a ~40% efficient midsize industrial gas turbine, and a ~63% (combined cycle) efficient utility turbine. Key technologies have been identified to ensure performance and component durability targets can be met over the expected life cycle for these applications. These technologies include a Si3N4 or SiC with high fracture toughness, durable EBCs for Si3N4 and SiC, an effective EBC/TBC for SiC/SiC, a durable oxide/oxide ceramic matrix composite (CMC) with thermally insulating coating, and the next generation CMCs with high strength that can be used as structural materials for turbine components for small engines and for rotating components in engines of various sizes. The programs will require integrated partnerships between government, national laboratories, universities, and industry. The overall cost of the proposed development programs is estimated at U.S. $100M over 10 years, i.e., an annual average of U.S. $10M. © 2010 by Solar Turbines, Inc. Source

Solar Turbines Inc. | Date: 2014-03-20

A vertical lathe fixture is provided. The vertical lathe fixture includes a main body and a sub-plate. The sub-plate includes a top surface and a bottom surface defining a thickness of the sub-plate therebetween. The top surface of the sub-plate is configured to be coupled to the main body and the bottom surface is configured to be coupled to a chuck of a vertical lathe machine. The sub-plate also includes a center pad provided at a center of the top surface. The center pad is configured to centrally align the sub-plate with respect to the main body. The sub-plate further includes a plurality of receiving pads provided in a radial pattern on the top surface and in relation to the center pad. The receiving pads are configured to hold the main body in a stationary position with respect to the sub-plate during rotation of the vertical lathe fixture.

Solar Turbines Inc. | Date: 2014-01-21

A platform seal assembly for a gas turbine engine with a turbine disk and a plurality of turbine blades is disclosed. The platform seal assembly includes a platform seal and a validation tab. The platform seal includes a first end, a second end, opposite and distal to the first end, and a body extending between the first end and the second end. The validation tab includes an attachment portion affixed to the platform seal and an observable indicator portion extending from the attachment portion.

Solar Turbines Inc. | Date: 2014-06-16

An aft clamp ring for a gas turbine engine is disclosed. The aft clamp ring includes a body, a forward sealing face, and an aft sealing face. The body includes an annular shape extending between an outer end and an inner end. The forward sealing face faces in a second axial direction. The aft sealing face is adjacent the outer end facing in a first axial direction and is at least partially radially aligned with the forward sealing face. The forward sealing face and the aft sealing face are each an annular surface with a surface area from 105.50 cm

Solar Turbines Inc. | Date: 2014-04-14

A method is provided for remanufacturing a machine component having multiple holes. The holes are provided to match in alignment with corresponding holes of an adjacent component in a machine assembly. First and second sets of holes are selected from the holes of the machine component on the basis of being located within first and second limits of positional tolerance with respect to corresponding holes of the adjacent component. Each hole from the first set of holes is bored to define openings in axial alignment with holes of the adjacent component. Each hole from the second set of holes is bored to an enlarged diameter and then plugged with a deformable insert. Each of these inserts is then drilled to define openings in axial alignment with holes of the adjacent component.

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