Success Story

Solar Turbines Inc. Partners with Penn State to Establish Center of Excellence

From left to right: Courtney Oliver, managing director, Solar Turbines; Justin Schwartz, Harold and Inge Marcus Dean of Engineering, Penn State; Karen Thole, distinguished professor and department head of mechanical and nuclear engineering, Penn State; Pablo Koziner, president, Solar Turbines; Neil Sharkey, vice president for research, Penn State; Bernhard Winkelmann, director of technology and new product development, Solar Turbines. Image: Penn State

After completing an extensive evaluation of institutions of higher learning, Solar Turbines Incorporated has chosen Penn State as a university partner to establish a center of excellence in gas turbines. The center involves numerous faculty across Penn State’s College of Engineering.

The Solar Turbines – Penn State Center of Excellence in Gas Turbines is the University’s third high-profile, industry research center partnership to be forged within the last 18 months as part of President Eric Barron’s Invent Penn State initiative. Implemented by Vice President for Research Neil Sharkey, Invent Penn State is focused on spurring economic development, job creation and student career success. A key component is industry research partnerships.

“We see these types of relationships as our redefined land-grant mission,” said Sharkey. “We’re here to enhance the social structure, to help society in any way we can. And one good way to do it is to contribute to the economy and help our colleagues in the private sector achieve their goals and help drive the economy. We want to provide our expertise to help companies, the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and the nation grow.”

Solar Turbines and Penn State have been collaborating on combustion and heat transfer research for more than 20 years. In addition, Solar Turbines has been helping to produce power at the University Park campus through its Taurus 70 power generation equipment.

“Since we have worked with Penn State for several years, we believe it is a natural fit to deepen our collaboration and establish a framework for multi-year research and process improvement opportunities. Penn State is a leader in the area of gas turbine technology and we are proud to be able to partner with this leading institution,” said Pablo Koziner, president of Solar Turbines, a wholly owned subsidiary of Caterpillar Inc…

— Adapted from a story by Megan Lakatos

"Penn State is a leader in the area of gas turbine technology and we are proud to be able to partner with this leading institution."

Pablo Koziner
President of Solar Turbines

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