September 6, 2019
The “Caterpillar Sixty” is?catching a lot of buzz lately as it?celebrates 100 years—but?Caterpillar’s?Advanced Materials Technology?team has reason to celebrate as well. August 2019 marks?100 years?of?“making the metal worthy of the machine”?through?metallurgical?science and engineering.?
Metallurgy is one of Caterpillar’s earliest?core competencies.?Metallurgical teams?around the world?create and develop?new technologies and materials to?enable?global design and manufacturing?groups to deliver?world-class customer value.?In fact, metallurgical?knowledge?remains?one of our critical?core?competencies?and the?numbers?speak for themselves. Annually,?Caterpillar?machines and engines consume millions of tons of castings, wrought steel, forgings, and heat-treated components.?Clearly, metallurgy is?at the heart of?our products and processes.?
There is no doubt that steel, casting and heat treat technologies?helped?establish Caterpillar’s reputation for quality and durability. While a lot has changed over the years, Caterpillar materials and heat treat are still recognized as world-class and used as an industry?benchmark.?
Today,?nearly?600 degreed materials engineers?are part of Caterpillar’s?workforce.?These materials engineers work in a variety of assignments,?both directly in a materials engineering role and as part of design, manufacturing and purchasing?organizations.? This density of materials engineers at Caterpillar indicates?the?importance of materials to Caterpillar’s business.?In?100?years,?more than?300?patentable ideas and processes?were invented?in?by the Caterpillar metallurgical?community with more?than 70 patents?and patent applications?published in the last five years?alone!?
?Time to Celebrate!?
On August 20,?2019?nearly 100 Caterpillar retirees and metallurgical engineers gathered at the Caterpillar Visitor’s Center to celebrate?metallurgy?and reflect on?its?history and importance.?Speakers at the event included: Vice President Karl Weiss (Innovation and Technology Development Division), Lee Fosburgh (Caterpillar Corporate Archives), Tim Hoefft (Global Materials Manager, Advanced Materials Technology), Mike?Hasselbusch?(Undercarriage Chief Engineer) and Ric Woldow (Drivetrain Product Manager).?