Solar Atmospheres of Western PA will install a custom-built horizontal 20-bar vacuum furnace at its Hermitage facility. The furnace, which was designed and built by sister company Solar Manufacturing, measures 40 inches wide x 50 inches deep x 36 inches high and has a 3,500-pound maximum load. The excessive pressure and high-speed gas velocities of the 20 bar simulate the benefits of oil quenching. Using inert gas as an alternative to oil minimizes distortion and provides a much cleaner process.

The new furnace will allow Solar Atmospheres to better serve customers requiring vacuum carburizing by increasing core hardnesses of large cross-sections. This is a particular benefit to those in the gear industry. State-of-the-technology is incorporated throughout the furnace, including an interactive touch-screen interface and a compact design.