Largest Horizontal Vacuum Furnace Coming to Solar Atmospheres of Western Pennsylvania


Solar Atmospheres of Western Pennsylvania announced that it will be installing the largest horizontal high vacuum furnace ever constructed at their Hermitage facility.  The furnace will be engineered and manufactured by their sister company, Solar Manufacturing, Inc.

The entire investment for Solar Atmospheres will be in the order of $8,000,000 including the cost of this large furnace, a new 20,000 square-foot building addition, and utilities to operate this large system.

“We will all be very busy over the next year, not only preparing a site to expand our current facility by another 20,000 square feet to house this newest piece of equipment, but also assembling and building the new equipment on-site,” said Robert Hill, president of Solar Atmospheres Western of Pennsylvania. “All of our employees are eagerly anticipating the day that we commission one of the most unique vacuum furnaces in the world.”

This car-bottom-type furnace — Model HCB-84576-2EQ — will have a work-zone that measures seven feet in diameter by 48 feet long, and it will be capable of handling loads up to 150,000 pounds at 2400°F.  Dual US patented loading cars are provided for loading and unloading from both ends of this furnace with its 48-foot long hot zone.

The vacuum chamber is being manufactured by Youngberg Industries, Inc., of Rockford, Illinois. It will incorporate three 48-inch diameter vacuum ports as well as six 24-inch diameter ports for gas cooling inlet and outlet. Autoclave type locking doors are included at both ends of the furnace.  According to Tom Larson, CEO of Youngberg Industries, “This is the largest horizontal high vacuum chamber they have ever manufactured.”

The programs for the engineering and construction phases have been initiated with key orders placed for major system components. The ultimate goal is to have installation and testing completed by the first quarter of 2016.