Caterpillar Inspires Students With Unconventional Tech

For engineering supervisor James Unruh, working at Caterpillar means getting out of the office and trying things the Pekin Daily Times reported.

📅   Fri October 13, 2017 - National Edition
Emily Buenzle


Students had the opportunity to see a 3D-printed heart that was created at the Caterpillar Technical Center in Mossvillle, Ill.., which illustrated some of Caterpillar's research and development strategies, the Pekin Daily Times reported. Caterpillar produced the heart with OSF HealthCare, in an effort to create a copy of the heart of a patient with a congenital defect. (Photo Credit: Journal Star)
Students had the opportunity to see a 3D-printed heart that was created at the Caterpillar Technical Center in Mossvillle, Ill.., which illustrated some of Caterpillar's research and development strategies, the Pekin Daily Times reported. Caterpillar produced the heart with OSF HealthCare, in an effort to create a copy of the heart of a patient with a congenital defect. (Photo Credit: Journal Star)

For Manufacturing Day on Oct. 6, Caterpillar invited area students to see how the company uses unconventional tools to create its equipment.

Students had the opportunity to see a 3D-printed heart that was created at the Caterpillar Technical Center in Mossvillle, Ill.., which illustrated some of Caterpillar's research and development strategies, the Pekin Daily Times reported. Caterpillar produced the heart with OSF HealthCare, in an effort to create a copy of the heart of a patient with a congenital defect.

For 15-year-old East Peoria Community High School student Mara Dimitroff, seeing the heart seemed to be an inspiration.

“This technology is the future,” Dimitroff, who is part of her school's STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) program, said. “I've always wanted to be part of the health field, but I can't quite stomach the blood and guts, so I thought I could do something else that would still help people.”

For engineering supervisor James Unruh, working at Caterpillar means getting out of the office and trying things the Pekin Daily Times reported.

“As an engineer, this is a great place…We're not sitting at desks all day every day,” Unruh told the students. “We get to come out here and work with the iron.”

For Tom Bluth, Caterpillar's chief technology officer and a vice president responsible for the Innovation and Technology Development division, the goal of the tour was to get students to walk away thinking, “I can't believe Cat does that,” the Pekin Daily Times reported.

Autonomous Technology

One way that Caterpillar has asserted itself as a leader in autonomous tech, in particular, is through its self-driving mining trucks, which have been made for over 10 years, the Pekin Daily Times reported.

“Caterpillar is one of the largest leaders in autonomous technology,” said Bluth. “People always thing Silicon Valley, but we do a lot of our autonomous technology right here in Peoria.”