Ralph Sarich


Ralph Sarich was born in Baskerville, Western Australia, Australia on December 10th, 1938 and is the Entrepreneur. At the age of 85, Ralph Sarich biography, profession, age, height, weight, eye color, hair color, build, measurements, education, career, dating/affair, family, news updates, and networth are available.

Date of Birth
December 10, 1938
Place of Birth
Baskerville, Western Australia, Australia
85 years old
Zodiac Sign
Ralph Sarich Height, Weight, Eye Color and Hair Color

At 85 years old, Ralph Sarich physical status not available right now. We will update Ralph Sarich's height, weight, eye color, hair color, build, and measurements.

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Ralph Sarich Religion, Education, and Hobbies
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Ralph Sarich Spouse(s), Children, Affair, Parents, and Family
Patricia (m. 1962)
Peter and Jennifer
Dating / Affair
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Ralph Sarich Career

His working career encompassed being a fitter and turner and trainee engineer with the Western Australian Government Railways between 1954 and 1963. He was plant engineer with Thiess Brothers between 1963 and 1965, in charge on the standard gauge project before running his own business, an engineering and service station operator. Sarich was sales engineer as well as investor in the area of earth moving and industrial machinery before being regional general manager and an investor. As he developed the orbital engine, he became managing director of Orbital Engine Company Pty Ltd, and chief executive officer and chairman of Orbital Engine Corporation. Following his retirement from Orbital, he became Executive Chairman of Cape Bouvard Investments, a private family investment company.

Sarich concentrated on research and development of new technologies, in particular the orbital engine. The engine was first fired in 1972 and Sarich appeared on ABC TV program The Inventors in 1972 claiming that the engine's compact design promised more power, fewer emissions and significant fuel economy. The technology was endorsed by the Royal Automobile Club of Western Australia in 1974:

The "staged combustion" process was later named as the orbital combustion process (OCP). There were two distinct orbital concepts; the OCP technology and the orbital engine hardware that converted the resultant combustion energy to mechanical output to drive vehicles. Under simulated urban and highway driving cycles it produced fuel and emission results superior to the best selected engines of the era. This was due to the OCP, often wrongly referred to as the fuel injection system because of its vital role in this technology. As the OCP technology was used on conventional engines to improve their performance this then led to inaccurate reporting claiming that the Orbital Engine Technology had failed. However, this combination was deemed to be the most cost-effective direction because it eliminated production re-tooling costs, which were inhibiting factors for mass production using orbital engine hardware.

Despite being offered A$12 million in 1973 for his stake in Orbital, Sarich refused to sell. BHP was an early investor in Sarich's Orbital Engine Company, taking a stake in the early 1970s that by 1989 represented 35% of the total company equity.

The OCP component of the engine was described in the 1980s by the Jet Propulsion Laboratories (JPL) for NASA, as the "cutting edge of world engine technology". International emission testing laboratories confirmed the Australian results. Fuel economy advantages of 50% were demonstrated against the best outboard marine engines and 20–25% under typical automobile operating conditions. Additional savings of 5–10% were considered readily achievable with further development. The savings were accompanied by a massive reduction in the "direct engine out" of several key emissions gases.

The OCP technology was sold as intellectual property (IP) to automobile, marine and motorcycle manufacturers and was incorporated in production engines to varying degrees; namely from complete systems to the improvement of their own technology, via knowledge gained from their IP purchases. All licensing payments were conditional upon the delivery of engines meeting numerous high emissions standards, fuel economies and other technical criteria. All deliveries met these criteria prior to Sarich's retirement in 1992, resulting in no dependent monetary penalties ever being incurred to that point in time.

However, key components of Sarich's engine could not be cooled and others could not be readily lubricated. The engine was susceptible to overheating, and the invention was eventually deemed too impractical.

Sarich sought A$100 million in investment from the Australian Government in order to commence manufacture of the engine in Australia. In 1989, the government offered an industry support package of A$15–16.5 million, which Sarich declined, and he proceeded to make arrangements to establish operations in the United States. He floated Orbital Engine Corporation in the US via an initial public offering that raised A$113.8 million in 1992 and the company began trading on the New York Stock Exchange. In 1998, Sarich reported that Orbital Engine Corporation had entered into a non–exclusive licensing agreement with the Ford to develop and test a pilot for the manufacture of the orbital engine. In January 1992, General Motors displayed its newest concept car called the "Ultralite", incorporating OCP technology, as its centrepiece at the Detroit International Auto Show. In April 1992, another of the world's largest automotive manufacturers signed an agreement to take a licence for OCP technology.

In 1991 it was reported that Orbital Engine Corporation entered into a licensing agreement with Fiat, an Italian car manufacturer. Despite initial interest, Czechoslovakian manufacturer, Škoda, withdrew from licensing negotiations in 1989, citing poor economic conditions in the country. Volkswagen terminated its agreement with Orbital in 1993, citing a softer European sales market.

In addition to the orbital engine, Sarich is credited with the following additional inventions:

As Orbital Engine Corporation sold its IP to manufacturers and the company did not manufacture engines, the success of Orbital was doubted. However, the company's financial success is reflected in the fiscal years 1989, 1990 (A$23.5m), 1991 and 1992 (A$22.75m).

Orbital's capitalised value upon Sarich's retirement as CEO in 1992 was in excess of A$1 billion. Over A$200 million at the time in cash, receivables, and research value convertible to cash, were scheduled for commercial investment as insurance against excessive dependence on the auto industry. Sarich converted a component of the risk element into relatively secure investments in synergetic corporations as patents expired and related IP income ceased. Since his retirement, Orbital's new management invested retained earnings on further research. Sarich sold his equity for a reputed A$100 million.

Following his retirement from Orbital, Cape Bouvard Investments (CBI) became the main focus for Sarich in his capacity as Executive Chairman of the private family investment company; while his son Peter is responsible for operations. CBI invests in numerous fields such as property investment, property development, technology and equities.