Magnetrol: Customers’ preferred partner for level and flow measurement

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It is with great pleasure that the team at Business and Industry Today dedicates its prestigious and industry renowned 'Company of the Year' feature to Magnetrol. This is presented to the company in recognition of the hard work and commitment put in, inevitably placing them at the forefront of innovation and design.

The roots of Magnetrol date back to 1932, when a Chicago, USA, based manufacturer of boiler systems, called Schaub Inc. was in need of level controllers for its systems. Ultimately, the level switches and controllers developed became attractive instruments for installation in applications and process installations, other than the own Schaub systems, and steadily began to be marketed under the name Magnetrol (MAGNEtic conTROL).

Following this success, in 1971, Magnetrol went international, as a partnership with U.S. company Daniel Industries, and established a company called Danmag, based in Zele, Belgium. In 1974, Daniel Industries drew back fromthis partnership, and Magnetrol became the sole owner of Danmag. Shortly after, the company was rebranded Magnetrol International N.V.

The following 80 or so years has seen Magnetrol's product program subject to continued program and range extensions, the introduction of new technologies and continued efforts for improvement on its electro-mechanical products. Magnetrol's level and flow controls transform industrial process measurement. Using a whole number of switches, ultrasonic or thermal dispersion technologies, their conventional, radar and electronics-based instruments make measurement more intelligent, more reliable and far more simplified to set up and operate than was ever possible.

From their main European headquarters in Zele, Belgium, Magnetrol specialise with clients in the oil, gas and related industries. More recently, they have released a product line specifically for the food, beverage and pharmaceutical markets.

One of Magnetrol's continued biggest sellers is the Eclipse, which uses guided wave radar technology. At that time, Magnetrol was the first to introduce the two-wire guided wave radar to the marketplace. Now its latest iteration, the Eclipse 705, has received the exida certificate for a "SIL 3 Capable" device according to the IEC61508: 2000 Parts 1-7. This means in practice that combining two devices in a 1oo2 set-up is in line with SIL 3 loop requirements. In addition to this SIL rating, Magnetrol's Eclipse 705 has several other agency approvals, including ATEX, Lloyds, TÜV, FM/CSA.

Another exciting product of recent times is the Thermatel Enhanced Model TA2. This new device is an evolution of the Thermatel Model TA2 air and gas mass flow meter, which was introduced about ten years ago and has a proven track record of reliability and precise mass flow measurement. At a first glance the enhanced model looks identical to the original design but it's much more. All standard input voltages (AC and DC) are accepted and the rotatable housing allows positioning of the display to the customer's liking. The display, two lines with sixteen characters each, is now backlit; this allows easy reading in bad weather conditions or dark environments. The four push-button keypad facilitates easy configuration allowing the customer to make modifications in the field.

The Enhanced Model TA2 can be calibrated for one or two different gasses or two completely different ranges, thus also increasing turndown ratio or providing more flexibility. By further fine tuning the sensors and sensor design, higher velocities can be measured, and a faster response to changing conditions is obtained. In addition, the new design reduces blockage of flow through the window and reduces orientation sensitivity. There is also a second optional mA output for temperature or flow. While this is a SIL 1 device the Enhanced Model TA2 has a Safe Failure Fraction (SFF) of 88.4%. Of huge importance when used in a safety system, this ratingis amongst the highest for this type of device.

Johan Van Wesemael, Marketing Manager EMEAI, of Magnetrol explained:

“We aim to be our customers preferred partner, and to achieve this we offer a plethora of benefits. Firstly, we offer human services i.e. live support, something which is unusual in our line of work. We can get people on-site offering field support which we have found goes very far with industry customers. All of our field support members are highly skilled and fully trained, and guarantee to meet every single customer’s requirements.”

Magnetrol's products have evolved as a result of their meeting every conceivable measurement challenge for over their many years. Typically for the Belgian plant around 70% of the devices are tailor made, with constant adaptions and tweaks being made to existing solutions when dealing with new individuals.

After speaking regarding the future of Magnetrol, Johan concluded:

“For the future, Magnetrol will continue to keep up to date with, upgrade, and constantly invest in new technologies. Over the next two years we will be expanding our production capacity, which in the long run will benefit both ourselves and current and potential clients.”

( This article is written by Business & Industry Today )