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Celebrating its centenary in 2022, Watlow Electric Manufacturing Company (Watlow) has become internationally recognized as one of the world’s leading providers of thermal solutions for the most demanding industrial and technological applications.
Leading companies apply Watlow’s advanced technologies to construct thermal systems that are ideally suited for vital applications such as clean and environmentally-friendly energy systems and processes, front-end semiconductor processing and lifesaving medical and clinical equipment.
Activities & Products
Watlow’s extensive product line includes multiple different electric heater products including band, cable, cartridge, cast-in, circulation, ceramic fiber, flexible, multicell, radiant, strip, thick film and tubular. The company’s temperature sensing capabilities include thermocouples, RTDs and thermistors as well as wire and cable products. Watlow’s temperature and power controller platforms can be customized for almost any electric thermal application.
Watlow is active in the following application areas:
- Heaters: including FLUENT® In-Line Heater, ULTRAMIC ® Advanced Ceramic Heater, FIREROD® 1/4″ Cartridge Heater, Polyimide Heaters and Silicone Rubber Heaters
- Sensors: A wide range of temperature sensor technologies
- Controls and software: including EZ-ZONE® Integrated Multi-Function Controller, F4T Temperature Controller, PM PLUS™ Controller, and PM LEGACY™ Controller
Structure & Background
Watlow was founded in 1922 in St. Louis, Missouri by Louis Desloge Sr. He chose the company name to refer to the “low-watt” electric heating elements he provided to replace steam head in the shoemaking industry. After building its first factory in 1924, Watlow expanded into consumer products, including electric irons and heating pads.
During the 1950s and 1960s, Watlow pioneered the patented FIREROD® cartridge heater that still forms a staple of its business, along with silicone rubber heaters for the aerospace industry, and a pioneering high watt density cartridge pressurized heater for use in nuclear power plants.
In the 21st century, Watlow has accelerated the pace of innovation, introducing an array of patented and registered new technologies, including EZ-ZONE® controllers, a fiber optic temperature measurement and control system for high RF environments, the F4T process controller with touch-screen technology, ATS Adaptive Thermal Systems, the Next Gen OPTIMAX® heat exchanger, ECO-HEAT® exhaust gas aftertreatment thermal management system and FLUENT® in-line heaters.
In 2017, Watlow introduced WATCONNECT® pre-engineered control panels as the first product of its Advanced Technology Center (ATC) in St. Louis, MO..
Watlow has grown organically and through acquisition, a process that is still continuing, and in 2021 itself became part of the Tinicum investment group.
Quality, Regulatory and Standards
Watlow’s essential quality assurance is underlined by its internal company code, The Watlow Way, that guides all behaviors and standards within the company.
In terms of statutory compliance, Watlow complies with all important regulatory and quality standards that apply in individual product areas and industries served. Thus electrical systems are guided by standards and inspections provided by professional bodies such as the global leader in applied safety science, UL Solutions®, for example the UL® Type LL standards for low leakage applications.
In Europe, Watlow products are CE-marked and comply with EU standards such as RoHS (Restriction of Hazardous Substances Directive 2002/95/EC) that defines guidelines on use of certain substances in electrical and electronic equipment.
Click on Watlow Company History to see the full story.