2022 marks the 50th Anniversary for Mechan Controls. Established back in 1972, what was once a small company in the Northwest of England has now established itself as one of the leading design and manufacturers of machine guard safety products worldwide.
Mechan controls launches a new safety control unit (GM1) and extender module (GSM), the advanced technology of Mechan controls allows the company to develop a new range of safety control units capable of monitoring up to 30 safety devices without the need for programming. The safety control unit and its extender module can work with a range of safety devices from OSSD to non-contact to locking units and grab wires. This is achieved by a combination of the GM1, GSM in conjunction with ESM whilst still achieving CAT4, SIL3, PLe,
With panel space becoming a premium and a growing demand for smaller safety relays, a decision was made to reduce the size of the popular EM1. The development improved on the existing designs diagnostic features and reduced power consumption meant 20+ extender modules could be added.
Mechan Controls develops a unique range of safety switches with OSSD outputs. The aims was to provide the customer with a robust solution that meets CAT4, SIL3, PL-e safety requirements even when connected in series. Available in uniquely coded RFID or coded magnetic, the O-Type are at the forefront of British innovation. O-Type Product Page
NPD activities culminate in a significant widening of the product portfolio to include RFID switches with OSSD, Stainless RFID switches, light curtains, and solenoid locking switches. All developments deliver on the company ethos to “protect people and productivity” in the global manufacturing environment.
Market expansion continues with additional distribution in Europe, Asia Pacific, USA and South America.
A special focus on the USA and China saw two new Business Development Managers join the business with the aim of growing our channel partners in both Countries.
With an increase in demand for Mechan machine safety products, the R&D department and factory was completely refurbished. Following this, a recruitment drive saw the business double the number of employees in less than 6 months.
With over 40+ years success with the MPX and F-Series safety system, Mechan Controls decided to develop a expandable safety relay without the need for programming. The EM1 was developed and it soon become the number one choice for Mechan customers to safely monitor non-contact switches, grab-wires, mechanical interlocks and e'stops to CAT4, SIL3, PLe.
Mabruk Farrah negotiates a takeover agreement and becomes the sole owner of Mechan Controls. A growth strategy based on both innovative NPD and market penetration is devised and implemented.
Mechan Controls introduces high coded RFID safety switches with volt free contact outputs. The R-Type features 4 billion possible codes and unlimited re-teaching. The idea was to develop a product that could replace a magnetic safety switch without having to change the safety relay.
A growing demand for education around the changing safety standards led Mechan Controls to participate in a series of safety seminars, designed to widen engineer’s knowledge and practicality of machinery safety standards compliance.
Additional product development sees the introduction of the HE Series which combined coded magnetic and robust solid state, shock proof design together to create a cost effective reliable safety switch.
Appointment of manufacturing giant Azbil as Mechan Controls sole distributor in Japan, follows an intensive period of negoitations and detailed quality audits at UK plant.
With the gorwing demand for robust safety switches, development started housing the MS5, MS6 and MS21 into 316 grade stainless steel housings. These products gave Mechan Controls a competative advantage in the food and beverage sectors.
After the growing success of the Magnasafe range, further investment saw the introduction of the MS6 and MS21. These products feature high current capabilities and industry standard fixing holes.
Additional contract manufacturing activity manifests in a second private label agreement, this time with Scientific Industries Inc, later to become Omron STI.
In 2007, Mechan Controls was producing over 10,000 switches per year. The growing demand for a safety relay led to the development of the SRL1. Customers could now purchase a products that would work with our standalone ranges. 2007 also introduced the MS7, a coded low cost safety switch.
With the growing demand for complete, modular safety systems, Mechan Controls developed the ISIS coded magnetic safety system. It features expandable modules up to 30 gates and a simple 2 wire switch that reduced installation time. The ISIS-4 also allows users to monitor e’stops on the same system.
Interest spreads to USA with the appointment of the first US distributor Norstat Inc.
Market expansion strategy attracts interest from around the world culminating in a series of new partners including Sentec Solutions in Australia.
With the product portfolio growing and a plan to expand the businesses reach internationally, the decision was made to submit all Mechan Controls products for independent testing and approval by TUV and cULus.
A focused NPD strategy delivers a rapid expansion of the product portfolio to include Magnetic, Coded Magnetic and standalone electronic safety switches. With the creation of MAGNASAFE, ISIS and SSS, Mechan Controls were able to satisfy all non-contact applications from the simplest Category 1 safety switch through to the top of the range Category 4 electronic safety system.
A change of ownership sees additions to the Mechan Controls senior leadership team of both Mabruk Farrah and Matthew Bagley (both ex-Guardmaster) to give additional focus to the extension of the product range into the next millennium.
The introduction of new products to the Magnasafe, F-series and S-Type range. The DNK1 was the smallest RFID switch on the market at the time of release giving Mechan Controls the technological advantage over the competition.
Mechan introduced the F-Series, a category 4 modular electronic safety system. Featuring a fully expandable control unit capable of monitoring 30 machine guards, the system utilized volt free inputs and LED indication for each safety switch and a further option of RFID switches with 500,000 unique codes.
A further extension to the MPX range delivers industry standard DIN rail mounted safety control units to monitor “feature rich” 4 or 8 RFID switch systems making installation and fault diagnosis easier than ever before.
More customer led innovation comes in the form of the compact MPX range of control units. It is compatible with the original RFID switches and not only reduces the panel space required but saves cost for larger systems.
Mechan introduced the world’s first modular electronic RFID safety system. It is widely adopted in many industrial applications, due to its robust and reliable design. The canning industry, in particular, use it for thousands of installations through-out the world.
Mechan Controls was established to design and manufacture non-contact safety switches for the harsh conditions of the can making industry. All products are designed and manufactured in Skelmersdale, between Manchester and Liverpool.