This year Munro celebrates its 150th anniversary. Exceptional versatility has been key to the company’s longevity. Though specialised in the field of meteorology, Munro has designed and manufactured innovative products for a range of different industries. Below are a handful of our favourites.
A contract with the Bank of England in 1880 led to the creation of the Munro bank-note printing and numbering machine – a feat of manufacturing excellence (hitherto unmatched) capable of producing 3,000 completed notes in just one hour. Munro also contributed to the build of Henry Babbage’s Analytical Engine Mill, an important early step towards the development of the modern computer. This connection to computing was renewed in 1956 when IBM asked the company to reconstruct a copy of Babbage’s Analytical Engine Mill.
Nevertheless, enthused by his own interest in meteorology, founder Robert William Munro (1839-1912) built the company into a world-leading manufacture of weather instrumentation. The firm was one of the earliest manufacturers of the Robinson Cup Anemometer (1870) and was heavily involved in the creation of the Dines’ Pressure Tube Anemometer during the 1890s (one of which was lent by Munro for use on the expedition to the Antarctic led by Captain Scott).
At the start of the First World War, output was redirected to assist the growing aviation industry – a natural corollary of the firm’s deep-seated interest in wind speed and direction (and something we continue to be extremely passionate about).
Other notable products include a portable seismograph (built in collaboration with John Milne), a shaping machine for model hulls, and a special glass cutting device for quantity production of photographic plates (previously cut by hand). A number of these early instruments now reside in the Science Museum in London.
To this day Munro remains a bastion of quality British manufacturing, and we continually seek to expand on the legacy of R.W. Munro through the creation of innovative new products.
by Edmund Daley
In October Munro Instruments attended the World Meteorological Technology Expo in Brussels, where we unveiled our new product, the IM147 Wind Speed and Direction Sensor. With 3000 visitors in attendance, we were confident that it would be the perfect place to showcase exactly what we had to offer. Despite a few minor setbacks (such as our product being the last carton to arrive), we had a successful Expo and received some extremely positive feedback.
The unveiling of the IM147 was just one of the many successful outcomes of the Expo. These kinds of events are great for networking. We met some great people from all over the world and established new relationships that we look forward to building on in the future. It also provided us with the opportunity to finally meet some of our customers and suppliers face to face.
We gathered a huge amount of feedback concerning our customers’ meteorological needs and requirements. All of this information will be really useful when it comes to releasing more products over the coming year.
The Expo also provided us with a platform to demonstrate our commitment to innovation and development. We are confident that we will be attending more exhibitions over the coming years!
by Ashish Acharya
That old adage about not being able to teach old dogs new tricks isn’t true. As we celebrate our 150th year, Munro continues to look for new ways to expand and innovate. We are currently embarking on a new phase of product development across all our sectors.
We are building on our current range of products in order to streamline their operation and simplify the process of data capture.
Over the coming year, there are multiple planned releases of innovated products, as well as entirely new products and services, all designed with client applications in mind.
We are pleased to announce that we have now launched the IM147. Based on our acclaimed IM146 Wind Sensor, the IM147 now has full remote telemetry functionality synchronised with our proprietary cloud based software, ClimateCloud. This gives you unlimited opportunity to set up distributed networks anywhere in the world from the comfort of your office.
The IM147 is part of our larger 150 Series, a modular approach to weather station functionality. The 150 Series will allow clients to specify their exact meteorological requirements. Munro will then create a bespoke system precisely matched to their needs and budget. The full 150 Series is due to be released in early 2016.
We will also be launching the revolutionary Digital Skid Resistance Tester, designed to streamline the entire testing and analysis process. The pendulum tester will record the PTV value and export the results via Bluetooth, whilst automatically generating a precise report for the user. This entirely removes the need for pen and paper and will increase company and user productivity during both testing and analysis phases. Data will be stored automatically for company records. The Digital Skid Resistance Tester is due to be launched January 2015.
Environmental monitoring is becoming an increasingly important field of study for both indoor and outdoor surroundings. Munro currently has a vast range of air samplers which measure particulates through time-weighted results. Munro is further developing its range of air samplers to improve functionality and increase user ergonomics of the system. Furthermore, to complement our range of time-weighted samplers, we are creating a range of samplers to monitor particulates (PM2.5 and PM10) and other important gases in real time. Users will be able to monitor environments without having to send the samples for analysis. This will further streamline client practices.
We are also currently developing a range of complete system-service packages over a wide range of applications. We will be providing further details of these innovative solutions in the very near future. Watch this space!
The Munro Development Team