KOLLMORGEN celebrates its centenary: from a periscope patent to drive and control technology

Ratingen, September 2016 - Kollmorgen's initial success was built on periscopes, particularly for submarines. Dr. Friedrich Kollmorgen had his inventions patented in 1911 and eventually founded the Kollmorgen Optical Corp. in New York in 1916.

100 years of Kollmorgen – this centenary has come about thanks to ingenuity and an entrepreneurial spirit, paired with a systematic overview that even in the early years extended beyond the company's own products.

Systems and overall solutions defined the company's development at that time, which was reflected in mergers with other visionaries of the period. In particular, these include Norman Macbeth as chairman of Macbeth Daylighting Company, Hugo Unruh as the founder of Inland Motor, and Robert Swiggett, circuit board inventor at Photocircuits. Kollmorgen gradually evolved into a manufacturer of servo drive technology and motion control products. The company founded by Dr. Friedrich Kollmorgen is regarded, among other things, as a pioneer in the development of engines with permanent magnets. Kollmorgen fitted out the Mars Rover and the ISS, for example; as well as the robot that Dr. Robert Ballard used to capture spectacular images of the Titanic in 1986.

Today the company comes under the umbrella of Fortive, which has 1,500 employees worldwide. The European market is supplied from Ratingen. "It's a real honor and privilege to work for a company that is 100 years old. Very few organizations are able to spend over a century developing innovative solutions," says Kollmorgen CEO Dan St. Martin. "Our success is built on the dedication of all our employees, who every day continue to put all their effort into trend-setting innovations, in every corner of the world."

Caption 1
Dan St. Martin, CEO of Kollmorgen: "It's an honor and a privilege to work for a company that is 100 years old."

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100 years of Kollmorgen: The company founded by Dr. Friedrich Kollmorgen in New York in 1916 initially made periscopes, some of which were for submarines

Caption 3 An early garage startup. Hugo Unruh was born in Germany and emigrated to the USA after the First World War, where he set up Inland Motors with a partner in the 1940s. The first windings were wound in basements, garages, and even in the kitchens of private houses.

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About Kollmorgen
Kollmorgen is a leading provider of integrated automation and drive systems along with corresponding components for machine builders all over the world. With more than 70 years of Motion Control Design and application experience and profound knowledge of constructing standard and special solutions, Kollmorgen supplies solutions time and again that stand out in terms of performance, quality, reliability, and ease of use. As a result customers can achieve market advantages which are beyond questions. For further information please contact think@kollmorgen.com or visit our website www.kollmorgen.com/in