Fluid Components International (FCI) founders Bob Deane and Mac McQueen have been recognised for their lifetime achievements in thermal mass flow sensing technology as members of the industry’s Hall of Fame, Class of 2017, by the Measurement, Control and Automation Association (MCAA).
Bob and Mac began their partnership in 1964 with the development of the industry’s first successful thermal flow switch designed to provide accurate, reliable service in the demanding operating environment of the oil/gas industry. Starting in Mac’s home garage, the two engineers improvised with a kitchen candy thermometer, soldering iron, and a bowl of water to prove the validity of their initial sensor concept design and then began manufacturing the devices for a major U.S. oil company.
In the 1970s, Bob and Mac next developed FCI’s first thermal mass flow meter. It gained rapid acceptance in the chemical, electric power, solid waste and water industries. Then in 1978, they qualified their flow switch and other products for the nuclear power industry. In the 1980-90s they achieved successes on the Rockwell B1 Bomber and other military and commercial programs, forming an aerospace division.
Bob retired from active service at FCI in 1995 and then returned to FCI in 2010 to work on research and development projects. He frequently offers his guidance to company engineers on product development tasks and specialized applications. He also consults on process development and holds three patents.
Mac retired from FCI in December 1995. He came back in 1998 as a consultant to FCI and its subsidiary, the Vortab Company, which specializes in flow conditioning devices. He has been Chairman Emeritus at FCI since 2000 and continues to be active as a designer, developer and “imagineer” for FCI, and is the holder of 19 patents.
From Bob and Mac’s achievements, products manufactured by FCI are today requested by name in many of the world’s most demanding environments for flow instrumentation. They are recognised for their precision measurement accuracy and repeatability in harsh conditions, where their high performance ensures both end-product quality and operational safety.