100 Years | Our History | Brand Evolution | Did You Know? | Featured Stories | Tell Us Your Story | Coloring Book | Oldest Heater
100 Year Logo

Chromalox has hit a new milestone! Since 1917 we've been driven by a pioneering spirit and built on opportunity and innovation. Chromalox was founded by a young engineer by the name of Edwin L. Wiegand. Through his intense curiosity in electrical conductivity, this led to the invention and patent of the electric resistance-metal sheath heating element that would create an entire industry. Chromalox has evolved to become the strong, respected, global industrial heating manufacturer with a well recognized global brand. Today we are known as the trusted experts who help companies solve the world’s most demanding and complex industrial heating challenges.


Our History

  • 1915

    Edwin L. Wiegand had always shown an intense curiosity in electrical conductivity..

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  • 1920's

    With about 100 employees, the company moved from downtown Pittsburgh..

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  • 1930's

    During the Great Depression, E.L. Wiegand licensed the brand and technology..

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  • 1940's

    WWII creates demand for portable comfort heaters and freeze protection heaters..

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  • 1950's

    When nuclear power became popular in the mid-fifties, Chromalox was the first..

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  • 1960's

    During the Space Age, Chromalox was the major supplier to the..

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  • 1970's

    Chromalox expanded into global markets by acquiring two manufacturing..

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  • 1980's

    Global changing economic conditions opened new markets..

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  • 1990's

    Changing economic conditions in the Far East opened new markets..

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  • 2000's

    The decade began with the transfer of ownership from Emerson..

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  • 2010+

    Chromalox continues to expand its international presence..

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Key Events

  • Developed ways to encapsulate open coil heater in a dielectric.
  • Groundbreaking patent in 1915 of a resistance-heating element embedded in an insulating refractory and enclosed in a metal sheath.
  • Founded Chromalox in 1917 and began producing the strip heater for what would become the modern electric clothes iron.


Key Events

  • Electric heating element developed for a pot belly stove lid, creating the first electric stove heating element.
  • Patent filed for first electric heater used in a vessel for heating – the Percolator.
  • Patent awarded for new strip heater applications for transportation market.
  • Combining the word “chrome” as in nichrome wire in a strip heater and “locks” because a cement mix locks in the heating element, “Chromalox” was born.
  • Appliance market emerges as key focus with the invention of the electric heating element.


Key Events

  • Introduced new Finstrip heater invented to diffuse more heat in a smaller space.
  • Company developed own patented version of a tubular heater – beginning of key core competency in industrial and commercial heating applications.
  • Controls closely integrated into product heating “systems”.
  • Heat and control solutions together are patented.
  • Introduced residential heating products in both electric comfort heating and appliances.
  • Launched wall-mounted heaters for the home.
  • Introduced new electric thermostats and controls for heating with temperature control for the home.


Key Events

  • Comfort air heater product line is introduced.
  • Introduced over-the-side heater product line.
  • First electric cartridge heater product line is completed.
  • Introduced usage of first commercial cooking applications for electric deep fryers.
  • The company focused on general industrial applications and transportation markets.


Key Events

  • Provided first nuclear pressurizer heater for Navy submarine, USS Nautilus, commissioned in 1959.
  • Introduced new patented radiant air heater line.
  • Launched new silicon laminate flexible heaters.
  • First electric immersion heater with housing patent obtained in 1961.
  • Launched new electric hopper systems for PowerGen applications.
  • Heat trace product line began R&D efforts.
  • Major footprint expansion of factories in California and Pittsburgh.
  • Primary focus on military and defense markets.


Key Events

  • First to supply NASA with liquid nitrogen vaporizers for purging the launch pad fuel systems for rocket ignition.
  • First circulation heater used in life saving application for operating room blood warming device.
  • Launched first electric skid systems with circulation heaters and controls.
  • Electric boilers added to the product line.
  • Launched heat transfer systems and electric vaporizers.
  • Introduced first MI Cable heating product for high temperature applications.
  • Developed and introduced first heat trace cable – Constant Wattage.
  • E.L. Wiegand took the company public in 1962.
  • Chromalox acquired by Emerson in 1968.


Key Events

  • First in the Space Shuttle Program with circulation heater and controls to purge nitrogen gas   at launch.
  • Introduced new flexible tank heating product line.
  • Launched patented explosion-proof comfort air heaters.
  • Introduced new track switch heaters for rail transportation.
  • Expanded presence in the UK with acquisition of Bray and Grimwood in 1971.
  • Further penetrated the European market with the acquisition of Etirex France in 1972.
  • Chromalox Industrial Controls was born with the purchase of Rosemount Temperature Controls.
  • Launched new custom control line for OEM applications.


Key Events

  • Introduced first self-regulating heat trace cables and accessories with UL and CSA approvals.
  • Launched new cast-in heaters.
  • Introduced new thin-blade product line.
  • Launched new screw plug heater product line.
  • Introduced new power control products.
  • Further expansion in the UK took place with the acquisition of Eltron in 1987.
  • Expanded global third party approvals and increased focus into the oil and gas market with   ATEX, Class 1, Division 2 hazardous location certifications.
  • Introduced new software for providing quicker engineered solutions for unique heating applications.


Key Events

  • First to supply UOP continuous catalytic regenerative (CCR) petrochemical process heaters and controls.
  • Introduced high temperature self-regulating heat trace cable with hazardous location certifications.
  • Launched heat trace controls product line.
  • Introduced first version of ChromaTrace heat trace design software.
  • Introduced swaged-in cartridge heaters – becomes industry standard.
  • Expanded Asia presence with new sales office in Hong Kong.
  • The Big Red Book is launched as technical document and product catalog.
  • Expanded North America presence with acquisition of Ogden.


Key Events

  • Supplied high temperature cartridge heater for Columbia Space Shuttle for anti-icing of shuttle wings.
  • First to provide circulation and controls for alternative fuels.
  • First to provide superheaters and control system for production of polysilicon for the solar market.
  • Supplied the only Deep Draw cartridge heater for commercial aircraft coffee makers.
  • Introduced patented high temperature “MaziZone” cartridge heaters.
  • Launched mica band heater, load bank and air handler product lines.
  • Expanded heat trace commercial product offerings with snow melting maps, roof and gutter de-icing and control products.
  • Introduced new Service Group and product offerings in 2008.
  • Expanded presence in China with opening new Shanghai sales office.
  • Restructuring of global manufacturing footprint took place.


Chromalox logo

Key Events

  • Completed first Engineering, Procurement and Construction (EPC) heat trace project for semiconductor plant.
  • Obtained first large solar facility heat trace EPC contract.
  • Supplied heating and control systems for natural gas discoveries (fracking).
  • Launched next generation of heat trace control products with hazardous location certification.
  • Introduced long line heat trace cable for heating pipes up to 15,000 ft in length.
  • Introduced heat trace skin effect heating for heating pipe of up to 10 miles in length.
  • Introduced new supervisory software control module for heat trace and heater monitoring capabilities.
  • Filed patent on new 4160 V tubular heating element – launching new medium voltage technology.
  • Opened new sales offices in Germany, India, Thailand, Singapore, and Dubai.
  • Opened new distribution facility in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada.

Our Brand Through the Years

See how our Chromalox brand logo and advertising literature has changed, through the years. We have kept up with changes in technology and market trends, as we evolved as a company.

Did You Know?

Chromalox has been very fortunate to have had many accomplishments and exciting things happen over the last 100 years. Here are a few things we want to showcase over the last 100 years!

Featured Stories about Chromalox

After a century of innovation, Chromalox has built many lasting relationships by working with suppliers and customers. So many people have been part of Chromalox's history and have added to its success.

We want to take this opportunity to hear from you and thank you in sharing your stories or experiences with Chromalox.  

Tell Us Your Chromalox Story

Fill out the form below to tell us your interesting story about Chromalox, that you would like to share with others who view this page. Submitted stories will be reviewed and posted above, for all to see.

Please note that form items with a red asterisk (*) must contain information in order to submit this form.

Please have your materials ready before you begin, as the form will not allow you to save partial information.


100-Year Anniversary Coloring Book

Coloring Book  

In honor of our 100 Year Anniversary, Chromalox is excited to provide a commemorative keepsake, “The Big Red Coloring Book”. This book pays tribute to our signature Big Red Book catalog, used by us all, every day.

We created this book, both as a commemoration of this important milestone and as a way to further educate our readers about the broad range of products and services we provide. This book is appropriate for all ages and the illustrations were designed and created exclusively for Chromalox. We received many entries, which we are now proud to display.

View the creative entries we received for our Coloring Book:

Chromalox 100-Year Coloring Book Entries

Thank you for all of the coloring entries. The winners of the Coloring Contest are:

 Name Age  Country
 Shaneeya 9  Singapore
 Wendy 4  Mexico
 Ivan 5  France
 Jonna 7  U.S.
 Shyann 9  U.S.
 Bella 6  U.S.
 Leila 3  France
 Gregoire 5  France
 Daniel 9  Mexico
 Suchawadee  Adult  Thailand
 Jay  Adult  China

Winners will be notified by December 15th.