August 9, 2012

Take Control with the Ion Genesis®

Metropolitan’s Ion Genesis® smart sensing controller gives users control of all vital pumping options.

The development of our Ion™ Digital Level Control float switch opened the door for the development of new products within the Ion product line including our user-programmable smart sensing controller, the Ion Genesis®.

To put in the most simplistic terms possible, the Ion Genesis® is the most complete pump controller on the market, providing the most features and safeguards against the devastation of flooding.

The Ion Genesis® comes complete with dual Ion™ Digital Level Control float switches which continuously diagnose and report real-time critical pumping information to the controller.  The controller itself gives users control of all vital aspects of pumping and efficiently cycles pumps to minimize pump turn-on cycles, ultimately adding life to the pump itself.

Metropolitan Salesperson James Spurney said everything starts with Ion™ Digital Level Control float switches, which are used in place of standard float switches.  These sensors are the most reliable on the market and incorporate no moving parts, which is associated with 98% of mechanical switch failures.

Basic features include a high water alarm and easy installation, but Spurney contends the Ion Genesis’® advanced features of protecting against floods are what distinguishes itself from similar products on the market.

“For starters, you have the redundancy of not just two pumps, but two of the most reliable float switches available,” said Spurney.  “Even if one of the float switches were to fail, a high water alarm will notify the user and will also keep both pumps operating.  This feature is not available anywhere else and will ultimately give users the time to replace a failed switch and still prevent flooding.”

Another unique feature of the Ion Genesis® is the ability for users to manually adjust the pumping level.  The level can be adjusted from 2” to 24” in 0.5” increments using the controller without entering the pit.  Spurney said this not only gives the product versatility, but can also extend the life of pumps as well.

“The ability to adjust the level differential is only available on the Ion Genesis®” said Spurney.  “Users can also set the level to produce the longest cycle time which is ultimately going to extend the overall life of the pump.”

Installation of the Ion Genesis® involves no hard-wiring or complex programming and can be used in small or large volume sump pits.

The combination of versatility, value and multiple fail safes make the Ion Genesis® the premier product in flood control.

“A pump alternator that is capable of testing the primary switch, the backup switch and has a high water alarm that can still run the pumps if switch failure occurs is a one of a kind piece of equipment,” said Spurney.  “In addition, the flexible nature of Ion™ Digital Level Control switches and the ability to adjust the pumping level ensures this product can be used in nearly any residential application.  Simply put, this is the best pump alternator available.”

For more information regarding the Ion Genesis®, please contact 815-886-9200 or visit us on the web.

November 17, 2010

Digital Level Control set to Replace Mechancial Float Switches

The Ion® Digital Level Controller that contains no moving parts that fail 98% of the time.

Mechanical pump switch’s days are numbered thanks to a new product called the Ion® Digital Level Control launched by Romeoville, Ill.,-based Metropolitan Industries that replaces mechanical switch operation with intelligent microprocessor technology.

Under development for several years, the patent-pending Ion® Digital Level Controller eliminates moving parts, which are the detriment of most mechanical switches and replaces it with solid-state sensing technology resulting in over 1.5 million cycles which is approximately triple the life of a mechanical switch.

“The problem was never the pump because they are generally built to last. The problem has always been the switch responsible for the critical task of turning the pump on and off,” says John Kochan, Jr., Metropolitan Industries President who developed the idea for the new product by utilizing solid state components and applying them to switch technology.

While mechanical switches are useful and function properly over a period of time, they are always subject to failure. “Mechanical switches use moving parts and wear and tear in a sump pit environment will always break those components down over time,” says Kochan, Jr.

Switch failures translate into non-running pumps, which can result in flooded commercial, industrial and residential locations.

With the demand for reliable switches evident with recent recalls put forth by some of the largest pump manufacturers during the last decade, Metropolitan began work over a period of three years to develop a product that can outperform mechanical switches in longevity and dependability.

How it works

The Ion® Digital Level Controller is a technologically advanced device that senses water level/pressure through the use of a proprietary sensor and microprocessor driven digital control. The microprocessor within the digital float sensor samples analog data from proprietary sensor, which electro-mechanically converts the water pressure to an electrical resistance. Because water pressure is directly proportional to the water height, the electrical resistance of the proprietary sensor is also proportional to the water height. The resistance of the proprietary sensor is measured by means of a resistive bridge network before passing into the microprocessors analog to digital converter.

Digital Level Controller

Metropolitan Industries Presdient John Kochan, Jr., holds the Ion® Digital Level Controller that has been tested over 1.5 million cycles and counting.

Traditionally, sump and sewage pumps often have been started by means of a mechanical switch. The mechanical switch design often uses a set of electrical contacts which close under a given water height scenario, thereby activating the sump pump. Due to the alternating nature of the electrical voltage source from the utility, large voltage differentials could possibly be present across the mechanical switch contacts prior to turning on a pump. When a pump is suddenly turned on under these conditions, large transient current surges could be expected as the motor begins to rotate. These transient surges often cause heating of the electrical contacts which, over time, effectively reduce the lifetime of the switch. This condition is further amplified when a mechanical switch attempts to open and turn off the pump.

When a mechanical switch suddenly opens an inductive motor load, the time rate of change of the current flow can be very large. This value, multiplied by the motors internal inductance, induces a large voltage transient across the mechanical switch contacts. This transient often causes arcing of the contacts which, over time, can cause the switch to wear and ultimately fail. It is well known in the sump pump industry that the cause of most pumping failures occurs when the pumps switch fails.

The embodiments of the ION Switch effectively eliminate the problem of switching transients and contact arcing by incorporating both a solid state switching device in parallel with an electrical relay. When a pump is called for, the turn on cycle begins by enabling the solid state device, or triac. The nature of the triac in our design is to switch on a load under low voltage conditions. By starting the pump motor from a low voltage potential, both radiated and conducted electrical noise have been dramatically reduced.

The Ion Digital Level Control is universal and can be used in almost any pumping application dependent of level control as well as effluent sump and sewage. To customize operation, the Ion® Digital Level Control has standard differential heights of 6 inches for standard sump applications and 10 inches for sewage applications and is inverter rated for use with most battery back up systems. The Ion® can be programmed for custom applications as well.

“We feel the Ion® Digital Level Controller will transform the plumbing industry much the way battery back up systems did in the 1980s because we figured the way to eliminate the moving parts associated  with most switch failures,” says Kochan, Jr.

“As wholesalers and plumbers realize there is a product available that can eliminate the problems associated with mechanical switches, it will only be a matter of time until mechanical switches are replaced entirely,” he added.

For further information about the Ion® Digital Level Controller visit

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