Magnetic locks are locking devices which consist of an armature plate and an electromagnet. The devices are used on sensitive doors and are of two types; fail-secure and fail-safe. The fail- secure devices remain locked when power is disconnected while the fail-safe are unlocked when power is disconnected. The electromagnetic lock is normally attached to the door frame and has an armature plate attached to the door.
Most of the magnetic locks are operated by passing a current in the electromagnet causing an increase in the magnetic flux. The flux makes the armature plate attract the electromagnet hence closes the door. The force created by the magnetic flux keeps the door locked even when pressure is applied on it.
For the fail-safe magnetic lock to work well and remain locked there must be a constant power supply and hence it cannot be relied on in places where high security is mandatory. When used in places where high security is a must, there must be a battery backup to ensure a constant the power supply.
Magnetic locks are normally used in exit doors because they hardly fail in the event of an emergency. The locks are strong and cost less as compared to other convectional locks hence they are they are preferred. The locks do not interact with levers and door knobs and are operated by a button that opens and closes the door. The locks have found a lot of applications in offices because they can be relied on during incidences of fire.
Some of the magnetic locks have electromagnets that attract a conductor with a force large enough to prevent the door from opening. They consists of a solenoid wrapped around a ferromagnetic material which amplifies the magnetic field produced creating a magnetic force.
Advantages of magnetic locks
· Durability: the locks are more durable as compared to other convectional locks
· Quick to operate: the locks are operated by switching power on and off hence they are valuable in a high traffic office where authentication is required.
· Easy to install: The locks are easier to install as compared to other convectional locks because they do not have interconnecting parts.
· Sturdy: The locks suffer less damage even when exposed to multiple of blows or when forced to open using a crowbar.
· Have no moving parts.
The locks come with the following disadvantages
· Requires a constant supply of power
· Power outages de-energizes the lock hence disabling security
· They are expensive especially when compared to mechanical locks and some additional hardware must be bought if they have to be operated safely.
For investors who build high security offices, buying the magnetic locks can be good because the locks enhances the security of the offices and bolsters the demand for the offices.