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Drive-Based Integrity Safety
While safety functions have been integrated into drives packages for some years now, the current trends are very exciting, from many angles. Today, a full complement of safety functions can be implemented at the front-end of a system design on all types of production machines, including printing, packaging, converting, materials handling and other equipment used throughout American industry. This can be accomplished in full compliance with all the current regulations for machines used worldwide.
Furthermore, machine designers can look to a drive-based safety integrated protocol that has greater flexibility than ever before, both in terms of its mechanical footprint and component savings, owing to the various ancillary devices such as external contactors and redundant electromechanical safety devices, with all their inherent wiring, cabinet space and related cost.
This paper looks ahead to the ways today's advanced drive designs can be used to better implement the mandated safety functions on many types of production machines, including printing, packaging, converting, materials handling and others. Without the need for redundant or hard-wired back-up devices, or for safety functions being incorporated into a PLC or other motion controller, machine designers and end-users alike can benefit from fast, accurate and fully compliant safety features integrated directly into the machine's drives package. The result is more immediate detection and response, plus space-savings, wiring reduction, external component cost elimination and overall improved machine effectiveness in the critical areas of man and machine protection. Some emerging trends in drive-based integrated safety are detailed as well.
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