Connectors / Sensors

Industrial sensors offer more connectivity options

No Matter the Magnitude of the Amount of Machine or Process Data Needed in Manufacturing Operations These Days, Sensor Suppliers Are Providing More Network Connectivity Possibilities With Their Devices

Big data, medium data, small data. No matter the magnitude of the amount of machine or process data needed in manufacturing operations these days, sensor suppliers of every ilk are providing more network connectivity possibilities with their devices to help report operating and/or condition status to other segments of the company, as well as enable more direct machine control feedback.

"The growing popularity of industrial networks has heavily influenced the expansion of our rotary encoder line," reports Bob Alesio, AMCI director of sales and marketing. "Our most popular shaft encoders now include an Ethernet, DeviceNet or Profibus interface."

Control Design's audience surveys regarding industrial sensor use seem to back that up. In 2008, 78% of respondents reported that their deployed sensors were hardwired. December 2013's survey pegs that number at 53% now. Nearly 15% of respondents noted using IO-Link, a solution that wasn't even asked about in 2008, since its North American visibility was pretty low at that point. Basic serial EIA232/422/485 was used by 23% of respondents in 2008. This latest survey puts that use at 10% at present.

What hasn't yet changed much is the percent of survey respondents who say they use wireless sensing. Only about 30% report using them, a number that's been largely constant since 2008.



Easy as ODVA    
OS32C-DM Type 3 safety laser scanners report status and measurement data via EtherNet/IP, and are conformance tested to the ODVA standard for connectivity to other ODVA-compliant devices such as PLCs and HMIs. Function blocks are provided for simple PLC controlled status and data updates. The scanners provide configurable object resolutions of 30, 40, 50 and 70 mm, and consume just 5 W (3.75 W in standby).
Omron Automation & Safety;


Flow and More
Sitrans FC410 compact Coriolis flowmeter has 0.1% measuring accuracy with a 10-ms signal update and measures flow rate data and the mass, volume, density and temperature of the medium. It works at pressure levels to 100 bar and temperatures -50 to 200 °C. It communicates with Simatic and all other common process control systems via multidrop-addressable Modbus RTU485, and can be integrated into existing and new systems.
Siemens Industry;


Flexible Laser Scans    
LS-500 Class 1 digital laser sensors in a small footprint for dirty settings feature 60-ms response time, built-in "and," "or" and "xor" logic functionality, four small sensor head configurations, analog 4-20 mA output, eight data banks with logic functions, four levels of light adjustment, threshold tracking feature and multiple application recipes.


Located in the Vicinity    
Inductive proximity sensors range from M8 to M30 in nickel-plated brass and stainless steel versions. Most are available pre-cabled with M12/M18 connectors, are IP67 (EN 60529)-rated, UL-certified with reverse polarity protection, output short circuit protection and an LED indicator with 360° visibility.
Industrial Control Direct;


Highly Transmittable    
One Series safety transmitters monitor temperature and pressure, providing a NAMUR 4-20 mA output. An internal, high-speed safety relay can initiate an alarm or emergency shutdown directly from the instrument. The sensor and logic solver functions are built-in. The transmitter is certified for use in SIL 2 applications and is capable of SIL 3 with redundancy, achieving a safe failure fraction of 98.5% and a risk reduction factor of 806.
United Electric Controls;


Dots the Eye    
Smarteye SmartDot laser sensor has an OLED graphic display, sensor scope diagnostics, pushbutton autoset, 240-µs response time, 10-LED contrast indicator, and is available in short-range, long-range and retroreflective models.


Color Tells It All    
S18-2 self-contained, dc-operated, photoelectric sensors have advanced ASIC technology, resistance to fluorescent light and offer a high level of crosstalk avoidance. Their visible-red emitter beams reach up to 25 m. Indicators include a solid green to indicate power is applied and the sensor is ready, while flashing green specifies a marginal sensing signal. Two yellow LEDs are visible from both sides of the sensor and indicate the output is conducting.
Banner Engineering;


NR25 series encoders for all PLCs and PACs that communicate with DeviceNet measure up to 30-bit total resolution, delivering 16 bits (65536 steps) per revolution and up to an additional 14 bits (16384 revolutions) for multi-turn versions They have IP67 ingress rating, solid shaft and hub shaft versions, and programmable resolution, count direction, total measurement range, velocity format and position preset. Bus address and bus speed, as well as a reset button, are accessed through the unit's back cover.
Advanced Micro Controls;


The One Piece    
Full Inox-inductive sensors are rated to IP68 and IP69K and sized M8 to M30 with sensing distances up to 40 mm. The family includes cable and connector versions with PNP or NPN output configurations. They have one-piece, stainless steel construction and hermetically sealed cable entry, and are weld-immune.


Lock Out Problems    
Bulletin 873P ultrasonic sensors have a wide range of operating voltages and setpoints, and output functions are selected via pushbutton and protected by a lockout feature to prevent tampering or inadvertent reprogramming. Multiple status LEDs assist setup and troubleshooting. Select models have synchronization to prevent crosstalk in multiple sensor installations. They're IP67-rated, come in 18-mm and 30-mm-diameter models with analog, digital and combination output configurations, and have sensing ranges from 400 mm to 3.5 m.
Rockwell Automation;


Long and Short of It    
OPT short- and long-range sensors available with either Class 1 or Class 2 laser options have rectangular plastic housings and an M12 quick-disconnect. Short-range, diffuse distance sensors use high-resolution CMOS line-array technology, thereby eliminating material, color and brightness-related differences. They have sensing ranges of 30-660 mm at 1,500 scans per second. The long-range photoelectric sensors use the transit-time measurement between sensor and the object, and have a sensing range to 10 m. The retroreflective styles sense up to
100 m.


No Foul, No Harm    
SC24 differential combined pH sensor has a sealed glass reference cell that prevents fouling and ensures measurement stability. It integrates four functions—pH sensing, reference cell, temperature compensation and liquid earth (ORP), so the user has to deal with only one sensor and one cable. It's designed for a 12-mm PG13.5 mounting. An adapter makes it compatible with most industrial holders. Usable for ORP/Redox control applications.

  No Flight Delays    
O5D Series photoelectric sensor integrates time-of-flight sensing principle with PMD technology for long diffuse-background suppression sensing ranges of up to 2 m. The switch point, visible on the sensor's numeric display, is set by pushbuttons. The O5D100 model displays range in centimeters, and the O5D101 model displays range in inches. The Class 2 laser has a visible red light spot for trouble-free installation, and has a complementary LO/DO, PNP output.
ifm efector;
  It's Solid-Free    
Element Type 8036 transmitter for flow rates in solid-free liquids has a sensor with paddlewheel and an enclosure with cover containing the electronic module and a removable display, all attached to a compact, quarter-turn fitting. The transmitter can operate independently of the display, which is required solely for programming to set parameters, restore default parameters, program information to be displayed, access codes, adjust 4-20 mA outputs, and view measured and processed data. For orifice sizes ¼ to 2½-in., the operating range is 5 to 212 °F. Maximum pressure is 232 psi.
Burkert Fluid Control Systems;

  Watch Your Speed    
SAM inductive sensor for speed and acceleration monitoring gives a raw pulse output and a programmable, discrete switching output. It has a monitoring range of up to 12,000 pulses per minute and a start-up delay. To reduce false trips, SAM offers no delay, fixed-time delay and upper-threshold delay modes to account for fast or slow machine start-up times. On-board adjustment tools make it easy to set parameters and display errors directly.

  Glass Tough    
R2 Series ‘ultra-small' sensors feature an industry-standard mounting footprint and a 45-in. cable outlet. The sensors have a glass optical surface for resistance to environmental contaminants, chemicals and abrasion. No-load supply current is less than 10 mA. Through-beam mode sensors offer a sensing range up to 2.5 m, deliver a 600-µs response time and can operate with a 10-30-Vdc supply and temperature range of -25 to 60 °C. R2 series photoelectric sensors are IP67-rated, and carry the CE mark and UL and cUL approvals.

  Compute the Power    
APN Series power-monitoring sensor measures three phases of current and voltage, and computes 14 values to track power use in the RS485 Modbus RTU format. To measure watts in an ac circuit, the supplied voltage is compared with the current and indicates whether the current peaks before the voltage (leading power factor in a mostly reactive circuit) or the current peaks after the voltage (lagging power factor in a more inductive circuit). It can be configured to accept standard 5-A current transformer inputs or sensors producing 333 mVac proportional to the ac current of the circuit.
NK Technologies;

  Sensible Sensing    
EZ Viz Prox proximity sensors in 8-, 12-, 18- and 30-mm models can be flush or non-flush face with nickel-plated brass or stainless steel housings, 2-m integral cable or industry-standard M12 connectors, PNP or NPN, normally open/close outputs. Standard sensing distances range  from 2 mm to 15 mm.

  Needs Little Power    
MNU Series ultrasonic sensors are self-contained and measure distance, level or volume with a standard Modbus RTU (RS-485) output. They have sensing ranges from 4 in. to 40 ft with accuracy of ±0.25% of detected range and resolution 0.1 in. Low current draw makes them suitable for remote locations where power conservation with solar panels and batteries is critical.
Automation Products Group;

Non-contact, ultrasonic sensors measure fill levels, heights and sag; count and monitor the presence of objects; and operate independently of color and surface finish. Detection ranges extend from 20 mm to 8 m, and they're available in switching or analog versions. All analog versions are available with voltage or current output (0–10 V or 4–20 mA). In addition, the M30 version includes variants with two switching outputs.

  Frugal Consumer    
Contelec Vert-X 21 LP non-contact angle sensors consume only 300 µA at 3.3 V. They have 0 to 360° measurement range, 12-bit resolution, repeatability to 0.1°, and maximum hysteresis of 0.2°. Power supply range is 1.8–5.5 V. Sensors can be ordered as a simple three-wire angle sensor or a programmable version with up to two switch outputs, custom measurement angle, start- and end-point settings, custom characteristic curve and/or sense of rotation.
Novotechnik U.S.;
  One Chip Only    
BTF Series photoelectric sensors use a one-chip, photo IC design and include background suppression function, through-beam or diffuse reflective types, visible red LED detection spot and IP67 rating. Stable sensing minimizes false detection regardless of the color or glossiness of the target.

  Not Easily Shocked    
PR-M/F Series miniature photoeyes have a resin-filled, SUS316L stainless steel body for shock resistance. The devices claim stable detection by reducing the effects of interference and target color or angle. Multiple sensors will not interfere with each other in close proximity because of built-in, crosstalk prevention function. They feature both Light-ON and Dark-ON outputs in the same unit and also feature M8 connector type models.
  T It Up    
Configurable SMT-8M-A proximity sensor for drive units with T-slot provides installation aid via second LED; one-hand assembly; reversible switching output; choice of IP65, IP68 or IP69K protection; and ATEX design configurable up to 30-m cable length.

Busy When Wet    
Liquiphant FailSafe FTL8x point level switches have two relay outputs, a 4–20 mA output that connects to a fail-safe switching unit with a two-channel output, safety contacts and a safety locking function. The 4–20 mA signal jumps from high to low current when the MIN or MAX point level is reached, and a permanent live signal of 0.25 Hz is superimposed on the sensor output to indicate status.


Q42 uprox+ long-range, inductive proximity sensor uses FDA-rated materials for washdown applications and choice of top-facing or front-facing models. It has a sensing range of 50 mm for all types of metals and operates in temperatures ranging from -40 to 100 °C.