Among its emerging trends, safety is being applied in "tougher applications such as those for cold storage environments, and that requires safety devices to have a wider range of functionality and a more-rugged design to prolong the device life," says Steve Aamodt, Sick's manager, national product management–safety.
Because automation enables greater productivity with fewer workers, "safety equipment must be easy to install and provide more real-time system information for easy troubleshooting and maintenance," Aamodt states.
Along similar lines, Aamodt says factories and warehouses are more efficient, however, since floor space is at a premium, automation lines must do more in a smaller footprint. "Safety equipment must seamlessly integrate into customers' current automation to keep workers safe and production lines running."
Zachary Stank, product marketing specialist–safety, at Phoenix Contact, adds, "Machine safety is increasingly incorporated into the control and PLC system. Including safety, or at least safety status, on the controller allows for direct diagnosis of unsafe conditions or spurious trips, which in turn reduces overall downtime of a system. This trend drives more networkable safety solutions, such as Ethernet-enabled configurable relays and distributed safe I/O solutions on the PLC."
Brian Taylor, business director, safety components, Rockwell Automation, believes advances in safety solutions have changed how we view machine safety. "Only a decade ago, safety was considered a hindrance to productivity," Taylor says. "Today there are real examples of how safety can enhance it. As a result, safety and productivity are no longer mutually exclusive goals."
Taylor adds the trend to integrated safety also offers the advantages of a common programming environment to help reduce design, configuration, startup, and maintenance time and costs. "With a single software program managing both safety and standard functionality, engineers no longer need to manually manage the separation of standard and safety memory, or worry about partitioning logic to isolate safety," he explains.
HS3A non-contact, RFID-coded, safety interlock switches for applications, where no contact is desired between the switch and its actuating key, are Category 4 and PLe compliant. Multicode and unicode sensor heads are available, preventing tampering with the use of an unassigned spare actuator, and allowing installation in five directions.
Tongue-operated safety interlock switches fit to the leading edge of sliding, hinged or lift-off machine guards with positively operated switching contacts. They have tamper-resistant actuator mechanisms and position interlock detection for moving guards. Available in 22, 30 and 40 mm mounting profiles, in plastic, aluminum and stainless steel housings, the switches have multiple actuator entry points and adjustable heads with 90° and 180° options.
ESL multifunctional door handle is designed for protecting and monitoring safety guards such as doors and flaps on machines, and consists of a handle and interlocking module equipped with transponder-coded safety technology CES in accordance to EN ISO 13849-1. With installed CES AR evaluation electronics, up to 20 ESL or other AR-version products can be connected in series.
Free, downloadable SafeConf (safe configure) software requires no programming knowledge for configuration of the company’s PSR-TriSafe safety controller family and its SafetyBridge Technology products. With a drag-and-drop interface instead of programming, users can drag the required functions and components to the connection area and link them. Its simulation mode allows safety design testing before connecting the hardware.
750-663 Profisafe EX i module provides four secure digital inputs for safety applications with intrinsically safe sensors in Zones 2, 1 and 0. Input and process data is securely transferred using Profisafe protocols V1 and V2 on one fieldbus line. Via functional safety, the intrinsically safe inputs also detect secure sensors in Zone 0/20, determining safety functions up to SIL 3 (IEC 61511, EN IEC 62061) and Cat. 4 PLe (EN ISO 13849).
GSR safety relays meet global functional-safety standards such as EN ISO 13849-1, and include seven basic units capable of supporting a range of safety devices in single- and multi-zone configurations. It has single-wire communication capability that helps eliminate dual-channel connection between relays. "AND/OR" logic is set via rotary switch on the front of the relay, and a universal input feature allows safety interlock switches, emergency-stop switches and safety mats to use the same set of input terminals.
DuelcoSC (DSC) modular programmable safety controller is capable of monitoring several emergency stop buttons and sensors, such as light curtains, laser scanners, photo-optics, mechanical contacts, safety mats/edges and two-hand control buttons. It provides for reduced number of components, easy electrical installation, configuration with logical operations and drag and drop software. It is certified for SIL3, SILcl3, PL e, CAT4.
Type 4 light curtains provide a multi-beam barrier of infrared light. If any of the beams are blocked by an object such as a finger or a hand, the light curtain signals the machine to a safe state. The curtains come in protective heights 160–1,510 mm, and in 150 mm increments with optional muting and blanking. Installation doesn’t require software or control boxes, and meets the highest maximum achievable safety level requirements per IEC61496; SIL3, SILcl3 and PL e.
RVS58S safety encoders and VBA-2E-KE4-ENC-S AS-I encoder input modules provide a safe motion solution by detecting zero-speed, over-speed and motion direction to ensure safe machine access during setup and maintenance. It integrates into new machines or existing equipment, and where SIL3, PL e and Category 4 certification are needed. Each module provides two safe inputs for incremental encoders and sends a safe signal via AS-i if values fall below a set threshold.
Surface flush-mount e-stop buttons mount without disassembling or individual wiring. They’re available with a non-illuminated base with four actuator styles: standard, illuminated actuator, lockable actuator and illuminated lockable actuator; or with an illuminated base with standard or lockable actuator. They have “Safe Break Action,” so safety contacts will open if the contact block is separated from the actuator.
Model 268PS safety pressure transmitter, manufactured according to IEC61508/ISA S84.01, and with TÜV SIL2 certification and applicable SIL3 for redundant configuration, has maximum working pressures range up to 21 MPa, 3045psi. Configuration is via handheld terminal or PC configuration platform. HART communication provides integration with HART platforms.
OS32C-DM safety laser scanner reports status and measurement data via EtherNet/IP, enabling users to check the operating state and analyze the cause of an emergency stop, and take quick corrective action. Function blocks provide simple PLC controlled status and data updates. The scanners provide configurable object resolutions of 30, 40, 50 and 70 mm for hand and arm-detection needs. They have a 104.5 mm profile, weigh 1.3 kg, and consume 5 W power (3.75 W in standby).
Omron Automation and Safety
Absolute LC 195S and LC 495S sealed, functional-safety (FS) encoders are available for EnDat 2.2 and Drive-CLiQ interfaces for use as single-encoder systems in safety-related applications, such as in axes with a linear motor. In addition to safe processing of the position values, these encoders provide fault exclusions for loosening mechanical coupling for various mounting types.
deTec4 Core is a guard-only safety light curtain with brackets that can be positioned in any location on the housing without causing blind zones. With a built-in automatic range detection of 10 m, the curtain automatically determines the distance to the sender, which eliminates manual setup of the sensing distance. It’s available in heights 300–2,100 mm with 14- and 30-mm resolutions.
BNS40S safety sensor monitors the position of movable safety guards per EN 1088 and EN 60947-5-3 in an IP69K-rated stainless steel housing and concealed mounting. It is cULus-approved and can be used in safety circuits up to PLe/SIL 3/Category 4.
Food-grade switches are manufactured using 316 stainless steel, and include mechanical keyed interlock switches, non-contact sensors, explosion-proof sensors and IP69K sensors. The product line includes e-stop rope pull switches and enclosures.
ABB Jokab Safety
IM154-8FX PN/DP F failsafe CPU for restricted areas with no space for switchboxes has IP65/67 protection. It has LEDs, online diagnostics and diagnostics alarm. Module data and diagnostics are available via web server.
EL731 ac/dc sensitive earth-leakage relay can detect ground currents in resistance-grounded electrical systems down to 0 Hz to protect variable-frequency drives (VFDs) that operate at low speeds, during which ac current approaches dc. VFDs operating in resistance-grounded electrical systems are growing in popularity because of their ability to reduce arc-flash hazards.
EP1908 EtherCAT Box with TwinSafe includes an IP67-rated variant with eight 24 Vdc safety inputs to connect safety sensors via M12 connectors. Inputs can accept OSSD signals from light curtains and laser scanners. Zero speed monitoring via encoder or proximity switch of 0–500 Hz max is possible.
GL-R Series safety light curtain is built from a 3 mm thick extruded aluminum body with a narrow, 9-mm wide recessed lens surface, sealed to meet IP65 and IP67 ratings. One-line wiring system allows the transmitter to be connected in series directly to the receiver for power and synchronization purposes. Smart features include edge-to-edge detection, built-in muting and blanking, visible indicators, quick disconnect cable options, and monitoring software.
STA safety trip alarm accepts signal input from transmitters, temperature sensors, resistance and potentiometer devices, and other monitoring and control equipment. It provides three failsafe alarm outputs, and is certified to IEC 61508: Parts 1, 2 and 3 by TÜV Rheinland for single use in Safety Instrumented Systems up to SIL 2.
PSSR-2 safety interface controller integrity monitors safety switch, mat, edge and bumper products with a 6.8 or 8.2 kΩ, end-of-the-line resistor at Category 3 SIL 2 PLd, EN 13849. It has a manual and auto reset, three output contacts, force guided relays, and two normally open and one normally closed contacts.
X20SL8000 SafeLogic controllers handle all central tasks in safety-related applications. They support up to 20 safety nodes, and have exchangeable application memory, one Powerlink V2 interface, and a power supply module.
B&R Industrial Automation
Remote Racking System (RRS) promotes workplace safety by automatically racking circuit breakers from a distance via a remote control station and customized cord length. It removes operators from manual contact with the breaker while it is being inserted or removed, which is when a significant percentage of arcing faults occur.
Type 4 finger safety light curtains have a maximum operating distance of 6 m, controlled heights ranging 150–1800 mm, and 14 mm resolution. They have a 32x37 mm profile with selectable EDM and manual/automatic restart.
M22 e-stop buttons have clear color signals with a luminous ring in 45 and 60 mm sizes with or without a key, twist-release, non-illuminated, illuminated with standard LED, or with mechanical switch position display in the center of the actuation element. They are tamper-proof in compliance with EN ISO 13850, and conform to EN 60204 and IEC 60204.
TD-CSR time delay control switch relay provides a means to mitigate arc flash danger in local circuit breaker operation by allowing a manually initiated, time-delayed trip or close. A flashing LED notifies the operator of pending trip or close operation and as a warning to evacuate the arc flash area. To avoid an inadvertent operation, the control pushbuttons must be depressed for four continuous seconds to activate the 10-second delay.
LKEH Series combines LED light tower with an audible horn integrated into the base, and is offered with pre-installed sounds or with MP3 field-programming capability. Volume is adjustable from zero up to 105 dB at 1 m.
Each channel of Safety Manager Remote Universal Safety IO can be configured individually to a different I/O type. Each module has a capacity of 32 configurable channels, and up to 28 redundant modules can be connected to a Safety Manager using the SIL 3-certified Safety Manager Remote I/O communication network.