Industrial automation safety components address safety factors in the workplace

26-03-2024 | Switches Unlimited | Automotive & Transport

IDEC designs and builds products that make interactions between people and machines safer, more efficient, and more productive. The products are available now from Switches Unlimited. Used largely in industrial automation, this series of IDEC products, and many others, addresses the safety factor in the workplace.

IDEC's KW2D series smart RFID Reader increases tracking, security, access levels, and productivity of applications. This device lets OEM and end users implement secure equipment identification, access control and traceability for easy integration into industrial systems. While KW2D works with various RFID tag formats, IDEC-supplied colour-coded key fob or card-style tags include enhanced encryption compared to other tag types. Lightweight, compact and designed to work on metal surfaces, it has a built-in RJ45 Ethernet port, built-in LED and auxiliary buzzer and features push-in power terminals for safety and easy connection.

In an HMI environment, ensuring the safety of operators and machines is given the top priority. The CAT 4 HR6S Series of Safety Relays can monitor multiple devices, process the signals and provide the logic to ensure that a safe machine environment is established per the requirements of the machine designer. This includes door interlock switches, emergency stop switches, light curtains, laser scanners and other safe inputs or safe sensing products used for detection. It has one module for all safety input devices, and with the advanced diagnostic and output functions, it is ideal for predictive maintenance. Its CAT 4 HR6S Safety Relay was the industry's first Category 2 safety relay module suitable for low-risk machines. It features a slim body that saves control panel space with push-in terminals that save installation labour and prevent the loosening of wires.

The SE2L Safety Laser Scanner helps protect personnel and machinery in hazardous areas by using reflected laser beams to detect if a human or object is present. Often used with AGVs and forklifts, IDEC's new SE2L covers an extended sensing distance, making it a great fit for a wide range of industrial robots, machines, and other equipment. It features the most compact footprint on the market.

The safe break action design found only in its XW, XA and X6 series of Safety Emergency-Stop Switches reverses the energy direction and uses the spring pressure to ensure NC contacts will open if the emergency switch is damaged or the contact blocks are separated due to excessive force. The NC contacts will open, even if welded, and stop the machine. The XA and XW E-Stop Switches offer up to four safe-break contacts with a depth half the size of conventional E-Stop switches, meaning the switches can be used in Level 4 safety category applications.

The new HT4P Safety Commander was built on the success of the HT3P by incorporating end-user feature requests for additional networking and operator interface functionality. The ergonomic device enables users to securely hold and protect an HMI tablet while providing power, networking, hardwired E-Stop, and other operator interface devices. OEMs and automation designers can now offer flexible and safety-rated operator interface options for equipment, robotics, collaborative robots, AGVs, AMRs, and other manufacturing system applications.

HE2G Grip Switches are designed for use as Deadman Switches by second operators in robotic cells. According to human behavioural studies, the off-on-off functionality provides a high level of safety when presented with a panic situation. Its light operating force ensures worry-free operation, and additional control buttons such as momentary pushbuttons, E-stop, and/or key selector switches are also available.

The company's safety components play a crucial role as workers increasingly monitor, maintain, program, and directly interact with industrial automation systems. They ensure worker protection, risk mitigation, durability, and ultimately enhanced productivity. The company's commitment to safety and innovation makes its safety components a valuable asset in today's industrial workplaces.

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By Seb Springall