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Sensor technology for secure safety gate monitoring

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article image Sensor technology for secure safety gate monitoring

Pilz Australia  have the right sensor for every requirement.

Where there’s flying metal swarf or hazardous movements on plant and machinery, safety guards or gates ensure the safety of operating personnel. Their position can now be monitored with a wide range of safety sensors, which consider not just the safety-related aspects, but economic considerations too. The challenge for the designer is to harmonise safety, productivity and user friendliness on the plant or machine.

Secure packaging: complete solution for safety gate monitoring

Put plainly, safe sensor technology alone is only half the battle. Safety gate monitoring is incomplete without a corresponding safety relay on the output side, to evaluate the signals. With a one-stop solution, users can benefit from maximum compatibility between components.

Safety devices used to be viewed as obstructive, but now the opposite is true: modern safety sensors such as the PNOZmulti make handling easier, and plant and machinery more productive.

In many industries, packing is still associated with manual work. Where man and machine are working together, the risk of injury must be minimised to the greatest possible extent.

Safe interaction between man and machine

On the Sprinter, PNOZmulti configures simpler, safer interaction between man and machine. By comparison the safety devices on its predecessor were simplistic and mainly based on individually wired switches and contactors. Large covers safeguarded wide-ranging potential danger zones such as the forming and sealing stations via switch contacts.

The infeed area in between was narrow and only allowed a one-up arrangement. On the Sprinter, the cover on the forming station is reduced to a minimum. Instead, an advance security slide ensures that it is impossible to reach into either the forming or the sealing station from the filling station. If the slide switch is not closed, the safety system will prevent the bottom film from being formed and stop pressing and heat-sealing in the sealing station. Propulsion drives and valves are switched off, the central PMI operator terminal (Pilz Machine Interface) receives an error message, stating the cause and the source.

Magnetic safety sensors PSENmag monitor the mobile protective hood over the sealing station, the longitudinal and transverse cutters, the lower positions of the lift cylinder plus the security slide on the forming/sealing station. The PNOZmulti also monitors the E-STOP and the enables that control the heaters and valves.

The risk of injury from the packaging machine, therefore, is kept to a minimum, both during operation and in setup mode. With PNOZmulti safety sensors, the machine has a flexible safety concept which is really easy to adapt to the requirements. Now the infeed area has a three-up arrangement, so assembly is quicker and easier, plus the machine is more productive.

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