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164 safety light curtains form ‘world’s broadest portfolio’

17 June, 2019

Omron has announced a family of 164 new safety light curtains, with the claim that they form the industry's broadest portfolio. The F3SG-SR/PG curtains provide finger (10mm beam gap), hand (20mm), leg (40mm), and body protection (80mm), and cover protective heights from 160–2,480mm. They are IO-Link compatible, and can thus be linked into IoT systems on factory floors.

The F3SG-SR models are designed to protect machine openings and are available immediately in Japan. They have 20m operating ranges, except for the finger protection version which has a 10m range. The multi-beam F3SG-PG models are designed to guard machine perimeters and will be available “soon” with beam gaps of 300, 400 or 500mm, and operating ranges of up to 70m. The curtains have slim housings with cross-sections of 38 x 32mm, making them about half the size of some rivals.

Omron says that the curtains will simplify selection and design, thus saving time and effort. They share the same methods of installation and wiring, allowing designs to be standardised. The curtains comply with global safety standards and cover almost all protection applications.

Each beam has a three-colour “area beam indicator” that allows users to see the beam status from a distance, reducing adjustment times “significantly”, and allowing the curtains to be installed by one person. The indicator turns orange when the light intensity is low or the optical surface gets dirty, helping to prevent unexpected stoppages.

The curtains help users to identify the causes of equipment stoppages and to prevent them from reoccurring, thus boosting productivity. Error diagnoses are simplified by indicators that show information such as replacement-recommended errors and safety outputs that are off.

The built-in support for IO-Link can be used to monitor the curtains for predictive maintenance. Settings can be backed up via IO-Link and restored automatically if a curtain needs to be replaced. Almost anyone can replace a curtain and restart the machine. Settings can also be copied between light curtains without needing a PC, cutting installation time and effort when installing a series of machines.

Applications for Omron's safety light curtains include protecting machine openings as well as perimeters.

The light curtains can operate in temperatures as low as –30°C and are protected to IP67G, providing resistance to oil and water and ensuring stable operation even in harsh environments

Accessories are available for complex muting applications, including mounts, and systems that reduce the need for wiring during installation and maintenance.

Safety light curtains are designed to protect industrial workers from hazards such as moving parts on production equipment. If a person interrupts a beam of light between an emitter and receiver that face each other, the curtain detects this as entry into the hazardous area and outputs a signal to stop the equipment safely. Omron’s emitters and receivers can be synchronised optically or via wired connections.

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