23 Feb 2018

Light curtains enable higher levels of safety in industrial production

RS Components has announced availability of the new Allen-Bradley GuardShield 450L POC safety light curtain system from Rockwell Automation.

Targeting machine builders, maintenance engineers and facilities managers responsible for on-site safety in production and processing areas, the new series of light curtains offers a flexible and cost-effective solution that enhances safety while improving productivity through innovative and patented transceiver technology.

Enabling a safer work environment, safety light curtains are essentially photoelectric presence sensors that have been designed to protect personnel from injuries related to hazardous machine motion. Widely used in industrial production processes that are becoming increasingly automated, light curtains offer optimal safety and enable greater productivity, as well as being the more ergonomically sound solution when compared to mechanical guards. The 450L series offers POC (Point of Operation Control) models, which are designed for finger, hand and arm protection and are designed to be placed close to the hazard and at the point of operation where personnel may frequently interact with a machine.

While traditional safety light curtains are based on separate transmitter and receiver units, the GuardShield 450L safety light curtains use a next-generation system featuring patented technology. It allows each transceiver to be used as a transmitter or receiver via an innovative plug-in module that establishes each unit’s function as either a transmitter or receiver. This innovative approach enables a flexible and cost-effective safety solution as well as greatly reduced stock. For example, when light curtain systems are developed on the traditional transmitter/receiver architecture, customers need to buy multiple light curtain models to accommodate different features. However, the GuardShield 450L series enables the purchase of identical sticks that offer customisable features with different plug-ins.

Five-pin plug-ins are available for basic on/off functionality, while eight-pin plug-ins provide manual and auto-restart with external device monitoring. To further simplify setup, advanced function settings are configured via DIP switches located on the plug-in module. Additionally, flexible mounting kits and built-in alignment indication allow for quick and trouble-free installation.

Now available from RS in the EMEA region, the complete GuardShield 450L series from Rockwell includes more than 20 safety light curtains and many accessories.

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