Opto-electronic protective devices
Opto-electronic protective devices

Safe protection of personnel for improved interaction between man and machine

Flexible production places great demands on safety when man and machine work hand-in-hand in automation. This human-machine cooperation must not compromise the safety of the employees. Opto-electronic protective devices, such as safety light curtains from Balluff offer you safe solutions while providing great flexibility. Another benefit for you: By using safety light curtains comprised of multiple parallel light beams, you can save space, because light curtains can replace cumbersome protective gates and fences or bundles of multiple individual through-beam sensors.

Non-contact protective devices

Opto-electronic protective devices are an excellent solution to protect against hazards associated with machines and equipment when operators frequently intervene in the production process. The non-contact Electro-sensitive protective devices (ESPE) detect the movement of a person at the equipment within a specified protective area by means of infrared light. The safety light curtains from Balluff are designed for finger and hand protection or as light grids for body protection applications. The closer the light beams, the greater the resolution and detection ability, so even small body parts can be reliably detected using Balluff's safety light curtains. If a person moves into the defined protected zone, the safety light curtain immediately triggers a stop command and all safety-critical movements of the equipment can be stopped.

The safety function can be implemented more quickly, simply and cost effectively with safety light curtains than using multiple single through-beam sensors. This is because installing a single safety light curtain instead of multiple individual through-beam sensors means fewer, simpler and easier connections.. All it takes to create the safety function is to simply connect the safety light curtain to the safe Safety over IO-Link module which is connected to the IO-Link master. And the standardized M12 plug connections save money due to less time spent wiring and lower cost.

Safe and space-saving

The non-contact protective devices allow you to provide reliable personal protection without giving away space for protective fence constructions. By using opto-electronic protective devices like our safety light curtains you can eliminate such constructions which prevent persons from entering hazardous areas in normal situations and which take up much space. Safety light curtains from Balluff can be flexibly used and are economical. At the same time they provide strong anti-tamper protection.

It's all about people

Fully automated handling processes represent a particular hazard to humans. This is why it is essential that the safety light curtains distinguish between people and material flow. For example to reliably provide robots with material, our safety light curtains can also be used at work area material entry/exit points. There, the safety function is temporarily by-passed when the material is transported through the protective field (muting). Safety is still maintained, however, in case a person inadvertently attempts to enter the hazardous zone.

The most important benefits

  • Finger, hand and body detection for convenient, flexible and fast interaction between man and machine
  • Defined protected area with an infrared protection field – suitable for safety applications up to PLe/SIL3
  • Safe machine stops for safety-critical applications
  • Better space utilization by reducing/eliminating the need for protective fences
  • High level of protection against manipulation