Smart Light Curtains Help to Achieve Efficient Material Flow and Maximum Safety

Author photo: Naresh Kumar Surepelly
ByNaresh Kumar Surepelly
Company and Product News

Leuze presents Smart Light Curtains with Smart Process Gating without "muting sensors” for Access Guarding

Light curtains are used to detect attempted access to a harmful or a hazardous area. In normal operation, if a light curtain detects an object, it causes the safety system to stop any motion in the hazardous area. In some applications, it is desirable for object to pass through the light curtain without stopping motion in the hazardous area. This can be done using a muting function - the temporary, automatic suspension of the protective function of a safeguarding device.

Leuze recently shared its latest product highlights with ARC, after the cancelation of Germany’s SPS trade show in November. One highlight is the MLC 530 SPG safety light curtains with Smart Process Gating, which offers a space-saving alternative for access guarding on conveyor lines. With this new product, Leuze claims that process control takes place in combination with the system control, and the solution requires no muting sensors. A switching signal provided by the PLC and interruption of the protective field by the transported goods are used as triggers for activation of the gating function. Thus, no additional triggers or muting sensors are required.

Smart Light Curtains

The Operating Principle and Signal Response of SPG

The gating function that bridges the protective field is activated by the correct sequence of switching signal and protective field violation that is monitored by the light curtain. The gating ends either automatically or, in the case of higher conveyor line speeds, by resetting the switching signal.

ARC believes that safety products, such as light curtains enabled for Smart Process Gating, will experience strong demand, especially in intralogistics applications in automotive and food & beverage. These smart products enable users to build compact and space‑saving systems as no additional sensors are necessary, and no, or limited, service calls required for trigger sensor alignments.  ​

Also, such smart products help address some of the user challenges, such as access guarding on pallet conveyor systems, that prevent operating personal from accessing the danger zone, while at the same time allowing the transported goods, car bodies, etc. to pass through.

ARC’s upcoming Online European Industry Forum: Accelerating Industrial Digital Transformation and Sustainability, May 17-18, 2022. 

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