Special technology for machine safety can be applied in special ways to provide compliant machine safeguarding. Technologies such as Google Glass are starting to merge into human activity. How will safety behavior be impacted if employees are allowed to wear Google Glass near operating machinery?
Does anybody remember HAL 9000, the computer that controlled the universe in the science fiction movie, 2001: A Space Odyssey? Is autonomous safety where we’re headed with networks and technology for integrated machine control and safety automation? [HAL 9000 was not OSHA approved.]
In a few years, could we just have one functional safety standard? The world has two predominantly accepted functional safety standards for machinery: IEC 62061, Safety of machinery: Functional safety of electrical, electronic and programmable electronic control systems, and ISO 13849-1, Safety of machinery - Safety-related parts of control systems - Part...
ISO 13849 clearly states that it is a standard for designers. If these designers work for U.S. original equipment manufacturers (OEMs), does the OEM have an enforceable legal requirement for compliance? Under the European Machinery Directive (MD), common opinion is no, but there may be exceptions.
Take safety system validation seriously. Validation is substantiating that a required safety function is reliably achieved in a machine’s safety system. Validation is not the same as verification. Safety automation offers flexibility.
Machine safety and security each involve potential hazards that can result in personal injury, damage to property, and / or interruptions and unplanned downtime in manufacturing. While the outcome can be the same, machine safety and security differ in causal behaviors based on intent.
Is your safety program like the game “Hide and Seek”? Or is your program “Top Down and Bottom Up” best-in-class machine safety? We all have a choice. Don't play games. Be proactive for machine safety compliance.
Safety considerations change as the source of hazards transforms, such as on moving workstations like automated guided vehicles (AGVs). Even Boeing’s 787 Dreamliner is assembled on slow moving AGVs. How can guarding for operator safety accommodate changing hazard levels during assembly?