An ongoing discussion of machine guarding topics, including solutions assessments, regulatory compliance, gap analysis, operating efficiencies and cost savings, as well as all relevant safety standards, such as those from NFPA, ANSI, RIA, IEC, ISO and OSHA. About J.B. Titus.
Machine Safety: You can have both safety and productivity
Solutions can deliver machine safety and productivity. Safety automation delivers a viable option to cabling discrete electromechanical components for safety compliance. And, by eliminating the need for cabling, safety automation can now help improve productivity.
After years of machine safety being blamed for unexplained accidents and lost productivity we have finally achieved solutions capable of delivering both machine safety and productivity. Safety automation delivers a viable option to cabling discrete electromechanical components for safety compliance. And, by eliminating the need for cabling, safety automation can now help improve productivity.
If you have lived in industry for the past 40 years you would have witnessed the entire paradigm shift in machine control systems from "everything wired" to "cables safety." For machine control systems this is like comparing hot air balloons to Boeing’s "Dream Liner" for transportation. When speaking to industry colleagues I can easily see that less than 10% of a typical audience was working in industry in the 1960s. Most weren’t even born.
Today, safety automation offers flexible scalable safety controllers and advanced communications incorporating field devices, wireless safe sensors, safe software, safe drives & motion and optoelectronics including light curtains, scanners and safe cameras. The impact on the architecture of a machine control system is a dramatic leaning out of the number and type of components like motor starters, contactors, safety relays, and resolvers. Eliminating these components also reduces their control reliable architecture design effort and related point to point wiring required to meet the redundancy demands for highly reliable safety functions.
As a result, in my opinion, safety automation offers greater reliability of safety functions over time and increased productivity because functions for the multiple devices above are integrated directly into safety certified devices. A main reason for greater productivity is that problematic intermittent failures of multiple components and their point to point wiring have been reduced significantly.
This is too logical, right? If this thought is holding you back just ask yourself, "why are practically all of the automation control and device manufacturers investing millions of dollars integrating safety functionality into their products?" There must be a market for them to generate a return on investement (ROI). Otherwise they wouldn't be investing.
Has this presented you with any new perspectives? Add your comments or thoughts to the discussion by submitting your ideas, experiences, and challenges in the comments section below.
Contact: http://www.jbtitus.com for “Solutions for Machine Safety”.
For more than 30 years, J.B. Titus has advised a wide range of clients on machine functional safety solutions, including Johnson + Johnson, Siemens, General Motors, Disney, Rockwell Automation, Bridgestone Firestone, and Samsung Heavy Industries. He holds a Bachelor of Business Administration degree from Oklahoma University in industrial management and an MBA from Case Western Reserve University in marketing and finance. He is a professional member of the American Society of Safety Engineers and is OSHA-certified in machine guarding. Titus is also TUV-certified as a Functional Safety Expert and serves on several American National Standards Institute, National Fire Protection Association, and National Electrical Manufacturers Association national safety and health standards committees. Reach him at jb(at)jbtitus.com and via www.jbtitus.com.