ABB introduces world's first wireless proximity sensor

Hannover, Germany - ABB Stotz-Kontakt presented the first pre-production samples of a new wireless proximity switch that promises to eliminate the task of cabling sensors on production machines.



Hannover, Germany - ABB Stotz-Kontakt presented the first pre-production samples of a new wireless proximity switch that promises to eliminate the task of cabling sensors on production machines. Operating in the 2.4 GHz band, the low-power 6mW sensors are energised by induction through an electromagnetic field provided by a cable that functions as a primary loop. The link to the controller is handled by input modules which can communicate with up to 60 sensors via an antenna.

Wolfgang Zimmerman, Sensor Product Manager for ABB Stotz-Kontakt, said a typical enclosed manufacturing cell in an automobile plant can contain from 30 to 200 proximity switches, which all have to be fitted with power supply and signal transmission cables for each sensor. "Complex assembly machines sometimes need modifying to customer requirements up until its very manufacture and this can prove to be particularly expensive due to the wiring," he said. "In operation, especially with robots, there is the risk that in the course of time the cable might fray at critical points."

Faults due to incorrect or defective wiring can also be avoided, he pointed out, which increases safety. Each sensor reports correct functioning to its input module twice every second. Installation and service are simplified due to easy identification at the press of a button.

Control Engineering Daily News Desk
Michael Babb, editor, Control Engineering-Europe

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