RFID Safety Sensor For Wash Down Applications

Aug. 3, 2013
Schmersal has applied Radio-frequency identification (RFID) technology in the new RSS36 series non-contact safety sensor.

Schmersal has applied Radio-frequency identification (RFID) technology in the new RSS36 series non-contact safety sensor. The RSS36 is designed for application in safety circuits monitoring the position of hinged, sliding or removable guards using a specifically coded, passive RFID tag in the actuator.
Radio-frequency identification (RFID) is a technology that uses radio waves to provide a wireless data exchange of a coded identification number from a target (tag, label, or chip) in close proximity to a reader or sensor. In this application the RSS36 sensor is attached to the machine frame and its matching RFID actuator target is attached to the safety guard door.

The clear advantage of using RFID technology is enhanced tamper resistance. Since the RSS36 uses a special frequency, the sensor will disregard non-actuator RFID signals, and the passive RFID tag in the actuator will not interfere with other RFID systems such as product trackers. The RSS36 is also difficult to by-pass because it has the option of individual coding: The basic version of the sensor responds to any RSS36 target actuator; The “I1” version only accepts the coded ID number of the specific target actuator which is taught in during the first start-up; The “I2” version allows the teach-in process to be repeated, allowing replacement of a lost or damaged actuator.

The non-contact sensing allows for longer switch life. Since there are no moving parts there is little to no wear on the components. As safety guard panels age, the sensor will tolerate misalignments, up to 10mm. It also allows the RSS36 sensor and actuator to be sealed into IP69K rated, corrosive resistant housings – a viable solution for use in hygienic or outdoor environments where high temperature and high pressure wash downs are typical. The RSS36 also offers an optional, integrated magnet latch to provide over 5lbs of holding force, and allowing the switch to be used as an end-stop.

The RSS36 also features all of the diagnostic advantages of electronic safety sensors. Because of an integrated dual monitoring microprocessor and continual function tests the switch meets PLe per ISO 13849-1 and SIL3 per IEC 62061. The RSS36 can be connected in series or in combination with pulse-echo sensors and locking switches, up to 31 devices without loss of signal or safety level when monitored with a number of standard Schmersal safety controllers. The RSS36 comes standard with LEDs to indicate various errors. For more advanced indication the RSS36 is also available with serial diagnostics to communicate its status via serial data packages for use in various network protocols.

Schmersal is a world-class designer and manufacturer of machine safety products, industrial switches, position sensors, and related control accessories that meet the new and emerging machine guarding safety requirements of OSHA, ANSI, Robotic Industries Association, and the European Machinery Directive. The company was founded in 1945 and is headquartered in Germany. Schmersal products are available at more than 120 stocking distributors throughout the U.S. and Canada, with additional sales offices and distributors in over 22 countries

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