Drives and Controls Magazine

Wireless safety devices free users from cables

01 June, 2005

Wireless safety switches free users from cables

Schmersal`s Esalan subsidiary has developed a wireless technology for safety devices such as emergency stop switches, footswitches and two-hand controls. As well as cutting installation and wiring costs, the battery-operated devices will make it easier to modify machinery.

The wireless devices are expected to be particularly useful for applications such as setting up and adjusting machine tools, because they will allow operators to move around freely without being hindered by cables. They will be able to move further away from the machinery than usual, and the risk of people tripping over trailing cables will be eliminated.

In some applications, one mobile control device could replace several conventional controls.

Esalan has developed a wireless data transmission technology that, it claims, complies with all of the requirements of the harmonised standards for machine safety. The wireless devices are suitable for applications up to Category 4 (EN 954-1) or SIL 3 (IEC 61508).

Schmersal says that the products are the first in a series of wireless safety devices.