Inductive Coupling: A Simple Solution for Replacing Slip Rings

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Figure 1: Inductive coupling for power and data exchange

In the industrial automation space, inductive sensors have grown very popular , most commonly used for detecting the proximity of metal objects such as food cans, or machine parts. Inductive coupling, also known as non-contact connectors, uses magnetic induction to transfer power and data over an air gap.

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Figure 2: Slip ring example

While inductive couplers have many uses, one of the most beneficial is for replacing a traditional slip-ring mechanism. Slip-rings, also known as rotary connectors, are typically used in areas of a machine where one part rotates, and another part of the machine remains stationary, such as a turn table where stations on the indexing table need power and I/O, but the table rotates a full 360°. This set up makes standard cable solutions ineffective.

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Figure 3: Inductive coupling replacing the slip-ring

A slip ring could be installed at the base of the table, but since they are electromechanical devices, they are subject to wear out. And unfortunately, the signs for wearing are not evident and often it is only a lack of power that alerts workers to an issue.

An inductive coupling solution eliminates all the hassle of the mechanical parts. With non-contact inductive coupling, the base of a coupler could be mounted at the base of the table and the remote end could be mounted on the rotating part of the table.

Additionally, slip rings are susceptible to noise and vibration, but because inductive couplers do not have contact between the base and the remote, they do not have this problem.

Inductive couplers are typically IP67-rated, meaning they are not affected by dirt or water, or  vibrations, and most importantly, they are contact free so no maintenance is necessary.

Learn more about Balluff inductive couplers www.balluff.us.

Shishir Rege is a Technical Sales Specialist, Controls Architectures at Balluff Inc. He brings over 19 years of experience in applying robotics and industrial automation technologies in diverse industries including automotive, packaging, aerospace, and medical. Shishir enjoys sharing his knowledge and passion for automation to solve today's automation challenges.

2 Replies to “Inductive Coupling: A Simple Solution for Replacing Slip Rings”

  1. Nitin Shevate, 9881714849 says:

    Dear Sir,
    Require Details of this device

    1. Balluff Webmaster says:

      Thank you for your interest in Balluff’s Inductive coupling solutions. Below are few links to help you navigate. Also, we recommend you contact a Balluff local sales representative to help you with product selection. Balluff offers several choices for inductive coupling that varies based on form factor and functionality.

      Brochure: https://assets.balluff.com/WebBinary1/916269_G14_EN.pdf
      Weblink: https://www.balluff.com/local/us/products/product-overview/industrial-networking/inductive-couplers/
      Product Finder: https://www.balluff.com/local/us/productfinder/#/ca/A0009/cg/G0905

      If you need help finding a local distributor or Balluff sales person in the USA please visit the following link:
      https://www.balluff.com/local/us/contacts/distributor-search/

      Thank you again for your interest in Balluff Inductive coupling solutions.

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