Linear Position Sensor Output Types – Which do I choose?

Linear position sensors are available with a variety of different output signal types to suit various application requirements and control architectures.  Let’s take a look at three of the most common output signal types for linear position sensors; 1) analog, 2) time-based digital, and 3) serial digital, and discuss some of the pros and cons of each.

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Flush or Non-Flush, Looks Can Be Deceiving

Written by: Jeff Himes

In almost all inductive proximity sensor applications the housing design and mounting method of the sensor need to be taken into consideration.  Sensor housing designs have historically been described as shielded (sometimes called flush) or non-shielded (sometimes called non-flush).  In reality the terms shielded and flush have different meanings just as non-shielded and non-flush have different meanings.  By using these terms interchangeably some confusion is typically created.  Additionally, a new term of “quasi-flush” has entered the market.  Let’s take a closer look at these terms and what they really mean. Continue reading “Flush or Non-Flush, Looks Can Be Deceiving”

Capacitive Sensors – Part I

Written by: Bjoern Schaefer

In this new series we will write about different aspects of capacitive sensors in today’s factory automation world. Capacitive sensors found their place in certain industries and applications as effective problem solvers for specific tasks such as plastic pellet detection devices in injection molding machines and liquid level monitors in the semiconductor industry.

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5 Things You Need to Know about IO-Link

Industrial networks are nothing new; ASi, CANbus, DeviceNet, Profibus (to name a few) have all been around for years.  Designers of production equipment use networks for a variety of reasons: simplified machine mount I/O, motor starters, valve bank control, etc.  Each network has a limited number of devices that can be connected and each device is designated a node address or IP address.  IO-Link takes a standard network and expands it beyond its current capacity through flexibility and expansion.

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Magnetic Field Sensors – Are Magnets Different?

It’s 3:00 AM and your machine has come to a screeching halt because, according to your PLC, the cylinder that holds a part in place is neither extended nor retracted.  After looking at the cylinder, you see it is extended just as it should be however; the cylinder-mounted sensor is not detecting the magnet.  No problem, you have another magnetic field sensor that will fit but it does not work either, so what is the problem? Another bad sensor? Maybe not, it could be the sensor and the magnet is incompatible.

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Luminescence (UV) Sensing – Seeing the Unseen

Difficult targets and unique application requirements call for specialized sensing technology. When over-the-counter medication producers and packaged food manufacturers were faced with the challenge of coming up with a response to concerns about protecting consumers from potential tampering, they turned to modern luminescence sensor technology.

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Inductive Proximity Sensor Targets – Material does matter

Written by: Jeff Himes

From some of the previous blogs, it has been indicated that a number of variables can affect the actual sensing range achieved by an inductive proximity sensor.  One of those variables mentioned was target composition or target material.  Let’s review how various target materials can affect an inductive sensor’s performance.

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Sensor Cables and the National Fire Protection Agency

If you aren’t familiar with the NFPA, here is a brief summary from their website:
“The mission of the international nonprofit NFPA, established in 1896, is to reduce the worldwide burden of fire and other hazards on the quality of life by providing and advocating consensus codes and standards, research,training, and education.”  http://www.nfpa.org/

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