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Machine Safety, When to use hard guarding vs light curtains or other presence-sensing devices?


If you are looking to install a new piece of automation equipment you may find yourself asking if hard guarding or a presence-sensing device is the way to go. Presence-sensing devices such as light curtains or safety scanners are commonly used to limit or stop a machine operation if someone comes to close. However, you should also consider secondary hazards that could present a safety risk. In many cases protection from things like sparks, flying debris, splash or splatter may be required. That is when a hard guard fixtures offer benefits presence-sensing cannot.


At Automation, Inc. we offer guarding solutions comprised of woven and welded wire partition as well as structural aluminum framing with a variety of panels combined with safety sensing devices. Our team of design engineers help customers to pick the right solutions and products for their specific needs. Depending on your application we have a variety of tools to pick from.


WireCrafters offers woven and welded wire partition based on a simple idea that panels stack one on top of the other between tubular post to reach the required height. This modular design approach allows Automation, Inc to meet the needs of virtually any layout and is quick and easy to assemble. This also give flexibility to reconfigure in today ever-changing manufacturing environments.


Parker IPS structural aluminum framing take guarding to the next custom level. Automation, Inc.’s design team is available to take even a basic sketch and turn it into a fully assembled guarding solution. The proven T-slot design provides a ready platform to integrate additional functionality including mechanical or electrical interlocks, access control, light curtains and more. No drilling or welding is required and all components can be moved, removed or re-configured as your requirements change.


Schmersal adds an addition layer of required safety to your guarding solutions. Schmersal focuses on machine safety devices and safety engineering services to safeguard machines in compliance with current safety standards without compromising productivity. Their comprehensive range of more the 25,00 products include safety switches, solenoid interlocks, emergency stop - switches, security sensors, safety mats with safety function, photoelectric light barriers and end switches, which include limit switches, position switches and micro switches.

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