EC: miniTwin Safety Light Curtain
Safety sensor: SICK miniTwin Safety Light Curtain. The miniTwin is the world's smallest safety light curtain that provides end-to-end coverage for point-of-operation protection. This is a Control Engineering 2011 Engineers' Choice (EC) Honorable Mention.
The miniTwin from Sick is the world's smallest safety light curtain. And, unlike any other light curtain offered by Sick, the miniTwin provides end-to-end protective coverage along the entire length of the stick - no dead zones! Two or three sets of miniTwin sticks can be cascaded together and wedged right next to each other without loss of resolution. This allows the light curtains to be mounted closer to the machine, increasing productivity. Plus, no longer will users need to stock senders and receivers. Thanks to Sick's patented twin-stick design, the miniTwin can solve new applications. With a cross section of 15 mm x 32 mm, it is by far the smallest safety light curtain that does not require a third box for evaluation. Additional features: Installation has never been easier: Five alignment LEDs for fast installation; Rotatable system plug connection for ease of cable runs; Automatic beam coding in cascade applications reduces setup time; Downtime is minimized with the help of the bright LED display on the front of the sticks; Coded error messages for wiring and system faults; Safety output status indicator lights extending the length of the stick; and Indicates if EDM or Reset is configured on each stick.
Safety light curtains have been around for nearly 60 years. The miniTwin provides new innovations for this mature product category. The miniTwin's small profile has allowed customers to build safety into their machines (literally into the framework) and protect small openings that were difficult or impossible to guard with light curtains in the past. With no dead zone and rapid cascade response times, customers can increase productivity without sacrificing employee safety. The miniTwin provides lower inventory cost, ease of installation, and flexible cable/mounting options for overall ease of use.
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Annual Salary Survey
After almost a decade of uncertainty, the confidence of plant floor managers is soaring. Even with a number of challenges and while implementing new technologies, there is a renewed sense of optimism among plant managers about their business and their future.
The respondents to the 2014 Plant Engineering Salary Survey come from throughout the U.S. and serve a variety of industries, but they are uniform in their optimism about manufacturing. This year’s survey found 79% consider manufacturing a secure career. That’s up from 75% in 2013 and significantly higher than the 63% figure when Plant Engineering first started asking that question a decade ago.