This episode of Ask an Expert for industrial sensors examines and provides answers to interesting sensing questions we've received from customers just like you. We explore and answer these questions:
1. Where can I find the add-on instructions for an industrial RFID controller?
2. How do I set the time delay function on a background suppression photoelectric sensor?
3. Is there interface software to view an AS-Interface network via a laptop or PC?
4. Can I swap out a photoelectric sensor for an ultrasonic sensor in a dusty paper mill application?
Feel free to ask us your sensing questions, and we'll do our best to reply with the whys and hows of a particular solution.
John: Welcome to Ask an Expert! Hi, this is John Appleson, Marketing Manager with Pepperl+Fuchs. Today, I'm joined by Zach Steck. Zach works as an Application Engineer here at Pepperl+Fuchs. So welcome, Zach and thanks for being here!
Zach: Hi John, thanks for asking me.
John: Zach, our first question comes from a customer who was watching one of our videos (RFID- Program Allen-Bradley PLCs Using Ethernet/IP) about industrial RFID and programming an Allen-Bradley PLC using EtherNet/IP. The customer is using an IDENTControl Compact RFID IC-KP2-1HB17-2V1D with a IPH-F15-V1 read head and is wondering where he can find the add-on instructions.
Zach: Generally, you can find the add-on instructions available for download from our website. Just go to the product page of the RFID controller IC-KP2-1HB17-2V1D, and click the 'Software' tab. If they are not on the site, or you are having difficulty locating them, contact technical support. We will periodically remove the add-on instructions if they are in the process of being updated. So, in that case, our tech support staff will send them to you directly.
John: This next customer is unsure how to set the time-delay function on the RLK28-8-H-2000-IR-Z/31/116 background suppression sensor. He is using this sensor to trigger a hydraulic cylinder, and he wants to increase the time delay. What does he need to do, Zach?
Zach: If you open up the terminal compartment on this RLK28-8-H-2000-IR-Z/31/116 background suppression sensor, you will see a set of DIP switches and a couple potentiometers towards the top of the housing. These components will be used to configure the timer function. He would select the type of delay using the DIP switches from the available options, which include on-delay, off-delay, or one-shot. Once you have selected the type, the potentiometers are used to adjust the amount of time from 0.1 to 10 seconds. The top potentiometer is used for the off-delay or one-shot setting, and the bottom potentiometer controls the on-delay.
John: Zach, a customer is wondering if there is any kind of interface software that will allow him to connect and see his AS-Interface network through his laptop, kind of like ProfiTrace. The units are connected to an Allen-Bradley 500 with a local network. He wants to plug into the local switch hub and look at the network. Is this possible?
Zach: There are a couple options out there to perform this function. If they are using one of our AS-Interface gateways with a round serial port, they can connect the gateway to a laptop, and view the network through an AS-Interface ControlTools Software. If they prefer something completely remote and passive, the AS-Interface Analyzer would be another choice. This connects to the network as a slave, and allows you to interface with a PC.
John: For this next application, the customer is using diffuse mode sensor MLV12-8-H-250-RT/65b/124/128 in a paper mill application. With a tough environment, it's difficult for the sensor to see the target. However, his application is already set up for the sensor's housing dimensions. The customer is thinking about switching to an ultrasonic sensor model with the same physical dimensions. The sensing range is about 100 to 200 mm, and he'd like to know if a diffuse or retroreflective sensor mode would work. He'd also prefer that the sensor be in the same price range, and he mentions that he'd be willing to compromise on the sensing range if he needed to. Zach, what can you suggest here?
Zach: Luckily for them, the MLV12 sensor housing is also available in ultrasonic form, as the F12 series. The dimensions and mounting would match up perfectly. We also have a version of it that would have a similar range and output type. The model I would suggest for this application is ultrasonic sensor UB250-F12P-EP-V15. This would give them the added durability and function of an ultrasonic sensor in the same physical package as their original photoelectric sensor selection.
John: Well, that concludes this segment of Ask an Expert. I'd like to thank Zach for joining me today, and thank our audience as well.