There are many different types of sensors used in industrial automation. Each type of sensor has its own advantages and disadvantages.
Some of the most common types of sensors used in industrial automation include: -Thermal sensors -Proximity sensors -Image sensors -Motion sensors -Pressure sensors.
A thermal sensor measures the temperature of a part, item or environment. While most thermal sensors are used for measuring temperature in an industrial automation application, they can also be used as an alarm that allows an operator to know if there is a problem with the part they are working on.
Some thermal sensors may also include laser pointers which can be used to outline or label parts on a PCB board with colored tape and then attach them to the board using conductive thread. These sensors are often used in high speed, high volume parts inspection equipment.
Temperature sensors are devices that measure temperature and convert the readings into an electrical signal.
A proximity sensor is a sensor that senses objects or people in its vicinity. These types of sensors are commonly used with industrial robots. They can also be used to sense dangerous items and provide an alarm.
Proximity sensors are devices that measure proximity and convert the readings into an electrical signal.
An image sensor is a type of CCD camera that detects light, which can then be analyzed to determine the images captured by the sensor. The result is what appears on the photosite or pixels on the image sensor itself.
A motion sensor is an object sensing device that can detect motion. A typical application of this type of sensor is a mouse trap. When the mouse moves past the sensor, it triggers the spring loaded trap and snatches the rodent in it.
Another common application for a motion sensor is a shop floor industrial robot that uses it to detect items in its path and avoid them. If an item does not detect movement, it will assume that something is there and stop or slow down until that object has been detected by a different type of sensor.
A pressure sensor is a sensor that measures the pressure applied to a surface. They measure force, deformation and acceleration. Often times they are used in medical equipment such as an MRI machine to measure the pressure which is applied to the patient inside of the machine.
Pressure sensors are devices that measure pressure and convert the readings into an electrical signal. Thermal cutouts are often used on PCB boards because they can help protect PCB’s from overheating when they become too hot.
Thermal cutouts detect part heat and stop part flow once a certain temperature threshold is reached. If a thermal cutoff fails, it can cause damage to the PCB board.
Sensors for Industrial Automation
Industrial automation is becoming more and more common with the increasing need for more accurate data flow, and integration of wireless technologies. The use of Industrial sensors provide a means to collect data remotely and reduce costs by not having to install another piece of equipment, such as a probe, in process.
The use of industrial sensors will be discussed along with the advantages and disadvantages of the different types that are available today.
The global industrial sensors market was worth USD 19.29 billion in 2019 and is expected to be worth USD 33.56 billion by 2027, growing at a 7.2% CAGR during the forecast period.
In industrial automation, sensors are used to detect the level of an object (liquid or solid) in a tank or other container. In the context of industrial automation, an object may be a living organism such as fish or a human, or it may be inanimate matter such as grains.
There are two types of sensors that can be used to measure levels: mechanical and optical. Both utilize reflected light to measure the distance from the sensor to the level of the liquid surface
Ways To Choose The Right Sensor For Industrial Automation
Sensors play a very important role to make the products intelligent and highly automatic. Temperature sensors and infrared sensors are devices that measure temperature and convert the readings into an electrical signal.
Pressure sensors are devices that measure pressure and convert the readings into an electrical signal. Proximity sensors are devices that measure proximity and convert the readings into an electrical signal.
Humidity sensors attribute a temperature & humidity sensor complex with a measured digital signal output. Linear variable differential transformer (also known as LVDT) is a type of transformer that is used to sense and measure linear displacement.
1. Sensor Type
There are many types of sensors available, but which one is the best? There are two primary types of sensor:
• Mechanical sensors use a mechanical device to detect the level of liquid or solid. The mechanical sensor consists of a submerging tool box coupled with a thread that is used to penetrate the material and measure the distance to the surface
• Optical sensors use light beam to determine level. This type of sensor uses a light source and an optical sensor (either CCD or CMOS chip) that detects the distance from the light source to the level. The optical sensor sends out an electrical signal when it receives light from its environment.
2. Range Of Measurement
Range of measurement is the distance that the sensor can measure. In many cases, the range is determined by the size of the laser beam. The larger the laser beam, the more likely it is to be able to penetrate into materials such as sludge or glue and provide a better measurement
3. Effect Of Viscosity
Viscosity is a measurement of the internal resistance of the liquid material. It is determined by the rating of the torque motor which can be used to overcome viscous forces. A large number indicates an increased resistance against processing
4. Temperature Range
Temperature range is determined by the materials that are being processed
• Constants such as viscosity and thermal capacity are a direct result of temperature, therefore increasing or decreasing temperatures will alter these elements. It’s important to account for temperature variations when choosing a sensor for industrial automation
• Most sensors have an operating range which refers to the maximum and minimum temperatures that can be sensed without damaging or “burning out” the sensor. If an increase in temperature is warranted, a sensor which accommodates a larger operating minimum can be used
Benefits Of Sensors In Industrial Automation
Industrial automation sensors market is anticipated to reach $22.59 billion by 2029 at a CAGR of 9.6% from 2022 to 2029, according to a new market research report titled, “Industrial Automation Sensors Market by Sensor Type (Level Sensors, Flow Sensors), Type (Contact Sensors, Non-contact Sensors), Mode of Automation, End User, and Geography – Global Forecasts to 2029.”
A digital temperature sensors are devices that measures the temperature of an object or environment and converts it into an electrical signal. There are many different types of temperature sensors, each with its own advantages and disadvantages.
Some common types of temperature sensors include thermocouples, resistance temperature detectors (RTDs), and thermistors. Pressure sensors are also commonly used to measure temperature. Proximity sensors are another type of sensor that can be used to measure temperature.
1. Increased Efficiency
Having sensors installed in industrial automation leads to an increase in production and efficiency. This is because the sensors provide information to a control system that can make adjustments such as speeding up or slowing down a motor
2. Increased Productivity
Sensors also increase productivity by collecting data from process and report it to automation systems, which can adjust the process based on the data being reported. For example, if there is a buildup of material in the waste tank, sensors will detect this and send a signal to first shut off the pump connected to that tank, then shut off all other pumps in order to remove the buildup (if so desired). This will save time and energy by not letting the pumps run continuously
3. Increased Safety
Sensors are also used for safety reasons. If a control system receives a signal from a sensor, which indicates some sort of problem, it can send out an alarm or shut down the process completely to prevent any injuries or damage to the material being processed
4. Reduced Costs
Using sensors in industrial automation reduces costs because they increase production and efficiency which allows for greater profits without increasing labor. This is because a control system can be programmed to react to specific sensor output and adjust the process automatically
5. Increased Connection Back To Control System
• A sensor provides information to a control system about the status of the process and the level of material being processed. It can be used in an industrial automation system, generally in combination with a CPU, which allows for greater flexibility than in-line sensors, but does not require additional wiring or mounting hardware that an external controller requires
• There are two types of connections between sensors and systems: analog and digital. Analog sensors read analog input (pressure, temp., etc.) which is then converted into digital values by integrators/converters within the system
6. Increased Reliability
Geographically, the industrial automation sensors market is predicted to be dominated by Asia Pacific in 2022.
• Systems using sensors are more reliable than those that do not
• Sensors can help a control system determine how to react to certain signals such as:
• External inputs (e.g., low battery, alarm, etc.)
• Changes in input signal (e.g., temp change)
7. Increased Productivity
Using an industrial automation system to include sensors will increase productivity by allowing a controller to react automatically.
This is because the controller can be programmed to the sensor’s output and will automatically send out signals like overheat when it detects that the temperature of the material being processed is too high or close to exceeding its operating ranges. As the controller receives signals from the sensor, it will then send out a signal to shut down the process, if necessary
8. Increased Flexibility
According to end user, the oil & gas sector is anticipated to have the greatest market share for industrial automation sensors in 2022. Having sensors installed in industrial automation allows for greater flexibility because it’s possible to replace or change sensors as well as their output so that control systems can react appropriately with changing conditions and improper input signals.
For example, if a sensor measures the level of material in a tank which is supposed to be stable, but it detects that the level is falling at a rate faster than it should be, it can transmit this information to a control system which will then shut down the pump or process associated with the tank
Risks Of Sensors In Industrial Automation
According to automation mode, the semi-automatic system segment is anticipated to have the greatest market share for industrial automation sensors in 2022. There are many different types of proximity sensors available on the market today.
Ultrasonic proximity sensors, optical proximity sensors, and capacitive sensors are all common choices for many applications. Rotating torque sensors are also becoming increasingly popular in a variety of industries.
1. Sensors Are Prone To Failure
Sensors can be the cause of a malfunction. If a sensor has been exposed to corrosive materials (e.g., gas or asphalt), it might fail prematurely. If it is mounted on a conveyor belt and made of plastic, it can eventually break.
The main concern with sensors is not the material being processed but the sensor itself which might malfunction due to corrosion or other factors
2. Sensors Can Give False Readings
When sensors are used in industrial automation, they are programmed to take measurements according to certain parameters and then transmit them as input into a control system which reacts accordingly.
This can lead to false readings that are not only inaccurate, but misleading to the automation system as well. For example, a temperature sensor which is mounted on an industrial conveyor belt might transmit data to a control system which says the belt is too hot because it is rising or falling faster than its operating range.
This can result in the system shutting down or slowing down the conveyor belt even though it’s perfectly safe
3. Sensors Emit False Readings Even When They Are Used Correctly
Even when a sensor is used correctly and functions properly, its output can be misleading to a control system because the mean value of its measurements doesn’t always reflect the actual conditions of the material being processed.
In other words, if a temperature sensor measures that the material is at 200 degrees Celsius (or 42 degrees Fahrenheit) while it’s actually at 200.5 degrees Celsius (43 degrees Fahrenheit), it will still report “overheat” because its mean value is 42 degrees Fahrenheit which is halfway between its operating range (43-50 degrees Fahrenheit).
As such, a control system would react by shutting down or slowing down the process under these circumstances
4. A High Concentration Of Dust Can Also Cause False Readings
Dust can also lead to false readings of a sensor. For example, if dust builds up on a temperature sensor and reduces its gain (its sensitivity) to 0.5 instead of 1, the temperature reading would be off by 50%. This would result in a control system shutting down the process because it received an input signal from the sensor that indicated a dangerous temperature level
5. The Operation Range Could Be Exceeded By Physical Conditions At Certain Points
According to type, the industrial automation sensors market is anticipated to be dominated by contact sensors in 2022. When sensors are used in industrial automation systems, their operating range must be observed so that they don’t read values outside this range.
For example, if a temperature sensor can only read 0-100 degrees Celsius (32-212 degrees Fahrenheit), it must be installed near the lowest and highest temperatures of the material being processed, but not in areas that have extreme temperatures
6. Production Cannot Be Controlled Automatically
By itself, a sensor cannot control production because it’s only providing information to a control system. For example, if a sensor reads a 4 (high) when the material level should be 3.5 for it to shut down the process, but there is no reliable way to change these values from within the control system itself
7. Sensors Can Prevent Production From Happening
If a sensor detects that the material is at an unsafe level, it might send out a signal to slow down the process or shut it down completely, lowering production.
As such, moving and transporting materials which are at dangerous levels should be strictly monitored by professional industrial automation engineers who are knowledgeable about all possible conditions of production over which a control system would react
The use of sensors in industrial automation is not a new phenomenon. In fact, it dates back to the early 20th century when it was still in its infancy.
The reason why so many industries use sensors today is because they are inexpensive, relatively easy to install and don’t rely on radio waves, Wi-Fi or Bluetooth for their transmission process.
For these reasons and more, sensors are an integral component of industrial automation systems.