Despite advancing automation, operators in many of the hybrid and discrete manufacturing industries must interact with the machinery and avoid getting injured.
In a Hydraulics & Pneumatics magazine post, Reliable Pneumatics Ensure Safe Machines, Emerson’s Andreas Blume and Dusko Markovic share how technology advancements have helped create safer machine operations. They open describing the perils of some machinery.
The operator holds the open package in the machine with his left hand and seals it by moving an axle with his right. All it takes is a single second of distraction and his hand is caught in the axle.
The operator would likely require:
…lengthy medical treatment and would be unable to work for weeks.
From a production standpoint:
…the machine has to remain shut down until it has been approved by experts of the trade association or other regulatory bodies in many countries. This can cause prolonged production downtime of entire lines.
…plays an important role in the implementation of the machinery directive for the assessment of technical safety measures.
Technologies such as the AVENTICS AV rapid-exhaust valve module:
…exhausts the cylinder chambers without requiring additional energy. This means a cylinder can be moved to reposition workpieces because the otherwise pressurized cylinder chambers are open to atmosphere. If a body part is trapped, and a power failure prevents moving the cylinder, the exhaust module lets the cylinder’s piston rod be moved manually.
Read the article for more on the operation of these rapid -exhaust valves, and how engineers can assess the performance level (PL) of the safety-related parts to address the required safety function.
Visit the AV Valve Systems section on Emerson’s AVENTICS website for more on these rapid-exhaust and other valve modules. You can also connect and interact with other pneumatic components experts in the Fluid Controls & Pneumatics group in the Emerson Exchange 365 community.