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Retrieving Area Safety

How can accidents be prevented when safety guards cannot be installed at retrieving areas?

Lack of accuracy and safety with general-purpose sensors
Automated storage is surrounded by safety guards to prevent accidents from occurring, that can be caused by people who enter the hazardous area unintentionally. However, since the safety guard is lower at the retrieval area of products, people might enter and they might touch the stacker lane. In order to prevent accidents, general-purpose sensors are installed to detect humans who are about to enter the hazardous zone, and to stop the equipment.
However, detection is not enough sometimes, when people are intentionally allowed to go in. Some applications use safety mat switches to detect human intrusion with weight, however, detection accuracy is not so high and switches may fail when strong pressure is applied, such as heavy objects, which leaves concerns about safety and convenience.

A safety laser scanner solve two issues

The method that IDEC proposes in order to prevent accidents at areas around product retrieval areas is the SE2L series safety laser scanner. This sensor can cover maximum of 5m and the range of 270 degrees. In the area within 1.8m, it can detect objects with high accuracy of the minimum width of ø30mm. With this capability, whether it is an arm or a leg that enters the hazardous zone, it can be detected without failure stopping the equipment quickly. Unlike light curtains, it can be operated as a single unit. It is small in size and light weight that it can be easily installed on top of the safety guard around the retrieval area. It is possible to set the detection range depending on the location and situation.
For example, the detection range can be set to ignore the movements of carts that are automatically-run, and to detect other movements only. Of course, because it is installed at locations where people cannot touch, there are no worries for failures we have with safety mat switches. With sensors like this, automated storage can be designed more safely.

Monitor 2 areas with one safety laser scanner

The SE2L series safety laser scanner can monitor intrusions to two hazardous zones separately and stop equipment with a dual protection function. In other words, if retrieval areas of two automated storage systems are close to one another, one unit can cover both. Cost to operate two light curtains can now be reduced. If you have any issues with design of systems around automated storage, please consult with IDEC. We have effective solutions with additional benefits.