Integrating production efficiency goals with machine safety

Manufacturing efficiency and productivity can go hand-in-hand with safety, says control and automation specialist Mitsubishi Electric

integrate with the safety network. Appropriate safety controllers can therefore be developed to meet exact, but varied application needs. The safety systems comply fully with

ISO 13849-1 up to PL e and IEC 61508 International Standards. Development of controller programmes is made in a safety compliant engineering environment and advanced security features prevent any unauthorised programme editing. A full set of certified safety function blocks is available for the programmable safety options.


he company offers a full range of safety technologies alongside and

built-in to its automation equipment and maintains that automation systems can be designed with safety features that work integrally with the core automation tasks. This means that machine builders can create efficient and productive equipment whilst ensuring that the safety of the workforce is maintained.

SAFETY SOLUTIONS To demonstrate its philosophy, Mitsubishi Electric had a display of its safety solutions for automated plant on show at the recent Drives & Controls exhibition at the NEC in Birmingham. Known as MELSEC Safety, Mitsubishi Electric’s safety systems and features are available via its controllers, variable speed drives, servos and robots. At the heart of its safety offering is a range of scalable options for its PLCs. This starts with simple safety relays and extends all the way to fully integrated safety PLCs. In all cases, safety diagnostic information communicates via the control system bus, removing the need for costly hardwiring of safety trip signals. Safety remote I/O can be distributed around the safety zones and


Mitsubishi Electric and MH Elektro- Steuerungstechnik are demonstrating the combination of the MELFA F series with safety scanner and MELFA SafePlus in a work cell solution that monitors the operator's front action radius first

SEAMLESS CONNECTIVITY Visualisation of safety specific events can be achieved by a comprehensive range of HMI displays and integrated SCADA. Seamless connectivity can be provided by the open CC-Link and CC-Link IE networks, which can enable rapid data exchange of up to 1GB/s between controllers. Using this architecture, the distributed safety control can be integrated with the wider control system and thereby enabling distributed safety and control across the whole plant, no matter how large or small it is. As well as PLCs, Mitsubishi Electric’s inverters, servo systems and robots, all come with integrated safety on board, which makes it possible to implement distributed safety solutions quickly and easily. The robots comply with the latest safety standard ISO 10218-1 and included features such as torque monitoring,

speed control, safe torque off and safe stop capabilities. This approach means that safety

control is fully integrated with machine and production control. Key features of Mitsubishi Electric’s approach to safety engineering include: scalable I/O; easy configuration and integration; multiple network options and excellent visualisation and diagnostics.

FUTURE HAZARD IDENTIFICATION, ESTIMATION AND EVALUATION Finally, Mitsubishi Electric realises that safety requirements, standards and legislation are getting more stringent all the time and many manufacturing companies find it hard to keep up to date with the changing standards. To help with this, the company has built up a team of Safety Consultants and developed a software-based semi- quantitative method for hazard identification, estimation and evaluation. MH Elektro-Steuerungstechnik based in Bad Friedrichshall (Baden-Württemberg), Germany, was founded in 1994. From the start, the medium-sized business has focused on providing electrical engineering, switchgear construction and hardware planning services for various branches of industry, in particular the automotive industry, materials handling and special machine construction. With Mitsubishi Electric as a system partner, MH Elektro-Steuerungstechnik has been able to add robot technology to its range of process automation services since the start of 2015. In connection with this, the company has also expanded its workforce to include specialists in robotics, system technology and software. Customers of the company benefit

from both the extensive technical know- how of its personnel and the latest developments in robotic technology by Mitsubishi Electric. As a result, MH Elektro-Steuerungstechnik is able to find optimum solutions even for highly complex technical requirements.

Mitsubishi Electric T: 01707 276100


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