Fibre amplifier sure has got a lot

Omron has introduced a new amplifier for fibre optic sensing heads that provides an analogue output in addition to the standard NPN or PNP digital output. In addition, the E3X-DAN, as it is known, includes an Auto Power Control (APC) function which guarantees stable detection over time, as well as a zero reset function.

In all photoelectric sensors, the incident level of the LED will deteriorate with time, and with traditional designs, this results in detection eventually becoming unstable.

Omron has solved this problem by applying APC circuits in the fibre head, which continually monitors the LED output and steadily increases the power over time to maintain stable operation. This makes the E3X-DAN suited for applications where a high degree of sensitivity is required.

Using the zero reset function, the digital display value can be instantaneously reset to zero whenever required. By setting reference values to zero, threshold settings can be made while monitoring differences in incident level.

Also, if the threshold has already been set, when the zero reset is executed the threshold with shift at the same time. Other features include an initial reset function which provides a simple method for restoring factory settings, and a monitor focus function, which allows the voltages used for monitor output to be changed between 1V and 5V.

A further innovation is a new connector option which requires only one power line to be connected via a master cable, and which allows up to 15 further devices to be slaved off this single supply. This not only reduces wiring effort, it also allows space to be used more efficiently and reduces costs. Any possibility of mutual interference when a number of amplifiers are close mounted is eliminated by the use of optical communications.

Programming of E3X-DAN sensors has been simplified with the introduction of a mobile programming console. Note only does this allow setting and teaching operations to be formed where the action is at the tip of the fibre rather than from the amplifier, it also allows simultaneous tuning of a group of amplifiers, saving time in setup. In addition, settings can be quickly copied to other groups. The remote console incorporates a full set of operation keys and function indicators, as well allowing incident level and threshold level to be displayed simultaneously. The console is fully programmable with a range of functions, including a function lock feature, which disables any functions that are not required.

Whilst the amplifier itself is compact, it builds in the largest LEDdisplay of any competing amplifier, giving a 6mm character height. TheE3X-DAN also offers three display modes, allowing users to toggle between a digital incident level display, a digital percent display or an analogue display. In all cases, the display can be ‘flipped’ allowing it to be easily read regardless of what orientation the amplifier is mounted in.

Users can select from three high performance modes of operation, including super-long-distance mode and super-high-speed mode. Standard mode provides powerful combination of long sensing distance and high speed of response. A range of sensing heads is available for the E3X-DAN, providing characteristics matched to the broadest spectrum of applications. Alongside the innovative new connection option, cable versions and M8 versions are also available, including an IP66 option.