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ifm electronics introduces ergonomic touch sensors

Ergonomically designed and easily actuated with just a light touch, the new KT6 touch sensors from ifm electronic reduce operator fatigue and provide reliable switching even in wet environments and for users with gloved hands. They also feature multi-colour LED illumination, making them an ideal choice for use in applications where operators must be presented with clear status indication.

To guard against accidental operation, KT6 touch sensors have a built-in switching delay and, to ensure an optimum match with the requirements of the application, they offer a wide range of user-configurable options. These include illumination colour, brightness, normally open or normally closed operation and instantaneous or bi-stable switching. Additionally, the touch sensitivity can be adjusted to optimise operation in wet environments or similarly demanding applications.

The sensors incorporate an IO-Link interface which is used to access the configuration options. The settings are retained even if the sensors are subsequently used without an IO-Link connection, which means that they can, for example, be used in legacy systems as a superior alternative to ordinary illuminated pushbuttons.

As well as their switching and indication functionality, KT6 touch sensors also count the number of times they have been operated. The count information is accessed via the IO-Link interface. This feature is particularly useful where the number of machine operating cycles must be monitored as an aid to maintenance planning, as it eliminates the need for a separate totaliser.

KT6 touch sensors from ifm electronic are available with PA plastic or stainless-steel bodies. Both types have an IP69K ingress rating from the front, and an operating temperature range of -40 to +85 ºC. The sensors have 22 mm diameter cylindrical bodies, with 29 mm diameter heads. Accessories include translucent disks carrying common legends such as OFF, ON and STOP. Plain disks are also available for users to add their own legends.

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