New Allen-Bradley GuardLink protocol for safer, smarter machines

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New Allen-Bradley GuardLink protocol for safer, smarter machinesRockwell Automation is introducing the Allen-Bradley Guardmaster GuardLink safety system, a new safety-based communications protocol that helps operators reduce costs and improve machine diagnostics and downtime while increasing productivity.

Traditionally, safety devices are wired to separate safety inputs, which requires significantly more wiring and introduces more potential fault points. When wired in series, customers lose the ability to distinguish information from each device. With GuardLink, safety devices are easily connected in series while providing access to individual device diagnostics. This system provides safety, diagnostics, remote reset and lock commands over a single four-conductor cable with up to 32 devices per link. In addition, customers can reduce installation cost, with up to 38 per cent reduction in wiring, when using GuardLink.

The GuardLink technology seamlessly integrates with Allen-Bradley Guardmaster safety relays and components, giving users access to status information throughout their entire safety system. The connection of safety devices with smart taps enabled by GuardLink technology and standard cabling to a Guardmaster safety relay provides greater visibility into the system, down to individual guard doors and emergency stop switches.

Thomas Helpenstein, safety product manager at Rockwell Automation, says: "When an e-stop or interlock switch is operated, the individual safety signal is sent to the Guardmaster safety relays. That information is then communicated seamlessly across The Connected Enterprise via the Guardmaster network interface, making it easier and faster to diagnose and repair problems when compared to traditional wired systems."

The GuardLink safety system fully integrates with the Logix platform with predetermined tag names in the Rockwell Software Studio 5000 application. Its simplified design and reduction in wires allows for simple plug-and-play installation.

Follow the link for more information about the Allen-Bradley Guardmaster GuardLink safety system from Rockwell.

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