Automation Canada - Cables & Connectors Issue - 6

a C-Track will likely fail at around 1-million bend cycles. A sensor cable
that has been designed for constant bending applications like a C-Track
has a more flexible jacket material and finer strands of wire. This
increases the amount of bend cycles to 10 million at very little extra cost.
That's a lot less cable changes and much more up time! Some sensor
cables are also designed for applications with a lot of twisting or
torsional movement. A basic sensor cable is limited to 180 degrees or
less of twisting, but a robotic sensor cable will give you a full 360
degrees of torsional movement so will last a lot longer in those type of
applications.
The operating environment and consideration of cable motion are
often overlooked, but if you care about the reliability of your machines,
these are important factors to consider when choosing a sensor cable.
The last thing to consider is the colour of the cable. This is generally
not a big deciding factor, but I do know some machine builders like to
use different sensor cable colours to identify the type of sensor
attached. i.e. black cables for photo or proximity sensors and grey

C A N A D I A N A U TO M AT I O N

cables for cylinder reed switches. It's really up to you but some colours
might have longer lead-times so double-check with your sensor cable
supplier to make sure the colour you want is readily available.
I think that's everything covered. The only other possible thing you
might want to consider would be the wire gauge for really long sensor
cable runs where voltage drop might be an issue.
In summary, sensor cables are an integral part of every control system
but are often chosen on price rather than the type of application or
environment they will be operating in. This often leads to unnecessary
breakdowns and can put a big dent in the reliability of your machines.
On the other hand, getting some input (pun intended) from a
connectivity specialist, or taking a little time to choose the right sensor
cable yourself, will improve your machine uptime and bolster your
reputation for quality and reliability. Next time you choose a sensor
cable, which outcome would you prefer?

Colin Cartwright is the System
Sales Manager at Murrelektronik
Canada and has nearly 30 years
of controls and automation
experience. He specializes in
I/O systems and works closely
with machine builders and
system integrators to help them
optimize their control systems
and
reduce
wiring/
commissioning times.

VOLUME 3, ISSUE 2

6


https://murr.ca

Automation Canada - Cables & Connectors Issue

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Automation Canada - Cables & Connectors Issue

Automation Canada - Cables & Connectors Issue - 1
Automation Canada - Cables & Connectors Issue - 2
Automation Canada - Cables & Connectors Issue - 3
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