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Modular I/O system

With pre-assembled sensors and actuators

Eaton has developed the XN300 modular CANopen products. The I/O system features plug-in connectors and high channel density.

The XN300-Assist software tool helps users configuring and testing the modular I/O devices (Photo: Eaton)

THE I/O DEVICES ARE INTEGRATED into automation systems via its CANopen gateway, which measures a width of 12,5 mm. Especially when used with the company’s HMI/PLC products, the I/O system allows compact space-saving solutions. Fast backplane communication in the CANopen system environment allows reaction times of less than 1 ms to be achieved. Up to 640 channels can be addressed for stations with the maximum of 32 subscribers.

The I/O system can be ordered with pre-assembled sensors and actuators. According to the supplier, the product needs due to its high I/O density less modules as others. With the product, up to 20 channels require a frontal area of just 12,5 mm x 102 mm, including plug-in connectors and a display that provides users with an instant visual overview of operational status. Because of this compact design, the I/O system occupies a minimum amount of space in the control panel. It therefore fulfills one of the main requirements of today’s machine designers, for whom every cubic centimeter counts and minimizing equipment size is a key concern.

The functionality of the modules offers opportunities for machine builders to make cost savings, stated the supplier. For example, groups of digital outputs can share switching, fusing and power supply arrangements. Some digital input units in the range have integrated counting functions, and some types of analogue input module offer extra functions, including temperature measurement, cold junction compensation and the generation of reference voltages.

Another benefit of the XN300 system is that it can be installed quickly, said the supplier. The assembly concept of the system divides the installation process into two stages, neither of which requires the use of tools. The first stage, which can be carried out in a workshop, is the assembly of the I/O stations and the second is the installation of the assembled stations in their final locations, where they clip on to standard mounting rail.

Further, because the modules feature plug-in connectors, users need only push stripped wire ends into the connector plugs, or plug in pre-wired connectors. Modules can also be replaced or added during maintenance. The mounting clips are accessible even when the modules are installed and the modules can be individually labeled. Indicator lights located next to each terminal, communication diagnostics and programmable application diagnostics provide detailed information about the system status.

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