OMRON to Release 2,512 Models of Its E2E NEXT Series Proximity Sensors, Now Equipped with IoT Features

OMRON Corporation will globally launch in January 2019 a total of 2,512 models of its DC 3-Wire E2E NEXT Series Proximity Sensors, which boast the world's longest sensing distances*1 and are now newly equipped with IoT features. These sensors reduce risks of sudden facility stoppages by a factor of 3;*2 they also detect signs that warn of such stoppages and notify users via the network. They help improve facility operation rates by preventing unforeseen facility stoppages and reducing facility downtime.


At actual manufacturing sites, unforeseen facility stoppages are a major management issue, for they directly lead to lost production opportunities. To minimize facility downtime, manufacturers must procure on-site maintenance personnel who can readily address unforeseen facility stoppages. With labor shortages becoming increasingly severe, however, demand is growing for ways to utilize IoT to maintain and improve facility operation rates without relying on human experience or skills.

Current proximity sensors characteristically have shorter sensing distances, and this entails many risks. For example, equipment vibration may cause the sensor body to move too far away from or come in contact with the sensing object. Such incidents are said to account for approximately 1/5 of facility stoppages.*3

The E2E NEXT Series Proximity Sensors (DC 3-Wire Models) to be newly released are equipped with OMRON's own Thermal Distance Control 2 and PROX3 hybrid circuitry technologies, which enable sensing distances that are at least twice as long as previous models,*4 and thus can reduce risks of such facility stoppages by a factor of 3. Distances between sensor bodies and sensing objects are monitored constantly, and users are notified via IO-Link communication*5 if they become great or too small. This allows users to identify warning signs of sudden facility stoppages, which in turn allows for timely maintenance, all in all enabling stable facility operation without having to rely on the experience or skills of maintenance personnel.

OMRON set forth a concept called "innovative-Automation" consisting of three innovations or "i's"--"integrated" (control evolution), "intelligent" (development of intelligence by ICT), and "interactive" (new harmonization between humans and machines). OMRON's endeavor is to dramatically improve the productivity and quality on the ground in the manufacturing sites. To this end, OMRON will continue to expand its lineup of IoT-enabled control devices, and, with the help of its clients, expedite the "intelligent" element (i.e. making manufacturing smarter) in manufacturing sites, which is key to delivering on the "innovative-Automation" concept.

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