Understanding Safety Functions: the Safety-related stop function

A stop sign - A red octagon with a white border, and white block text reading STOP.

The most used safety function on machinery is the safety-related stop function. The requirements discussed in this post are not generally applicable to process-related stop functions unless the process and safety stop functions share the same control system hardware and software. Copyright secured by Digiprove © 2021Acknowledgements: ISOSome Rights ReservedOriginal content here is published under these license terms: X License Type:Non-commercial, Attribution, Share…

Manual reset using an HMI

A Siemens HMI displaying control functions and data.

Update: Since this post was first published in 2021, things have changed a bit. There are now some safety-rated HMIs available from big controls companies like Siemens, so if you are considering this approach, consult with your controls vendor to see if their HMIs can meet the requirements of ISO 13849-1. Ed. – 2022-05-10 Question: Can…

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Can Emergency Stop be used as an “on/off” control?

Emergency Stop Button

Every couple of months I get an email asking me if there is any reason why e-stop functions can’t be used as the primary power control (on/off button) for machinery. Following a recent exchange, I thought I would share the reasons for why this is such a bad idea. The short answer The short answer…

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Introduction to Functional Safety Seminars

Man training a group of people, pointing to Functional Safety topics on the whiteboard

If you are interested in functional safety, and I know many readers are based on the statistics I see for my other functional safety-related posts, I think you will be interested in this. I am collaborating with the IEEE Product Safety Engineering Society’s Virtual Chapter to provide a series of three 35 minute seminars discussing…

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Emergency Stop Pull-Cords

When it comes to emergency stop devices there is no doubt that the red mushroom-head push button is the most common – they seem to be everywhere. The second most common emergency stop device is the pull-cord, and like the light-curtain in safeguarding devices, the pull-cord is probably the most misapplied emergency stop device. Local…

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