The E2E NEXT sensor range is part of OMRON’s new IO-Link compatible product line. It incorporates through-beam, retro-reflective, diffuse reflective photosensors and colour mark sensors which are available as both standard proximity sensors and spatter-resistant types.

One useful feature is their ability to continuously check and report on performance. They support real-time reconfiguration using data transferred by the automation system.

The range includes two master modules, one with screwless clamp terminals for pre-wired sensors and another with Smart click connectors. Both connect to standard sensors and new IO-Link types for simple upgrading of existing machines and systems.


IO-Link is an open international standard providing bidirectional communication. It also supports standard sensor and actuator signals. This lets sensors and actuators exchange status and operating settings with the automation system.

Sending new settings to the sensors is useful in machines that handle more than one type of product. In many applications, it also eliminates the need for manual intervention in changeovers.

It complies with the industrial communications networking standard IEC 61131-9 and uses an industrial Fieldbus or Industrial Ethernet.

Early Error detection

Connecting sensors to a controller through the IO-Link Master allows checking of the devices using a HMI to flag errors in real-time. The sensors can generate an alert if their performance starts to fall off due to a build-up of soiling. This allows correction of the problem before it results in a machine stoppage. Compiling performance information to a database allows analysis for preventative maintenance and productivity purposes.

Omron’s Sysmac Studio software provides a seamless integration environment with other products. It provides comprehensive facilities for configuring, programming, simulating and monitoring automation systems.

Major sensor manufacturers and industrial manufacturing companies have joined the international IO-Link Consortium. They promote IO-Link communications protocol due to its advantages over standard I/O.

They include Schneider Electric, Mitsubishi Electric, Omron, SICK, SMC, Phoenix Contact, Wago and Pilz.


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