Photoelectric Sensors

Photoelectric sensors detect and measure physical objects or quantities by emitting a field or beam of electromagnetic radiation, an object is detected by measuring alterations in the return signal. There are 3 main types of photoelectric sensors which provide reliable detection, these are through-beam, retro-reflective and diffuse. The basic function of each is to detect the presence or absence of objects or measure the distance to the object.RS Components offer an extensive selection of photoelectric sensors for use various industrial applications. Our high-quality products are supplied from leading brands including Omron, Sick, Pepperl + Fuchs Telemecanique Sensors Baumer, Banner and of course RS PRO.

Through-beam Sensors

Through-beam sensors (aka thru-beam) rely on two separate housings, one for the transmitter and one for the receiver, with the transmitter providing a continuous beam of light to the receiver. Each time an object passes through the beam this interrupts the signal between the transmitter and receiver, which in turn causes the receiver to send an electrical signal to the output. Through-beam sensors are suited to long-distance sensing and can detect almost any object, irrespective of colour or angular motion.

Retro-reflective Sensors

Retro-reflective photoelectric sensors (retroreflective) have both the transmitter and receiver contained within the same housing but require a reflector opposite to the sensor. The reflector bounces the light beam back to the transmitter until an object breaks the beam. Objects which are highly reflective such as aluminium require sensors with polarising filters. The filter allows the sensor to acknowledge that the reflected light from reflecting materials is different from the reflector.

Diffuse Sensors

Diffuse sensors (proximity sensor) are easier to install as only one device must be mounted. This is because the transmitter and receiver are contained within one housing. Diffuse sensors use the reflection from the target object within a predetermined sensing range. The transmitter sends out a continuous beam of light, once this hits the target it is diffused in all directions, a part of this light is reflected and recognised by the receiver, the receiver then sends an electrical signal to the output.A special type of diffused mode is background suppression which enables the user to precisely control the sensing range.


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Description Price Sensor Style Detection Type Detection Range Output Type Electrical Connection Switching Mode Maximum AC Voltage Communication Protocol Maximum DC Voltage Terminal Type Light Source IP Rating Maximum Current Interface
RS Stock No. 856-8359
Mfr. Part No.PD112CNB25BP
SGD363.21
Each
units
- - 500 mm → 2.5 m NPN/PNP - - - - 30V Cable - IP67 - -
RS Stock No. 856-8469
Mfr. Part No.VP02EP
SGD256.17
Each
units
- - - PNP - - - - - - Infrared IP67 - -
RS Stock No. 859-3024
Mfr. Part No.ET1820PPAS-1
SGD208.82
Each
units
Barrel Through Beam (Receiver) 20 m PNP M12 Connector - - - 40V M12 LED IP67 12 mA -
RS Stock No. 201-0798
Mfr. Part No.MPF2-912RSL
SGD164.70
Each
units
Barrel Through Beam 15 m Relay Screw Terminal - - - - - - - - -
RS Stock No. 859-3406
Mfr. Part No.PE12CNT15
SGD112.41
Each
units
Barrel Through Beam (Emitter) 15 m - 3-Wire Cable 5m - - - 30V - LED IP67 ≤20 mA -
RS Stock No. 188-5194
Mfr. Part No.PD30CNB25NAM5PS
SGD104.26
Each
units
Miniature Diffuse-Reflective 250 mm NPN NO/NC M8 x 4 Pin Connector - - - 30V M8 LED IP67 50 mA -
RS Stock No. 201-0804
Mfr. Part No.PD140FNT60QMU-02C
SGD243.68
Each
units
Block Through-Beam 60 m Relay Screw Terminal - - - - - - - - -
RS Stock No. 201-0797
Mfr. Part No.MPF1-230RS
SGD185.31
Each
units
Barrel Through Beam 15 m Relay Screw Terminal - - - - - - - - -
RS Stock No. 857-7854
Mfr. Part No.PA18CAD10PASA
SGD110.56
Each
units
Barrel Diffuse 1 m PNP 4-Wire Cable 2m - - - 30V - LED IP66, IP69K 20 mA -
RS Stock No. 201-0812
Mfr. Part No.PMP12RG
SGD274.35
Each
units
Block Retroreflective 12 m NC, NO Cable - - - - - - - - -
New
RS Stock No. 209-8600
Mfr. Part No.LD30ETBI10BPM5IO
SGD250.17
Each
units
Rectangular Diffuse reflective 1000 mm NPN/PNP Plug - - - - - - - - -
RS Stock No. 188-5202
Mfr. Part No.PD30ETR60PAM5SA
SGD148.21
Each
units
Miniature Retro-Reflective 6 m PNP NO/NC M8 x 4 Pin Connector - - - 30V M8 - IP68, IP69K 25 mA -
RS Stock No. 201-0799
Mfr. Part No.PA18CLD01TC
SGD112.19
Each
units
Barrel Diffuse 100 mm SCR Cable - - - - - - - - -
RS Stock No. 859-3386
Mfr. Part No.MOFR-M12-5
SGD268.45
Each
units
Barrel Through Beam (Receiver) - NPN/PNP 15m Cable - - - 8V - LED IP66, IP67 11 mA -
RS Stock No. 857-3225
Mfr. Part No.PC50CNR10BA
SGD291.25
Each
units
Block Retroreflective 10 m NPN/PNP Cable - - - 30V - LED IP67 40 mA -
RS Stock No. 857-3234
Mfr. Part No.PD30CND10PPM5RT
SGD151.06
Each
units
Block Diffuse 1 m PNP 4-Pin M8 Connector - - - 30V M8 LED IP67 30 mA -
RS Stock No. 188-5200
Mfr. Part No.PD30CTB20PAIS
SGD94.65
Each
units
Miniature Diffuse-Reflective 200 mm PNP NO/NC Cable - - - 30V Cable - IP67 40 mA -
RS Stock No. 857-3174
Mfr. Part No.PMP12RI
SGD342.14
Each
units
Block Retroreflective 12 m - 5-Terminal Screw - 240V - 240V NPT LED IP67 - -
RS Stock No. 201-0808
Mfr. Part No.PE12CNT15-15M
SGD108.22
Each
units
Barrel Through-Beam 1.5 m NPN, PNP Cable - - - - - - - - -
RS Stock No. 859-2970
Mfr. Part No.EO1804PPAS
SGD222.89
Each
units
Barrel Diffuse 400 mm PNP Cable - - - 40V - LED IP67 20 mA -