A Compact Inductive Sensor That Offers a Large Measuring Distance

February 28, 2023 by Damond Goodwin

Baumer has added to their compact inductive sensing lineup with the addition of the IF200 sensor to measure distance within a range of 10 mm.

An inductive distance sensor is a type of distance sensor used in various automated industrial applications. It works similarly to inductive proximity switches, with the added benefit of being able to tell precise distances in addition to the object's proximity. Inductive distance sensors are useful in applications where high precision and fast readout are necessary. Just this past month, Baumer released a compact inductive distance sensor with a measuring distance up to 10 mm.


inductive distance sensors work by producing a magnetic field around the sensor's sensing face

Inductive distance sensors work by producing a magnetic field around the sensor's sensing face. Image used courtesy of Baumer


How Does an Inductive Distance Sensor Work?

An inductive distance sensor works by producing a magnetic field around the sensor's sensing face. The sensor will remain in homeostasis until the magnetic field is interrupted. Metal objects that enter the magnetic field will interfere with the field, introducing a change in the state of the sensor. 

In the case of proximity sensors, a change is all that is necessary to switch the state of the sensor. In an inductive distance sensor, the exchange in the magnetic field is represented proportionally as an analog or digital readout. This readout can be used to find the precise distance a metal object is from the sensor, depending on the composition of the metal. 


Baumer's "Best-in-Class" Inductive Sensor

Baumer's new IF200 is an inductive distance sensor that boasts an impressive measuring distance range within 10 mm, considering its compact dimensions at 20x42x15 mm (WxLxH). This Increased range helps to reduce the likelihood of the sensor coming into contact with the object being measured and offers a greater measuring distance than the IF200's predecessors. The sensor includes a plastic housing that can operate in temperatures up to 75 ℃.


Baumer's new IF200 inductive distance sensor

Baumer's IF200 inductive distance sensor. Image used courtesy of Baumer 


Baumer has designed the sensor with a high degree of accuracy and a drift of only 2% over the entire sensing range. Since the IF200 can give a digital output, the need for shielded cables and A/D converter cards are not necessary for accurate readouts from the sensor. 

The most accurate version of the IF200 sensor is capable of 3-micron accuracy. The readout for the sensing data is available as both digital and analog readouts. One version of the IF200 sensor is a replacement for Baumer's IWFK20 inductive sensor and is cable of:

  • easy parameterization

  • creating histograms 

  • temperature data

  • switching cycles

  • boot cycles

Product costs can be reduced because the sensor can have a wider variety of sensing capabilities. This means that manufacturers can use the same sensor for a larger range of products. Using the qTeach feature, customers can easily teach new products when they need to be added to the system after a product change. A ferromagnetic tool is the only thing necessary to teach the sensor the new parameters with each product change.  


Compact and Capable

Baumer's new IF200 inductive distance sensor gives customers more sensing options and greater protection for the sensor itself. The IF200 can provide readouts in either digital or analog format, making the sensor capable of replacing older sensors or for use with new IO-Link technology.