Wenglor Extends PNG//smart Line of Photoelectric Sensors

October 20, 2023 by Shawn Dietrich

Wenglor has extended the PNG//smart product line of photoelectric sensors by offering a compact version, the 1M, featuring the same robust IO-Link and NFC configuration options.

Photoelectric sensors, also known as optical sensors, have served countless applications in the over half-century history of automation, from robot part detection to object detection on a conveyor. The automation industry uses optical sensors for object detection in assembly and distribution stations across nearly every imaginable type of facility around the world.

Wenglor has announced the expansion of the PNG//smart (which stands for ‘Photoelectric Next Generation’) family of optical sensors with a new, compact model, the 1M.


Extended lineup of optical sensors from wenglor

The new 1M family of optical sensors. Image used courtesy of wenglor


PNG//smart Sensors

Photoelectric sensors are a reliable and efficient way of detecting objects without interacting with the object. The PNG//smart series from wenglor is a collection of retro-reflective, long-range detection, and through beam sensors offering an aligned optical axis and a calibrated switching point, but to stay competitive with Industry 4.0 technology, all of the PNG//smart sensors come equipped with IO-Link 1.1 communication technology.

The new weCon app allows operators and technicians to set parameters using near-field communication (NFC) technology. This technology can reduce integration time and aid with maintenance by allowing technicians to simply place a mobile device near the sensor. The app can communicate with the sensor and download all of the configuration parameters.


1M Format

Currently, Wenglor has the 1N, 1K, 1P, and 2K designs for the PNGSmart sensor, which has to do with the size and shape along with the electrical connections of the device. The 1M format is the recent addition to the PNGSmart sensor family. The 1M format offers all of the features of the PNGSmart series but in a compact housing made of rugged fiberglass and reinforced plastic.

An industry-standard M12 round plug is integrated into the housing for electrical connections. The overall dimensions of the sensor are 54.5 mm x 27 mm x 16 mm without the plug. Similar to other PNG//smart sensors, the 1M version can be configured over IO-Link or by using NFC. The model has two independent switched outputs and is IP67 or IP68 rated.


New wenglor 1M sensor

The new 1M sensor from wenglor. Image used courtesy of wenglor


Applications of Optical Sensors

A common (yet challenging) use for photoelectric sensors is detection through transparent objects. Bottling lines in beverage companies will typically use a retro-reflective sensor specifically designed for transparent objects to detect clear bottles before they are filled. Using a photoelectric sensor in this application requires the sensor to be configured and tuned to detect these transparent objects.

Leveraging an IO-Link sensor configuration, all operating parameters can be easily added to an HMI screen or an NFC application directly on the technician's mobile device. The PNG//smart family of sensors offers a wide selection of photoelectric sensors that can be configured for virtually any application.



Since 1983, wenglor sensoric group has been innovating and producing high-quality sensor technology. With its headquarters located in the town of Tettang in Germany, wenglor is now a global supplier of photoelectric sensors, vision systems, and industrial networking technology. Wenglor’s PNG//smart photoelectric sensor family currently consists of four body designs that offer a wide variety of sensor selections, providing superior detection abilities across a wide range of industries and applications around the globe.