5 Things People Believe about Servomotor Safety


People believe all kinds of things that aren’t true.

Servomotors are safe or dangerous.

Gotta be one or the other, right? Actually, no. Servomotors are not safe or dangerous in and of themselves. They’re safe or dangerous depending on how they’re built, how they’re configured, and how they’re used. All three elements have to work together for a safe work situation.

Rexroth’s electric motion control is getting safer and safer all the time, but following correct configuration procedures and safe use regulations is still essential.

Experienced workers naturally follow safety rules.

Not so. Experienced workers can sometimes get so relaxed that they don’t think about basic safety rules. They may follow them most of the time without thinking, but then comes the day when they absentmindedly step on the servo as they’re trying to reach something or pick it up and drop it on their foot.

It’s like the way airline employees go over the basic safety rules on every flight. Most of the people on the plane have heard the information before, and they quite naturally ignore the whole spiel. It’s natural for the brain to ignore information it can’t identify as new. But safety info has to be repeated on a regular basis for the new workers and the experienced ones.

Once you’ve configured your servo, you’re set.

This can be true. Some of our clients configured their servos back in 1984 and they haven’t had a moment’s concern since then. But that’s only true if the environment hasn’t changed. In many places, the ambient temperature is a lot hotter than it used to be. Or you might have moved your facility to a higher elevation, bringing along your servomotors without making any changes.

Even the electricity in a facility can change over time. If your facility no longer has the same environment as when you first installed your servos, you might have safety concerns that you didn’t have back then.

Safety standards are different in different countries.

U.S. machine safety standards like ANSI/PMMI 155 and ANSI B11.0 are actually very similar to EU machine safety standards like ISO 13849. Rexroth builds servomotors in more than one country, but this does not affect the safety or the compliance of the machinery.

Safety standards are different at different time depths. Your legacy Rexroth servomotors may not meet safety standards for as long as you use them. This can make it especially important to follow safety rules as listed in the manual for your component. If you’ve lost your manual, you can request a manual from us.

Servos don’t change over time.

From the point of view of safety, a damaged servo motor is potentially a dangerous servo motor.

If you’re continuing to work with a Rexroth servo even though you have reason to believe that it’s not 100%, you’re putting your team in danger.

Contact us today. We have decades of experience with Rexroth electric industrial motion control.

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