Switches • Proximity Switches

A proximity sensor is able to detect the presence of nearby objects, and open or close an electrical circuit without any physical contact via an electromagnetic/electrostatic field.

  A proximity sensor is able to detect the presence of nearby objects, and open or close an electrical circuit without any physical contact via an electromagnetic/electrostatic field, or a beam of electromagnetic radiation. Proximity switches are most commonly used in manufacturing equipment, robotics, and security systems. Proximity switches are used in manufacturing processes to measure the position of machine components.  The four main types of proximity sensors are inductive, capacitive, infrared, and acoustic. Other types include eddy-current, magnetic, photocell, sonar, and radar.  

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  • Yaskawa Electric America

    Yaskawa offers a wide selection of proximity switches, including general purpose magnetic proximity switches that are completely sealed and capable of direct control on loads greater than even 100VDC.  They also offer vane-type switches for medium and large capacities.

  • Aleph America

    Aleph America produces magnetic actuation proximity sensors that contain internal reed switches, and are turned on and off by changes in magnetic field strength (e.g., vertical, horizontal, or longitudinal magnetic movement). Proximity switches are made with several contact forms such as normally open, normally closed, or a combination of the two, as well as transfer and latching styles.

  • Lion Precision Inc.

    Lion Precision offers the ECA100 Eddy-Current precision analog proximity switch which features adjustable gain and zero offset, adjustable setpoint for go/no-go testing, and range-indicating LEDs. Additionally, these proximity switches have non-linear output, 0.02%FS resolution, and 10 kHz bandwidth.

  • Pepperl + Fuchs, Inc.

    Pepperl+Fuchs manufactures an array of proximity switches for different applications, including inductive, capacitive and magnetic field types. Proximity switch accessories are also available.

  • Globetron Controls Inc

    Globetron Controls offers capacitive, inductive, and specialty/extended range proximity switches. Capacitive proximity switches are used for non-metallic materials such as plastic, glass, wood, and paper, as well as liquids. These IP67-enclosed units are most popular in sizes M18 and M30, but are available in several others.

  • SUNS International

    SUNS proximity switches are available in dozens of combinations. Starting with cylindrical metal or square plastic housing, the units range in size from M8 to M30, and from 17x17 to 40x40. Inputs can be 10-30VDC or 90-250VAC, either shielded or unshielded.

  • Hydracon Subsea

    Hydracon manufactures subsea proximity switches for deepwater pipeline connectors, diving, deepsea mining, dredging, and other underwater applications. The switches are unaffected by mineral deposition or silt, and are submersible to 20,000'. Meanwhile, their hysteresis is 0.02" to 0.04", and actuation or sensing range is either 0.25" or 0.5"+, depending on the magnet size. Finally, these units are hermetically sealed and constructed from stainless steel, making them resistant to shock, vibration, and pressures up to 10,000 psi.

  • Sensoronix, Inc.

    Sensorix manufactures digital proximity sensors with sinking NPN or sourcing PNP outputs. These Hall-Effect units switch between logic low (operate point) and logic high (release point) to detect the presence or absence of a target magnet. Performance data includes an airgap of 0.005" to 0.75", 1.00us maximum output rise time, 1.00us maximum output fall time, 180 Gauss Nom. magnetic operate point, and 140 Gauss Nom. magnetic release point. Consequently, these proximity sensors are useful in the automotive, power generator, exercise equipment, and pharmaceutical industries, in applications as wide ranging as machine tools, engine speed measurement, counting, and food processing.

  • Infineon Technologies North America Corporation

    Infenon Technologies manufactures hall-effect switches and proximity sensors for automotive, industrial and consumer applications such as position sensing, index counting, BLDC motor control, etc. Those devices show excellent accuracy and robustness against electrical disturbances

  • Euchner-USA, Inc.

    Euchner USA manufactures inductive cylinder proximity switches in a variety of sizes and switching ranges. The parts are housed in either brass-nickel plating or stainless steel, and rated to IP67 for oil, dust, and water tightness and resistance. They also have a wide ambient operating temperature tolerance, from -13 to +158 degrees Fahrenheit. Consequently, the proximity switches can be used in everything from presses and grinders to material handling/storage retrieval systems and plastic injection molding.

  • SICK, Inc.

    SICK offers single-beam photoelectric safety switches that provide large scanning ranges. Available in a variety of shapes and size, these products feature safety performance complying with Type 1 or 4, EN 61496 and PL c or PL e, in accorance with EN ISO 13849. Cylindrical models like the L2000/L21 and L4000 offer scanning ranges up to 60 m, while rectangular types like the L2000/L28 and W26/3 provide ranges to 18 m and 70 m, respectively. The safety switches can be used in robots, processing machines, machining centers, palletizing systems, high-bay warehouses, transfer lines, and other dangerous applications.

  • Canfield Connector

    The 9M50 magnetic proximity switch is available from Canfield Connector. This compact, full featured part is designed to fit the D-shaped groove detail designed into linear actuators, allowing it to be inserted anywhere along the linear actuator. The switch is available in reed and electronic styles, either NPN or PNP, and is encapsulated to meet IP67 NEMA6 environmental protection. Capable of operating from -10 to +70 degrees Celsius, it withstands shocks up to 30G (reed) or 50G (electronic), vibration up to 9G, and sensitivity to 60 gauss parallel (reed) or 40 gauss parallel (electronic).

  • Carlo GAVAZZI Automation Components

    Carlo Gavazzi features proximity switches in a variety of styles, from 4 mm to 30 mm, with both digital and analog outputs. The switches have shielded standard, unshielded standard, and extended range sensing choices, at a default sensing distance of 2 mm. Output options include NPN, PNP, Namur, 2-wire AC, 2-wire DC, 4-20 mA, and 0-10 VDC. Housing options including short or long plastic or metal, along with metal face and high temperature variations.

  • ISE Controls

    ISE Controls is a source for inductive and capacitive proximity switches. For sensing metals, they offer inductive switches produced by manufacturers like Balluff, Baumer, Contrinex, IDEC, Sick, Softnoz, and Sunx. By contrast, capacitive proximity switches detect object mass in non-metals, clear solids, and even liquids. Brands offering these products through ISE Controls are Balluff, Baumer, IDEC, SICK, and SIE.

  •, Inc

    Myriad proximity switches are offered through They sell optical switches in plastic or metal housings, including reflected light-beam varieties without background suppression (M18 x 1), with fixed background suppress (M30 x 1.5), without polarization filter (M18 x 1), or with polarization filter (M30 x 1.5). Inductive proximity switches are also available, and come in both round and rectangular designs and plastic or metal housings. Finally, the company carries capacitive proximity switches in M12, M18, and M30 round designs, and 32 x 20 x 8 mm or 114 x 40 x 40 mm rectangular designs.

  • NTE Electronics, Inc.

    NTE Electronics offers a full line of switches, including toggle, rocker, waterproof, illuminated, security, and snap action varieties. Examples include the bat handle toggle switch, which has a Neoprene seal and slow make/slow break contacts, as well as a 0.5" diameter mounting hole and insulation resistance to 100 Megohms. Round hole rocker switches, meanwhile, come standard with a solder lug or 0.185" Tab Q.C. terminal type, 0.717" or 0.795" mounting hole, and 100,000 cycle mechanical life; other styles include snap-in and square bezel. More than a dozen other combinations are available, as well, including toggle, rocker, and automotive/marine waterproof switches, toggle and rocker illuminated switches, anti-vandal and magnetic alarm security switches, and standard or watertight snap-action switches.

  • KSR Kuebler Level Control Products of America Inc

    KSR Kuebler manufactures magnetic proximity switches that have an expected life greater than 3 billion switching operations. They offer rotational speed detection in the 200 to 3,000 rpm range, and a switched output up to 1,000 cycles/second, depending on the model. These products are also suitable to applications that require a switched output for proximity sensing, linear limit detection, logging/counting, or actuation. In addition, the list of materials from which these parts can be constructed is a long one; it includes brass, stainless steel, glass-reinforced polyamide, aluminum, and polyethylene.

  • Automation Direct

    Automation Direct distributes proximity switches from a group of Euorpean manufacturers. The round selection includes 3-5 mm PY and PD Series, stainless steel, 3-wire DC switches; 8 mm AE Series switches; 12 and 18 mm, 2- or 3-wire DC metal switches; and IP65-rated, 2- and 3-wire, DC, 30 mm switches. Other options within this group include triple sensing distance, extended sensing distance, and analog output. Furthermore, the company sells three series of rectangular, IP67-rated, 3-wire, DC proximity switches. Most of them are available in fixed or quick-disconnect cable styles, and feature LED status indicators to verify operation.

  • O'Keefe Controls Co.

    O'Keefe Controls offers non-contact air proximity switches that contain no moving parts and detect objects up to 0.125" away, in addition to magnetic proximity switches for sensing magnets or steel parts. The air/electric switches include the P/N OKC-661, which has the best vibration resistance and 20 ms response time; P/N OKC-664, with the greatest current capacity at 10 A; and the P/N OKC-819, which is the smallest and fastest of the models, with 10 ms response. Meanwhile, the magnetic proximity switch has a 2-position, 3-way, normally closed configuration, with a 0.08" diameter valve orifice. It filtration rating is 5 microns, and depending on the model, its pressure limit ranges from 30 to 100 psig. Its sensing range is greater than 0.0625", and it can pick up wire diameters down to 0.04".

  • Turck, Inc.

    Turck manufactures a wide selection of proximity sensors under three different brands. WeldGuard switches are embeddable or non-embeddable barrel-style sensors that have potted-in or quick disconnect cables. Made from stainless steel or Teflon, the parts range in size from 8 mm to 30 mm. Next are stainless steel front face sensors, which come embeddable barrel standard, and with either potted-in cable or quick disconnect functionality. Lastly, the company offers Stoneface proximity switches that are embeddable or non-embeddable, again, either potted-in cable or quick disconnect. Sizes offered go up to 32 mm.