Distributed I/O System has Factory Mutual Certification.

Press Release Summary:

FLEX Ex(TM) distributed I/O System consists of 5 components. FLEX Ex 1797-BIC and 1797-CEC Bus Isolator Pair (used in lower point count applications) allow connections to other FLEX I/O adapters. FLEX Ex 1797-PSI N and 1797-PS1 E ac power supplies have input ranges of 85 to 250 Vac, and include 4 IS outputs. FLEX Ex 1797-IE8NF 8-point, 16-bit, single-ended, non-isolated, analog input module is noise-filtered and designed for process applications.

Original Press Release:

Rockwell Automation Increases Versatility of FLEX Ex(TM) I/O Family with New Products and Factory Mutual Certification

New FLEX Ex(TM) distributed I/O with Factory Mutual (FM) certification increases customer options and enhances product flexibility for Intrinsic Safety applications

MAYFIELD HEIGHTS, Ohio, Dec. 3, 2001 - Complete automation leader Rockwell Automation today announced it has added five new products to its Allen-Bradley FLEX Ex(TM) I/O family, one of the industry's most popular, Intrinsically Safe (IS) distributed I/O systems. The company also announced that, with the exception of power supplies designed for European use, the entire FLEX Ex family of products has attained Factory Mutual (FM) certification for use in hazardous areas.

The new FLEX Ex products include the FLEX Ex bus isolator pair, alternating current (AC) power supplies and a noise-filtered analog input module for process control. The newly announced FM certification augments the FLEX Ex line's UL/cUL Listing for Zone 1 or Class I, Division 1 areas in the United States and Canada.

"Thanks to FM certification, UL/cUL Listing and CENELEC (BVS/DMT) certifications, FLEX Ex meets the Intrinsically Safe I/O requirements of plants throughout the world," said Pat Moyer, product manager, Rockwell Automation. "And, with the addition of five new FLEX Ex products, the FLEX Ex line has the qualifications and flexibility that users need for hazardous areas in both discrete and process manufacturing."

The new additions to the FLEX Ex product line give customers an increased array of hardware options for a wider range of applications:

*FLEX Ex 1797-BIC and 1797-CEC Bus Isolator Pair are used in situations where FLEX and FLEX Ex I/O modules are attached to the same adapter and grouped to allow the integration of IS and non-IS systems. Used as a pair, the 1797-BIC bus isolator and 1797-CEC bus connector provide a cost-effective means to use FLEX Ex in lower point count applications and allow connection to other FLEX I/O adapters and alternative networks.

*FLEX Ex 1797-PSI N and 1797-PS1 E AC power supplies have an input range of 85-250 VAC, include four Intrinsically Safe outputs and are better suited for longer distances compared to the DC power supplies. The new power supplies convert energy to safe levels for routing to I/O modules. No additional supplies are required because the I/O modules contain transformers that provide the necessary voltages to transmitters and field devices. The PS1 N power supply is designed primarily for North American usage, while the PS1 E power supply with Increased Safety terminations is suitable for European applications via its Committee for Electrotechnical Standardization (CENELEC) certification.

*FLEX Ex 1797-IE8NF analog input module is noise-filtered and designed for many process applications. The eight-point, 16-bit, single-ended, non-isolated module secures signals from differential pressure and temperature transmitters, level detectors, flow meters and related equipment. It is ideal for slow-changing, steady-state processes where additional hardware filtering damps out spurious signals. The existing -IE8 module is
intended to be used for high-speed measurement applications.

The FLEX Ex family of products create a compact, distributed I/O system that combines I/O and the terminal strip into a single unit. As a result, FLEX Ex eliminates the need for stand-alone IS barriers/isolators, wiring runs to field devices and costly explosion-proof or purged enclosures. FLEX Ex products can be mounted directly to controlled equipment or distributed throughout a hazardous area for significant savings.

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