Figure shows a number of configurations of contact-type proximity switch being used in manufacturing automation.
These are small electrical switches which require physical contact and a small operating force to close the contacts. They are basically employed on conveyor systems to detect the presence of an item on the conveyor belt.
Magnet based Reed switches are used as proximity switches. When a magnet attached to an object brought close to the switch, the magnetic reeds attract to each other and close the switch contacts. A schematic is shown in below Figure.
Photo emitting devices such as Light emitting diodes (LEDs) and photosensitive devices such as photo diodes and photo transistors are used in combination to work as proximity sensing devices. Below Figure shows two typical arrangements of LEDs and photo diodes to detect the objects breaking the beam and reflecting light.
Figure- LED based proximity sensors