Faster cycle times, better process control, reduced downtimes: these days system and machine management that ensures the optimal use of resources plays an important role in the economic success of a company. Sensor technology, too, is an indispensable part of this success in automation technology. Festo's comprehensive sensor portfolio combines optimum performance and maximum reliability to ensure smooth and efficient production processes.

Mode of operation of sensors

A sensor converts a physical quantity to be measured into an electrical quantity. In this way, the electrical signals can be easily transmitted and further processed. The sensor can output whether...

  • object available or not (binary)
  • ...a measured value is achieved (analog or digital)

Excellent sensor systems from Festo

Festo's range of sensors includes proximity sensors, pressure and vacuum sensors, flow sensors, optical and inductive sensors as well as versions for special applications such as acids, foodstuffs, cooling lubricants and much more.

Proximity sensors

Proximity sensors are used for binary feedback of the piston position of pneumatic drives. They are sensors that detect the magnetic field of the piston magnet via a magnetic field sensor or reed contact. They are mounted at the desired switching position in the slot of the cylinder and output a standardized 24 V switching signal when the piston magnetic field is detected.

Proximity sensors

Inductive proximity sensors

An inductive proximity sensor is a sensor that reacts contactlessly, i.e. without direct contact, to the approach of a metallic or galvanic object.


  • no mechanical wear, thus longer service life
  • no downtimes due to dirty or welded contacts
  • no bouncing of the contacts and thus no switching errors
  • high switching frequencies
  • high degree of protection through fully encapsulated housing
  • any mounting position

Inductive sensors

Position transmitters

Position transmitters provide an analog output signal in the sensing range. The contactless measuring principle ensures wear-resistant sensing, which is a particular advantage in harsh environments. As a further development of the binary proximity sensor, position transmitters enable a range of new application areas when combined with pneumatic cylinders:

  • Quality control
  • Ultrasonic welding
  • Process control (sheet metal production / wear monitoring)
  • Object sensing (pressing / clamping)
  • Object detection (detecting positions)

Position sensors

Sensors for industrial automation: pressure sensors

Pressure and vacuum sensors expand the application range of systems, provide greater process reliability and offer reliable monitoring. They are also easy and quick to use thanks to the standardized control and display concept shared by the Festo pressure sensors. Vacuum pressure switches measure the pressure at the pressure inlet of the sensor. With the aid of a pressure measuring cell installed in the sensor, the overpressure or underpressure applied to the sensor is compared with the prevailing ambient pressure (relative pressure measuring cell) and output as an electrical signal.

Pick & place machines

Pick & place machines are a ready-to-install functional module for transferring, feeding and removing small parts in highly confined spaces. From an adjustable threshold, the vacuum sensor detects whether the workpiece is securely gripped in order to move it reliably. The movement is positively guided in a linkage and enables very short cycle times. Pick & place machines are designed for use with electric, servo-pneumatic or pneumatic drives.

Sensors for industrial automation: flow sensors

By monitoring the flow, a simplified diagnostic and condition monitoring process can be implemented: A change in the flow rate is often an indication that problems are likely to occur.

Applications for Festo flow sensors:

  • Flow and air consumption measurement for energy-efficient sensing
  • Leakage monitoring
  • Sensing for picking up very small parts (extra small vacuum suction nozzles)
  • Checking for presence
  • Leak-tightness check

Sensors from Festo – for smooth processes

Proximity sensors for pneumatic drives form the starting point for Festo's sensor range: they are optimally designed for Festo drives and the extensive range includes solutions for all industry segments. From the position transmitter SDAT to pressure sensing with the pressure sensor SPAN and flow sensing with the flow sensor SFAH - the portfolio from Festo covers the full range of classic sensor tasks for pneumatics.

Industry-specific sensors

All kinds of industries rely on the sensors from Festo. This leads to a first-class partnership and the creation of application-optimized products in line with the needs and tasks of customers. These help to increase productivity, enhance process reliability and enable everything to be supplied from a single source for many sectors, e.g. the automotive industry or the food industry.

FAQs - frequently asked questions explained easily

What are sensors?

A sensor is a component that converts a measured physical quantity or chemical effect into an analog electrical output signal. The physical quantity is a non-electrical input signal, e.g. pressure, weight, temperature, radiation, magnetic flux, rotational speed or another physical quantity.

What sensor types are there?

There are different types of sensor, e.g.:

  • Position transmitters
  • Pressure and vacuum sensors
  • Flow sensors
  • Proximity sensors
  • Inductive proximity sensors
  • Opto-electrical sensors

What are sensors from Festo used for?

Sensors from Festo are used in a wide range of industries and help to increase productivity and enhance process reliability. They make it possible to offer the automotive industry, the food industry and many other sectors everything from a single source.