3 Process Advantages of Opacity Sensors

Friday, June 26, 2020

opacity sensor

Protecting Products from the Harmful Effects of Light

Just as with many other outside factors, light has the potential to damage a variety of product types and cause chemical changes that lead to product spoilage and other damaging effects. One long-standing example of this is medicinal bottles. The amber color of the bottle is designed to prevent ultraviolet light from degrading the product inside, which may contain photosensitive contents. If UV light were to enter the bottle, it could cause a photochemical reaction that could lessen the effectiveness of the product. This is why utilizing a reliable opacity sensor is critical to protecting consumers.

Medicines aren’t the only product that can be affected by light, however. Many consumer goods such as skincare products and even milk can be adversely affected by light. A study by Virginia Tech determined that exposure to light can quickly begin to change the flavor, odor, and nutritional value of milk, despite the type of container in which it was packaged.  

Ultimately, whether light will affect your product comes down to the type of packaging material you’re using. If you’re in one of the many industries using material types such as high-density polyethylene (HDPE) — such as for milk production, gas containers, or personal care products — then using an opacity sensor to evaluate the amount of light transmission in your packaging is an absolute. Opacity applies to other materials beyond HDPE as well, such as low-density polyethylene (LDPE) and even paper or composite films.

There are far more benefits to opacity sensors than protecting packaging contents, however. Here, we’ll explore the impact that a well-designed and well-implemented opacity sensor can have on your business.

How Opacity Sensors Strengthen Your Business

Manufacturing Speed Increases

Protecting consumers comes first above all, but following closely behind is the importance of streamlining the manufacturing process. As you’re likely required to determine the opacity level of your product packaging, having a solution in place that can quickly and accurately determine where your material stands on a specific opacity scale would be extremely advantageous. Integrated into your production line, an opacity sensor with pass/fail criteria enables real-time quality control and helps to quickly identify any materials or packaging that don’t hit the mark.

Consistency in Quality

Many manufacturers are constantly monitoring performance metrics such as product quality and waste. Because the ability to prevent light from damaging package contents is critical to delivering a successful product, it stands that having an opacity sensor to both automate and enhance the light transmission measurement phase of your manufacturing process would help you make tremendous strides toward improving those metrics. 

Concurrently, if you’re finding that an unacceptable number of materials are failing the opacity scan, it reveals that there may be opportunities for improvement in other areas of production that come before this verification stage. And of course, product waste can be reduced overall thanks to identifying these areas and implementing improvements.

Opacity sensors can also be implemented post-production as part of a quality control system. Combined with in-line opacity detection, this dual approach further enhances the customer experience and financial performance of your product line by giving you even more peace of mind in knowing that the products you’re putting out to market meet safety and quality standards.

Easy Integration

Not every opacity sensor is designed to be used in-line in your manufacturing process, and not all can be deeply integrated with additional systems. The ideal opacity sensor solution will be able to be immediately integrated into your production environment, preventing you from having to lean on more manual and time-consuming processes. As it will be part of a manufacturing or testing line, it should also be rugged to prevent any damage to the sensor internals and ensure it continues performing well for years to come.

Meet the Ideal Solution — the OPAX-1000

EMX Industries, Inc. offers the OPAX-1000 opacity for a wide variety of applications where light transmission is critical to production success. The OPAX-1000 shows opacity on a relative scale of 0-99 with an incredibly high 100-microsecond detection discrete output speed, providing immediate pass/fail responses. If needed, the OPAX-1000 also offers a calibration feature for manual sensitivity adjustment. 

In addition to streamlining your production process, the OPAX-1000 was also designed to be incredibly resilient and durable yet flexible to integrate into your environment as needed. It features rugged construction with adjustable brackets for rapid setup.

Discover the Difference with EMX Industries, Inc.

EMX Industries, Inc. is a leading innovator of industrial sensors for factory and process automation. If your organization has been looking for a better solution for opacity and turbidity detection to streamline your production process, our team is ready to assist.

Contact us today to learn more about our opacity sensors and other industrial solutions.