Finding the Right Sensor for a Sticky Production Process

Multiple applications rely on different types of adhesives as part of their production process. Examples range from consumer-focused applications such as packaging for various consumer goods to more industrial applications such as adhesives for automotive and manufacturing components. Regardless of the application, verifying the presence of an adhesive is part of quality control. That’s why bonding agent and glue detection systems are critical.

The tricky part of glue detection is that the material — whether it’s glue, epoxy, a sealant, a bonding agent, or some other type of adhesive — typically has to be verified while the material is being dispensed on the surface of the package, part, or product. This is because, at some point throughout the production process, that glue will obviously be used to create a seal — meaning it will no longer be visible. Examples include paper bags or folding cartons, in which the glue will fasten adjacent or opposing sides of the material together.

Additionally, the application may call for verifying the amount of glue or adhesive being applied in addition to or instead of whether the glue is present. Because of this, an industrial automation sensor is needed to:

  • Operate quickly to continually verify the presence of glue/adhesive
  • Have flexible spot sizes in order to measure the adhesive volume
  • Distinguish between the adhesive and the background material
  • Ensure consistent readings between multiple sensors

Go deeper: Learn how EMX provided a sensor solution for a glue detection application.

UVX: A Leading Line of Luminescence Sensors Ideal for Adhesives


The UVX-300 is one of our core luminescence sensors for adhesive and glue detection purposes. It provides a luminescence display range of 0 to 50, allowing your systems to determine the right level of luminescence according to the material itself. It also has a high sensitivity rating, meaning it will have no trouble detecting minor variations in luminescence. Its adjustable gain also allows you to customize the detection area based on your unique application. Lastly, it has a 20–350 mm operating range, allowing it to function in a variety of industry environments.

Download the UVX-300 spec sheet here.


The UVX-300G-C is the next step up in glue detection sensors. This particular sensor expands on the capabilities of the UVX-300 by extending the intensity display range from 0–55 to 0–99 — giving you even more options for understanding the luminescence of your application. Its adjustable gain allows you to further customize its performance according to your application. Its operating range, on par with the UVX-300, means it can be integrated in virtually any production environment and line without impacting performance.

Download the UVX-300G-C spec sheet here.

A Note About Multiple Luminescent Materials

While UVX sensors are designed to detect luminescent materials, it’s important to understand that the backing material that glue or adhesive goes on can’t itself be luminescent. In these instances, the UVX will register the luminescence of both materials, creating a false positive reading. Two specific examples in which this might be an issue include printer paper (the optical brighteners used in paper production may be luminescent) and packaging inks (some inks use luminescent tracers, so they and the glue on top of them will both be detected). You can learn more about luminescence in our FAQs.

Confirm Processes with Complimentary Sample Testing

Whether you’re concerned about your application containing multiple luminescent materials, or if you simply want to understand if our UVX sensors will work in your environment, your best course of action is to request sample testing. Simply contact us with details about your application and your intended goal, then ship a sample of your material(s) to our facility. We’ll immediately test them using one or more sensors to find the best option for you. 

If we find that our sensors won’t work in your application, we’ll inform you and provide a recommendation or alternative if one is available. If our sensors will work for your application, you’ll receive a complimentary report with images, notes, and recommended integration instructions from our engineering team. When you’re ready, simply reach out to your sales contact or place an order for the recommended sensor online.

Any questions? Our team is here to help. Get in touch with us today.