Why a Color Mark Sensor is Important in Today’s Production Environment

Color marks are an essential part of product packaging and labeling, quality control systems, and product and manufacturer identification processes for multiple industries. These marks play an important role in validating that products are ready to move on to the next stage of production, are checked for integrity and accuracy, are routed and stored properly, and more. Detecting them and verifying their presence ensures that production quality is maintained, compliance requirements are met without fail, and that the companies and consumers using the end product are protected.

While there are many color mark sensors available in the market, EMX Industries, Inc. has developed a leading solution for production environments that require the utmost precision, speed, and adjustability. Our CMYX Color Mark Sensor was developed with these requirements in mind and has upheld them successfully for manufacturers nationwide for years. Here, we’ll explore a few color sensor applications of our CMYX color mark sensor to help you make the best decision possible when it comes to your needs.

3 Color Mark Sensor Applications for the CMYX

1. Pharmaceutical Codes

Pharmaceutical codes — aka pharma code — are unique barcodes designed to convey information about a healthcare product within a package. They help to ensure that the right product is in the right packaging and are designed to function despite any potential printing errors and any damage that might occur after the packaging has been produced. Because these codes are often small (down to half a millimeter in width for the thin bars), it’s absolutely essential that the color mark sensor being used is capable of detecting them.

The CMYX Difference: The CMYX color mark sensor features a 0.5 mm spot size for its broad-spectrum white LED light, allowing for both the detection of these thin bar code systems as well as the detection of all colors. So whether the thinnest bar in a pharma code is black, red, blue, or some other color tint, the CMYX will be able to verify the presence of that code — providing pharmaceutical companies or those handling medical packaging with peace of mind in ensuring the quality of that packaging and the integrity of the pharma code on it.

2. Printing & Packaging

Another color sensor application for the CMYX is printing and packaging. In high-speed environments where tens of thousands of labels and packaging elements are running along lines, manufacturers and printers need to be able to verify the presence of registration and other color marks and ensure they meet a specific value. This supports not only quality control for printing but also overall process control — allowing production managers to rapidly identify potential issues with production and take action when needed.

The CMYX Difference: Designed to support printers and packaging organizations, the CMYX is capable of differentiating between backgrounds and color marks during high-speed processes. Its lightning-fast 40 kHz switching speed and 25-microsecond discrete output response ensure that color marks are rapidly identified and outputs to PLCs or other control systems are equally rapid.

3. Small Part Color Verification

A final color sensor application for the CMYX is small part color verification. Whether for automotive, consumer products, packaging, or electronics, there are infinite small parts being produced every day that have to meet specific color values. This might be for identification purposes, branding, or simply matching parts to other components. In these applications, the ideal color mark sensor will verify that the parts have been produced according to the proper color specifications. If there are any issues, the fast discrete output can trigger an appropriate corrective action for a production team or another system.

The CMYX Difference: The CMYX is one of the most adjustable sensors available for color mark detection. Its calibration feature allows manual user sensitivity adjustment to support the type of parts being produced. Additionally, its circular spot allows for the sensor to be installed in virtually any orientation to the parts or marks, making integration into an existing line fast and simple.

Why Not ColorMax or the CNTX Contrast Sensor?

EMX Industries, Inc. offers the ColorMax line of sensors as well as the CNTX contrast sensor in addition to the CMYX. The CMYX color mark sensor is ideal in applications that require extremely fast detection speeds beyond the capability of the ColorMax (40 kHz vs. 20 kHz). Additionally, the ColorMax is ideal when multiple colors need to be detected along with RGB values and luminosity. It’s a more specific sensor that allows for greater optimization versus detection alone.

The CNTX contrast sensor is certainly an option for registration mark detection and identifying color values within a specific range. It even matches the CMYX’s switching speed of 40 kHz. But the CMYX is the clear winner when it comes to detecting color as the contrast sensor was designed for precisely that — identifying contrast. The CMYX features a broader display range allowing for greater values to be displayed based on your production needs.

CMYX Marks the Spot — But Will It Work in Your Color Sensor Application?

EMX Industries offers complimentary sample testing to help you determine if this or another sensor will support your unique application. Simply let us know what you’re looking to achieve, send in a sample of the material, and one of our application experts will conduct a test using the ideal sensor. You’ll receive a written report with images as available detailing the results, recommendations, and next steps.

Request your free color mark sensor sample test now.