Clear Plastic Container Detection

Clear, thermoformed plastic containers, trays and clamshells are used to package a wide variety of products. To ensure that loading and other downstream processes progress as smoothly as possible, packagers must be able to detect the leading edge of these containers and confirm presence.

Reliable, consistent detection of clear objects can be difficult. Many photoelectric sensors simply burn through translucent packaging. Reflectors required in many applications can dull over time or become damaged, losing reflectivity. Containers on a loading line can come in a range of shapes and sizes, complicating reliable leading edge detection. Additionally, any grooves or facets in a container wall can reflect light in erratic ways.


Banner’s Q4X clear object detection sensor is a dual-mode laser sensor that measures distance and light intensity to provide best-in-class clear object detection. It pairs a small laser spot size with a 1.5 ms response time, ideal for extremely precise leading edge detection on loading lines.

The Q4X has three on-board tactile buttons and an angled, four-digit display, simplifying setup and inspection management. An operator simply teaches the sensor to recognize a stable background condition, like a smooth surface, or even an empty space. A clear object passing between the sensor and the background condition will alter the perceived distance and/or the light returned to the sensor and trigger an output. Because the sensor is taught the background condition, no reflector is required and it will not be fooled by reflected light.

The Q4X is designed to meet the challenges of demanding applications in difficult environments. This rugged sensor can withstand mechanical impact, over-tightening and extreme vibration. Its IP69K-rated FDA-grade stainless steel enclosure will resist high-pressure, high-temperature washdown as well as chemical clean-in-place processes.

Q4X Versatile, Rugged Laser Distance Sensor

The versatile, rugged laser distance sensor has superior performance, detecting distance changes as small as 1 mm with a reliable sensing range of 25 to 300 mm.

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