color Process Automation Technology cPAT with ACLCC

color Process Automation Technology (cPAT) for plastics manufacturing is a fully integrated, online color measurement and color control solution tailored to meet the needs of plastics manufacturers. From plastic sheet manufacturing, to window profile, vinyl siding, custom profile and compounding, cPAT offers best practices and automated solution tools to improve manufacturing efficiencies, ensure product quality, and reduce overall costs.

Today’s plastic extrusion color control process relies a bit on ‘black magic’ to be successful. Time-interval based color monitoring is insufficient in providing information on baseline, variation or improvement opportunities. The process is not very controllable, predictable or often times even understandable. cPAT eliminates the ‘black magic’, making the process something that operators can control, predict and troubleshoot.


cPAT for plastics manufacturing moves the production color QC
process from one of time-interval based color measurements and
manual adjustments to one of real-time color monitoring, automated
closed-loop color control, and automated defect containment. Benefits include:

  • Reduced operational costs
  • Process Yield Improvementscpat-logo
  • Cost Reduction through Material savings
  • Improve Operator Efficiencies
  • Improved Equations for Green Initiatives and Carbon Footprint Reductions
  • Improved Customer Satisfaction
  • Improved shareholder/stakeholder value

Principle of Operation


The system consists of a high resolution, lab-grade color spectrophotometer designed for in-line color monitoring,
and a PLC with closed-loop color control software developed by Plastore, Inc. The solution uses colorimetric data
from the spectrophotometer to control the feeder rate, adjusting material flow automatically to maintain color within
preset color tolerances. The PLC allows programming downstream actions such as short cutting boards or sorting
when the system indicates color is out of spec.

  • Online, real-time color measurement and monitoring
  • Touch screen PLC with easy to set up and operator friendly color-control softwarecpat-logo
  • Automated closed-loop color control
  • Outputs for downstream defect containment
  • Historic data logging and storage for retrieval via USB or remotely on a network by FTP
  • Process variables charted in real-time with 100 scans of data storage for on screen viewing
  • Calibration reminders automatically displayed based on number of scans and time since last calibration

Data flow


Process Automation Technology (cPAT) is a fully integrated, online color measurement and
color control solution tailored to meet the needs of plastics processors. This unique system
allows for continuous color monitoring, automated feeder adjustments based on color
measurements taken directly from the process stream, and enables downstream containment
of defective product. Applications include:

    • Sheet Plastic
    • Vinyl Sidingcpat-logo
    • Window Profile
    • Other custom profile