Shown above is a bird’s eye view of the Gernsheim production site in Germany where Merck plans to invest almost 10 million euros anew. Photo courtesy of Merck

Tech giant commissions fully automated unit for digital color measurement of pigment products

Merck, a global science and technology company, announced on Oct. 12 that the firm had commissioned its first fully automated unit for the digital color measurement of its pigment products.

The unit was commissioned in Gernsheim, Germany, the company’s largest pigments production site. Approximately 560 people work at the site.

“We have invested tremendously in recent years to expand our pigment production capacities,” said Jeff White, chief of the surface solutions business unit within the Electronics business sector of Merck.

“In September 2021, a second production line for effect pigments based on silicon dioxide was launched in Gernsheim – an investment of nearly 28 million euros. We are now increasingly investing in automating and digitalizing our production processes.”

White added that the investment of nearly 10 million euros in a unit for the automated and digital color measurement would be only one example of how Merck is trying to further advance the digitalization of its production processes within surface solutions.

By commissioning this unit, Merck said that it would improve the color reliability of its pigment products.

To date, quality control of color pigments has mainly been manual and is highly dependent on the perception of the human eye.

With the new, fully automated process, Merck will measure the color values digitally, and improved reproducibility of the pigments will provide customers with consistently high product quality worldwide, according to Merck.

In the future, Merck expects that color will be a transparent quality criterion. The new unit is one of the numerous projects at Merck designed to advance the quality of products and processes through automation and digitalization.

Following Gernsheim, color measurement units are to be introduced in the coming months at additional Merck pigment production sites in Japan’s Onahama and Savannah, Georgia in the United States.

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