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This project is designed to demonstrate the uses of programmable logic controllers (PLC’s). The end result of this project will be used to generate interest in VCU’s Industrial Controls classes with prospective students as well as employers. The project involves building a working demonstration showing how PLC’s are used to control manufacturing systems. This system will be mobile and able to be used in different locations including the PLC lab, where students in the Industrial Controls class can also use it to test their knowledge of PLC programming. The system consists of a conveyor belt and sensors that sorts different objects. As the objects travel down the conveyor, the sensor reads data on the object’s shape and color and the PLC controls the placement of the objects on a turntable. This is designed to mimic a manufacturing facility and the PLC’s use in a real world environment. Many components have been donated, and certain pieces built ourselves to cut on costs. The project effectively shows what PLC’s can do and demonstrates what knowledge can be gained through the Industrial Controls classes at VCU.

Publication Date



Electrical and computer engineering, Programmable Logic Controller (PLC), industrial controls, packaging, conveyor


Electrical and Computer Engineering | Engineering

Faculty Advisor/Mentor

Dr. Robert Klenke

VCU Capstone Design Expo Posters


© The Author(s)

Date of Submission

August 2016

Automatic Sorting Machine Using a Programmable Logic Controller