Trolley Scan(Pty) Ltd
RFID_WIP(tm) system for monitoring work in progress in factories
A hardware and software system for managing work in progress in factories in a cost
This system will allow the current progress of up to 1000 items to be monitored at regular intervals, producing reports on discrepancies and maintaining a database to show the current progress through manufacture of the products of the factory.
The system comprises of transponder tags for attaching securely to the bins housing the products, transponders attached to the locations/machines which interact with the items being produced, a long range portable UHF RFID reader, a software package running on a laptop/notebook computer and a Bluetooth communication link between the the UHF reader and the notebook computer to pass information.
The system uses the long range capabilities of the reader and the transponders to allow identities of bins and manufacturing locations to be read at a distance. This means that by moving through the factory with the reader, all tagged bins in the factory can be scanned and their identities passed via the Bluetooth link to a software package in the notebook computer.
The software will record the presence and current location of all bins tagged, note the time of checking, and update the database. The system will also feedback which bins have not been located in the current scan, giving details of the product, when it was last seen, and what was the manufacturing stage when it was last seen. The operator can then immediately query the relevant person as to its current location. The software will also report items which have moved to a new location as part of the manufacturing process, updating the database appropriately.
The database is further compatible with common spread sheet programs allowing easy maintenance and information extraction. The software also produces various reports that can be printed.
Features of the transponders.
Features of the reader
Work in progress monitoring software
The software has a Bluetooth management package for managing the Bluetooth communication via a USB/Bluetooth dongle and routing the data from the reader to the RFID_WIP management software.
The RFID_WIP management program is a customised program that allows the user to set up the system for all measurements via drop down menus. It takes measurements from the UHF reader, and applies these to the central database automatically updating the current location of items, and informing the operator of which items have not yet been seen at this location. The system also generates reports that can be viewed and printed from any WWW browser to provide a paper trail.
All databases are stored in common type formats, letting programs like Excel spreadsheets import/export the master database for massaging and data capture should that be necessary.
To operate the software, the user moves around the factory pointing the UHF reader antenna at the various spaces and reading the codes of the items at high speed into the software. When finished with the scanning, by querying the software to show what items have been missed, he is given a list of items that were in that scanning location the last time a survey was done, and which are not now yet detected. This allows him to immediately follow up with the queries before moving onto the next location.
When finished with all locations he can produce reports on what was and what was not seen, and then update the master database to reflect the date and current location of all the items that were identified.
The package comprises
RFID_WIP(tm) is the trademark of RFID Technologies CC
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