APPLICATION PROFILE—BONDED WAREHOUSE
A bonded warehouse in the U.K. stores expensive single-malt whiskies that are subject to theft even by the warehouse employees. Pallets carrying these stocks are also subject to being misplaced, thus delaying on-time deliveries. To prevent these problems, it was necessary to ensure that forklift trucks moving pallets would pass correctly along preset routes. Deviations might mean that employees were taking product off to a hiding location intentionally for later theft or were just misplacing stock. To create this security system, the company built a grid of transponders suspended from the ceiling. The forklift trucks are equipped with RFID readers. Routing details are downloaded to the forklift truck from a central computer via a radio frequency communication link. This includes correct loading location, exact sequence of transponders along the route, and the delivery bay location. If the onboard reader detects deviations, the truck is immobilized and a supervisor is needed to reset the vehicle. Automatic weighing is also used in combination with the system.
Receiving Incoming Materials
• Pallet—tag contains manifest of items on pallet (product descrip
tions, quantities, weights, lot numbers, and use/sell-by dates, plus
unique ID to track pallet)
• Readers on the floor are linked to computerized ordering and stock
control system. Sophisticated operations might be even be mani
fest to details of anticipated deliveries.
• If no match, a red light flashes to alert receiving bay personnel of
• Eliminates need for manual logging.
THE NEW WORLD OF SMART LABELS
The demand for radio frequency identification (RFID) has fueled research and development during the last few years, resulting in breakthroughs in both technology and pricing. "Smart labels" represent the next generation in RFID for industries who want to uniquely identify and track millions of items at a low cost.
• Cost of tags in tens of cents range
• Produced in very high volumes.
• Thin, flexible construction.
• Read/write-programmable at point of issue.
• Simultaneous ID (SID).
• airline baggage
• express parcels
• product ID and tracking
• brand authentication.
Tag-it inlays are manufactured into labels by leading label companies like Avery Dennison, Moore, and METO.
Well-known companies in the bar code industry have already integrated the ability to read and program Tag-it smart labels into their equipment. Some of these include Zebra, Genicom, and METO bar code printers and PSC hand-held and stationary scanners.
Tag-it for Smart Labels
• operating frequency 13.56 MHz
• thinness (less than 250um)
• user memory (256 bits)
- factory programmed
- user onetime programmed (OTP)
- portion reprogrammable during life
• read speed (20ms ID only)
• SID of 40 tags per second.
Not Just an EAS Tag
Multifunction capability for
1. antitheft and authentication
2. manufacturing automation
3. inventory and logistics management
4. electronic receipt
5. warranty tracking.
Tagging at Levels in the Supply Chain
RFID experts are now talking about an infrastructure that includes levels of tagging in the supply chain, such as
• consumer units—products and individual items
• traded units—boxes/packaging/product carriers
• distribution units—pallets/trucks.