Production tracking automation with RFID
A pillar of Industry 4.0

The Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) technology is experiencing unprecedented growth: characterised by increasingly higher standards, low costs and exceptional reliability, RFID is being adopted in various business sectors to help bring efficiency, precision and connectivity to processes.

Indeed, RFID technology can reduce shipping errors, ensure correct and efficient order fulfilment, improve safety, accurately track the consumption of raw materials and finished products, as well as offering clear visibility of the goods within a supply chain.

RFID: efficiency and traceability for the industrial sector

Concept Reply's tracking system

Concept Reply has developed an RFID Intelligent Tracking solution, a digital service for the rapid and effective introduction of RFID technologies in the industrial sector, for businesses of any size. The solution, developed thanks to Concept Reply’s partnership with highly specialised technology suppliers, enables the digitalisation of assets in a factory setting to be implemented rapidly and progressively.



PRODUCTION
TRACKING

INTEGRATED SUPPLY
CHAIN MANAGEMENT

MONITORING OF WORK IN PROGRESS

SUPPORT IN LEAN MANUFACTURING AND KAIBAN PRACTICES

OPTIMISATION AND AUTOMATION OF WAREHOUSE RESOURCES

The use of tags

The key element that characterises the RFID Intelligent Tracking System is a tag: a small object to be applied to the assets, which can be read, even from considerable distances and while in motion, by means of special antennas, resistant to shocks and atmospheric agents. The tags are available in many formats and can be affixed to the assets in different ways, so as to ensure a quick and safe application. In fact, tags can be integrated into conveyor belts, self-driving vehicles, trolleys and containers of various kinds. What’s more, to maximise operations in the field, the tags can be made operational on the move thanks to manual RFID readers and wearable printers.


Moreover, the tags’ ability to contain both fixed and dynamic information – such as part numbers, production lots, customer codes – enable the RFID Intelligent Tracking solution to determine the position of raw materials, semi-finished and finished products at any time and along the entire production and supply chain, in a complementary way with respect to forklifts, Automated Guided Vehicles (AGVs) or traditional systems.

Concept Reply’s role

Thanks to its long-standing experience in the IoT field, in radio frequency technologies and in the world of industrial production, Concept Reply is the ideal partner to support the customised creation of manufacturing tracking systems, reducing implementation times and maximising the return on investment.

In this sense, it has been found that the use of RFID tags can guarantee significant increases in accuracy. By ensuring inventory visibility through a database combined with fixed and mobile RFID readers, significantly high levels of efficiency can therefore be achieved.

A real-life example in automotive components

Concept Reply has developed a complete system for the integrated tracking of the production of plastic connectors for a customer specialised in automotive components. The RFID Middleware – the central element of the system – communicates in real time with antennas and with RFID portals integrated on each piece of automatic machinery. When the production of components reaches an optimal level, the system calls an AGV (Automated Guide Vehicle) which sorts the boxes of products towards the truck preparation areas or the automatic assembly areas, ensuring the constant tracking of all the resources involved.


The introduction of the RFID Intelligent Tracking solution has made it possible to improve the management of items in the warehouse significantly, thus reducing the costs of internal logistics and optimising the spaces occupied by intermediate supermarkets and the storage of raw materials and semi-finished products. The solution has also helped increase the efficiency of the transport from suppliers and to customers, thanks to a more precise arrangement of the pallets.

Concept Reply is the Reply Group’s hardware and software development partner specialised in IoT innovation. Concept Reply offers solutions in the Smart Infrastructure, Industrial IoT and Connected Vehicle realms, from the initial idea, through the conceptual phase to implementation, the operational phase and the support phase. The Company’s numerous IoT specialists cover all aspects, from hardware design and development, to software implementation in embedded environments, to edge computing software or Cloud-based applications.