Zebra Technologies: Smart Track and Trace Manufacturing Technology

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A manufacturing line is a complex dance of parts, materials, people, machines and processes. Almost move perfectly to the second. Any glitch from a late delivery to a slow machine breaks the flow and causes delays, but technology can help. Wi-fi networks, RFID, and barcode
labels together with mobile computers, scanners, and printers can help you see
everything everywhere in real-time. How can you take advantage? How can you digitize your “can-ban”, smooth your workflow, and proactively spot issues to always be on time? Meet our widget. It’s arriving in a tote box. Each box holds 1,000 child parts. An RFID scanner captures data about the goods from a label fixed to the totes by the supplier. The details are sent over wifi to the back office. This registers the parts and aligns them with a PO, build manifest, and ERP system. A note is then sent the mobile computers,
used by the goods-in team, telling them where to put the tote box in the storage area. Our widget moves to line side. Meet Danny, who’s operating this cell. When he started his shift, he scanned the barcode on his badge to show what selling equipment he’s running. If Danny’s cell underperforms, this data will help the business improve performance by changing training, staff locationing, or the calibration of machines. The parent part is being built. As it comes along the line, Danny reaches for our child widget. A robot fixes the widget to the main assembly. The tote box is now low, so Danny hits the e-“can-ban” button on his cell for replenishment. The storage system’s mobile computers show the request that’s then processed. The storage supervisors sees that his usual buffer stock of 2000 widgets is low, and also requests replenishment. The supervisor presses his e-“can-ban” button, and an email is sent to the supplier requesting an additional order of 2,000 parts to be delivered within 30 minutes. Our widget, attached to its parent part, is moving smoothly. This is assisted by automated, and handheld scanning of our products’
barcodes and RFID labels as it moves through each stage of production. This ensures that all is on time and cost. And all robots are machines are running
well as they are continuously monitored using smart sensors, and RFID tags. The data from sensors is sent over wi-fi in a continuous stream. The industrial controls team watch the data feeds, and can remotely scheduled maintenance to
prevent downtime. As our product’s making its way towards its dispatch point, Mark, a quality inspector, removes it from the line. Using a tablet PC, he runs over a checklist. Satisfied with the quality, he prints a checked label that’s fixed to the part, and puts it back on the conveyor. Our product’s now in the packing area. It’s given a finished project digital ID tag. Shipping labels are automatically printed and is moved to a holding area in goods-out. Whatever you’re making, our proven track and trace technology can help you see how your lines running, reduce downtime, enhance quality, and stay within your just-in-time objectives always.


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