Printed Circuit Board Tracking with RFID

Omnitrol Networks and Texas Instruments Incorporated (TI) (NYSE: TXN) developed a radio frequency identification (RFID) real-time traceability solution for printed circuit board (PCB) manufacturing applications. The solution provides electronic and contract manufacturers a highly automated method of simultaneously identifying and tracking PCBs from the manufacturing floor to customer delivery. The new PCB tracking solution is in pilots with several electronic manufacturers.

The complete solution integrates Omnitrol Networks’ award-winning Work-In-Process (WIP) visibility software and industrial sensor integration appliance, Gen 2 RFID readers and Texas Instruments’ RFID Gen 2 UHF chips. The off-the-shelf solution provides automated real-time visibility and maintains complete electronic pedigree (e-pedigree) for traceability on parts and WIP providing real-time dashboards, alerts and reports for the shop-floor management. The manufacturing pedigree information is automatically programmed into the RFID tag for rapid access to critical data without the need to be connected to a back-end database.

The solution provides manufacturers with highly accurate information on units in production including location, status, and time metrics.

As a fully-integrated hardware and software solution, the PCB tracking solution can be rapidly deployed and scaled at a low cost by simply adding readers where required. By creating a complete e-pedigree for each unit produced, the system can assist manufacturers in identifying products impacted by defective parts, equipment or processes, including tracking counterfeit and diverted products in the market.

More information: Printed Circuit Board Tracking with RFID: Speed, Efficiency and Productivity Made Simple (pdf)