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NFC for manufacturing operations

NFC for manufacturing

In this Industry 4.0 era, automation and connectivity are the primary drivers of increasingly efficient production and effective manufacturing operations.

Embedding RFID or NFC technology in final products can reduce the duration and complexity of many different operations and processes along manufacturing flows, warehousing and supply chains.

Typical NFC/RFID use cases in manufacturing flows and warehousing

In a typical production flow, key steps such as pre-personalization, quality inspection and personalization of bulk goods can be facilitated with NFC/RFID technology using appropriate RFID readers (compact RFID, NFC-enabled smartphone, or RFID portal).

Parameter setting on production lines

Parameter setting on production lines using NFC

Parameter setting with NFC/RFID technology is finding widespread application in manufacturing. It only requires a single NFC/RFID reader (for example, Feig LR1200) with a single antenna along the production line.

It allows the simultaneous configuration of several packaged goods embedding ST25DV-I2C dynamic NFC tags connected to STM32 microcontrollers. External power supplies are not required.

Serial numbers, language, manufacturer ID, and any set-up data can be programmed immediately before shipment in multiple boxed products at the same time. This considerably optimizes production yields with respect to wired interface programming.

Simplify quality control using NFC/RFID

nfc for quality control

Quality inspectors can use NFC-enabled smartphones and tablets at short range to check the configuration of packaged goods samples quickly and efficiently.

Most smartphones are NFC-enabled, so it quite simple and cost-effective to set up and read data from ST25DV-I2C dynamic NFC tags embedded in products.

This is a battery-less operation, as the tags can harvest power from the energy field created by the smartphone or tablet NFC reader. This of course reduces time and improves yield as there is no need to open the packaging to perform certain quality control measures.

Pre-personalization on bulk goods in warehouse

An ISO15693 HF portal with a powerful, long-range reader can configure a larger number of packed and palleted products before they are shipped. In the diagram below, a pallet full of packaged goods (each with an ST25DV-I2C dynamic NFC tag) is placed between two ISO15693 RF antenna gates. The gates generate a long-range HF field that, with a power ISO15693 HF reader, allows a power splitter and an antenna multiplexer to simultaneously program all the goods.

The demo in the adjacent video shows how a cubic meter of 30 packaged goods positioned on a pallet can be programmed in less than 1ms.

video Pre-personalization on bulk goods in warehouse
antenna gate setup
Find all the setup and configuration details in this application note.

On-demand webinar: NFC RFID tags capturing the essence of Industry 4.0

Learn about adding new value dimensions across product life from manufacture to updates and maintenance.

Agenda

  • Introduction to Industry 4.0 concepts and taking advantage of RFID/NFC across product lifecycles
  • Examples tracing an electronic product from the manufacturing floor to field deployment with end users
  • Widespread electronic product personalization strategies, even when they are unpowered, boxed, and stacked on pallets before shipment
  • The opportunities for clever system designs along with professional readers and ST25 Dynamic tag ICs based on ISO15693

Products

Ecosystem

ST offers a complete ecosystem of software, hardware, and design tools, which will help you simplify your manufacturing operations using RFID and Near-Field Communication.

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