HARTING employs RFID in its internal RFID@Kanban production process
Until now, the delivery of materials for connector housing production has been regulated with Kanban cards via a Kanban loop in the so-called Toyota Production System. Each card indicates which product should be produced in which quantity. The Kanban cards are passed along with the filled transport containers. Forklifts transport the full container from the production area to the adjacent interim storage facility. The final assembly process, which completes the HARTING connectors, is fed from this interim storage facility.
HARTING is currently reducing container sizes in order to achieve greater flexibility in production control. But this has resulted in more work with regard to manually posting goods receipt and issue. In this section of the production process RFID technology is deployed to reduce the increased booking input.
Determining the number of pieces of bulk goods is easy with the help of automatic RFID identification during weighing
This is accomplished by equipping the Kanban cards with smart label transponders and the transport containers with robust HARTING Ha-VIS transponders. A weighing process directly after the production process determines the exact number of connector housings produced. In the future, this weighing process will also be used for the logical connection between a container and its content. The RFID transponders are read out with a hand-held unit that inputs the weight data from the scale and then transmits the data to the server via WLAN. After only a few seconds, the RFID handheld's display shows the worker the number of housings in the container, as determined by the server.
RFID identification on the forklift allows the movement of goods to be posted automatically
In order to allow automatic postings in the interim storage facility in the future, the forklift has been equipped with two Ha-VIS RFID readers. Two antennas that move with the fork have been positioned on the fork itself. A distance sensor on the forklift switches the two UHF antennas on as soon as one or more containers have been loaded. Receipt of the goods is not posted until the forklift is driven into the warehouse.
Electronic posting of the movement of goods is now possible in the warehouse as the containers are automatically identified using RFID.