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RFID technology is contributing to improving operational efficiency at a wide variety of companies and organizations. Manufacturing companies are employing RFID to achieve major benefits, both in their supply chains and in their factory operations. From lowering the cost of managing the supply chain to preserving and creating value in physical assets, RFID is playing a critical role in reducing attrition of all-important profits and turning enterprise asset management from a loss leader into a profit center. Whether for tracking inventory, assets, processes or personnel, RFID is the key to steering an organization toward better profitability, and this track will focus on how manufacturing firms are utilizing RFID to achieve benefits today.

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May 1, 2013

1:30 PM—Track Session
Improving Visibility in Manufacturing With RFID-Enabled Baskets
Marlin Steel Wire Products, a producer of custom wire baskets and other metal products, is employing an RFID-enabled system to increase visibility in the assembly process, to track components' locations and to ensure that a company has the correct quantity of parts on hand. Each RFID-enabled basket comes with an EPC Gen 2 passive UHF RFID tag attached to it, encoded with a unique ID number. By knowing where baskets are located, the system is able to provide data to the users, such as when a basket has left storage and has been received at a workstation, thereby triggering the ordering of additional inventory. In the event that a basket spends excessive time in storage or at an assembly station, the system could issue an alert to management. Learn how the solution improves visibility by ensuring that the proper components are available in real time, as well as enabling users to track their work-in-progress.
Drew Greenblatt, President, Marlin Steel Wire Products, LLC
• Limiting chokepoints along the assembly process
• Using RFID to track high-value items, since a single component built into a product can be worth tens of thousands of dollars
2:20 PM—Track Session
Atlanta's Transit Authority Enhances Track Worker Safety With RFID
Track inspections are one of the most hazardous jobs in the rail industry, because the integrity of the rail and track conditions plays a significant role in ensuring that trains are able to move people safely. Inspections of the rail and track area are often conducted at all hours of the day and night, due to the frequency of required inspections, and the job presents hazards as track inspectors often walk along tracks while trains are in revenue service. MARTA rapid transit system (Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority) has partnered with Bombardier Transportation to utilize RFID to improve safety for railway workers and track-side workers. MARTA is using passive high-frequency (HF) RFID tags embedded in wristbands worn by employees, readers installed along the tracks and motion sensors to detect oncoming trains to alert workers about those trains. Learn how the system is being used to enable automated setup of safety zones for workers, and to provide timely alerts for train operators, thereby reducing the risk of accidents.
Abhay Joshi PMP, LEED AP, Project Manager, Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority
Mark Willer, Product Development Manager, Bombardier Transportation
• How the system is being used to trigger warning lights when trains are within 1,000 feet and 500 feet of workers on the tracks, as well as a simultaneous audible alert, warning nearby personnel
• How the solution reduces risk for workers while improving processes, thus providing operational value for MARTA
3:10 PM—Track Session
ATK Uses RFID to Create
Moving from the decades-old practice of fabricating aircraft from discrete metal components to building aerostructures by cutting, forming and curing advanced composite materials, has produced a shift in the manufacturing paradigm for aerospace companies. ATK, an aerospace, defense, and commercial products manufacturing company, is using RFID to improve process efficiency. ATK’s Aircraft Commercial Center of Excellence (ACCE), is dedicated to high-rate composite structures manufacturing and produces composite airframe and engine components for the Airbus A350 XWB, and General Electric and Rolls-Royce engine programs. Learn how the use of RFID in the ACCE is enabling a “visual factory” where each step of the composite manufacturing process can be tracked and monitored automatically, from raw material receipt through component production through eventual shipment to the end customer. Hear how RFID informs the firm’s manufacturing processes and how RFID serves as a critical enabler for ramping up production for ATK’s Airbus A350 contract.
Brian J. Andrus, IT Director, Aerospace Structures Division, ATK
James Morgan, Program Manager, ATK Space PMO, ATK
4:00 PM—Track Session
Synthes Realizes Cost Savings Using RFID in Its Loaner Process
Medical device manufacturer Synthes is using RFID to efficiently manage its loaner processes. By RFID-enabling distribution center processes—shipping, receiving, auditing and replenishment—Synthes has saved thousands of direct labor hours, improved turnaround times and improved lot visibility. Learn how the Synthes system works and delivers a strong return on investment.
Mike Diguglielmo, Product Manager, Synthes
• How to design and deploy a solution that improves inventory management
• Insights into the business and technical decisions Synthes made to design an effective RFID system

May 2, 2013

9:00 AM—Track Session
Australian Oil Refinery Construction Site Tracks Assets With RFID
A global energy company is testing an RFID system from Australian firm Industrial Automation Group to track the locations of hundreds of thousands of assets at a major construction project in a remote region on the west coast of Australia, north of Karratha. Though actual construction of the refinery is not expected to commence until 2014, the RFID team has begun testing tags and readers. At the site where the new refinery will be erected, tags are already being affixed to some of the hundreds of thousands of tools, materials and components that will be used during construction. Learn how the system enables the firm to see actual products moving, view where they were located and receive alerts if anything is not onsite when expected, or is located in the wrong place.
Henk de Graaf, Managing Director, Industrial Automation Group
• Results from tests performed on an area of the site measuring 82 feet square
• How the system has the potential to pay for itself quickly, by ensuring that work is never halted due to a missing item, and that no asset is unnecessarily replaced
9:45 AM—Track Session
New Method for Embedding RFID in Paper Could Reduce Counterfeiting
Researchers at North Dakota State University (NDSU) have developed a method for embedding ultrathin passive RFID chips on paper or other flexible substrates. The embedding method involves chips thinner than most commercial RFID chips on the market today. RFID-enabled paper could be used to dramatically reduce counterfeiting, as well as improve the tracking of paper documents of all kinds. In addition, this method could enable the production of paper-based RFID tags at a cost lower than that of today's conventional RFID tags.
Val R. Marinov, Ph.D., Associate Professor, North Dakota State University
• An understanding of a new process for embedding RFID in any type of paper
• Insights into how this novel method of manufacture could be used in a variety of anti-counterfeiting and tracking applications

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RFID Journal LIVE! 2013 is produced by RFID Journal, the World's RFID Authority.

All conference sessions are subject to change, and RFID Journal reserves the right to alter dates, programs and speakers at any time, as circumstances dictate. Sessions without assigned speakers indicate a target topic; every effort will be made to ensure that a program of equivalent standard and value is available.

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