RFID Case Study: Capturing the flow of goods in real time


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In the world of sanitary products, too, it is important to be able to work quickly and efficiently. Positioning yourself as an innovation leader in production and logistics makes it important to look for the latest technologies. For the manufacturer, Kathrein sought a solution by using RFID tags within the Kanban process. This allows the flow of goods to be monitored in real time.



A manufacturer of sanitary products positions itself as an innovation leader in production and logistics. They were looking for a solution to track the flow of goods throughout the company in real time. The aim was to use RFID tags within a Kanban process. The pilot project gives the manufacturer a development lead. An existing Kanban process between production in a factory and the shipping centre was equipped with the new RFID technology. A contactless identification and localisation by means of the RFID technology is implemented in production practice. This project will stimulate the demand for RFID-enabled processes both within the manufacturer's plants and off-site.


After seeing several solution providers, the manufacturer chose RFID applications from SAP. With the support of SAP consultants and RFID specialists, SAP Auto-ID Infrastructure was implemented in a SAP ramp-up project. The SAP solution represents the Kanban processes for all finished products manufactured in the plant. Each of the 4,000 identification cards in circulation was given an RFID tag. Gate-like reading devices recognise the goods as they leave the production site in the lattice boxes. The cards from the boxes are read in tunnel-like RFID readers. It is possible to identify even a stack of dozens of cards in a fraction of a second. SAP Auto-ID Infrastructure is linked to the functional areas of production planning and material management in the SAP ERP. The software translates the scanned chip data into informative business information.



Higher production quality and fewer operational errors. Time and effort for manual detection and control processes have been reduced. The project gave the manufacturer a significant lead in development. More reading devices would capture the production and logistics processes without gaps. The technology will also have advantages for trade. The tags and the end products merge into one and provide more information than before. The SAP software creates added value thanks to the versatile RFID applications.



Kathrein Solutions GmbH is a German manufacturer of antenna systems and related electronics. They offer AutoID Turnkey Solutions including hardware and software. From the initial proof of concept to the go-live implementation, Kathrein and its integration partners support customers in applications for logistics, industrial automation, healthcare and vehicle identification. From track and trace visualisation to seamless integration of any kind of identification technology - including solutions such as barcode readers, active RFID systems and wide area network technologies.


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