EIIS novel technology enables RFID tags to be embedded within the structure of a multilayer printed circuit board (PCB). The RFID tags can then be used to monitor and optimise manufacturing processes, track components, locally store life-cycle information and support dismantling and recycling. By using these embedded components, it will be possible to radically reduce the lifecycle costs of manufactured products by increasing observability, traceability and controllability of manufacturing.
The devices can carry information such as details of manufacturing process test results, supply chain information, as well as data about any hazardous materials or precious metals present, thus offering OEM, service technicians, end users and recyclers more information to enable them to make informed choices that will maximise the life cycle value of the product.
WHAT CAN EIIS OFFER?
Embedded RFID technology
Embedding of RFID tags within the structure of the PCB allows Original Equipment Manufacturers to track and store product related information within the product from as early as the PCB manufacturing.
The total encapsulation of the RFID tag ensures that the system withstands harsh environments during manufacturing and usage of the product.
Typical applications of this technology were initially targeted at high value products such as avionic, defence or medical products. Interest could be found also from other domains such as industrial products and automotive components.
- Itemised tracking of process steps
- Itemised recording of process test results
- Real-time visualisation of product’s location on the shop floor
- Increased quality through fast accessibility of product related documentation, process information and quality guidelines
- Increased reaction time on customer requests.
- Decrease of scrap value
- Embedded RFID for Sustainable Innovation and improved supply chain efficiency
Wireless sensors represent the next stage beyond RFID. At EIIS we work towards making this technology feasible, less expensive and more robust.
The new EIIS technology enables RFID tags to be embedded within the structure of a multilayer printed circuit board (PCB). The product relevant data is structured and stored in the memory of the embedded RFID. Relevant data was derived from extensive research and surveys in the electronic manufacturing supply chain. Data elements contain fields such as:
Itemised tracking of process steps
Unique identification of the product
Date of PCB manufacturing
Date of electronic assembly
User defined process test results
Identification of valuable components
Special manufacturing instructions
A special API was developed, which can be used to easily integrate the product data into user applications. The dynamic link library (dll) which was developed for .NET applications allows to access information structured in product objects.
The reader API deals with all RFID configuration and communication methods. Data access can be realised without prior knowledge about RFID operations.The dll passes data objects to the application which can be configured dynamically. Lists of PCB, operators or documents can be process and transmitted to additional company or supply chain software such as quality tracking, manufacturing execution or enterprise resource systems.
Access of product data
Communication with products without the need of configuring the RFID communication
Easy access to data across the whole supply chain
Easy integration into existing IT systems
RFID Machine Integration
Production machines such as flying probe testers and pick and place machine need to load operation programs for each individual product. Results of the different processes have to be stored with regards to the specific product.
Embedded RFID readers communicate with embedded RFID tags within a product and enabling process automation. The EIIS Reader API enables the software integration of RFID readers to machine control software.
Storage of selected process test results allows the quality control across the whole supply chain.
Machine test / operations results can be directly stored into the product
Machine parameters and programs can be loaded automatically with respect to the identified product
Exact process time tracking possible without human error
Reduction of non-optimal machine configuration
MES & Supply Chain Applications
Manufacturing and assembly lines are equipped with antennas of UHF RFID readers at the beginning and end of each process step. Tasks such as the board identification, writing of test results into the board’s embedded tag and notification of the system are realised via the EIIS Reader API.
Additionally, handheld readers can be used to access product information whenever needed on the shop floor.
Collected data from the RFID readers are used to track manufacturing processes and store process test results on an itemised level. Exact time tracking of process stages can be used for quality control or as a knowledge basis for future quotations.
Itemised tracking of process steps
Itemised recording of process test results
Increased quality through fast accessibility of product related documentation, process information and quality guidelines
Real-time visualisation of product’s location on the shop floor
Increased reaction time on customer requests.
Decrease of scrap value