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Reducing costs by automatically identifying goods and assets

Siemens will be presenting its range for the automatic identification of goods and assets at CeBIT 2009 in Hanover, Germany.

This range includes products and systems, solutions and services. Companies can save money by optimizing their production and logistics processes with radio frequency identification (RFID) and 1D/2D codes. One outstanding Siemens innovation is the counterfeit-proof RFID transponder for fast, automated identification of original products.

One of the main themes of the Siemens presentation is RFID-aided management of fixed and mobile assets such as transport containers and tools. Once all the relevant items have been fitted with RFID transponders, their movements can be monitored and documented continually. That makes them easier to find which, in turn, means that a valuable asset, such as a transport container, spends more time in productive use and less time lying idle. As the RFID tag on such a container can also store information about its contents, the appropriate cleaning after each use can also be specified.

With AutoID/RFID core solutions, Siemens has developed three basic applications for managing assets, such as transport containers, and for the continuous tracking and tracing of products and transport units in production, logistics, and the retail and wholesale trades. These basic applications can be easily adapted to meet specific customer requirements.

Siemens will also be exhibiting code reading systems and RFID readers at the fair. These can be all integrated into automation systems with the same interface and software modules, which naturally cuts down engineering costs. The new compact Simatic RF620R reader – with integrated antenna – has been specifically designed for the UHF band.

RFID and 1D/2D codes can not only save money but also help to increase sales. Siemens, Fujitsu Services and Fujitsu Siemens Computers have jointly developed "Dynamic Logistics", a complete RFID package tailor-made for trade distribution logistics. The package includes the RFID infrastructure such as readers and writers, a software suite for managing information flows, IT systems for storing product data, and support. This gives users transparency right along the supply chain through to the point-of-sale. That means, they know where their goods and raw materials are at all times. To give just one example: suppliers receive a message when a product is in heavy demand so they can then step up production immediately. That enables them to respond quickly to unexpected situations and fluctuations in demand, and so give the best possible support to sales campaigns.

Siemens will also be exhibiting solutions to help companies increase their sales by fighting off product counterfeiting. One example of this is the prototype of a counterfeit-proof RFID transponder that enables a reader to identify genuine original products automatically. This method of identification is far faster than previous conventional methods, such as those depending on hologram IDs.

Siemens is the market leader in Europe, with over 300,000 RFID readers and writers installed. It also supplies the corresponding transponders and essential software – from RFID middleware to application suites for a wide range of trade and industry sectors.

Julia Kauppert | Siemens Industry Automation
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