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Swedish Steelmaker Using Active RFID to Monitors Railcars

The company expects that the system will help it manage the flow of materials transported by rail and plan production more efficiently.
By Rhea Wessel
Aug 20, 2007In an effort to improve oversight of its production process Swedish Steel is using a radio frequency identification system to monitor the shipment of steel slabs. In April, the steelmaker began mounting active RFID tags to some 400 railcars used to transport steel slabs from its facility in the city of Luleå to one in Borlänge, about 900 kilometers away, and also from a facility in Oxelösund. The system is helping the company make sure that the right cars are being loaded with the correct materials, as well as identify the cars' locations.

Swedish Steel is using custom-designed active RFID tags and readers from Swedish systems integrator and technology provider Adage Solutions. Sometime this month, the tagging of the 400 freight cars will be complete. Integration of the system's software will begin in September.


An active RFID tag (encased in blue plastic) is mounted on the sides of each freight car.
Every car is being fitted with two tags—one on the front right side, the other on the back left—so that an interrogator can read a car's tag regardless of the direction in which it is traveling. Each tag is encoded with its own unique ID number and the wagon number of the freight car to which it is attached.

The system features seven different points where the tags are interrogated—two in Luleå, two in Oxelösund and three in Borlänge. When a car is loaded in Luleå or Oxelösund, a reader mounted on a pole at the station interrogates its tag, and the tag ID number and wagon are recorded in a database and linked to a description of the slabs being shipped. When the train leaves the site, a pole-mounted reader in the rail yard records the car's departure. At the facility in Borlänge, two readers along two separate train tracks log the freight car's arrival. A third reader, mounted at the receiving station, notes when the car is unloaded.

USER COMMENTS

Onn Bar-Av 2007-08-23 03:34:57 AM
Swedish Steelmaker Using Active RFID to Monitors Railcars In Israel a company by the name of LogiTag is monitorint traincarts with passive RFID with great sucsess in lower price range hence better ROI . LogiTag tel: ++972-9- 8354848

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