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Airbus Issues RFID Requirements, Expands RFID Usage
The aircraft maker has distributed RFID requirements to suppliers of parts for its A350 aircraft, and will use EPC RFID tags to manage the configuration of A330 and A340 planes, as well as to track tools.
Jul 09, 2009—Aircraft manufacturer Airbus indicates it has distributed RFID requirements as part of its technical specifications for suppliers worldwide for the A350 extra-wide body (XWB) aircraft currently under development. In addition, the company says it has embarked on number of new RFID projects, and has expanded one it has already deployed.
Carlo K. Nizam, Airbus' head of value chain visibility and auto-ID—who recently discussed the company's RFID efforts at the RFID Journal LIVE! Middle East 2009 conference, held last month in Dubai—says, "We have requested a combination of RFID and contact memory button [CMB] part marking for a selection of parts on the A350."
"We have created some criteria to help our suppliers assess which parts should be tagged, either with RFID or contact memory buttons," Nizam says. "These criteria are contained with the requirement documents that have already been distributed. For example, if a part is serialized, repairable and replaceable, it would require either an RFID tag or a CMB."
In pressurized areas of the aircraft, Nizam explains, RFID tags will be employed. In unpressurized sections, however, it is likely that contact memory buttons will be used, because of their greater robustness to harsh environments compared with current ultrahigh-frequency (UHF) tags.
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