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Industrial code readers ensure effective data collection for Kanban system


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Integrating industrial ID code readers and machine vision systems into production processes elevates logistics, the automation of operations and automatic data collection to a higher level. The northern Bohemian company TRCZ is a subsidiary of the Japanese Tokai Rika Co., which is one of the world's largest manufacturers of automotive parts. The company was established in late 2001 and in 2003 a new production factory was built from scratch in Lovosice in northern Bohemia. The building belongs to one of the largest production capacities of Tokai Rika Group and its current product range consists mainly of multi-drivers, safety belts and other components used to ensure the active and passive safety in vehicles. The main customers of TRCZ components are the European factories of car makers like Toyota, Suzuki, NedCar, Ford and Volvo.

In its production, TRCZ wanted to use the latest technology to raise the efficiency of the production processes using the Kanban model of production. They chose industrial ID code readers to do this. The main requirement when choosing an automatic barcode scanning system was to find an effective solution for automated data collection, without the installation being in any way a burden for the operating processes. During the selection, the emphasis was put on the quality, reliability and ability to adapt to special requirements at an affordable price. At the same time representatives of the northern Bohemian company expressed the desire for cooperation with a strong supplier focused on quality and able to offer expanded capacities, with a long history and ability to respond in the shortest terms possible.

The above-listed requirements, combined with the fact that there are only a handful of suppliers in the market, were an obstacle in the first stage of selecting a suitable solution. The problem was often in the complexity and design of the whole solution—imperfect configuration options, weak or poor quality of scanning and the application in the actual operation. However, according to Michal Roudný, System Engineer at TRCZ, the company has come to quickly appreciate the quality of Cognex industrial code readers: "The Cognex products have caught our attention for their quality, simple setup, configurability and design. After clarification of all matters with the company representative, we negotiated a test meeting and then we sent the orders straight away,” he states. Cognex met all requirements on functionality and the ability to customize business parameters contributed to the final decision.

TRCZ has completed four installations of DataMan® fixed-mount readers in its production facility to monitor the electronic traceability system. Unlike previously, the company can now keep records of the relevant processes in its operations. During the system implementation it was necessary to ensure that these processes would not be delayed and production would continue to run smoothly. Another requirement was the quality of barcode reading along with a high level of flexibility in terms of distance, clarity, direction, angle and position of the Kanban system itself. A high level of configurability, ease of use, intuitiveness and smart settings combined with the scanners’ reliability in identifying the correct barcode were the major competitive advantages of the Cognex system.

The company has been using this DataMan system for two years now and according to Michal Roudný in full satisfaction. TRCZ also plans a possible further extension of the automatic data collection in the production plant and will certainly use this proven solution if possible.

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