Ensuring automotive traceability throughout each parts complete lifecycle
John Keating, 10-11-2011
Marking parts and subassemblies at every step of the manufacturing process assures full automotive traceability. With the availability of cost-effective image-based ID readers for every application and budget, you are no longer bound by selecting a limited number of barcode-reading checkpoints. Here are some reminders about where to mark and scan and why.
At the component level, serial numbers and other information like quantity, date, location of origin, and supplier can be converted to barcodes and either directly marked on parts (DPM) or printed on labels.
Monitoring the assembly process ensures that each task has been completed. Finished products with incorrect components that make it all the way to final quality control (QC) will have to be reworked, causing substantial losses to productivity.
Operators using an instruction sheet to help select final assembly components can eliminate most errors by scanning each assembly individually to correctly identify the subassemblies or major assemblies to be mounted.
Don’t forget to mark and scan the final product to its next destination. Total automotive traceability is essential for tracking repair, service, and support issues later on in the lifecycle and ensures that a part or product is authentic at its ultimate location.
What are some of the applications you have added to your line to ensure automotive traceability?