Tracking & tracing and quality inspections are also a hot issue in non-regulated industries. CXV Global are pioneers with crate identification since 2007. The first project for The Greenery delivered a solution to identify crates using Machine Vision algorithms. In those days, increase counting accuracy and automatically inspecting the quality of crates in a distribution center were the main targets.
The pharmaceutical and the food industries have very specific and important mandates to ensure consumer safety and require every participant in the chain to implement track-and-trace solutions.
Logistic businesses have found ways to reduce packaging: customer packaging but also transport packaging. A switch to reusable transport packaging replaces one-time pallets & boxes with reusable containers, reusable pallets and pallet/container pooling systems or so-called RTI’s (returnable transit items). Each RTI carrying either a unique RFID tag or a 2D GRAI code for identification purposes. The last 5 years the usage of RTI’s has been growing exponentially linked to ERP systems that follow the location of each individual RTI during the complete logistic cycle.
Traceability becomes a priority for these logistic operations not only to increased supply chain efficiency but also to fight theft of the RTI’s (warranty money) or counterfeiting. The high value of these RTI’s makes them a target for theft and counterfeiting within the logistic chains.
Both inbound as outbound, there is a need to count, identify and track & trace RTI’s. On the inbound, the RTI’s come back from the retailer stores all mixed-up and in a ‘dirty’ condition. Solutions to identify and count in the blink of an eye have been implemented for the last 10 years. On the outbound side from a distribution centre, clean and sorted RTI’s leave the Distribution Centres towards the harvester. The main question to answer is not only to know how many but also to know exactly which GRAI codes go to which customer?
Some Distribution Centres have full automated washing, sorting and palletising processes, others semi-automatic or even manual processes. Both inline solutions and offline (standalone tunnel) modular solutions are available.
Checking for quality on RTI (returnable) crates, pallets and containers is needed since the harsh usage and rough environment creates a lot of wear. During the logistic chain a lot of foreign objects like stickers, foodrests, packing strips etc. are attached to these RTI’s. The re-usable logistic carriers (crates, pallets and containers) have thus to be checked for structural integrity, deformations, presence of dust, foreign materials, etc.
CXV Global have delivered vision systems to logistics customers for decades. Where a suitable product solution is available from our world-leading partner providers including Cognex our Design & Development engineering team will integrate and customize these solutions for you.
Examples of these systems can be found here:
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