Fujitsu RFID technology adopted by Boeing

Monday, 24 April, 2017

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Boeing will implement Fujitsu RFID technology for the management of its aircraft components.

By attaching RFID labels to major aircraft components from the manufacturing stage for all aircraft, Boeing will be able to manage individual components, achieve accurate traceability and raise the efficiency of its aircraft maintenance work.

Boeing manages information about an aircraft's constituent components and provides airlines with a component list called an Aircraft Readiness Log (ARL) at time of delivery, as a delivered configuration. In order for an aircraft to safely operate for as long as 30 years, strict configuration management of components is necessary, but because this task previously had to be done by an employee visually checking and manually entering the data, it required a great deal of time.

In response to these issues, Boeing is moving forward on automatically generated ARLs by using RFID labels, and has now decided to deploy the labels to its manufacturing lines.

By attaching Fujitsu's RFID labels to the approximately seven thousand aircraft components that make up a single aircraft and automatically generating an ARL, Boeing aims to digitally manage component information and greatly improve task efficiency, including cutting man-hours worked and reducing human error. In this way, aircraft delivery tasks are also becoming more efficient, supporting improved productivity in aircraft manufacturing.

In addition, by using the digitised ARL, airlines can ensure accurate traceability for components, enabling secure and rapid support during maintenance or when a fault occurs. Moreover, by using RFID labels in inventory management and stocktaking tasks, efficiencies in logistics operations and inventory optimisation can also be expected.

Using technology from Fujitsu Laboratories, the RFID Integrated Labels developed by Fujitsu meet the SAE AS5678 standard(1) environmental tolerance specifications demanded by aircraft, and adhere to the airline industry standard ATA Spec 2000(2) RFID data format. Given that these standards are highly rated, Boeing has now become the latest aircraft manufacturer to adopt Fujitsu's RFID labels.

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