The efforts that are aimed at digitizing the industry – especially manufacturing and production – within Industry 4.0 are one of the dominant and heavily researched trends of recent years. Despite its popularity, putting it into practice still has many challenges, both conceptual and practical, that inhibit the widespread adoption. This paper details the design, implementation and verification of a complex asset tracking system meanwhile discussing possible solutions to many of the actual challenges.
Digitized production and logistics processes offer controllability and traceability, in contrast to the traditional sub-processes are executed through human interactions.
The first part of this work examines a concept, in which autonomous systems that cooperate execute different sub-processes constituting Supply Chain Networks. This allows data exchanges between individual devices within and in between these systems. In this case, the owner of the data is always the process in which the given device is involved. Therefore, building on this data gives a real-time representation of an asset, i.e. digital twin of the device.
The second part of this paper introduces the design and implementation of an RFID-based asset tracking system that can retrofit into the legacy infrastructure of a company. During these steps, the advantages of such a system will be presented within the described concept, focusing on how certain logistics failures and bottlenecks due to human interaction can be eliminated. The feasibility of this system will be tried within a use case of a practical problem reasoned with measurement results of certain, implemented sub-tasks.