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01 Nov 2017 | 11:00

Five benefits of direct part marking

Every component, part and critical asset in your manufacturing process can tell a story. From when it was made and where it’s been to when it was last serviced and when it becomes obsolete.

Whether you’re running a labour-intensive assembly line or a fully automated, robotic manufacturing environment, all these stories can be told accurately and instantly through one-or two-dimensional bar codes created by direct part marking (DPM).

With DPM, parts and components can be encoded with a wide range of essential information including serial number, lot code and configuration information. Manufacturing operations in a wide range of industries, from automotive to aerospace, medical to military are already creating new business processes to take advantage of accurate, unique serialisation offered by DMP. The improved processes, capabilities and benefits that DPM offers you include:

1. Lifetime item identification and traceability

DPM with a data matrix or other bar code symbology makes it practical to identify almost anything by putting a lifetime identification mark permanently into an item - including small, traditionally hard-to-label items. The ID is typically a serial number or other information that uniquely identifies that item, which paves the way for total lifecycle traceability.

2. Greater visibility into assets and components

DPM also makes it practical to instantly access essential information about the item throughout its life cycle and throughout the supply chain – even in challenging environments where traditional bar code systems won’t work.

3. Improved asset inventory and maintenance management

In today’s hyper-competitive environment, managing your spare parts inventory is critical for reducing total cost of ownership and maximising the performance of systems and equipment. Even the smallest of delays in finding and replacing a part can cost £1,000s in lost production or enforced overtime.

4. Enhanced product and channel protection

DPM can help you achieve your goals for improving asset supportability and managing obsolescence across all your channels. It can provide greater predictability of spare parts costs and help you manage your maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) expenses within a fixed budget. It can also save inventory costs, minimise exposure to risk, increases system reliability and safety, and reduces acquisition lead time.

5. Meet industry requirements and guidelines

Many industries have direct part marking and/or unique identification requirements that DPM will help you meet. These include (aerospace (ATA Spec 2000), automotive (AIAG B11), defense (DoD Unique Item Identification, or UID), medical device (FDA Unique Device Initiative, or UDI) and others.) UK examples needed please.

Barcode’s DPM solutions

Working with our partners including Honeywell Intermec, we can provide complete solutions for marking, reading and analysing DPM bar codes in industrial environments. While DPM to create 2D bar codes is becoming more common, it still requires specialist bar code reader capabilities. Factors like low contrast, small symbol sizes and the many physical challenges in industrial environments require highly capable imagers that are optimized for DPM. 

Our range of scanners use advanced imaging technology that is sensitive enough to quickly read small, high-density, low-contrast bar codes that are etched or stamped on metal parts, whilst still having the flexibility to read many other bar code symbols of different types and sizes on more traditional media like paper. Thanks to omni-directional scanning capabilities, marks can also be read at any angle. 

We never forget the real-life environment you work in – our solutions are rugged enough to withstand the rigours of manufacturing plants. For example, our solutions will still work after being dropped on concrete or steel, are built to withstand the vibration and shocks common in forklift operations, work in temperatures ranging from -20°C to +50° and are rated to withstand dust and liquids.

To find out more about our DPM solutions, get in touch.

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