Wireless Manufacturing (WM) is emerging as a next-generation advanced manufacturing technology (AMT). WM relies substantially on wireless devices (e.g. RFID—Radio Frequency Identification or Auto ID—Automatic Identification, and on wireless information/communication networks (e.g. Wi-Fi and Bluetooth), for the collection and synchronization of manufacturing data. This paper proposes a WM framework where RFID devices are deployed to workstations, critical tools, key components, and containers of WIP (Work In Progress) materials to turn them into so-called smart objects. The study is based on a simplified product assembly line. Smart objects are tracked and traced and shop-floor disturbances are detected and fed back to decision makers on a real-time basis. Such real-time visibility closes the loop of adaptive assembly planning and control. A facility called assembly line explorer is provided for the line manager to oversee the status of the entire assembly line, and a workstation explorer facility for operators to monitor the status of their operations at corresponding workstations. These facilities improve the effectiveness of managerial decisions and operational efficiency.
Huang, G. Q., Zhang, Y. F., Chen, X., & Newman, S. (2008). RFID-enabled real-time wireless manufacturing for adaptive assembly planning and control. Journal of Intelligent Manufacturing, 19(6), 701-713. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10845-008-0121-5