Skip to main content

Product Lifecycle Management and Information Tracking using Smart Embedded Systems

Project description

Products and Services engineering 2010 Smart car parts save money and the environment

A car that can tell mechanics what is wrong with it would improve road safety and reduce repair and maintenance costs for drivers. Such a vehicle is one application of a new kind of product life-cycle management (PLM) system.

Closed-loop PLM, as it is known, allows a product – be it a car, a locomotive or a piece of factory equipment – to be monitored throughout its life.

To achieve that goal, European researchers involved in the PROMISE project are using radio frequency identification (RFID) tags embedded in product components to transmit information wirelessly at short range.

The RFID tags, a type of product-embedded information device, are similar to the electronic labels commonly used by stores to protect merchandise from theft but can contain a lot more information about the product.

A better, cheaper car service

In one demonstration of the technology, the PROMISE team embedded the tags into a specially adapted Fiat car and used them to transmit information to mechanics about the wear and tear on different parts.

To gather the data, the vehicle simply needs to be driven over a one-metre square servicing pad fitted with an ultra-high frequency reader and four antennae. The pad compares part numbers to manufacturer information stored in a database.

Mechanics can then instantly determine which parts are nearing the end of their useful life and which may need to be replaced.

This information helps prevent them from overlooking the replacement of old parts during servicing, but it can also stop them from replacing parts unnecessarily. The technology can therefore help reduce maintenance costs. Used in a car owner’s garage, the system would help ensure their car remains in tip-top condition.

Keeping good parts from the scrap heap

In addition, when the car is to be scrapped, the RFID tags would help prevent unnecessary waste by allowing mechanics to identify parts that are still in a usable condition and which could either be kept as spares or refurbished for use on another vehicle.

Caterpillar, a project partner, is already using refurbished and remanufactured parts in its earth-moving vehicles. The ability to do so allows the company to use less raw materials, energy and resources in their production, increasing the company’s profit margins.

Helping recycling and consumers

More significantly, the use of RFID tags to transmit life-cycle information will contribute to the European Union’s goal of ensuring that 96% of a car’s weight is recyclable by 2015.

For businesses and consumers, closed-loop PLM also offers other advantages. By monitoring a product when it leaves the factory, through its useful life until it is scrapped or recycled, companies will have more information at hand with which to improve the design and satisfy consumer needs.

Call for proposal

FP6-2002-IST-NMP-1
See other projects for this call

Funding Scheme

IP - Integrated Project

Coordinator

STIFTELSEN SINTEF
Address
Strindveien 4
7034 Trondheim
Norway
Activity type
Research Organisations
EU contribution
€ 935 225

Participants (24)

BOMBARDIER TRANSPORTATION (SWITZERLAND) AG
Switzerland
EU contribution
€ 219 204
Address
Brown Boveri-strasse 5
8050 Z�rich
Activity type
Other
ECOLE POLYTECHNIQUE FEDERALE DE LAUSANNE
Switzerland
EU contribution
€ 797 188
Address
Batiment Ce 3316 Station 1
1015 Lausanne
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
ENOTRAC AG

Participation ended

Switzerland
EU contribution
€ 105 098
Address
Postgaessli 23
CH-3661 Uetendorf
Activity type
Other
UNIVERSITAET BREMEN
Germany
EU contribution
€ 528 251
Address
Bibliothekstrasse 1
28359 Bremen
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
INDYON GMBH
Germany
EU contribution
€ 267 977
Address
Hansastr. 27D
80686 Muenchen
Activity type
Other
COGNIDATA GMBH
Germany
EU contribution
€ 304 747
Address
Frankfurter Strasse 36-38
D-61118 Bad Vilbel
Activity type
Other
INMEDIASP GESELLSCHAFT FUER INNOVATIVE PRODUKTENWICKLUNG UND INFORMATIONSTECHNIK MBH
Germany
EU contribution
€ 518 088
Address
Neuendorfstrasse 18 A
16761 Henningsdorf
Activity type
Other
SAP SE
Germany
EU contribution
€ 916 250
Address
Dietmar Hopp Allee 16
69190 Walldorf
Activity type
Private for-profit entities (excluding Higher or Secondary Education Establishments)
INFINEON TECHNOLOGIES AG
Germany
EU contribution
€ 611 500
Address
Am Campeon 1-15
85579 Neubiberg
Activity type
Private for-profit entities (excluding Higher or Secondary Education Establishments)
Teknillinen korkeakoulu
Finland
EU contribution
€ 439 459
Address
Otakaari 1
02015 Espoo
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
TRACKWAY OY
Finland
EU contribution
€ 383 586
Address
Tekniikantie 14
02150 Espoo
Activity type
Other
CATERPILLAR FRANCE SAS
France
EU contribution
€ 149 326
Address
40 Av Leon Blum
38043 Grenoble C�x 9
Activity type
Other
INTRACOM S.A. HOLDINGS

Participation ended

Greece
EU contribution
€ 43 666
Address
19,5 Km Markopoulou Ave.
19002 Peania (Attika)
Activity type
Other
INTRACOM SA TELECOM SOLUTIONS
Greece
EU contribution
€ 99 696
Address
New Road Peania Markopoulo 19 7Km
19002 Peania
Activity type
Private for-profit entities (excluding Higher or Secondary Education Establishments)
NATIONAL UNIVERSITY OF IRELAND GALWAY
Ireland
EU contribution
€ 267 500
Address
University Road
H91 Galway
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
ARISTON THERMO SPA

Participation ended

Italy
EU contribution
€ 37 191
Address
Viale Aristide Merloni
60044 Fabriano
Activity type
Private for-profit entities (excluding Higher or Secondary Education Establishments)
CENTRO RICERCHE FIAT SCPA
Italy
EU contribution
€ 418 500
Address
Strada Torino 50
10043 Orbassano
Activity type
Research Organisations
FIDIA SPA
Italy
EU contribution
€ 150 750
Address
Corso Lombardia 11
10099 San Mauro Torinese
Activity type
Private for-profit entities (excluding Higher or Secondary Education Establishments)
WHIRLPOOL EMEA SPA
Italy
EU contribution
€ 32 857
Address
Via Carlo Pisacane 1
20016 Pero
Activity type
Private for-profit entities (excluding Higher or Secondary Education Establishments)
CONSIGLIO NAZIONALE DELLE RICERCHE
Italy
EU contribution
€ 170 750
Address
Piazzale Aldo Moro 7
00185 Roma
Activity type
Research Organisations
POLITECNICO DI MILANO
Italy
EU contribution
€ 218 248
Address
Piazza Leonardo Da Vinci 32
20133 Milano
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
WRAP S.P.A.

Participation ended

Italy
EU contribution
€ 78 232
Address
Via Lamberto Corsi 55
60044 Fabriano
Activity type
Other
Q-Free ASA

Participation ended

Norway
EU contribution
€ 0
Address
Thonning Owesensg 35 C
7044 Trondheim
Activity type
Private for-profit entities (excluding Higher or Secondary Education Establishments)
THE CHANCELLOR MASTERS AND SCHOLARSOF THE UNIVERSITY OF CAMBRIDGE
United Kingdom
EU contribution
€ 306 681
Address
Trinity Lane The Old Schools
CB2 1TN Cambridge
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments