Boeing uses radio frequency identification, or RFID, to track and manage the maintenance cycle of essential airplane parts. Using electronic tags attached to each part allows for storing a wealth of information that can be accessed quickly and easily.
Radio frequency identification uses radio waves to transmit data between a receiver and objects equipped with electronic RFID tags. Boeing’s RFID technology uses low- and high-memory RFID tags and contact memory buttons attached to each item to store information. The primary focus of Boeing’s RFID solution is the management of emergency equipment, essential cabin items, rotables, repairables and structural repair.
For managing emergency equipment, technicians using RFID can quickly confirm critical cabin safety items are present and in good condition, while maintenance personnel can easily keep track of when essential bulk cabin items, such as various panels and covers, were replaced, helping to more efficiently manage them. Rotable parts management allows technicians to store complete information about a part, including the ability to enter maintenance notes on the part’s RFID tag.
Boeing uses RFID to help manage repairable parts, improving supply chain efficiency and reducing maintenance lead time, while the ability to store all pertinent data regarding structural repairs helps streamline the maintenance process and enables more informed repair decisions.