Our client supplies tool management systems to the Aerospace industry where access to and the use of tools has to be controlled. Traditionally this has been done using lockable tool cabinets with manual booking-out procedures. The requirement was for a more automated “Access Control” system for the high – value and calibrated tools.
A system was required that would only allow authorised users to access particular tools and to ensure that all tools were accounted for at the end of the working period (and not left in critical aircraft structures).
IB Technology designed an RFID based locking and “Access Control” system for the tool cabinets. The standalone RFID reader in the cabinet could “learn and store” a number of authorised users with a prioritised access system based on a “Factory card”, Supervisor card” and users cards. The RFID tags themselves were moulded into rubber wrist bands so users could easily wave their hand over the Reader antenna to open a cabinet drawer leaving both hands free. The RFID reader incorporated the drive electronics to lock/unlock the cabinet drawers and battery charging circuitry. A key feature was the “Access level” that was encoded in the wrist band tags that only allowed access to par ticular drawers according to the users job function. Fur ther development is under way for a networked version to allow integration with a company-wide “Tool Management system”.