Using RFID in tires has always carried lots of potential, and the technology is used by many heavy equipment manufacturers and by truck-leasing fleets to manage assets, improve maintenance and conserve fuel. Last year Michelin included RFID tags on its X InCity tires used on bus fleets in London during the Summer Olympics.
Tagging every tire, however, has always been considered too costly, especially for domestic passenger vehicles. Korea-based Kumho Tire Co. just shot down that theory by announcing that it intends to embed RFID tags on every tire it produces.
According to the Tire Review, the RFID program is being rolled out as part of the “u-IT New Technology Verification Project” sponsored by South Korea’s National IT Industry Promotion Agency. Kumho Tire expects to save millions from efficiency gains and cost savings in logistics, production and quality control.
Here is an excerpt from the article:
The RFID tag Kumho uses was co-developed with Asiana IDT and delivers information on product quality. The patch-type tag is implanted inside the tire’s innerliner during the manufacturing process. Each RFID tag-fitted tire is given a unique identity, which can be tracked by a database system at Kumho’s headquarters. The tag contains information on quality and performance and detailed records relating to the production process, distribution and sales.
Since early this year, Kumho has fitted RFID tags on all truck and bus tires manufactured in its Gwangju and Gokseong plants in South Korea and on OE passenger car tires supplied to BMW. As of the second half of 2013, RFID units will be built into all domestic market passenger car tires, and from 2014 all manufacturing sites in South Korea and overseas will adopt the RFID system.
According to a Kumbo press release, “Under the RFID system, the entire product lifecycle can be managed systematically by streamlining the whole process from product quality in the course of manufacturing to product record tracking to distribution channels to warehousing and to inventory management.
“It can also prevent possible distribution through illegal channels or selling of defect products, helping raise consumer confidence and satisfaction.”
Michelin is considered the leader RFID research and deployment on tires. The company has piloted RFID on tires for more than seven years, including embedding tags on 50,000 tires that have logged more than 3.4 billion miles to test the technology for monitoring tire pressure and maintenance.
By combining a tire pressure monitoring system (TPMS) and RFID, Michelin helped London transport operators to enhance the safety of the tires fitted on their buses, improving the mobility of both vehicles and transport users.
Click here to read about Michelin deploying RFID for commercial fleets.