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Case Studies

2D tag on carrier in paint line systemHCM Systems integrated their SimpliFlex WCS software application to assist in the automation of a leading heavy machine manufacturer's paint line system. HCM designed and implemented a SQL part number based routing, mapping, and scanning system to allow this customer the ability to route parts through their paint system based on the HCM supplied database application. This new application includes the following key benefits.

Beginning Situation

RFID tags attached to the carriers and PLC controlled routing proved to be unreliable and inflexible. The lack of robustness of the RFID tags and readers created unacceptable down time. The PLC controls would not allow for the image capture and advanced look up tables required to meet desired production levels.


Use 2D tags and HCM’s SimpliFlex SQL based application to meet the production needs of the facility. PC tablets allow for the speed and ease of use requirements to be met. Greater "up time" and "rules based" loading have been achieved.

New Description of Operations

  • A 2D bar code is permanently attached to each of the paint line parts carriers on the power and free conveyor system.
  • The parts to be processed are hung on the carrier bar.
  • Operators scan the work order number that includes a part number with the hand held Toughbook® Tablet.
  • The part number is pulled from the database and the application allows the operator to associate the carrier with the part number scanned.
  • The database accesses the path, time, unload location, and auxiliary data from the HCM application.
  • 2D Cognex cameras are located at all decision points on the line.
  • Cameras transmit the carrier number to the HCM application to allow for proper routing within the manufacturing operation.

Key Features

  • Path mapping based on part number stored in database
    • No redundant data entry
  • Time and date stamp for all zones within the system by part number
  • Cycle time statistics
    • Projected vs. actual
  • Line and zone status
    • Part number and carrier location mapping data look up
  • Unload sequence
    • Unload times, sequence of parts, required packing type data
  • PLC interface for conveyor control from SimpliFlex WCS application

Key Technologies

  • SQL Server
  • .net framework 4.5
  • Ingear Active X
  • 2D Bar code
  • Toughbook® Tablets for scanning and data entry
  • LED displays

DataMan® 300 Series Reader

Cognex DataMan 300 Series readerCognex DataMan® 300 Series readers are high-performance, fixed-mount ID readers that among others offer the following advanced features:

  • Highest read rates on 1-D and 2-D codes
  • Most flexible optics and lighting
  • Intelligent tuning and express setup
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