During my time in sales, I have found that barcode traceability has become an integral factor in the manufacturing of circuit boards. It is important for companies to have an updated inventory of components and finished products, while also having the knowledge of where this product is in the manufacturing process. One of the prime areas where it’s important to identify the product being tested is the industrial test fixture. Utilizing a barcode scanner to identify the product in front of you prior to testing and loading firmware is the best way to collect information about that particular circuit board in an accurate and timely manner.
There are a few barcode scanning solutions that one can use with their industrial test fixtures. Options readily available are a vision system, fixed mount barcode scanner and tethered or cordless 2D barcode scanners.
- Vision system – Implemented when numerous barcodes are required to be scanned at one time.
- Fixed mount scanners – Work well when one or two barcodes will be scanned and tester space is at a minimum.
- 1D and 2D tethered and cordless scanners – Great for hand scanning circuit boards.
Since most manufacturers seem to be switching to 2D data matrix labels and laser etching on their circuit boards, you might want to look at a 2D scanning solution, which will work well in both 1D and 2D applications.
If you have any questions regarding how barcode scanning would work within your industrial test fixture or software applications, feel free to contact us.