Canadian Consulting Engineer

Tunnel segments get chipped

Precast tunnel liner segments destined for the Toronto Transit Commission's York-Spadina Subway extension are being manufactured with Radio Frequency Identification Tags (RFID) embedded in the units.

June 28, 2011   Canadian Consulting Engineer

Precast tunnel liner segments destined for the Toronto Transit Commission’s York-Spadina Subway extension are being manufactured with Radio Frequency Identification Tags (RFID) embedded in the units.

Armtec is using the RFID system in its Woodstock plant for the fabrication and inventory data for 8,000 tunnel liner segments being shipped for the 6.5 kilometre subway extension under way.

The computer chips make it easier for the manufacturer to track the quality and movement of the units through the plant. As the panels move through, a crew updates their status on mobile computers.

Once the panels arrive at the construction site, the RFID chips enable the contractor to more easily verify the arrival of the materials. The computerized system should provide more efficiency than the current paper-based system of tracking materials in the construction industry.

The National Research Council Centre for Computer-assisted Construction Technologies (NRC-CCCT) is partnering with Armtec on the RFID tags.

An article in NRC’s June 2011 Construction Innovation newsletter points out that the technology could be used to help owners keep track of many types of infrastructure, helping them to identify what components need repair and replacement. 

To see the article, click here.

http://www.nrc-cnrc.gc.ca/eng/ci/v16n2/9.html


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