GPS - Cellular - RFID Patent 7333016

Asset Management - Zone Inventory Control



Patent NumberTitleCountryPDF
U.S. Patent 7333016PROPERTY ENTRANCE AND EXIT NOTIFICATION, INVENTORY CONTROL SYSTEMUSA

Patent Number 7333016 General Overview Description

The Beacon® Inventory Monitor Zone Index Automation System is designed to be capable of identifying attributes and location of any tagged object upon entrance, inside and exiting a monitored zone. The System is designed to work with or without the human element; thereby keeping automation and asset control a top priority.

This patent includes certain embodiments which can be used to establish baseline system arrangements for use in conjunction with Near Field Communication technology (NFC), sometimes referred to "Electronic Wallet Payment." In the most efficient NFC systems, the NFC components include a combination one of at least "GPS" Global Positioning System Technology, Electromagnetic Wave - Cellular, "RFID" Radio Frequency Identification, "SAW" Surface Acoustic Wave and or Barcode/QR code components. These components are used to automatically identify products that are entering, inside and exiting a monitored zone, with updating a computerized inventory information control system. That inventory information can include key characteristics about each product identified by the system and that key information can then be used by an NFC system to control payment for goods that were detected within the monitored zones.

With NFC on the verge of wide-spread acceptance by key prominent retailers, it should be understood that the embodiments covered within the patent represent the primary arrangement of components and devices that would normally be used within any NFC system. The system is to identify a product, generate key data and information about a product such as inventory and pricing. The NFC components coordinate with the automated inventory control embodiments to result in a fully defined and operational NFC system.

In an exemplary embodiment of the patented system, when any tagged object enters the monitored zone, the System is capable of allowing the tagged object to be monitored, registered, indexed and catalogued. At exit of any tagged object from the monitored zone, the attributes and location of the tagged object can again be monitored, registered, indexed and catalogued. Since objects can change inside the monitored zone, attributes and location are identified within the monitored zone. Because a tagged object may be subjected to damaging activities and forces while the tagged object is within the monitored zone, the System also offers the capability of monitoring the forces that have acted upon the tagged object while the tagged object was being monitored by the System. For example, by calculating acceleration or deceleration of the tagged object as it may have been moved within the monitored zone, the System can provide an estimate of the g-forces that may have acted on the tagged object.

This Beacon® property entrance and exit notification, inventory control system can also automate the documentation of entry time and exit time of tagged objects such as personnel, equipment, tools, vehicles, products and shipping containers.

The zone monitoring process as described here accomplishes its monitoring mission by use of one or more of the following communication devices; "GPS" Global Positioning System Technology, Electromagnetic Wave - Cellular, "RFID" Radio Frequency Identification, "SAW" Surface Acoustic Wave, and or Barcode/QR code. Using at least one of these devices, a computer system can generate inventory control information utilizing upload database management. The monitoring process may also identify what an object is, where an object is, and many other important characteristics about the object and its movements at all times within the zone to be monitored.

This Inventory Monitor Zone Index Automation System is designed to be capable of recording attributes and history of any tagged object in the zone for viewing via (including but not limited to) phone, tablet, computer or cloud software. This documentation of location of any tagged object generates a unique formulation of information of real time visibility. During monitoring of tagged objects throughout the property, a signature map of time and location of the tagged objects may be recorded into a database for real-time viewing; as well as viewing by management, on or off the property, at a later time. One key purpose of tracking tagged objects in this manner throughout the property is to identify time and location including scheduling, job location, safety-related issues, lost personnel, security, asset management, loss prevention, as well to identify potential terrorist or vandalistic activities.

In certain embodiments, tagged objects and products that enter the monitored zone are regarded as any physical item including but not limited to people, identification cards, tools, equipment, vehicles, products or containers. Keeping track of tagged objects is an inventory asset or non-asset management tool.

The Beacon® Inventory Monitor Zone Index Automation System is capable of monitoring tagged objects within the monitored zone by using one or more of the following processes:. Upon entrance of the tagged object into the monitored zone. Data Transfer: Signal upload database management related to the tagged object. Date tagged object entered the zone. Time tagged object entered the zone. Within the zone: History of the tagged object's movements. Date of movement of the tagged object from one location to another. Time of movement of the tagged object from one location to another. Speed of movement of the tagged object from one location to another. Rate of acceleration of the tagged object from one location to another. Rate of deceleration of the tagged object from one location to another. Time tagged object remained at a single location. Association of the tagged object with a second tagged object. Predetermined correlation of the tagged object with a second of the tagged object. Date tagged object exited the zone. Time tagged object exited the zone.

With this Beacon® Inventory Monitor Zone Index Automation System, it can be determined if there is a possibility that a tagged object has been tipped or turned over, as well as the amount of force the tagged object has sustained -- all of which can be used to identify the likelihood that damage may have occurred to the tagged object. If a gate, barricade, or door is utilized as a choke point upon the entrance or exit into the zone to be monitored, then this Inventory Monitor Zone Index Automation System can be made capable of sensing and recording the opening date and time of the gate, barricade, or door. Furthermore this system will can be equipped to also sense and record the closing date and time of the gate, barricade, or door of the monitored zone. As the gate, barricade, or door is opened or closed the inventory control information is automatically updated.

If tagged objects enter the monitored zone utilizing a wide spectrum entrance where a choke point, gate, barricade, or door is not utilized, one of at least "GPS" Global Positioning System Technology, Electromagnetic Wave - Cellular, "RFID" Radio Frequency Identification, "SAW" Surface Acoustic Wave, and Barcode/QR code can be used to record the objects attributes, location, date, and time upon entrance into the monitored zone. Also in reverse when the object departs from the monitored zone, one of at least "GPS" Global Positioning System Technology, Electromagnetic Wave - Cellular, "RFID" Radio Frequency Identification, "SAW" Surface Acoustic Wave, and or Barcode/QR code can be used to record the objects attributes, location, time, and date of departure.

The property management system's entrance and exit notification and inventory control aspects use one or more of the following scanning means: one of at least "GPS" Global Positioning System Technology, Electromagnetic Wave - Cellular, "RFID" Radio Frequency Identification, "SAW" Surface Acoustic Wave, and or Barcode/QR code. This system is applicable but not limited to the following types of facilities: Federal and State prisons, Federal and State warehouse property including property for hazardous materials, Federal and State distribution property areas, Commercial warehouse property, Commercial distribution property areas, and Private, State, and Federal construction sites in addition to other types of sites.