Estimating the Effects of Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) Tagging Technologies on the Army's War-Time Logistics Network
AIR FORCE INST OF TECH WRIGHT-PATTERSON AFB OH SCHOOL OF ENGINEERING AND MANAGEMENT
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Some civilian business practices, such as radio frequency identification RFID tags, were used for the first time by the Army in a major conflict during Operation Iraqi Freedom OIF. RFID tags were attached to every container and pallet in all sustainment shipments entering and exiting the area of operations AOR. Although RFID tagging was somewhat successful during OIF, the logistics network still suffered significant problems, to include lack of asset visibility and ineffective theater distribution. Implementing business practices on the battlefield seems like an easy answer to these problems, but the implementation of RFID tags mayor may not easily transition to a military of combat environment. The purpose of this research was to discover if the business practice of using RFID tags to track equipment and supplies could be effectively used in a war-time environment by the Armys logistics network. Using grounded theory and content analysis methodologies, this research sought to understand the similarities and differences between how RFID tags are being used by civilian industry and the Army, and if RFID tags can apply to a war-time scenario. Data collection included interviewing industry subject matter experts regarding RFID tag use and implementation, and an extensive analysis of OIF lessons learned. Data was tabulated and compared, and similarities and differences were identified. The research then highlighted how RFID tags could improve asset visibility and theater distribution during war, and the limitations associated with transitioning RFID tags from a civilian supply chain to the Armys war-time logistics network.
- Computer Hardware
- Defense Systems
- Active and Passive Radar Detection and Equipment