Quality Magazine

Verifiers Ensure Compliance with New AIAG Code

July 30, 2009

NATICK, MA - Cognex Corp. announced that the company's DataMan handheld and fixed-mount 2-D code verifiers enable auto industry suppliers to verify compliance with the new B-17 code quality guideline issued July 20, 2009, by the Automotive Industry Action Group (AIAG). The new AIAG B-17 quality guideline incorporates the Direct Part Mark (DPM) Quality Guideline for 2-D codes developed by the Association for Automatic Identity and Mobility (AIM).

The guideline provides the necessary foundation for a universal standard to verify the quality of Data Matrix codes directly marked on parts with techniques such as laser, dot peen, inkjet, and other DPM marking methods. The goal of the B-17 guideline is to ensure consistent marking methods and enable the highest read rates of direct marked codes throughout the manufacturing process and supply chain. Suppliers will be expected to verify and document that codes meet the guidelines before components can be shipped to the customer.

"The wide variety of codes, marking techniques, and substrates that are used in DPM applications mean that the look of a DPM mark can vary significantly...and that has been a challenge for code quality verification prior to the release of the AIM DPM Quality Guideline," says Carl Gerst, director of ID products for Cognex. "Cognex code verifiers offer reliable, repeatable performance in even the most challenging circumstances, and enable suppliers to immediately document compliance with the new B-17 guideline."

"Ensuring high read rates is key to a profitable traceability system," says Morris Brown, supply chain management program manager for the AIAG. "The B-17 Direct Part Marking Guideline combines the latest best practices into a concise guideline to help manufacturers address traceability at the component level to improve read rates. AIAG values Cognex's contribution as a member of the B-17 Standards committee in the development of this new industry guideline."