RFID System To Track, Manage Assets For Marine Corps In Afghanistan

Lockheed Martin's Savi Technology has received a Marine Corps order for 50 Portable Deployment Kits (PDKs) to locate, track and manage RFID-tagged supplies anywhere, anytime in support of expeditionary force surges in Afghanistan.

This most recent order from the USMC Automatic Identification Technology office brings the total number of kits procured to nearly 1,300 kits over the past several years by the Department of Defense (DoD), National Guard, NATO and allied international defense forces.

The updated PDKs in the USMC's latest order operate on dual Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) modes to provide real-time visibility of assets tagged with devices based on pre-existing standards or to new standards the DoD has adopted based on the ISO 18000-7 (DASH7) standard.

The compact "out-of-the-box" system uses RFID, GPS and Iridium Modems to communicate via satellite with DoD's In-Transit Visibility (ITV) network. The highly portable solution, which can be carried like luggage and used where fixed infrastructure is not practical, enables military logisticians to know where mission-critical assets are located while they are transported to and from supply depots in the United States to the last tactical area in the field of operations.

"The Portable Deployment Kits help war fighters to be properly equipped, especially in remote and austere environments where rapidly moving expeditionary forces need to be self-sustaining," said David Stephens, CEO of Savi Technology. "In addition to providing end-to-end supply chain visibility, Savi's Portable Deployment Kit helps to improve operational efficiency, lower transportation costs and minimize inventory and excessive supply orders.

"There's a force multiplier effect when civilian agencies involved in rapidly-moving disaster relief efforts can leverage an off-the-shelf solution that links with the DoD's existing communications network.”

The DoD used PDKs and other RFID fixed infrastructure to track supplies shipped this year to Haiti during disaster relief efforts there.

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