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Method to Track Inventory Through the Use of Weight Sensitive Smart Shelving

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000239583D
Publication Date: 2014-Nov-17
Document File: 2 page(s) / 39K

Publishing Venue

The IP.com Prior Art Database

Abstract

Disclosed is a method to track inventory through the use of weight sensitive smart shelving.

This text was extracted from a PDF file.
This is the abbreviated version, containing approximately 56% of the total text.

Page 01 of 2

Method to Track Inventory Through the Use of Weight Sensitive Smart Shelving

This disclosure tracks the contents and remaining amount of product on a shelf without the need of RFID tags built into the product packaging. Known solutions for tracking shelf inventory utilize RFID tags incorporated into product packaging and RFID antennas incorporated into the shelving units to track if a product is present. The drawback to this solution is that it requires RFID tags on each individual product. Incorporating RFID tags on certain products would not be cost efficient (i.e., large quantities of fasteners).

    This disclosure utilizes piezoelectric weight sensors coupled with an algorithm to track product weight and shape to determine the contents of a shelf. This method is advantageous over known solutions because this technology can be implemented with existing shelving and product packaging. Known solutions utilize RFID tags built into product packaging which contain information about the product. This disclosure could be implemented via a mat containing the piezoelectric sensors laid out over existing shelving, and no changes to current product packaging would be required.

    A grid of piezoelectric sensors are distributed as a mat on a shelf or are incorporated to the shelving unit itself. When products are placed onto the sensors, the weight of the product(s) deflect a sensor array creating a piezoelectric voltage. This voltage can be read and stored in a memory unit. A...