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MSR-FSR installs InvoTech's GIMS system cleanroom garments
May '11
InvoTech Systems Inc, provider of the GIMS Laundry System, announced installation of its GIMS system with ultra-high frequency radio frequency identification (UHF-RFID) technology at two MSR-FSR facilities that process a total of 112,000 pounds per month of Class 10 cleanroom garments for high-tech industry clients. The new UHF-RFID system significantly boosts efficiency and slashes labor costs. It automates the inventory tracking and sorting of garments at each step of the cleaning process.

“InvoTech installed Impinj UHF-RFID readers in key locations at MSR-FSR's New Mexico and Oregon laundry facilities,” says Jeff Welles, InvoTech vice president. “The GIMS Laundry System software tracks and reports the movement of hundreds of cleanroom articles per minute. Asset tracking with RFID is done automatically as cleanroom garments pass by a GIMS UHF-RFID station. The RFID tracking system records and logs the garments without any labor required at all.”

“The GIMS UHF-RFID System makes our operation manageable,” says Steve Cox, CEO of MSR-FSR's Global Operations. “The tracking system automates the labor-intensive job of hand counting and tracking our laundry's cleanroom articles to make our process much more efficient. GIMS tells us how often an item has been cleaned, what chemicals were used, at what temperature the dryer was set, and where every piece of our inventory is right now. Cleanliness is ensured by the way the garments are tracked.”

“The InvoTech team provided us with consummate customer service from the beginning of our association,” says Cox. “We evaluated the GIMS system and quickly confirmed that InvoTech's inventory solution provided the comprehensive tracking that our costly garments warrant. InvoTech was also immediately responsive with making our requested system enhancements. The company did a very professional job with our onsite installation and training, and InvoTech's follow-up and support services are excellent.” MSR-FSR plans to install GIMS at three other locations—including its Kildare, Ireland facility—beginning in the third quarter of 2011.

MSR-FSR clientele include semiconductor manufacturers, pharmaceutical companies, and other industries with facilities sensitive to contamination. MSR-FSR provides and manages 40 different types of cleanroom garments, including cleanroom suits, hoods, gloves, smocks, and boots. The costly specialty items represent a significant investment that must be tracked carefully. Each garment can be worn only once before being cleaned. As a result, MSR-FSR handles more than 28,000 pounds of garments each month from a single client.

The GIMS system includes Fujitsu UHF-RFID laundry tags provided by Fujitsu Frontech North America fitted in pouches sewn into garments, allowing inventory to be tracked in large batches rather than by single-piece hand counts. UHF-RFID technology has extended reading distance far beyond legacy RFID systems. This enables entire laundry carts of soiled or clean items to be automatically identified, counted, and processed instantly at each step of MSR-FSR's process.

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