Level 5™ ATC from Snap-on® Industrial Breaks New Ground in Tool Management

PC-based database and innovative digital imaging technology, has created a premium asset management category.


Kenosha, Wis., Oct. 14, 2010 – For industries around the world, precise, efficient tool control can mean the difference between project success and failure. With the introduction of the automated Level 5™ ATC tool control system from Snap-on® Industrial, advanced digital imaging technology delivers another layer of security in applications that extend from standard jobs to highly controlled, mission-critical functions.

Snap-on Industrial is a division of Snap-on Incorporated.

In addition to day-to-day issues like inefficient maintenance practices or critical tool breakdown, Foreign Object Damage (FOD) and maintaining strict Foreign Material Exclusion (FME) procedures pose a whole new level of risk. The Snap-on Level 5 ATC system advances tool management by ensuring both tool access and security. The blending of a proven tool storage box design with keyless entry, plus a powerful PC-based database and innovative digital imaging technology, has created a premium asset management category.

Snap-on Level 5 ATC starts with Snap-on Industrial’s HID proximity card keyless entry system. Each user’s assigned ID or key card is embedded with a user-specific code, so the tool storage unit knows at every moment exactly who has accessed the system.

As the tool storage unit is accessed to remove or return tools, ATC uses digital imaging technology to scan each tool in the drawer and determine its status. ATC's audio system announces tool issue and return. If tool status is questionable, the Snap-on Level 5 ATC can display the disputed tool transaction on the 7” LCD or it can be identified in the audit image at the administrator’s PC. User log data and time-date information is available for every transaction.

“Snap-on Industrial Level 5 ATC represents the next generation in managing access to tools and equipment for organizations and applications that demand strict accountability and efficiency," said Pat McDevitt, manager, business development for Snap-on Industrial. "The Level 5 ATC system ensures that people throughout the network know the status of tools and equipment. This means workers can be assured the tool they need is on hand and available immediately, and managers have an extra measure of confidence that tools and other critical assets are being well supervised. There's a lot of money and effort involved in managing productivity and safety; companies will see the value of this system the first day it's deployed."

The process is simple – scan the proximity card to log in, enter a work location, and remove or return the tools. Digital cameras located in the top of the unit capture a scan of the drawer and determine which tools have been removed or returned. The user then logs out. After each user logout, the digital imaging devices forward full-drawer images and log files to the PC where they are stored for later access.

The integrated imaging/software package employed in the system is an extension of the company's work with digital image capture technology in the automotive market.

The Snap-on Level 5 ATC System offers an optional administrator’s software package that is used to add and delete users, assign various levels of user access and lock permissions, and track individual tool usage. The administrator's system can be synchronized to individual or multiple boxes and can pull data and images from each selected tool box. The data logs and audit image files are available for inspection in the administrator’s program following synchronization with the box. Other features available in the administrator’s toolbox include creation of various reports, tools searches, alerts for broken tools and tools out for calibration, tool custody transfer and box set-up functions.

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