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AusRAIL PLUS: GS1 partners bring i-TRACE to life

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At AusRAIL Plus 2023, Project i-TRACE will showcase GS1 global data standards together with three GS1 certified barcoding partners.

Project i-TRACE was initiated by the rail industry and the Australasian Railway Association to digitise inventory management, automate all steps in the supply chain and provide critical information throughout the life cycle of a product, part or component using ISO certified GS1 global data standards.

Visit project i-TRACE and the certified partners at stand 546.


Trotec Laser manufactures a complete range of high quality laser marking solutions from entry level to high spec customisable systems, which includes a range of high speed fibre galvo lasers that are capable of directly marking most metal and industrial plastic substrates.

General manager Mark Luft said the systems could be as simple as a standalone workstation, or a fully integrated system with automated material handling capability, including smart camera systems to verify data integrity.

“We have a range of options that allow manufacturers and suppliers to add fully compliant traceability marks to flat, curved, angled and multi-faceted surfaces,” he said.

“The marking itself can done in a number of ways, which is not only durable but will not affect the integrity of the product. The end result is a high speed flexible marking process that can include additional data as required.”

Luft said being a certified GS1 partner was extremely important for the business.

“Firstly, having an intimate understanding of the GS1 standards and requirements means we are able to work with our customers more effectively,” he said.

“Then knowing that our machines and software are capable of generating fully compliant barcodes that have been verified by GS1 means customers can be confident that a Trotec laser marking solution will not only work, but we can guide new users through the laser marking process as well as the GS1 requirements, making implementation seamless and complete.”

Luft said it was important for rail suppliers to use certified partners to mark and barcode their assets and components.

“Put simply, there’s no point adding traceability markings to a product if they can’t be read,” he said.

At AusRAIL PLUS, Trotec Laser will be showing visitors its latest SpeedMarker 700 laser workstation with 3D capability, which will also have a SpeedMark Vision positioning camera and an additional smart camera for barcode data verification.


Leading Australian labelling, coding and marking supplier insignia provides a wide variety of products such as scanners, tablets, mobile computers (RF Guns) that allows capture and use of data accurately, quickly and easily.

The company’s product specialist Craig Zammit said insignia boasted a wide range of options for marking in the rail industry, with each solution requiring a different application, for example adhesive thermal direct and thermal transfer labels, ink jet coding, CO2 and fibre Laser coding.

“Once an item is labelled or marked, it needs to have the capability to be read and data entered into asset tracking systems,” he said.

“Being a GS1 certified partner provides organisations with the assurance that their methods are certified to industry standards, and would have the capability to be traced throughout the entire rail ecosystem, from manufacture to installation and use.

“Non-compliant suppliers’ counterfeit products can lead to failed coding and traceability in the supply chain, so it’s important to partner with a knowledgeable, experienced partner like insignia who can guarantee delivery to industry specifications.

“It is essential that you can not only apply a code to your assets and components, but that the code will endure the conditions they’re subjected to for the lifespan that is required.

“We have had a long-standing relationship with GS1, and our staff are trained to provide coding and data capture services in alignment with GS1 standards.”

Visitors at AusRAIL will be able to observe how to correctly identify, label, capture and trace assets and components and through the entire supply chain, with hands-on demonstrations of equipment by insignia’s experts.


Zebra Technologies is a global business providing enterprise-grade rugged products for asset identification and tracking:  applications that are robust and scalable across large organisations.

Sales manager Colin Hughes said the company provided solutions for printing and encoding barcode labels and RFID (radio-frequency identification) tags.

“We also supply the equipment required to read barcodes, RFID tags and direct part marking codes,” he said.

Hughes said i-TRACE certification provided proof that the company was following best practice principles for standardising traceability and transparency of products and assets in the supply chain.

“Using certified partners ensures compliance with current standards and up-to-date knowledge as these organisations know what they are doing,” he said.

Zebra will display the latest best-of-breed technology in automatic identification solutions and asset tracking systems at the stand.