The world’s first fully automated license plate production

Italian government relies on German technology from Lower Saxony


Delmenhorst / Rome, November 2017. The Government Printing Press of Italy, the Istituto Poligrafico e Zecca dello Stato (IPZS), has commissioned the Delmenhorst based company Tönnjes E.A.S.T. to build the world’s first fully automated car license plate production. At the new location near Turin, around six million number plates will be manufactured per year from the end of 2018. “A high-tech factory is being built”, explains Holger Lang, Managing Director at Tönnjes E.A.S.T. and adds: “The special feature lies in the complex, automated interlinking of all work processes - keyword industry 4.0.” In Italy, the printing of all security documents, such as passports, number plates, bank notes or driving licenses is centralised and in the hands of the state — this is unique in the European Union. The IPZS with headquarters in Rome is wholly owned by the Italian Ministry for Economy and Finance.

There will hardly be any people in the new factory. Instead you will encounter a tactical combination of machines, logistics and software — the state-of-the-art car license plate production is the new flagship of Tönnjes. “All components used in Italy hail from our range of machines for the production of license plates. For the first time, however, they will be all digitally connected with each other”, explains Lang. The end result can be divided into three work modules. First of all, the license plates are cut to size, then robots emboss their alpha numerics. In the end, further robots join plate pairs, shrink-wrap and pack them. The digitalisation of the processes permits the plant manager to be always informed in real time about the current production status.

However, the Italian license plates themselves will not change. “We always guarantee that the standard prescribed by the government is maintained”, emphasises Lang. Built-in quality controls directly sort faulty plates. “Each number plate receives its own identification number during production. This allows the authorities to track later, when it is already on the road, when it has passed through which production step”, he explains. This protects against manipulation. The IPZS had advertised the job with a budget of nine million Euro already in 2016. After an extensive application and regular talks on site, both parties signed the contracts in October. “We are happy to have found an innovative partner with long-standing experience and current, technical know-how with Tönnjes E.A.S.T”, says Ivo Planeta, Technical Manager of the IPZS.

In the future, robots will produce the Italian license plates. The new high-tech factory of the IPZS could look similar. © SaisinTipchai /



Electric cars in Latvia charged for free using the IDePLATE

EU-funded pilot project from the Baltic state also possible in other countries 


Delmenhorst / Riga, October 2017. The European Commission is working on a new bill to limit CO₂ emissions from cars. This may not include a quota for electric cars, but the EU shall continue to subsidise projects that enable the transition from petrol and diesel to electrical power. One such project can be found in Latvia: Since 2016, the authorities in the Baltic Republic have been fitting all electric vehicles with a so-called “IDePLATE” during registration. Tönnjes E.A.S.T. from Lower Saxony is the company commissioned by the Latvian Ministry of Transport to manufacture these vehicle licence plates, which at first glance look like ordinary number plates. However, they contain an RFID chip that should enable free charging in the future. “As soon as an electric car stops at a suitable charging station, an LED light will signal whether the IDePLATEs has been recognised”, explains Dietmar Mönning, the Managing Director of Tönnjes E.A.S.T., adding: “Vehicle owners will also have to enter a PIN number to protect against theft, and then the battery will start charging right away”.

The amount of electric cars registered in Latvia, with its population of just under two million, is still manageable. “The problem does not lie with the technology, but rather a lack of infrastructure”, says Mönning. In his view, Europe’s greatest challenge is to create a larger and more consistent charging system. “With the IDePLATE, we’ve developed the perfect technological basis for vehicle identification”. He believes it is now up to local authorities to install more charging stations in public places. The RFID plate also has other functions: “Not only does it enable contactless authentication; it also makes it possible to monitor the entry of approved vehicles in low-emission zones and allows cars to use certain parts of the road, like bus lanes, without the need for extra equipment”, he explains. Unlike older vehicle identification methods, such as camera-based systems, RFID plates are not affected by adverse weather conditions or visibility and are more secure.

Tönnjes E.A.S.T. has been delivering car licence plates for many years in the Eastern European state. It has also been supplying a windscreen sticker that acts as a “third licence plate”. This holographic sticker identifies a number plate as belonging to the vehicle, thus protecting against theft and misuse. Just like with the blank plates used for standard licences, the IDePLATE is manufactured in Germany before being printed and personalised by Tönnjes at its Latvian branch. This gives the integrated RFID chip a unique and encrypted identification number, which complements the alphanumeric data and can only be detected by authorised readers. Mönning believes this pilot project could become a model for other countries: “Electro mobility demands all kinds of modern, innovative technology, so why not start with the number plate? After all, it is a car’s passport”.

Soon electric cars in Latvia will be able to charge free via IDePLATE. © Pixabay



Kathrein RFID and Tönnjes E.A.S.T. Conclude Cooperation Agreement

Rosenheim/Delmenhorst, September 2017. Kathrein, a leading international specialist for reliable, high-quality communication technologies, is starting a global collaboration in the field of electronic vehicle identification (EVI) with Tönnjes E.A.S.T., the leading German licence plate manufacturer. Both companies have been working together for years in the development of new technologies. In their joint projects, Kathrein contributes its expertise in the field of RFID technology, Tönnjes E.A.S.T. is a specialist for the integration of the required transponders into vehicle licence plates or windscreens.

The automatic, contactless identification of cars, lorries or motorbikes using electromagnetic waves is a pioneering technology for the road traffic of the future. It enables efficient solutions for electronic vehicle registration (EVR), access to low emission zones and traffic light control systems. “Our collaboration includes implementing the required infrastructure on motorways and in cities, as well as establishing and operating central data base solutions for authorities and providers. In other words, we offer our clients a turnkey solution,” explains Thomas Brunner, Head of the Business Unit RFID within the Kathrein Group.

Automatic speed monitoring and toll gates

The joint portfolio includes new products from both companies. The RRU 4500, Kathrein’s latest generation of RFID reader, has a read range of up to 20 metres and enables the reliable identification of vehicles in freely moving motorway traffic up to a maximum speed of 250 km/h. Tönnjes uses RFID technology in two systems: One is the IDePLATE®, a vehicle licence plate with an integrated RFID chip. The other is the IDeSTIX®, a windscreen sticker containing a data chip with an encrypted ID number.

In order to ensure the IT security of the employed transponder data, the cooperation partners rely on UCODE DNA, the latest generation of hi-security transponders from NXP Semiconductors. The decryption takes place directly between the transponders and the Kathrein readers. These are a new kind of combined RFID reader-writer and IoT gateway, as it is called. This means that the data can be loaded directly into a Cloud and then used from there.

“We are very happy that we are taking the proven collaboration with Kathrein up to a new level,” says Dietmar Mönning, Managing Director of Tönnjes E.A.S.T. “Together we can offer our customers comprehensive hardware and software solutions as well as services from one source. We see great potential in our global collaboration.”

Tönnjes E.A.S.T and Kathrein enable efficient solutions for electronic vehicle registration. © Tönnjes E.A.S.T.




„Die Bevölkerung besser vor Straftaten schützen und die Polizei entlasten“

SPD-Politikerinnen diskutieren Einsatz von Sicherheitskennzeichen in Deutschland


Delmenhorst, August 2017. „Im Zusammenhang mit Autos herrscht in Deutschland unglaublich viel Kriminalität”, erklärte die verkehrspolitische Sprecherin der SPD-Bundestagsfraktion, Kirsten Lühmann, vergangenen Donnerstag während eines Besuchs bei Tönnjes E.A.S.T. in Delmenhorst. Die ehemalige Polizistin ist Bundestagsabgeordnete sowie Mitglied im Ausschuss für Verkehr und digitale Infrastruktur in Berlin und hat sich mit ihren Parteikollegen Susanne Mittag, Bundestagsabgeordnete des Wahlkreises Delmenhorst, Wesermarsch und Oldenburg-Land und dem Landtagskandidaten Deniz Kurku über das IDePLATE-System informiert. Bestehend aus den Kfz-Kennzeichen und einem Windschutzscheiben-Aufkleber, jeweils mit integriertem RFID-Chip, erfasst es effizient und sicher Fahrzeuge. „Diese Technik würde es der Polizei deutlich erleichtern in Gefahrenlagen Autos zu überprüfen”, meinte Lühmann. Auf den passiven Chips ist jeweils eine einmalige Nummer gespeichert, die autorisierte Kartenlesegeräte verschlüsselt aufnehmen. Fährt zum Beispiel ein LKW mit gestohlenem Kennzeichen vorbei, schlägt das System Alarm, weil eines der Elemente fehlt. „Rechtlich gesehen besteht dann ein Verdacht — den benötigen die Beamten und Beamtinnen für eine Überprüfung”, so die Politikerin. Die Zahlen unterstreichen den Handlungsbedarf: Laut der Allgemeinen-Rechtsschutz-Versicherungs-AG werden hierzulande täglich rund 400 Kennzeichen entwendet. 

„Die Identifikationsnummer könnte nur vom Kraftfahrt-Bundesamt entschlüsselt und mit dessen Datenbank abgeglichen werden“, erläuterte Dietmar Mönning, Geschäftsführer von Tönnjes E.A.S.T. und ergänzte: „Selbst wenn der unwahrscheinliche Fall eintritt, dass sich jemand die Daten illegal beschafft, ist es unmöglich sie zu entschlüsseln.“ Die bisherige Methode der Fahrzeugerfassung sei extrem fehleranfällig, weil diese bis heute lediglich über optische Merkmale erfolgt. „Bei schlechtem Wetter und eingeschränkter Sicht erkennen Blitzer gerade einmal die Hälfte der Nummernschilder. Dabei entgehen dem Staat wichtige Einnahmen und viele Raser kommen ungestraft davon“, meint Mönning. Außerdem sei es einfach, die Kennzeichen zu manipulieren, beispielsweise mit schwarzem Klebeband. Anders wäre es mit dem IDePLATE: Ein Test in Kooperation mit dem niederländischen Verteidigungsministerium hat ergeben, dass auf diese Weise 100 Prozent der Pkw erfasst werden – unabhängig von Witterung oder Schmutz. „Wir würden mit diesem System die Bevölkerung besser vor Straftaten schützen und die Polizei entlasten“, sagte Kirsten Lühmann. Doch das sei nur möglich, wenn die Regierung sich für eine derartige Neuerung aufgeschlossen zeigt. „In diesem Fall muss das Bundesministerium für Verkehr handeln“, fügte Susanne Mittag hinzu. Die beiden Politikerinnen wollen sich in Berlin für das Sicherheitskennzeichen einsetzen, um einen weiteren Beitrag zur Kriminalitätsbekämpfung zu unterstützen.

V.l.n.r.: Dietmar Mönning, Deniz Kurku, Susanne Mittag, Kirsten Lühmann und Piet Tönjes. © Tönnjes E.A.S.T.



„Deutschland geht es gut, wenn die Menschen Arbeit haben“

Parlamentarischer Staatssekretär zu Besuch bei Tönnjes E.A.S.T. in Delmenhorst


Delmenhorst, August 2017. „Die Kultur der Familienunternehmen ist ein Baustein des Erfolgs des deutschen Mittelstandes“, bilanzierte Dr. Michael Meister (CDU), Parlamentarischer Staatssekretär beim Bundesminister für Finanzen, nach seinem Besuch des Delmenhorster Unternehmens Tönnjes E.A.S.T. am vergangenen Dienstag. Meister, der auf Einladung der hiesigen CDU-Bundestagsabgeordneten Astrid Grotelüschen in die Region gekommen war, informierte sich im Beisein des Delmenhorster CDU-Kreisvorstandsmitglieds Jürgen Waßer, über das von Tönnjes entwickelte IDePLATE. Das Kfz-Kennzeichen mit integriertem RFID-Chip enthält eine verschlüsselte Kodierung, die von autorisierten Lesegeräten erfasst wird und dadurch die sichere Identifikation von Fahrzeugen ermöglicht. Das gesteigerte politische Interesse lässt das Familienunternehmen hoffen, dass seine innovative Technik künftig auch in Deutschland für Geschwindigkeitsmessungen, Zufahrtskontrollen oder die automatische Kennzeichenerfassung bei Mautsystemen eingesetzt wird. Im europäischen und internationalen Ausland kommt das System bereits landesweit zum Einsatz.

"Kein Wunder", so Grotelüschen "dass der Betrieb bereits 185 Jahre besteht.“ Die Christdemokratin sprach dem Unternehmen bei ihrem Besuch einen enormen Innovationsgeist zu: „Sie verhalten sich vorbildlich. Es gibt keine Angst vor Veränderungen. Im Gegenteil — vielmehr werden hier Chancen erkannt und Ideen verwirklicht.“ Dies schlägt sich auch in den Bilanzen nieder. In Delmenhorst beschäftigt Tönnjes derzeit 190 Mitarbeiter, weltweit sind es gemeinsam mit seinen Partnern über 2.000 – Tendenz steigend. Piet Tönjes, Geschäftsführer der J.H. Tönnjes GmbH in sechster Generation, machte in diesem Zusammenhang deutlich, dass er weiterhin auf die politische Unterstützung für den deutschen Mittelstand baue. Darauf sagte Meister: „Deutschland geht es gut, wenn die Menschen Arbeit haben. Wir sollten alles daran setzen, dass es so bleibt.“ Die Historie der Niederlassung weckte dabei gleichermaßen sein Interesse, wie das Innovationspotenzial der RFID-Technologie. In Deutschland setzt die Politik nach wie vor auf die fehleranfällige kamerabasierte Identifikation von Fahrzeugen. Die Wahrscheinlichkeit, dass in Berlin künftig über die Einführung des „Kennzeichens der Zukunft“ diskutiert wird, ist nun höher denn je.

„Die bisherige Art und Weise der Fahrzeugerfassung ist extrem fehleranfällig. Bei schlechtem Wetter werden fast die Hälfte der Nummernschilder aufgrund der Oberflächenverschmutzung durch Schnee oder Regen schlichtweg nicht erkannt. Dadurch gehen dem Staat viele Einnahmen verloren“, erklärt Tönjes. Darüber hinaus profitier das visionäre IDePLATE von seiner Sendereichweichte von bis zu 15 Metern. Damit eignet sich die Technik für vollautomatische Mautstellen, Geschwindigkeits- und Zufahrtskontrollen oder für die polizeiliche Fahndung bei Gefahrenlagen. Gleichzeitig garantiert die revolutionäre kryptographische Verschlüsselung die Datensicherheit der Autofahrer. Zudem schützt das System vor dem weitreichenden Problem des Kennzeichen-Diebstahls und der Manipulation von Nummernschildern. Möglich macht dies der Windschutzscheiben-Aufkleber IDeSTIX in Kombination mit dem IDePLATE. Er verfügt ebenfalls über einen RFID-Chip. Sollte eines der beiden Elemente fehlen, wird dies bei der Erfassung durch ein Lesegerät, direkt sichtbar. Das Unternehmen aus Delmenhorst bietet in diesem Zusammenhang Komplettlösungen von der Kennzeichenerfassung bis hin zur Erstellung eines zentralen Fahrzeughalterregisters an. In Lettland, Honduras, Kenia oder auf den Kaimaninseln werden diese bereits auf nationaler Ebene genutzt.

Dr. Michael Meister, Jürgen Waßer, Astrid Grotelüschen und Piet Tönjes beim Rundgang durch die Produktion von Tönnjes E.A.S.T.. © Tönnjes E.A.S.T.



Radar cases in Germany: on the trail of speeding drivers for 60 years

RFID-based number plate system could make speed cameras a thing of the past


Bremen, July 2017. Exactly 60 years ago, the North Rhine-Westphalian interior ministry in Düsseldorf used a speed camera for the first time in Germany in a trial test. One year later, the “Traffic radar 2 device”, manufactured by the company Telefunken, went into series production. Since then, measuring technologies have developed from radar to light barriers to laser. One thing has, however, remained the same: vehicle identification of the number plate by photo. Hereby, fraudsters who manipulate number plates or speeding drivers who are not identified due to poor weather conditions often get away unpunished. Now this problem could be solved by an RFID chip with identification number integrated in the vehicle’s number plate. The IDePLATE® manufactured by Tönnjes E.A.S.T. offers this function and may be decoded by authorised reading devices. “Last year, a field test in cooperation with the Dutch defence ministry showed that our system records the vehicles 100 per cent – regardless of how bad the weather or lighting is,” says Dietmar Mönning, Managing Director Tönnjes E.A.S.T. “The time has come to make camera based speed traps a thing of the past.”

A car speeds past a police car and the police follow it and, in doing so, film their own speed indicator. A complicated and inefficient way of catching speedy drivers yet, in the mid-fifties, this was the only method. With 13,000 fatalities each year as a result of car accidents at the time, the state had to act. As a comparison: in 2016, nine people a day were killed on the roads. Each year there are approximately 45,000 accidents caused by speeding. “Recordings are therefore essential and, at the same time, the technology should be reconsidered to ensure more justice and safety,” says Mönning. Time and time again, police report cases in which speeding drivers push their dangerous driving to the limits: in Munich’s Richard-Strauss tunnel, for example, a motorcyclist was caught speeding on camera 26 times in three months yet it wasn’t possible to identify the number plate due to the high speed. “This would not have happened with the IDePLATE®,” said the managing director. A stationary reading device would have read the individual numbers of the number plate and exposed the speeder. 

“Stolen number plates are also a major security vulnerability,” explains Mönning. According to estimates of the Allgemeinen Versicherungs-AG (German insurance company), 160,000 number plates are stolen in Germany every year. “In this country, vehicle identification is only by means of number plate and photos and this is open to abuse.” The Tönnjes E.A.S.T. system also includes a windscreen sticker, the so-called IDeSTIX® which, similar to the IDePLATE®, incorporates a digital chip. If a number plate is affixed to another car, this “third number plate” will allow the mobile or stationary reading devices to identify that the characteristics do not match. Data protection is ensured by the Dutch cooperation partner NXP Semiconductor, the encoding technology specialist. “This technology improves not only radar cases but can also help ease border controls and offer important information in solving terrorist cases.”

High-Tech made in Germany: The IDePLATE by Tönnjes E.A.S.T. has an integrated RFID-Chip. © Tönnjes E.A.S.T.



IDePLATE system: an example of innovational strength “made in Germany”

High tech number plate as pioneering innovation in road traffic


Bremen, June 2017. German number plate manufacturer Tönnjes E.A.S.T. has developed the number plate of the future together with its cooperation partners NXP Semiconductors and Kathrein. Many years’ development work has now resulted in the visionary IDePLATE system which incorporates a number plate with an integrated RFID chip (radio frequency identification) and the associated reading devices. For the realisation of this technology, three companies pooled their specialist industry expertise under the direction of Tönnjes E.A.S.T. The automatic and contactless identification and authentication via electromagnetic waves guarantees the protection of individual vehicles and, “could, for example, assume transport management systems, access solutions in environmental zones or the control of traffic light systems with only one medium, the IDePLATE,” says Thomas Brunner, Head of the Kathrein RFID division. The cooperation offers an integral concept for controlling the growing number of vehicles with view to identification, authentication and access controls. “It is a ground-breaking development which has immense potential,” says Dietmar Mönning, Managing Director of Tönnjes E.A.S.T.  

Tönnjes has been manufacturing number plates since 1962 and has optimised both the materials used as well as the safety features during the years. Now, with the development of the IDePLATE, the company is taking a step further towards the digital future. One component of the system, the RAIN RFID chip, which is integrated in the number plate, is produced by the RFID technology expert, NXP Semiconductors, based in the Netherlands. “The UCODE® DNA system which is used combines a transmission range of up to 15 metres with revolutionary cryptographic encoding,” explains NXP Marketing Director Mahdi Mekic. Whilst in the past, a balance had to be found between a large reading distance and functional safety, NXP now creates a combination of the two elements. The increased range enables fully automated toll booths and speed controls which, at the same time, protect driver data. The necessary encoding occurs with the aid of the infrastructure provided by Kathrein. This offers an innovative linkage of RFID write/read device and a so-called IoT gateway whereby data can be loaded into a Cloud and then used from here. As the world’s biggest antennae manufacturer, the Rosenheim-based company is continuously developing this technology. “In Bavaria and Saxony, we are working daily on the reader and are focussing 100 percent on Germany as a location for innovation,” said the Head of Kathrein RFID, Thomas Brunner.

According to the Allgemeinen Rechtsschutz-Versicherungs-AG (ARAG) (German legal protection insurance company), approximately 160,000 number plates are stolen in Germany every year. This is often only the first stage of more far-reaching crimes which lead to extensive risk situations for the public. Here it is not only private individuals who come to harm but also the state: non-authorised vehicles which remain unidentified due to stolen or manipulated number plates also represent huge tax losses. In the USA, for example, the revenue department loses up to 1.5 billion dollars a year in this way. Dietmar Mönning also criticises the situation in Germany: “With the current methods, too many criminals are getting away unpunished. These circumstances don’t ensure sufficient security and, when it comes down to it, it is the tax payers that have to pay for this.” In contrast, the fraud resistant data memory of the IDePLATE enables the clear identification of vehicles and prevents thefts and fraud. The RFID technology forms the basis for many future oriented usage possibilities which are already being used abroad. In Kenya, for example, a country in which the gross domestic product is continuously growing and where more vehicles than ever were registered in 2014, the German RFID identification system has already impressed many. By 2020, a central registration databank will be set up here which will ensure that not only the roads but also auto trade are safer. The system has also been successfully used on the Cayman Islands: here it is planned that the entire state administration as well as the associated vehicle fleet will be equipped with the IDePLATE in the next two years. “Tönnjes is a typical ‘hidden champion’ and a good example of how Germany can generate and export progress through its businesses,” says CDU parliament member Astrid Grotelüschen. The technology of the Delmenhorst-based company and its partners could represent an important step in making cities more efficient, environmentally friendly and, with this, developing them more towards “smart cities”. The IDePLATE also opens up new opportunities in association with the increasing digitalisation which is why it is important to shape pioneering innovations in a responsible way and support their development,” she says.

Tönnjes E.A.S.T. managing director Dietmar Mönning holding an IDePLATE from Honduras where the system is already in use. © Tönnjes E.A.S.T.



Emergency response via car license plates

IDePLATES could improve the security situation 


Bremen, June 2017. The German government asks for more scope for action in particular hazardous situations. Therefore, the Federal Council approved a law on March 31 that permits the Federal Police to use automatic license plate detection systems to provide more effective protection of the population in case of hazardous situations. The technology that is worth considering was demonstrated to the German Minister of the Interior Thomas de Maizière on the same day in Saxony at the motorway no. 4. Already since 2013, license plates have been captured there by means of video camera and reconciled with a database. Dietmar Mönnig is Managing Director of the Delmenhorst company Tönnjes E.A.S.T. and sees, however, clear shortcomings in this method: “If the license plate is dirty due to snow or mud, the detection quota via a system that is exclusively based on cameras is impaired.” More reliable would be a so-called IDePLATE - a license plate that can be read in any weather condition thanks to the integrated RFID chip. 

De Maizière stresses during his visit that the automatic license plate detection by means of camera should be used to “increase safety and better identify offenders.” It should be used in particular near borders, at airports and dragnet investigations. However, according to Mönning there are doubts if the applied technology provides the level of security the government is asking for in this case. “Dangerous persons who prepare their actions by means of forged or manipulated license plates or use their vehicle as a weapon, could be detected faster, since the authorities have solid indications for the search”, he explains. The IDePLATE system has the right solution for this: “On the windscreen, drivers can attach a sticker called IDeSTIX containing a chip like the license plate. It has an encrypted identification number that can only be read by authorised readers.” Should the number plate therefore be mounted at the wrong vehicle, the mobile or stationary reader trigger an alarm. In the past year, the police in Saxony caught 26 vehicles with stolen license plates using their previous method. Mönning: “The number merely represents the license plates reported as stolen, since they appear in the database. With IDePLATE, in combination with the IDeSTIX, however, each stolen or manipulated license plate would be unmasked - even when the vehicle owner has not even noticed the theft yet.” 

In Saxony, five mobile license plate reader systems are in use. The camera is attached to the crash barrier, a cable leads to a patrol car of the police and the officers see the cars driving past via a monitor. Each license plate is enlarged by zoom and reconciled with the database.  In case of a match, the police officers need to go after the car with their vehicle. “This procedure takes long and is inefficient”, says Mönning. “The Federal Government should consider a contemporary solution.” Other countries have decided for the system from Tönnjes E.A.S.T. long time ago. Kenia, Peru and the Cayman Islands already capture vehicles in this manner. 

With the IDePLATE-system manipulated license plates would be unmasked. © Tönnjes E.A.S.T.



„Tönnjes ist ein Hidden Champion und steht für Fortschritt“

Astrid Grotelüschen sieht großes Potential für IDePLATE-System in Deutschland 


Delmenhorst, Mai 2017. Um sich ein genaueres Bild von den Einsatzmöglichkeiten des IDePLATE-Systems zu machen, besichtigte die CDU-Bundestagsabgeordnete Astrid Grotelüschen vergangene Woche Donnerstag die Produktion des Delmenhorster Unternehmens. Das von Tönnjes entwickelte IDePLATE ist ein Kfz-Kennzeichen mit integriertem RFID-Chip. Dieser enthält eine verschlüsselte Kodierung, die von autorisierten Lesegeräten mobil oder stationär ausgelesen wird und ermöglicht so die sichere Identifikation von Fahrzeugen. Eine Technik, aus der sich viele weitere Anwendungsmöglichkeiten ergeben. Sie könnte für Geschwindigkeitsmessungen, Zufahrtskontrollen oder die automatische Kennzeichenerfassung bei Mautsystemen eingesetzt werden. Durch die Unterstützung der Bundestagsabgeordneten hofft das Unternehmen auch in Deutschland auf die Chance, die Leistungsfähigkeit des Systems über ein Pilotprojekt demonstrieren zu können.

Obwohl das IDePLATE-System in Deutschland noch nicht zugelassen ist, befindet es sich weltweit schon im Einsatz. Länder wie Honduras, Kenia oder die Kaimaninseln haben das System von Tönnjes E.A.S.T. bereits auf nationaler Ebene eingeführt. Auch ein groß angelegter Feldversuch in den Niederlanden verlief sehr erfolgreich. Hierzulande setzen die politisch Verantwortlichen bisher auf die kamerabasierte Identifikation von Fahrzeugen. „Mit dem IDePLATE eröffnen sich neue Möglichkeiten, von denen Bürger und Behörden gleichermaßen profitieren können, zum Beispiel beim Thema innere Sicherheit. Ich denke seitens der Regierung sollte diese Technologie auf jeden Fall diskutiert werden, weil es sich um eine zukunftsweisende Innovation handelt“, sagte Grotelüschen. So sei es zum Beispiel auch notwendig zu bedenken, dass künftig immer mehr CO2-belastete Städte in Sachen Emissionsschutz auf Zugangskontrollen für Fahrzeuge setzen. „Es gibt viele Anwendungsbereiche, für die das System interessant ist. Tönnjes ist ein typischer ‚Hidden Champion’ und ein gutes Beispiel dafür, wie Deutschland über seine Unternehmen Fortschritt erschaffen und exportieren kann“, meinte Grotelüschen. 

Astrid Grotelüschen zu Besuch bei Tönnjes E.A.S.T. Bernd Tönjes aus der Unternehmensfamile (links), Geschäftsführer Dietmar Mönning (rechts).  © Tönnjes E.A.S.T.



The car toll is coming – but how will it be implemented?

Vehicles are detected with outdated methods


Bremen, April 2017. After long disputes, the intention turns reality: The majority of the members of the Bundestag have voted on March 24 for the introduction of the much-discussed motor vehicle toll. In the future, motorists are to pay the infrastructure fee yearly by means of direct debit. However, there will be no changes to the vehicle itself. The government will do without adhesive vignettes, like for example in Switzerland. Controls are made at random and only by means of comparison of registration number. “This method makes fraud and abuse very easy”, says Dietmar Mönning, Managing Director of Tönnjes E.A.S.T.. “The detection could be fairer and safer by means of digital license plates as well as windscreen stickers called IDePLATE® and IDeSTIX®. They are equipped with RFID chips containing an encrypted and individual number.” Only authorised reading devices can receive it and confirm if the license plate really belongs to the car.

“Fair, sensible and just” called Transport Minister Alexander Dobrindt the newly decided toll. “One can certainly not speak of fairness here”, says Dietmar Mönning. It would only exist if misuse of license plates would no longer be possible. The numbers make clear that there is still a long way to go. According to the Allgemeine Versicherungen AG (ARAG), 400 license plates are stolen daily; this adds up to 160,000 per year. “A considerable sum that must not be ignored when planning a toll”, says Mönning. When a thief has struck, this does not only mean up to 100 Euro for the replacement and annoying dealings with authorities for the persons concerned. Mönning: “Whether fuel theft at the fuel station, the avoidance of tickets or soon also the bypassing of the toll - the mere observation with cameras has many weak points.” As long as the registration number does not become digital, however, nothing will change.  

“The vehicle owner enjoys double security with our RFID-based system”, explains the Managing Director. “Thanks to the IDeSTIX® on the windscreen, the reading devices can detect immediately if the license plate belongs to the car or not.” Since it gets destroyed when removed, it cannot be used in other vehicles. A look across the European borders shows that this system works: Countries like Peru, Kenya or the Cayman Islands already trust in the modern technology from Tönnjes E.A.S.T. The authorities there have decided, to use IDePLATES® or IDeSTIX® at national level, and protect themselves, and the car owners, from fraud in this manner. The Delmenhorst company delivers the license plates and windshield stickers that are personalised locally. “If the Federal Government is open to a motor vehicle toll, it should also consider new methods when it comes to the implementation”, says Mönning.

In the future car-holders will have to pay a toll for using the motorway in Germany. / Foto: Jon Flobrant



Kenya identifies automobiles by using RFID technology from Germany

TÖNNJES C.A.R.D. provides over three million vehicles with high tech windshield labels

Bremen, February 2017.
 Almost 47 million people are registered citizens of Kenya. However, the government has no backed record on the total number of car owners on Kenya’s streets. As a consequence, the state misses out on tax revenues that are essential to enhance the country’s traffic infrastructure. The Kenyan National Transport & Safety Authority (NTSA) wants to change this situation. Its aim is to create a nationwide vehicle register. For that reason, the German based company TÖNNJES C.A.R.D. supplies Kenya with about 3.3 million windshield labels that entail an integrated UCODE® DNA RAIN RFID chip from NXP® Semiconductors. The technology allows the secure identification and authentication of vehicles. Over the next three years, all Kenyan car owners are obligated to switch to the new technology. “We have several projects in Africa. However, the partnership with the NTSA is an important milestone for our company. We do not just deliver the UCODE DNA based RFID windshield labels, we also help and advise the authorities during the implementation of the system”, explains Jochen Betz, Managing Director of TÖNNJES C.A.R.D. The central automobile database, called traffic information & management system (TIMS), is planned to be fully updated and vetted until 2020.

“We are excited that our latest RAIN RFID UHF chip technology, which includes cryptographic authentication, is enabling Kenyan government to securely identify their vehicle population, boost their tax revenue and support the safety of their traffic network,” said Markus Staeblein, VP and General Manager of NXP’s Secure Mobility and Retail business.

In addition to the stickers for the windshield, the IDeTRUST® security solution is also part of the partnership between TÖNNJES C.A.R.D. and the Kenyan government. The system gives users the ability to identify vehicles using their smartphone. In case of traffic or access controls, the IDeTRUST® verification app decrypts the data from the tag and verifies vehicle details like the car plate number, the car’s colour or information on the vehicle owner. “This way thefts and misuses become a lot more difficult, because anyone with a smartphone can instantly see, whether the vehicle is registered with the correct license number or not”, Jochen Betz explains. Stripping off the tag, for example to obscure a car theft, is impossible. Jochen Betz: “IDeSTIX® is a double secured system. On the one hand the label destroys itself when being removed from the windshield. On the other hand information on the UCODE DNA chip is protected by cryptography following highest functional security standards. This technology is provided by our business partners NXP and Kathrein, specialists in secure RAIN RFID chip technology and RFID reading equipment.”

With the nationwide introduction of the RFID-Windshield label and the IDeTRUST® verification system, Kenya is using only a part of the solutions offered by TÖNNJES C.A.R.D. The portfolio also includes IDePLATE®, a microchipped number plate, mobile and stationary readers with identification software as well as IDeSTIX®, electronically readable labels. In addition to secure vehicle identification, a range of other possible applications can be realized using all solutions offered by TÖNNJES C.A.R.D. Even well-developed toll or traffic control systems can be improved by increasing their detection accuracy. “We see good opportunities for the deployment of our system, particularly in countries that are currently developing a new or more efficient vehicle management scheme“, comments Jochen Betz.

With the windshield label IDeSTIX® by TÖNNJES C.A.R.D. vehicles can be identified in Kenya. © TÖNNJES C.A.R.D.



Toll: “Count on modern technology during collection”

Motor vehicles with chip license plate from Tönnjes E.A.S.T. are identified by 100 percent

Bremen, November 2016.
 The motor vehicle toll is coming: Federal Minister of Transport Alexander Dobrindt (CSU) believes that starting the system after the elections in the coming year is realistic. Instead of a classic adhesive vignette, Dorbrindt counts on the electronic reconciliation via the registration number in terms of toll. Up to now, the Federal Government has not decided for a concrete implementation technology. “DePLATEs based on RFID technology could be the solution. The decision-makers in Berlin do not know our system sufficiently enough yet”, says Dietmar Mönning, Managing Director at Tönnjes E.A.S.T. about the current developments. “We would not like to appear as a toll company, but to cooperate with them - as specialist for vehicle identification”.

Which technology should be used for the vehicle identification with the motor car toll is not yet clear. Discussed options are cameras shooting a digital photo of the license plate. Like the successfully completed, large-scale field trial by Tönnjes E.A.S.T. of this year in cooperation with the Dutch Ministry of Defence, the detection rate of cameras is partially at 62 percent. In case of snow, rain, fog or dirty license plates, cameras quickly reach their limits. The procedure with added electronic license plates with RFID chip is significantly more effective and reliable. A combination of both systems identifies almost 100 percent of all vehicles. “Against this backdrop, those responsible should ask themselves, whether one would like to concentrate exclusively on camera detection in Germany”, replies Dietmar Mönning. In conclusion, the Federation would possibly lose high earnings with a decision without the chip license plates: “Not only that traffic offenders get away with it in bad weather, but the Federation also misses out on around 40 percent of the earnings.” With an average of 121 rainy days per year in Germany this is a considerable amount.

Due to such successful tests from the field trial, the Netherlands are very interested in the system. In South America, already several countries have decided for an RFID solution from the Tönnjes E.A.S.T. company. The use of the chip-based technology is also interesting on grounds relating to data protection. The RFID chip offers maximum security in combination with the encryption technology of the Dutch company NXP and especially designed RFID reading devices. The Ministry of Transport already stressed that all data will be deleted immediately after positive collection. “We would like this. Anyway, we plead for control by the state”, says Dietmar Mönning.



Anniversary in Central America: TÖNNJES subsidiary SISTEMAT celebrates ten years at their location

Delmenhorst company assumes further growth in Panama


Bremen, October 2016. Successful expansion: Ten years ago, the republic of Panama was the only client of SISTEMAT in Latin America. Today, a decade after setting up of SISTEMAT, the country between Pacific and Caribbean is the centre of operative business in the region for the provider of security license plates hailing from Lower Saxony.

SISTEMAT is part of the Tönnjes company and was founded in September 2006 in Panama - crucial for this was a waterway with a length of over 80 kilometres. “From a logistical point of view, the location is invaluable due to the Panama Canal”, explains Olaf Renz from TÖNNJES C.A.R.D. SISTEMAT has its headquarters in an industrial area of Panama City and from there it suppliers many other countries such as Colombia, Peru or Bolivia with vehicle identification solutions from Delmenhorst. “The machines and the technical knowledge still come from Germany. However, we try to establish a similarly high standard”, adds Olaf Renz. According to his opinion, some Latin American states meanwhile have, thanks to holographs and other technical innovations, a significantly higher security standard than European license plates like the ones in the Federal Republic. 

The Republic of Panama is still one of the most important customers of SISTEMAT. This is also demonstrated by the number of employees: From around 130 employees in Central and South America, the company employs half of them in this location alone. Moreover, the license plates are produced locally - this permits the company to react significantly faster to regional customer requests. Due to the growth, SISTEMA already had to move within of Panama. Today, the location has 1,000 square metres of production, storage and office area. Due to the increase in orders the company expects further growth: “In the past years, we register an increased interest in our solutions for vehicle identification, especially in the RFID technology in Central and South America. Therefore, we shall invest in the required machines in Panama in the future”, says Olaf Renz.

Bernd Toenjes, Gerd Toenjes, Stephan Wuestefeld, Kenji Schneider and Olaf Renz at the anniversary-event at SISTEMAT in Panama. © TÖNNJES C.A.R.D.



Test result gives rise to hope for more security in German road traffic

Chip-based license plates from TÖNNJES E.A.S.T. from Lower Saxony detect motor cars at 100 percent


Bremen, October 2016. The RFID chip technology from TÖNNJES E.A.S.T. convinces again: The German company could successfully complete a joint field trial with the Dutch Ministry of Defence for vehicle identification by means of RFID chip technology in August this year. The system offers in combination with the encrypted chip technology NXP UCODE DNA a secure, robust, effective and reliable possibility for vehicle identification - and this with distances of up to twenty metres and speeds up to 150 kilometres per hour. Now TÖNNJES E.A.S.T. Presents test results for the first time. The result: The two-month practical phase on a military area near Eindhoven confirms that motor vehicles can be identified at 100 percent. Conventional, camera-based systems achieve only a detection quota of up to 62 percent. The comparatively weak performance of the camera technology can be traced back to the strong dependence on weather and visibility conditions, which quickly reaches its limits in case of rain, snow or dirty license plates. Corresponding camera-based systems are used at present for the planned section controls for the B 6 in Lower Saxony and the A 1 in North Rhine-Westphalia. Unlike previously, here vehicle drivers are not checked at individual locations, but prosecuted for exceeding an average speed over a longer road section.

“The test results confirm our expectations and show that there is no getting around RFID chip technology in the future when it comes to vehicle detection. In addition, there are also now the chances for an early nationwide introduction in our neighbouring country”, says Dietmar Mönning, Managing Director at TÖNNJES E.A.S.T. Against this backdrop, the company encourages to expand the section control planned for Germany by RFID technology. On average, there are 121 rainy days in Germany. Therefore, it is sensible to use an all-weather system. Only this permits the continuous detection of speeders. “Supplementing the camera system section control planned for Lower Saxony and North-Rhine Westphalia would ensure more security and justice in nationwide road traffic”, says Mönning with conviction. Austria had a test track with section control already installed in 2003 on the A22 in the Viennese Kaisermühlentunnel. According to the operator Asfinag, the number of accidents decreased by around 50 percent within ten years. There were no more fatalities. The average speeds also reduced for motor cars by ten kilometres per hour and for lorries by around 15 kilometres per hour. Different from the planned test tracks in Germany, in Austria the tunnel protects even from bad weather conditions.

The current field trial from The Netherlands is mainly composed of three parts: the standard camera-based system with automatic license plate detection, the all-weather RFID chip technology and a combination of both systems. The test result discloses the weak points if only the camera-based technology is used: Out of 100 vehicles, only 52 vehicles could be clearly identified. Ten motor cars were identified inaccurately. 38 could not be detected at all. An inaccurate identification means that one or several characters on the license plate could not be displayed properly - what, however, basically still makes an identification possible. Therefore, TÖNNJES E.A.S.T. Recommends, based on the test results, to combine both technologies. In this case 85 out of 100 vehicles could be identified completely and an additional 15 inaccurately. The case that a motor car was not detected at all when both systems were combined, did not occur. 

All vehicles tested in The Netherlands were equipped by TÖNNJES E.A.S.T. With IDePLATES and IDeSTIX. These are motor car license plates and windscreen stickers with an integrated RFID chip. They are based on the crypto chip UCODE DNY of the semiconductor manufacturer NXP Semiconductors. This passive security chip has, apart from a high read range, also an encryption technology. It guarantees data protection and privacy of the vehicle drivers. Separate high speed tests also confirm that data protection-friendly encrypted identity checks for speeds of up to 160 kilometres per hour are possible without any problems. This also applies to multilane motorways. To increase the identification quota on German roads, the company from Lower Saxony also works at the moment on the development of a ground antenna. It should be inserted in the respective lanes and serve especially for the identification of IDePLATES. This reduces the distance between the RFID chip and the reading device to a minimum.



Utsch Tönnjes Europe GmbH stellt Geschäftsbetrieb ein

Muttergesellschaften führen Geschäftstätigkeiten weiter

Schönefeld, Oktober 2016. Die Utsch Tönnjes Europe GmbH gibt heute bekannt, dass der Geschäftsbetrieb mit Wirkung vom 01.11.2016 eingestellt wird. Die Geschäftstätigkeiten des Unternehmens werden durch die Muttergesellschaften Tönnjes E.A.S.T. Infrastruktur Invest GmbH in Delmenhorst und die Erich Utsch AG in Siegen weiter geführt.

Die ehemaligen Gesellschafter erklären, dass durch diese Umstrukturierung die strategischen Ziele auf dem Gebiet der Europäischen Union realisiert werden.

Für die Kunden der Utsch Tönnjes Europe GmbH gibt es keinerlei Auswirkungen hinsichtlich Lieferung und Service. Auch die MitarbeiterInnen werden alle von den beiden Muttergesellschaften übernommen und die Weiterbeschäftigung ist langfristig gesichert.

Die Niederlassungen von Tönnjes und Utsch sind auf Sicherheitskennzeichen und Identifikationslösungen für verschiedenste Fahrzeuge spezialisiert.



More than a piece of sheet metal

Motor car license plates of the future safeguard mobility

Bremen, September 2016. Motor vehicle license plates are as a daily companion a familiar sight in road traffic. Hardly any vehicle owner thinks about the small sheet metal, except when choosing a customised registration number. There is an interesting history and great potential for the future behind the licensing plate, which was introduced to Germany at the beginning of the 20th century. Where this journey may take us, shows the example of the new RFID-based registration plates of the company TÖNNJES E.A.S.T. The next generation of technically upgraded license plates offers completely new possibilities for theft protection and information, within the scope of more justified traffic monitoring or for the use of automatic barrier systems. 

The history of the license plate starts in Germany with the start of the 20th century. Traffic increased drastically and thus also the number of hit-and-run drivers. To contain this offence, the German Reich introduced in 1906 for the first time uniform license plates for motor cars, motorcycles and lorries. The licensing system in force in Germany today, was introduced in 1956. At the front side, there is a DIN test and monitoring symbol and a corresponding registration number. An innovation at the end of the 80s ensured better readability. License plates made from aluminium with a special retroflective film was used. “This is not just a matter of having any license plate. The technical possibilities with regard to protection against counterfeiting, material, printing and presentation have improved enormously”, says Olaf Renz, Managing Director at TÖNNJES E.A.S.T. 

The manufacturer from Northern Germany opens a completely new chapter with the further development of license plates with RFID chips. The chips contain an encrypted code and can be activated via a reading device. A look at the practical test at the military base Oirschot in the Dutch province of Nordbraband shows that safe identification of vehicles is possible also in case of unfavourable weather conditions such as rain, snow or fog and with dirty license plates. The test run will be continued until the end of the year and then evaluated. This development could inaugurate a new era for the history of the license plate. “At present there are different approaches for planning motor car mobility. With increasing traffic density, it becomes more and more important to install good systems against counterfeiting and for safe identification of vehicles”, describes Olaf Renz the new challenges for state and administration. The system developed by TÖNNJES E.A.S.T. is already used in countries around the globe. Apart from the Cayman Islands, Honduras and Latvia are also using the new license plate technology from Germany. 

The IDePLATE-system from Germany offers many different features. © Tönnjes E.A.S.T.



German license plate technology in the Caribbean

Cayman Islands count on innovative system from TÖNNJES E.A.S.T. 


Bremen, August 2016. The Cayman Islands situated south of Cuba explore new horizons to install an effective management system for vehicles. The IDePLATE developed by the Delmenhorst company J.H. TÖNNJES E.A.S.T. plays a key role in the implementation. As a world’s first, a complete vehicle management based on license plates with integrated RFID chip is installed. The German company is in charge to convert the entire vehicle fleet as well as the management of the group of islands together with the local authorities within three years. The new system applies to roughly 50,000 Caymanians. The Caribbean state expects this implementation to bring higher tax income, optimised traffic planning and the protection from crime in connection with vehicles requiring registration.

Turquoise sea water and white sandy beaches as far as the eye reaches: the almost 800-kilometre-long road network of the island state could hardly be nicer. Like in any country, the vehicle owners of the Cayman Islands must register their cars and motorcycles and in return they receive registration documents and license plates. The currently used system, however, has some weaknesses. On the one hand, the metallic number plates are transported to the islands with substantial delivery times. On the other hand, security elements permitting electronic management and helping to distinguish forged from authenticated license plates are missing. These problems should be solved with the implementation of the new system. Within the scope of the cooperation, the authorities receive 90,000 security license plates including integrated RFID chip and 45,000 holographic labels called IDeSTIX for the windscreen in the first step. To imprint the prefabricated IDePLATEs locally and to personalise labels, the required know-how is passed on to the administration.  A so-called number plate management system controls registration, production, storage, distribution, shipping and delivery. In addition, TÖNNJES delivers the required software as well as mobile reading devices and stationary antennae to detect and read out the passive UHF chips. 

“We see a large potential for the use of our technology in many countries of the world. Obviously, we encounter very specific framework conditions on the Cayman Islands. But exactly this goes to show how varied the application possibilities of the RFID-based license plate technology are, completely independent from the number of vehicles or size of the country”, explains Olaf Renz, Managing Director at TÖNNJES. Apart from the containment of the forging of license plates and the improvement of traffic safety, the new system for the Cayman Islands has further advantages. The shipping times of the customised plates are shortened in the future and temporary license plates should be abolished. Thanks to the automatic control of payment data, the security with regard to the revenue is ensured.

A junction on Caymen Islands that will use the technology from Tönnjes in the future. © Tönnjes E.A.S.T.



“If section control, then in the best possible way”

License plates with RFID chip from Lower Saxony significantly improve the detection quote


Bremen, June 2016. In the past year, around two and a half million traffic accidents were put on the record - 4.2 percent more than in the previous year. 305,900 persons were injured, 3.475 of them died. One of the main causes of accidents: inappropriate speed. For years, police and Ministry of Transport have been looking for possibilities to catch speeders. Stationary and mobile radar traps are only partially effective, since the locations are often known. Especially on routes, where accidents happen frequently, a new technology called “section control” should provide relief in Germany. It determines average speeds of the vehicles over a longer distance. The first installation of this type will be put into operation shortly on the federal highway 6 between Gleidingen and Laatzen in Lower Saxony. On the 2.1 kilometre, long pilot stretch there is a total of six speed cameras, which determine the drivers’ speed. After a test phase of 18 months, section control could then also be used in other federal states. However, in case of rain, snow or dirty license plates, the camera-based system quickly reaches its limits. The Lower Saxon company J.H. TÖNNJES E.A.S.T. offers now a solution with its additional RFID chip technology. This could significantly increase the detection quota of the planned section control.

“If section control, then in the best possible way”, says Dietmar Mönning, Managing Director at TÖNNJES. “Section controls are a good solution to act preventively against traffic accidents in connection with speeding. However, there is still room for improvement.” The company J.H. TÖNNJES E.A.S.T. from Delmenhorst therefore has developed with the IDePLATE, in addition to the camera-based section control, a product that ensures sure identification of vehicles in any weather. The designation IDePLATE stands here for car license plates equipped with a readable RFID transponder (radio-frequency identification). It contains a unique and unchangeable identification number that can be transferred by means of latest crypto chips in an encrypted manner. Sure, identification takes place with authorised reading devices also in case of bad weather conditions or dirty license plates. Reading is done either stationary or mobile. The IDeSTIX ensures added security - a holographic label with integrated RFID chip. This label is attached to the inside of the windscreen and cannot be removed without being destroyed in the process.

Austria had a section control already installed in 2003 on the A22 in the Viennese Kaisermühlentunnel. According to the operator Asfinag, the number of accidents decreased by around 50 percent within ten years. There were no more fatalities. The average speeds also reduced for motor cars by 10 km/h and for lorries by 15 km/h. Different from the planned test tracks in Lower Saxony, the Kaisermühlentunnel protects the Viennese section from bad weather conditions. These useful framework conditions are not offered by the test section on the B6 in Lower Saxony. A use of the additional RFID chip technology by police and Ministry of Transport is not yet planned in Lower Saxony. With an average of 121 rainy days per year in Germany, this could, however, soon prove to be a sensible addition. 

RFID-chip-technology could improve Section Control. © kichigin19 und Fotolia



More than 400 license plates are stolen on a daily basis

IDePLATEs can help remedy the situation


Bremen, May 2016. According to estimates of the Allgemeine Versicherungs-AG (ARAG), 160,000 license plates are stolen in Germany every year. This comes to an average of 400 thefts per day. A real problem for entrepreneurs and private persons and considerable extra work for the administration, since a theft has far-reaching consequences. This includes dealing with authorities and costs up to 100 for the replacement. If it is a personal license plate, the costs are even higher. Moreover, the old license plate remains blocked for five years. The company J.H. TÖNNJES E.A.S.T. from Delmenhorst has developed a solution to the problem with the IDePLATE. These are license plates with integrated passive RFID chip. It contains a unique and unchangeable identification number that can be transferred by means of encryption technology. The safe detection by authorised reading devices complicates the use of stolen license plates. The technology already used abroad could also reduce the number of thefts in Germany.

The plate thieves have different intentions. Very often the use stolen license plates for petrol theft at fuel stations or to get a flawed vehicle through the technical inspection. It would be possible to put an end to these plans by using IDePLATEs. The so-called “Third license plate”, which is found on the inside of the windscreen in form of a holographic sticker, provides additional safety. If the details of the so-called IDeSTIX do not match the ones of the actual license plate, the system detects this. “Up to now, Germany has neglected to publicly discuss this technology. Now is the right time for a debate in order not to be overtaken by systems developed abroad. Among others, the organised theft of high-grade vehicles can be combatted using the IDePLATE”, explains Dietmar Mönning, Managing Director at TÖNNJES. 

In Germany, the introduction of the technology is also conceivable through a test phase, says Dietmar Mönning with conviction. “In many states the authorities have a positive attitude towards the possibilities of the IDePLATE. In the Netherlands, a large-scale experiment is being carried out until the end of the year under the watchful eye of the local ministry of transport”, he explains. Apart from protection from theft and counterfeiting, the new development has other advantages. According to statements of the experts, automated entries and exits on company premises or in parking garages can be organised in a more time and cost-saving manner. Even during major events such as the upcoming European Football Championships in France, the security situation could be improved with IDePLATEs.  Competent authorities would be in a position to detect terroristic activities in connection with stolen vehicles at an earlier stage.  

German license plate technology on the advance

Tönnjes E.A.S.T. presents motor vehicle detection systems at Intertraffic Amsterdam 

Bremen, March 2016. From 5th to 8th April, the Germany company J. H. Tönnjes E.A.S.T. presents its tried and tested detection systems for vehicles at the Intertraffic Amsterdam. In other European countries and at international level, vehicle identification based on RFID technology (radio-frequency identification) is already in use. According to the company’s own information, it is one of the market leaders with its solutions. Core piece is a passive chip integrated in the license plate. In Amsterdam, the company presents technical details and corresponding application examples to a broad specialised public. 

At present, the forces of the Dutch army are gaining practical experience with an IDePlate, a license plate with integrated chip. The inspector of the Royal Dutch Land Forces, Lieutenant-General Mart de Kruif, praises the project as ground-breaking. Test area is one of the largest military training areas in the Netherlands. In other countries, the RFID technology for motor vehicle detection is in the testing phase or, like in Peru, is already being used nationwide. In Europe, apart from The Netherlands, Turkey and Latvia are among the most progressive. According to the Managing Directors Olaf Renz and Dietmar Mönning, there are also enquiries from Germany. “The interest, especially from large companies from the automotive and logistics industry to optimise the security of their fleets and the company area, is great. Easy and efficient solutions, on the other hand, are rare. With the IDePlate including manipulation-proof software, we offer a fully developed alternative for many application areas”, explains Olaf Renz. 

The Intertraffic in Amsterdam is the world’s largest innovation platform for mobility solutions. More than 800 exhibitors from over 40 countries present their products and services all around the traffic and transport industry. Visitors of the fair find Tönnjes E.A.S.T. in hall 10 at stand 10.218. 



Test bestätigt Wirksamkeit von RFID-Technologie zur Fahrzeugidentifikation

13. Juli 2016 – Das niedersächsische Unternehmen J.H. TÖNNJES E.A.S.T. präsentierte heute gemeinsam mit dem niederländischen Halbleiterhersteller NXP Semiconductors und dem Handelsunternehmen Kirpestein die Ergebnisse eines groß angelegten Feldversuchs mit IDePLATEs in den Niederlanden. Die Technologie zur Fahrzeugidentifikation wurde ein Jahr lang an über einhundert Militärfahrzeugen getestet. Wichtigste Erkenntnis sei nach Angaben des Unternehmens, dass Fahrzeuge mit CHIP basierter RFID-Technologie sicher identifiziert werden können. Unter den gegebenen Testbedingungen betrug die maximale Mess-Entfernungen zwischen Fahrzeug und Scanner bis zu zwölf Metern und eine verlässliche Auslesung war bis zu Geschwindigkeiten von 150 Stundenkilometern möglich. Die erzielten Werte gelten auch für ungünstige Witterungsbedingungen wie Regen, Schnee oder Nebel sowie bei verschmutzten Kfz-Kennzeichen.

Der Testlauf startete 2015 auf dem Militärstützpunkt Oirschot in der niederländischen Provinz Nordbrabant. Über einhundert Autos und Lkw wurden mit IDePLATEs und IDeSTIXs ausgestattet. Dabei handelt es sich um Kfz-Kennzeichen und Windschutzscheiben-Aufkleber mit integriertem RFID-Chip. Seitdem erfassen autorisierte Lesegeräte, die an einem Gate befestigt sind, Kennzeichen und Windschutzscheiben-Aufkleber. Für den Feldversuch wurde der neue reichweitenstarke Kryptochip UCODE DNA von NXP verwendet. Dieser passive Sicherheitschip kombiniert erstmals eine hohe Lesereichweite mit modernster Verschlüsselungstechnologie zur Chip-Authentifizierung. „Nur stationäre oder mobile Lesegeräte mit dem passenden, geheimen und kryptografischen Code können die einmalige Identifikationsnummer entschlüsseln“, betont Maurice Geraets, Geschäftsführer bei NXP. „Verschiedene Hindernisse wurden durch den Feldversuch überwunden“, erläutert Koert Kirpestein, Inhaber und Geschäftsführer von Kirpestein. „Viele Militärfahrzeuge sind mit zusätzlichen Metallverkleidungen ausgestattet, die zu Störungen bei den RFID-Antennen führen. Eine Hauptaufgabe war es sicherzustellen, dass auch diese Fahrzeuge verlässlich identifiziert werden können. Außerdem ermöglichte der Testlauf die Optimierung des Zusammenspiels von Hardware und Software.“

Nach dem erfolgreichen Test auf dem Militärgelände in den Niederlanden soll die RFID-Technologie nun auch in anderen Ländern zum Einsatz kommen: „Die erfolgreichen Ergebnisse des Feldversuchs haben bereits zur breiten Einführung der RFID-Chips in elektronische Kennzeichen bei Projekten in Südamerika geführt. Besonders der Datenschutzaspekt sowie die sinkenden Kosten für die Einführung von elektronischen Kennzeichen machen die Lösung auch für einen großflächigen Einsatz in Europa attraktiv“, ist sich Olaf Renz, Geschäftsführer bei TÖNNJES sicher. Außerdem eröffne der Einsatz von elektronischen Kennzeichen neuartige Geschäftsmodelle. Beispielsweise könnten Kosten für Parkhäuser automatisch abgerechnet werden, wenn der Fahrzeughalter einen entsprechenden Service wünscht. Ebenso lasse sich die Technologie für die manipulationssichere Fahrzeugregistrierung und Identifikation, das Verkehrsmanagement und Zugangskontrollen einsetzen.

Weitere Informationen zum Projektfileadmin/user_upload/Presse/FactSheetIDEPLATE.pdf

Militärfahrzeuge, ausgestattet mit IDePLATEs und
IDeSTIX, passieren das mit Lesegeräten ausgestattete
Gate in Oirschot

Royal Dutch Army: General de Kruif supports vehicle identification with passive RFID technology
As part of a long-term project on the training and education grounds of the Dutch Ministry of Defense, Tönnjes and Kirpestein presented RFID based solutions for vehicle identification to Lieutenant General Mart de Kruif, commanding officer of the Royal Dutch Army. Military vehicles were equipped with IDePLATEs and IDeSTIXs, license plates and windshield labels with integrated passive RFID chips. Reading units, which are mounted on a gantry, read the information stored on license plates and windshield labels. De Kruif called this solution a real-life technical innovation which provides concrete applications for military purposes.
“In these days the technical requirements of systems for a reliable and tamper proof vehicle identification increase steadily”, explains Koert Kirpestein, managing director of Kirpestein B.V., during the presentation. To meet these requirements, both companies are constantly working on the development of their technical solutions.
General de Kruif visited the installation and was introduced to all details of the application.
The Project on the training and education grounds of the Dutch Ministry of Defense is initially planned for one year. For this purpose, 100 vehicles were equipped with license plates and windshield labels, using the latest kryptochip developed by NXP Semiconductors. The so called UCODE DNA, in compliance with the highest security standards, works with an encrypted authentication – even over long distances.
Certified tests confirm the functionality of the IDePLATE under all weather conditions and at high speed. With these features it fulfills individual requirements and enables a variety of applications – these include tamper proof vehicle registration and identification, traffic management, section control, parking and access control. Countries like Peru and Latvia have already commenced using the IDePLATE.


Koert Kirpestein (Kirpestein B.V) presents the benefits and applications of the IDePLATE to Lieutenant General Mart de Kruif

Koert Kirpestein (Kirpestein B.V) presents the
benefits and applications of the IDePLATE to
Mart de Kruif 

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