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Revolutionary smart labels set to transform global parcel tracking
Thu, 1st Feb 2024

A revolutionary technology that allows for real-time tracking of parcels worldwide is set to redefine the logistics industry. Printed Energy, funded by the St Baker Energy Innovation Fund (StBEIF), has joined forces with California-based direct-to-satellite company eSAT Global to develop environmentally sustainable battery-powered smart labels. This technology, predicted to be widely available by 2025, leverages satellite connectivity to let users track their goods with unparalleled accuracy.

These smart labels will utilise printed batteries manufactured by Printed Energy, tapping into eSAT Global's expertise with GEO satellite technology and cellular networks. Trevor St Baker AO, Chairman of Printed Energy, highlighted the primary obstacle to the expected uptake of innovative smart labels. He stated it was the "lack of battery technologies that could be produced reliably and cost-effectively at scale."

He added, "By combining the know-how of Printed Energy's environmentally friendly, printed battery technology and eSAT Global's proprietary GEO satellite technology and cellular networks, we believe we can overcome current barriers to widespread adoption and bring this product into circulation by 2025."

St Baker indicates that this enterprise presents an opportunity to minimise environmental impact and reduce waste by optimising business supply chains. "By enabling businesses to track and optimise their supply chains, we can help to reduce waste and minimise environmental impact," said St Baker. 

Rick Somerton, President and CEO of eSAT Global, expressed his confidence that the smart labels will usher in a new era of possibilities. He remarked: "This partnership is a game changer for the logistics industry. We are creating smart labels that can track valuable packages virtually anywhere on Earth, even in remote locations beyond cellular reach."

The collaboration between Printed Energy and eSAT Global is already in full swing, with a Memorandum of Understanding signed in 2024 and efforts to explore market opportunities on the go. Printed Energy's cutting-edge Arizona-based facility mass produces products comprising printed batteries and electronics on the same surface, negating the need for wires.

According to Printed Energy CEO George Linscott, this signature manufacturing approach makes them ideally suited for powering smart labels and complements eSAT's satellite technology. "They are lightweight, durable, and environmentally friendly, providing long-lasting power without the harmful drawbacks of traditional batteries. This partnership allows us to scale our technology and make a significant impact on the future of global logistics," he added.

The smart labels offer exceptional advantages. They have connectivity in remote areas via eSAT Global's satellite technology and utilise long-lasting Printed Energy's environmentally friendly and recyclable batteries. The labels are equipped with sensors that monitor temperature, humidity and other environmental conditions. Enhancing supply chain visibility becomes practical with businesses able to track their valuable packages in real-time. This bolsters product safety and efficiency, paving the way for a more secure, sustainable, and efficient logistics industry.