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  • 1. POC SB 2002.3–Doc 4a.Annex 13 S37-3 Draft B UNIVERSAL POSTAL UNION Physical encoding standards Receptacle asset numbering • UPU status: none; draft of proposed update to status 0 standard S37-2 • Date of adoption at this status: 17 October 2000 • Date of approval of this version: n.a. Users are reminded that there is only one current version of any document so it is important that users verify that they have the most recent one. UPU Standards are updated in their entirety. To ensure that you have the most recent update, please refer to our Catalogue of UPU Standards on our website at www.upu.int © UPU 2002 – All rights reserved
  • 2. S37-3 Draft B Disclaimer This document contains the latest information available at the time of publication. The Universal Postal Union offers no warrants, express or implied, regarding the accuracy, sufficiency, merchantability or fitness for any purpose of the information contained herein. Any use made thereof is entirely at the risk and for the account of the user. Warning – Intellectual Property The Universal Postal Union draws attention to the possibility that the implementation of this standard may involve the use of a claimed intellectual property right. Recipients of this document are invited to submit, with their comments, notification of any relevant rights of which they are aware and to provide supporting documentation. As of the date of approval of this standard, the Universal Postal Union had not received such notice of any intellectual property which may be required to implement this standard, other than what is indicated in this publication. Nevertheless, the Universal Postal Union disowns any responsibility concerning the existence of intellectual property rights of third parties, embodied fully or partly, in this Universal Postal Union Standard. Copyright notice © UPU, 2002. All rights reserved. This document is copyright-protected by the UPU. While its reproduction for use by participants in the UPU standards development process is permitted without prior permission from the UPU, neither this document nor any extract from it may be reproduced, stored or transmitted in any form for any other purpose without prior written permission from the UPU. Requests for permission to reproduce this document for other purposes should be addressed to: Universal Postal Union – International Bureau Standards Programme 3000 Berne 15 SWITZERLAND Tel: + 41 31 350 3111 Fax: + 41 31 350 3110 E-mail: standards@upu.int Reproduction for sales purposes may be subject to royalty payments or a licensing agreement. II © UPU 2002 – All rights reserved
  • 3. S37- 3 Draft B Contents Foreword........................................................................................................................................................iv Introduction.....................................................................................................................................................v 1 Scope 1 2 Normative references....................................................................................................................................2 3 Terms and definitions....................................................................................................................................2 4 Symbols and abbreviations...........................................................................................................................5 5 Definition and allocation of receptacle asset numbers..................................................................................5 5.1 Definition.....................................................................................................................................................5 5.2 Field of application......................................................................................................................................6 5.3 Allocation of receptacle asset numbers.......................................................................................................6 5.4 Delegation of authority to issue receptacle asset numbers.........................................................................8 5.5 Allocation of receptacle asset numbers under the UPU IAC.......................................................................8 5.5.1 Case in which the UPU IAC is followed by a numeric value......................................................................9 5.5.2 Case in which the UPU IAC is followed by an issuer code........................................................................9 6 Representation of receptacle asset numbers on receptacles........................................................................9 6.1 Representation as a code 128 bar code.....................................................................................................9 6.1.1 Use of data identifier...............................................................................................................................10 6.1.2 Code 128 element width.........................................................................................................................10 6.1.3 Code 128 bar height................................................................................................................................10 6.1.4 Positioning and orientation......................................................................................................................11 6.2 Representation in human-readable form...................................................................................................11 6.3 Representation on the receptacle in other forms......................................................................................12 7 References to receptacle asset numbers in messages...............................................................................12 7.1 ISO/IEC 15418 representation of receptacle asset number references....................................................12 7.2 EDIFACT representation of receptacle asset number references.............................................................12 7.3 ASN.1 representation of receptacle asset number references..................................................................13 7.4 OCR and human-readable receptacle asset number references..............................................................13 8 Data capture and use of receptacle asset numbers....................................................................................13 8.1 Data capture.............................................................................................................................................13 8.2 Decomposition of receptacle asset numbers............................................................................................14 9 Postal receptacle attributes.........................................................................................................................14 9.1 Attribute list...............................................................................................................................................15 10 Representation of receptacle attributes.....................................................................................................16 Annex A (informative) 100 Examples of bar codes.....................................................................................................................17 A.1 Introduction...............................................................................................................................................17 A.2 Illustration of bar code for postal receptacle.............................................................................................17 A.3 Illustration of bar code for postal receptacle label for a pallet...................................................................18 A.4 Illustration of bar code for postal receptacle label for a tray......................................................................18 Bibliography..................................................................................................................................................19 © UPU 2002 – All rights reserved III
  • 4. S37-3 Draft B Foreword Postal services form part of the daily life of people all over the world. The Universal Postal Union (UPU) is the specialized institution of the United Nations that regulates the universal postal service. The postal services of its 189 member countries form the largest physical distribution network in the world. Some 6.2 million postal employees working in over 700 000 post offices all over the world handle an annual total of 430 billion letters, printed matter and parcels in the domestic service and almost 10 billion letters, printed matter and parcels in the international service. Keeping pace with the changing communications market, posts are increasingly using new communication and information technologies to move beyond what is traditionally regarded as their core postal business. They are meeting higher customer expectations with an expanded range of products and value-added services. Standards are important prerequisites for effective postal operations and for interconnecting the global network. The UPU's Standards Board develops and maintains a growing number of standards to improve the exchange of postal-related information between posts, and promotes the compatibility of UPU and international postal initiatives. It works closely with posts, customers, suppliers and other partners, including various international organizations. The Standards Board ensures that coherent standards are developed in areas such as electronic data interchange (EDI), mail encoding, postal forms and meters. UPU Standards are drafted in accordance with the rules given in Part V of the "General information on UPU standards" 10 and are published by the UPU International Bureau in accordance with Part VII of that publication. This standard may be submitted for endorsement by CEN and shall be amended only after prior consultation with CEN/TC 331 in accordance with the Memorandum of Understanding between CEN and the UPU. This document is the third version of the standard. Substantive changes are marked using margin bars. They are: − addition of numeric prefixes to support the conversion of container identifiers allocated by BIC, ICAO and IATA to data identifier 5B-compliant form; − change of "Consignia" to "Royal Mail" pursuant to the name change of that organization. IV © UPU 2002 – All rights reserved
  • 5. S37- 3 Draft B Introduction It is often useful, for both processing and transportation purposes, to be able to treat a group of postal items with common handling requirements as a single unit called a mail aggregate. This may be thought of as any set of postal items which has been physically grouped so as to permit such common handling. Examples include bundles, consignments and the content of a particular sorting machine output stacker or of a postal receptacle, such as a mailbag, tray or roller-cage. As shown in Figure 1, mail aggregates may occur at several nested levels. For example, the mail aggregate consisting of the set of postal items addressed to a particular delivery point may form part of a bundle of postal items destined for the same delivery postcode area, which may in turn be part of a mail aggregate, such as the content of a tray, to be delivered by a particular delivery agent, which in its turn may be part of a mail aggregate to be transported, in a roller-cage, to the delivery office concerned. NOTE: Figure 1 shows individual postal items, in bundles, placed in trays or boxes, in turn placed in a roller-cage. The bundles have mail aggregate identifiers on the strap or wrapping which holds them together; each tray carries both a mail aggregate identifier, printed on a removable tray label, and a fixed tray identifier (a receptacle asset number). Similarly, the roller-cage carries both a removable label with a content identifier and a fixed receptacle asset number. Figure 1: Mail aggregate nesting; aggregate identifiers and receptacle asset numbers Although this is not strictly required, it may simplify handling if mail aggregates are physically constrained to form a unit. Thus: − low level mail aggregates are frequently constrained by bands or by poly-wrapping; − intermediate level mail aggregates may be housed in trays or mailbags; © UPU 2002 – All rights reserved V
  • 6. S37-3 Draft B − these may in turn be housed in roller-cages, or stacked on pallets. In postal terminology, such physical housings are collectively referred to as (postal) receptacles. A postal receptacle is thus any device or container which may be used to physically constrain a mail aggregate in order to simplify its handling as a unit. Examples include mailbags, trays, wheeled containers (roller-cages), pallets, pallet- based containers and airfreight containers (ULDs). Road, rail and sea vehicles and containers may also be regarded as receptacles if appropriate. Postal receptacles are often handled by and exchanged between several parties, for example one or more postal operators, customers, carriers, delivery agents, customs authorities, etc. Though they represent a significant capital asset for postal operators around the world, there is currently no adequate system for tracking their exchange between parties and significant losses occur. NOTE: For example, it is estimated that European posts have acquired some 1.5 million roller-cages. Some posts can account for only 60 to 70% of these. The "missing" roller-cages represent a total investment of more than 100 million euro! By reducing asset loss from non-repatriated postal receptacles, and by minimizing the permanent loss of postal receptacles from the pipeline, the number of units in service (including stocks in reserve) could be more closely aligned to actual operational requirements. Ultimately this could enable postal operators to reduce the number of receptacles in circulation, thus reducing capital asset costs. A coherent asset management and control system that identified and tracked postal receptacles could thus offer many potential benefits, including significant cost reductions. This would require the receptacles concerned to carry individual identifiers and for these to be used, by all parties, in communications about the receptacles and their contents. NOTE 1: The need for identification can arise for a variety of reasons, including the requirement to track individual receptacles and the need to exchange service and/or service quality data, about a postal receptacle, between postal operators, their customers and service providers. NOTE 2: Communications about a postal receptacle may include delivery information, transport instructions, content and other customs information, invoicing instructions, handling constraints, etc. Given the increasing extent to which receptacles are exchanged between organizations, the identifiers used need to be globally unique. This standard fulfils that requirement. It specifies an open system of identification, accessible by any user of a receptacle. Its use is expected to: − provide the basis for an audit trail for postal receptacles; − allow postal operators to reap operational benefits; − permit improvements in postal service quality. Subject to bilateral agreement on the use of receptacle asset numbers in association with the electronic transmission of mail aggregate data, adoption of the standard will also simplify receptacle labelling procedures and the introduction of RFID-based tracking of receptacles and their contents. It is not anticipated that the standard will be applied to all types of receptacles, since different types of receptacle have different intrinsic values: − for all practical purposes, bands and poly-wrap material may be regarded as having no value. Either they are used only once (e.g. poly-wrap) or, if they are re-usable, they have an extremely low replacement value (a few cents) and are therefore treated as consumables; − mailbags and trays have a somewhat higher value (a few dollars or euro), but are extensively re-used and, because of the numbers involved, have a significant total value; − some types of receptacle (e.g. roller-cages, ULDs) have a much more significant value and are normally treated as capital assets. Receptacles falling into the second and third of the above value classes are normally subject to some level of asset or inventory control. For lower value items, this may be a statistical exercise only, but items of higher value may be subject to control on an individual receptacle basis. It is these higher value receptacles to which the standard is expected to apply. VI © UPU 2002 – All rights reserved
  • 7. S37- 3 Draft B This standard specifies a receptacle asset number for application to postal receptacles. It does so under six main headings, together with an informative Annex: 5. Definition and allocation of receptacle asset numbers: introduces the concept of receptacle asset numbers; defines their field of application; specifies how their allocation is controlled to ensure uniqueness and defines the constraints applicable to receptacle asset numbers issued under the authority of the UPU. 6. Representation of receptacle asset numbers on receptacles: specifies that receptacle asset numbers shall be represented on receptacles, both in linear bar-coded and human-readable form, and defines the manner of representation, including the required bar code symbology parameters, placement location, etc. Also identifies other permitted forms of representation. 7. References to receptacle asset numbers in messages: introduces the distinction between a receptacle asset number, attached to the receptacle it identifies, and a receptacle asset number reference, being a message- based reference to a receptacle; defines representation rules for such references. 8. Data capture and use of receptacle asset numbers: addresses the issue of data capture of receptacle asset numbers and receptacle asset number references and describes the extraction of data components from a complete receptacle asset number. 9. Postal receptacle attributes: identifies, but does not define, a number of postal receptacle attributes which might usefully be either encoded on the receptacle, along with the receptacle asset number, or exchanged in messages which use a receptacle asset number reference as access key. 10. Representation of receptacle attributes: specifies how the various attributes defined in the previous section should be represented, in particular in the case in which they are encoded on a label affixed to the receptacle. 10: Examples of bar codes: provides illustrative examples of receptacle asset number bar codes which are compliant with this standard. © UPU 2002 – All rights reserved VII
  • 8. S37- 3 Draft B Physical encoding standards – Receptacle asset numbering 1 Scope This standard specifies a mechanism for the unique identification of individual receptacles. It defines the method of construction of the identifier, referred to as the receptacle asset number, and specifies one required and a number of optional methods by which this identifier may be associated with (affixed to) the receptacle itself. The receptacle asset number is defined in accordance with the specification of data identifier number 5B, B being the data identifier category associated with container information. The standard also identifies a number of receptacle attributes, or characteristics, which it may be useful to communicate between parties making use of the receptacle concerned. A coded representation of one of these attributes – equipment qualifier – is integrated into the recommended structure of the receptacle asset number. The others are not defined in detail in this document. Precise definitions and encoding formats for them will be developed over time, as a result of practical experience of use of the standard. The definitions will be included in an appropriate reference specification, such as UPU standards S25 10 and M82 10, which serve as baseline definition documents for attributes used in postal industry communications about postal items, mail aggregates and receptacles. The application of this standard is voluntary in the sense that receptacles are not required to be individually identified. NOTE: Not all receptacles need to have a receptacle identifier. In particular, in today’s environment, mailbags and disposable trays are not normally identified explicitly – rather their contents are. Many posts are, however, starting to individually identify more valuable receptacles and this practice is expected to spread, including to trays, as the advantages of being able to individually track and control receptacle movement become more apparent. However, for postal receptacles which do carry an individual identifier, the application of this standard is strongly recommended. NOTE: Individual postal operators could define proprietary approaches for use domestically, if they so wished. However, this would almost certainly lead to increased development and maintenance costs both for the posts and their customers and service providers. It may also be difficult to guarantee that postal receptacles, identified in accordance with the (closed) proprietary system, are segregated from postal receptacles which are exchanged with other postal operators in accordance with the open system described here. The receptacle asset number, defined in accordance with this standard, is primarily intended for use in asset management applications, which may include receptacle tracking. It is not intended that it be used to replace the mail aggregate identifier1, defined in UPU standard S9 10, for the process management and tracking of the content of the receptacle. However, users of the standard may agree to its use for this purpose on a bilateral basis. NOTE: A companion to this standard, covering the allocation of aggregate identifiers in accordance with the ISO licence plate standard, is under development. It is envisaged that the resulting aggregate licence plate will, in time, replace the use of UPU standard S9. Many of the examples given in this document relate to receptacle asset numbers issued under the UPU issuing agency code (IAC). The use of this IAC is subject to registration as an issuer under UPU standard S31. The use of the examples concerned is in no way intended to pre-empt or prejudice such registration. 1 S9 is entitled Postal Receptacles. However, this is a misnomer, as the standard is actually about mail aggregates, being that part of a despatch which is contained in a particular receptacle. © UPU 2002 – All rights reserved 1
  • 9. S37-3 Draft B 2 Normative references The following normative documents contain provisions which, through reference in this text, constitute provisions of this standard. For references which mention specific version numbers or dates, subsequent amendments to, or revisions of, any of these publications do not apply. However, parties to agreements based on this standard are encouraged to investigate the possibility of applying the most recent editions of the normative documents indicated below. For references without date or version number, the latest edition of the normative document referred to applies. S31: UPU issuing agency – Assignment of issuer codes S40: Human and OCR data capture – Error detection – Algorithm for the generation and checking of an error detection code ISO 9735: Electronic data interchange for administration, commerce and transport (EDIFACT) – Application level syntax rules NOTE: ISO 9735 defines the basis for EDIFACT. This standard makes use of only one EDIFACT code list, namely code list number 8053 – Equipment Qualifier (Directory 96A) or Equipment Type Code Qualifier (Directory 99B). This code list is accessible via: http://www.unece.org/trade/untdid/d96a/uncl/uncl8053.htm. ISO/IEC 14816: Road Transport and Traffic Telematics – Automatic Vehicle and Equipment Identification – Numbering and Data Structures ISO 15394: Packaging – Bar code and two-dimensional symbols for shipping, transport and receiving labels ISO/IEC 15416: Information technology – Automatic identification and data capture techniques – Bar code print quality test specification - Linear symbols ISO/IEC 15417: Information technology – Automatic identification and data capture techniques – Bar code symbology specification – Code 128 ISO/IEC 15418: Automatic identification and data capture techniques – International specification – Data application identifiers NOTE: See application identifier and data identifier in section 3. This standard relies on and cannot be used without reference to ANSI MH10.8.2 (see below). ANSI MH10.8.2: Data identifier and application identifier standard NOTE 1: As at the date of approval of this standard, the published version of ANSI MH10.8.2 was still that dated 1995. This standard is based on an updated 2001 version, available for trial use from http://www.autoid.org/ansi_mh10sc8_wg2.htm. NOTE 2: ANSI standards may be obtained from the American National Standards Institute: 11 West 42nd Street, New York, New York 10036, U.S.A.; Tel: +1.212.642.4900; Fax: +1.212.398.0023; web.ansi.org 3 Terms and definitions A number of common terms used in this document are defined in documents referred to in Normative References and in the Bibliography. Definition of frequently used or particularly important terms as well as other terms introduced in this document are given below. 3.1 aggregate licence plate licence plate applied to a mail aggregate 3.2 application identifier numeric prefix to a data structure that defines the content, format and intended interpretation of the data NOTE: Application identifiers are specified in ISO/IEC 15418 and ANSI MH10.8.2. 3.3 bundle low level mail aggregate which is physically constrained by a band or wrapper 2 © UPU 2002 – All rights reserved
  • 10. S37- 3 Draft B NOTE: For example, a wrapped bundle of postal items to be delivered by an individual letter carrier. Note that, like mail aggregates in general, bundles may be constructed hierarchically – a bundle may be comprised of several lower level bundles, as illustrated below: Bundle 2 Higher Level Bundle 1 Bundle 3.4 code 39 symbology for the encoding of alphanumeric data, in bar-coded form, which is defined in ISO/IEC 16388 10 3.5 code 128 symbology for the encoding of alphanumeric data, in bar-coded form, which is defined in ISO/IEC 15417 3.6 consignment collection of mail, contained in receptacles, which is to be transported as a whole from a specific place of loading to a specific place of final destination. See UPU standard S32 10. 3.7 data area title human-readable text, printed close to a bar code or two-dimensional symbol, indicating the nature of the content of the bar code or symbol NOTE: A data area title indicates the nature of the bar code, not its actual data content. For example, the data area title for a bar-coded representation of a licence plate might be “Licence Plate No:”; that for a delivery postcode might be “Delivery Postcode:”. Compare this with human-readable interpretation, which reproduces critical content. 3.8 data identifier alphanumeric prefix to a data structure that defines the content, format and intended interpretation of the data NOTE: Data identifiers are specified in ISO/IEC 15418 and ANSI MH10.8.2. 3.9 data identifier category grouping of related data identifiers NOTE: Data identifiers are divided into 26 categories, labelled A to Z, each of which corresponds to a particular class of DIs. For example, B is used for container information and D for dates. Different data constructs within a category are identified by means of a numeric prefix. 3.10 equipment qualifier coded value indicating the type of the receptacle with which it is associated. See also section 9. 3.11 human-readable interpretation human-readable text, printed close to a bar code or two-dimensional symbol, which reproduces the critical content of the bar code or symbol NOTE 1: A human-readable interpretation for a bar code or two-dimensional symbol is usually provided to permit manual processing of the item associated with the bar code, or manual or OCR data capture of key data, in situations in which the bar code or symbol is unreadable, either as a result of damage or poor quality printing. NOTE 2: For linear bar codes, it is normal to include, with a human-readable interpretation, the complete content of the bar code, including the data identifier; for two-dimensional symbols, only critical data contents may be reproduced. 3.12 issuer organization authorized by the UPU to issue identifiers and other codes under the UPU’s issuing agency code 3.13 issuer code code, allocated by the UPU in accordance with UPU standard S31, to distinguish between issuers NOTE 1: According to UPU standard S31, issuer codes can be either two or three characters in length. Only the three- character form is supported by this standard. NOTE 2: Organizations assigning identifiers under the UPU’s issuing agency code are required to incorporate (one of) their issuer code(s), within the assigned value, in accordance with UPU specifications. © UPU 2002 – All rights reserved 3
  • 11. S37-3 Draft B 3.14 issuing agency organization registered with the Dutch standards institute (NEN) for the purpose of controlling the issue of licence plates in accordance with ISO/IEC 15459–1 10 3.15 issuing agency code code allocated by the Dutch standards institute (NEN) to distinguish between issuing agencies NOTE: Each issuing agency is allocated a unique issuing agency code of from one to three characters. The UPU’s issuing agency code is J. 3.16 licence plate unique identifier for a transport unit, assigned in accordance with ISO/IEC 15459–1 10 3.17 mail aggregate set of postal items which has been physically grouped so as to permit common handling NOTE: Bundles, consignments, the content of postal receptacles and the content of a sorting machine output stacker are all examples of mail aggregates. 3.18 narrow element minimum width element (bar or space) in linear bar codes, such as code 39 and code 128 3.19 narrow element dimension; X-dimension width of a narrow element 3.20 postal receptacle receptacle which is primarily intended to hold or transport postal items NOTE: A postal receptacle may contain mail and/or other postal receptacles. Examples include mailbags, trays, wheeled containers (roller-cages), pallet and pallet-based containers and airfreight containers (ULDs). Some types of postal receptacle (e.g. roller cages and ULDs) may have a residual value; others may not (e.g. disposable trays). 3.21 receptacle asset number globally unique identifier for a receptacle, allocated in accordance with this standard 3.22 receptacle asset number reference reference to a specific receptacle, made by quoting the receptacle’s receptacle asset number 3.23 registration authority organization which is empowered to register and authorize the use of a standard which requires user registration NOTE: The UPU Standards Board Secretariat is the registration authority for UPU Technical Standards. 3.24 serial number component of an identifier, allocated by the lowest level organization in the hierarchy of allocation domains under which the identifier has been generated, which uniquely identifies the entity concerned within that organization’s allocation domain. NOTE: Serial numbers are not necessarily numeric: they may be composed of a combination of numeric and/or upper case alphabetic characters. 3.25 supplier identifier globally unique identification of a supplier or other organization, constructed in accordance with the specification for data identifier number 18V. See also UPU standard S35 10. 3.26 transport unit package, intended for transportation, comprising one or more articles, wrapped or unwrapped, and when multiple articles constrained to form a unit NOTE 1: The above definition is taken from EN1572 10; ISO/IEC 15459-1 10, though applicable to transport units, contains no definition of what they are. NOTE 2: Individual mail items, bundles and mail aggregates housed in postal receptacles can all be regarded as transport units, but postal receptacles themselves are not. 3.27 universal load device receptacle which is shaped to fit within aircraft cargo and baggage holds 4 © UPU 2002 – All rights reserved
  • 12. S37- 3 Draft B 3.28 X-dimension see narrow element dimension 4 Symbols and abbreviations ANSI: American National Standards Institute CEN: European Committee for Standardization CEN/TC 331: CEN Technical Committee 331: Postal Services DI: data identifier EAN: European Article Numbering association EDI: Electronic Data Interchange NOTE: EDI covers all forms of electronic interchange of data, not only data exchanged in accordance with the EDIFACT standard (ISO 9735). EDIFACT: Electronic Data Interchange For Administration, Commerce and Trade; see ISO 9735 IAC: Issuing Agency Code IEC: International Electrotechnical Commission ISO: International Organization for Standardization NEN: Nederlands Normalisatie-instituut NOTE: NEN is the Dutch national standards institute. It is designated in ISO/IEC 15459–2 10 as the organization responsible for the allocation of issuing agency codes. RFID: Radio Frequency IDentification: acronym given to applications and systems based upon the capture of identification and other information emitted, in the radio frequency spectrum, by electronic transmitters contained in or attached to the items about which the data is captured SB: (UPU) Standards Board TSM: (UPU) Technical Standards Manual UCC: Universal Code Council ULD: universal load device UPU: Universal Postal Union 5 Definition and allocation of receptacle asset numbers 5.1 Definition A receptacle asset number is a globally unique (semi-)permanent receptacle identifier, consisting of not more than 352 alphanumeric characters, which may3 be: − associated with and applied or affixed to an individual receptacle; 2 Where possible, it is recommended that receptacle asset numbers be limited to 20 characters. However, this is not required and all users of this standard should be capable of processing receptacle asset numbers of up to 35 characters in length. 3 In particular, it is anticipated that receptacle asset numbers will not be assigned to receptacles of no, or very low, residual value. © UPU 2002 – All rights reserved 5
  • 13. S37-3 Draft B − used for applications requiring the identification of individual receptacles. NOTE 1: The receptacle asset number assigned to a particular receptacle is intended to remain assigned for the operational lifetime of the receptacle. Receptacle asset numbers assigned under the UPU IAC may, however, be replaced: − in case of a change of ownership, or major overhaul, of the receptacle; − in case the representation(s) of the originally assigned receptacle asset number, which is engraved on or affixed to the receptacle, is damaged and becomes unreadable. NOTE 2: Applications may include tracking, asset management and the electronic exchange of data about the receptacle and/or its content. This standard does not seek to specify or to limit the applications to which receptacle asset numbers may be put. 5.2 Field of application Though this standard is primarily concerned with postal receptacles, the use of receptacle asset numbers as defined herein is not limited and receptacle asset numbers may be issued to, and used to identify, any receptacle or container, whether it be a mail (postal) receptacle or not, provided that a suitable equipment qualifier for the receptacle exists. It is not required to allocate a receptacle asset number to every postal receptacle. However, where there is a need to identify postal receptacles (as opposed to, or in addition to, their content), the application of this standard is recommended. 5.3 Allocation of receptacle asset numbers The global uniqueness of receptacle asset numbers is guaranteed through use of the hierarchical structure defined, in ISO/IEC 15459-1 10 and -2 10, for the issue of licence plates to transport units and in ANSI MH10.8.2 for the issue of supplier identifiers using data identifier number 18V. This is achieved as follows: − at the highest level, a world-wide registration authority (in fact the Dutch national standards institute) licenses issuing agencies and, in accordance with ISO/IEC 15459–2, allocates each of them a unique issuing agency code (IAC), which is required to prefix every identifier issued under the issuing agency’s authority; NOTE: In particular, the Universal Postal Union (UPU) has been assigned the single character “J” as an issuing agency code on behalf of its membership. − the issuing agency may further delegate authority to authorized issuers, requiring each to structure identifiers in accordance with an issuing agency-defined specification which incorporates the use of an issuer code allocated by the issuing agency; NOTE 1: For example, the UPU delegates authority to issue identifiers to its member posts (and, possibly, other registered issuers) provided that the identifiers issued include the issuer’s UPU issuer code, allocated in accordance with UPU standard S31, and are structured in accordance with an appropriate UPU standard such as S24 10, S25 10 or S26 10. NOTE 2: There are many issuing agencies. An organization wishing to be an issuer may be registered with more than one issuing agency. If so, it will be allocated an issuer code by each issuing agency with which it is registered. It is imperative that proper correspondence is maintained – i.e. the issuer code allocated by a given issuing agency should be used with, and only with, that issuing agency’s IAC. − each authorized issuer may issue its own identifiers and/or may further delegate authority to other parties (e.g. to suppliers, label printers, customers) provided that it ensures that no two identifiers issued under its authority can be identical; NOTE 1: Issuers may choose how to achieve this guarantee of uniqueness. Normally this will either be by requiring delegated organizations to include, in their receptacle asset numbers, a unique party identifier allocated by the issuer, or by controlling the range of serial numbers (see below) which may be used by the delegated organization. NOTE 2: An organization wishing to allocate identifiers may be registered with more than one issuer. If so, it will be allocated a party identifier or serial number range by each issuer with which it is registered. It is imperative that proper correspondence is maintained – i.e. the party identifier or serial number range allocated by a given issuer should be used with, and only with, that issuer’s issuer code and the corresponding issuing agency’s IAC. 6 © UPU 2002 – All rights reserved
  • 14. S37- 3 Draft B − at the lowest level, the party responsible for the allocation of an identifier ensures uniqueness, within its own domain, by adding a serial number, of which the last three characters shall be an equipment qualifier4. NOTE 1: "Number" in this context should not be taken to imply that the value must be numeric. Alphanumeric values are permitted – indeed, all equipment qualifiers existing at the date of publication of this standard are alphabetic. NOTE 2: The equipment qualifier is included in the definition of the receptacle asset number in order to support effective handling of receptacles by type, without the need for on-line access to a database. Information about the receptacle type is particularly relevant to the determination of handling needs. For example, bags, trays and wheeled containers can be handled without the use of mechanical equipment, whereas pallet-based containers need a fork lift truck or similar device. The incorporation of this information in the receptacle asset number means that it will always accompany the receptacle, thus allowing handling decisions to be made without access to online database information. NOTE 3: The allowed values of the equipment qualifier are defined in section 9. NOTE 4: Apart from the last three characters, the issuing organization is free to define any desired internal structure to the serial number. For example, some postal operators who assign their own receptacle asset numbers may structure the serial number as a supplier code and supplier-dependent serial number; others may use an internally assigned asset number, possibly including the date of acquisition as a component. The length of the serial number shall be such that the total length of the receptacle asset number is 35 characters or less. NOTE: Where possible, it is recommended that the total length of receptacle asset numbers is limited to 20 characters. This may, however, be exceeded if necessary, provided that the limit of 35 characters is not surpassed. Users of the standard shall be able to process receptacle asset numbers which have the maximum length of 35 characters permitted by this standard, even if they normally use shorter receptacle asset numbers. Once allocated to a given receptacle, a serial number shall not be assigned to a different receptacle, by the party concerned, at least during the lifetime of the first unit and preferably for a period of at least five years thereafter. NOTE 1: The hierarchical structure defined above ensures that receptacle asset numbers assigned by different parties can never be identical: they must differ either in the IAC, the issuer code or the issuing party’s identifier. NOTE 2: To complete the guarantee of uniqueness, it is required that the allocating party does not re-use a serial number, at least during the lifetime of the receptacle to which it was last allocated. NOTE 3: To avoid any possible confusion, not least in archived records of receptacle use, users of the standard are strongly recommended to reserve used serial numbers (and thus the corresponding receptacle asset numbers) for at least five years after the receptacle to which they were originally assigned is retired from service. The complete receptacle asset number shall be obtained by concatenating the above components, in the above sequence, to form a single value. NOTE: The receptacle asset number thus comprises: − a hierarchical sequence of one or more organization identifiers, of which: − the first is an issuing agency code allocated by the Dutch national standards institute; − each subsequent one, if present, is allocated by the organization identified by the preceding one; − a serial number, allocated by the last organization in the above hierarchy, of which the last three characters are the equipment qualifier corresponding to the type of receptacle concerned. EXAMPLE: The receptacle asset number JGBAE12A4B76925-GU is issued under the authority of UPU (IAC J) issuer Royal Mail (issuer code GBA). Depending on specifications developed by Royal Mail, the balance of the identifier might5 represent: − issue by the express mail handling division (E) of Royal Mail; − that the receptacle was supplied by their supplier number 12; − that the model of receptacle is A4, version B; − and that it is the 76925th flats tray (-GU) of this model and version supplied by the supplier concerned. 4 The ISO standard for the allocation of licence plates, on which the allocation mechanism defined herein is based, does not impose any requirement for particular content of the serial number. In this standard, the serial number is required to end with the equipment qualifier, in order to ensure that the latter is always available with the receptacle. 5 It should be stressed that the example is hypothetical: at the time of drafting, Royal Mail has not published specifications as to how it plans to use receptacle asset numbers. Also, the user of a receptacle asset number would not, in general, know – or need to know – the details of its structure: see section 8.2. © UPU 2002 – All rights reserved 7
  • 15. S37-3 Draft B 5.4 Delegation of authority to issue receptacle asset numbers Where authority to assign receptacle asset numbers is delegated in accordance with the above hierarchy, the delegating organization shall: − ensure either: − that the identification code it assigns to the delegated party has not been assigned by it to any other party, or − that the range of serial numbers which may be used by the delegated party excludes any serial numbers which have been used or may yet be used, by any party previously authorized to use the same identification code, as part of a receptacle asset number for a receptacle which has in the last five years been in, or yet may come into or return to, service; NOTE: It is recommended that organization identifiers are not re-used. However, this recommendation may be ignored if it can be proven that no confusion or conflict may arise out of re-use. − satisfy itself regarding the measures taken by the delegated party to ensure the uniqueness, within its domain, of the serial number assigned; − maintain a register, including contact details, of delegated organizations and the organization identifiers and/or serial number ranges assigned to them; − either: − make this register, together with any necessary structuring information, publicly available or − provide a receptacle asset number-origin information service so that any party may determine or obtain the contact details corresponding to any receptacle asset number which has been encountered by that party. 5.5 Allocation of receptacle asset numbers under the UPU IAC This section applies only to receptacle asset numbers issued under the UPU issuing agency code. NOTE 1: The UPU has been assigned the single character “J” as an issuing agency code on behalf of its membership. It delegates authority to its member posts (and, possibly, other registered issuers), to use this IAC in conjunction with an issuer code, allocated in accordance with UPU standard S31. NOTE 2: The UPU is not the only issuing agency: other organizations, including supplier associations, private transport service providers, etc., may acquire issuing agency status and may similarly authorize their members and other organizations (which may include postal operators) to issue receptacle asset numbers in accordance with this standard. Some of the receptacles concerned may enter the postal system, provided that they meet with acceptable physical standards. NOTE 3: Receptacle asset numbers issued under other IACs are valid under this standard and all users are expected to be able to process them. This implies that: − the carrying of a receptacle asset number issued under a non-UPU IAC may not be used as a reason for refusing to handle the receptacle; − users of the standard must be able to process receptacle asset numbers which have the maximum length of 35 characters permitted by this standard, even if they normally use shorter receptacle asset numbers. In the case of receptacle asset numbers issued under the UPU issuing agency code, the IAC shall be followed either by a valid three-character issuer code, allocated in accordance with UPU standard S31, or by a numeric code, other than 0, of which the first digit indicates the number of following digits. NOTE: Under UPU standard S31, all issuers are allocated a three-character issuer code; certain issuers are also allocated a two-character issuer code. Only the three-character form may be used in receptacle asset numbers. The two-character form may not be used. 8 © UPU 2002 – All rights reserved
  • 16. S37- 3 Draft B 5.5.1 Case in which the UPU IAC is followed by a numeric value The following numeric values are supported by the present version of this standard: − 11: indicates that the following data (the serial number) consists of a numeric value, constructed in accordance with ISO/IEC 14816 format CSI1, followed by the equipment qualifier; NOTE: Format CSI1 provides for a 56-bit (17 digit) value, with 10 bits indicating the country, each able to identify up to 16,384 issuers, each able to issue service numbers in the range 0 to 4,294,967,295. − 12: indicates that the following data (the serial number) consists of a numeric value, constructed in accordance with ISO/IEC 14816 format CSI2, followed by the equipment qualifier. NOTE: Format CSI2 provides for a 48-bit (15 digit) value, with 16 bits to identify up to 65,536 globally registered issuers, each able to issue service numbers in the range 0 to 4,294,967,295. − 13: indicates that the following data is an IATA-allocated container identifier suffixed with the equipment qualifier; − 14: indicates that the following data is a BIC-allocated container identifier suffixed with the equipment qualifier; − 15: indicates that the following data is an ICAO-allocated container identifier suffixed with the equipment qualifier. NOTE: Formats 13, 14 and 15 provide for the conversion of IATA, BIC and ICAO container identifiers to a globally unique, data identifier 5B-compliant form. As and when the organizations concerned obtain their own issuing agency codes and publish their own specifications for data-identifier 5B-compliant container identifiers, these specifications should replace the use of numeric prefixes 13, 14 and 15. 5.5.2 Case in which the UPU IAC is followed by an issuer code Only the three-character form of issuer code may be used. UPU issuers may delegate authority, e.g. to their suppliers, in accordance with the hierarchical structure defined in sections 5.3 and 5.4 above. All postal operators recognized by the UPU are therefore authorized both to issue receptacle asset numbers for themselves, and to delegate issuance to their suppliers, under the UPU’s issuing agency code. 6 Representation of receptacle asset numbers on receptacles Where receptacles are assigned a receptacle asset number in accordance with this standard, this shall be represented in machine-readable form and engraved on or permanently affixed to the receptacle so that: − it can be read automatically, thus minimizing errors and data capture costs; − the same identity can be used by all parties which handle the receptacle; − each party can use the identity to access its computer files for information associated with the receptacle concerned. NOTE: If a common identity is used, all the interested parties have a common means of referring to the receptacle. This contrasts with the situation in which each party uses its own means of identification – there is then no way to exchange information about the receptacle between parties, without also exchanging identification codes and maintaining a complicated system of cross-referencing. The identity must of course be attached to the receptacle if it is to be used to allow processing information to be collected, stored and retrieved for process control purposes. 6.1 Representation as a code 128 bar code The receptacle asset number of a receptacle shall be engraved on or permanently affixed to the receptacle concerned in the form of an ISO/IEC 15417 (code 128) bar code, printed in accordance with the quality standards defined in ISO/IEC 15416. NOTE 1: Representation as a code 128 bar code ensures readability by a wide variety of commonly available scanners. It is imperative that receptacle asset numbers be easily captured by the widest possible range of users of the receptacle. The use of other representations, whilst permitted (see below), may rely on technologies which are less widely available. © UPU 2002 – All rights reserved 9
  • 17. S37-3 Draft B NOTE 2: ISO/IEC 15416 defines a standardized methodology for measuring and grading bar code symbols. The parameters for the evaluation of symbols are defined by specifying an overall quality grade for a given measurement aperture and wavelength of light used for the measurement. Values for these parameters will be defined as part of the testing phase of the standard. NOTE 3: The bar code may be engraved on the receptacle itself or may be printed on a durable label which is permanently affixed to the receptacle. NOTE 4: The use of code 39 is supported by other identification standards, such as EN1573 10, and postal operators using this standard are recommended to support the reading of receptacle asset numbers represented as code 39 bar codes, even though the printing of code 39 bar codes is not supported herein. 6.1.1 Use of data identifier As shown in the example given in section 7, the bar code representation of the receptacle asset number shall be prefixed by data identifier 5B. NOTE: The data identifier confirms that the following bar code value is a receptacle asset number and prevents the bar code from being confused with any other bar code which may be found on the receptacle. 6.1.2 Code 128 element width The X (narrow element) dimension of the code 128 bar code shall be: − between 0.33 and 0.51 mm (preferably at least 0.42 mm); NOTE: Printing or engraving bar codes with a narrow element width of less than 0.33 mm is not supported by this standard because of the need to ensure that labels can be read by automated scanning equipment at distances of up to 2 metres. However, the code 128 specification, ISO/IEC 15417, allows bar codes with an X dimension as low as 0.191 mm. Users of this standard are therefore recommended to accept receptacle asset number bar codes with X dimension down to 0.191 mm (if they can be read), even though such bar codes are not in accordance with this standard. − chosen to correspond to an integral multiple of the resolution of the printer or engraving device. NOTE 1: This maximizes bar code quality. Poor quality and high read error rates result if the bar code resolution is not properly matched to the resolution of the device used to print or engrave it. NOTE 2: The following table gives recommended values of X, as a function of some commonly used resolutions. It shows the value in both dots (second column) and the approximate equivalent in mm (third column): Device Resolution (dots/inch) X (dots) X (approx. mm) 200 4 0.51 300 6 0.51 5 0.42 600 12 0.51 11 0.47 10 0.42 6.1.3 Code 128 bar height The bar height shall be: − at least 27 mm for ULDs, pallets, wheeled containers and cages; NOTE: This is required to ensure that scanning equipment in common use is able to read the bar codes, independently of their orientation, at distances of between 500 and 2000 mm. − at least 15 mm for bags, letter trays and flats trays; NOTE: Scanning distances are expected to be lower (in the range 250 to 1000 mm) for bags and trays, and a lower bar code height may be used, especially since the use of 27mm-high bar codes may not be practical on these types of receptacle. 10 © UPU 2002 – All rights reserved
  • 18. S37- 3 Draft B − determined on the basis of code 128 symbology aspect requirements, anticipated skew and expected scanning distance for any other type of receptacle. NOTE: ISO/IEC 15417 specifies that the height of a code 128 bar code must be at least equal to 15% of the bar code length. Desired height is also influenced by the extent to which presentation of the bar code to the reader may be skewed and by the scanning distance which must be supported. 6.1.4 Positioning and orientation The code 128 bar code representation of the receptacle asset number shall be placed in a prominent and easily located position. To aid location, it is recommended that: − the bar-coded representation is repeated on every surface which may be presented to an operator or bar code reader for data capture purposes; − the area(s) in which the bar code is placed is marked in some way, e.g. by having a different colour or a coloured surround; − the bar code is placed close to the natural bottom/right edge of this marked area, with no other bar-coded information being placed below or to the right of it. When placed on the side of a receptacle, the bar code shall be oriented such that the bars are perpendicular or parallel to the natural base of the receptacle, with skew limited to a maximum of 5 degrees. NOTE: Orientation perpendicular to the base of the receptacle is recommended, as this represents the best fit between the needs of automated scanning, hand-held scanning and acquisition of the human-readable data. However, the alternative orientation (bars parallel to the base of the receptacle) is permitted for compatibility with the bar code reading systems already in use by some posts. The support of this alternative implies that posts wishing to ensure the readability of receptacle asset numbers on all receptacles which may be encountered should install bar coding reading equipment capable of reading in either orientation. 6.2 Representation in human-readable form Each code 128 bar-coded representation of the receptacle asset number of a receptacle shall be accompanied by the data area title "RECEPTACLE ASSET No." and a representation of the bar code content (including data identifier enclosed in parentheses) in human-readable form. NOTE 1: Some users of the postal receptacle may not have access to advanced computer and data acquisition technology. These users are catered for through the use of human-readable data, which is not dependent on access to a computer database. Human-readable information also provides a contingency or "fall-back" facility. NOTE 2: The above does not include any provision for the detection or correction of data capture errors. Where the human- readable representation may be used as the basis for data capture, it is strongly recommended that error protection is provided using a two character error detection code calculated and printed in accordance with UPU standard S40. These shall be placed in close proximity to the bar code, in accordance with ISO 15394: Packaging – Bar Code and Two-dimensional Symbols for Shipping, Transport and Receiving Labels. NOTE 1: It is recommended that UPU standard S26 10, which defines labels for parcels, be followed in respect of positioning of the data area title and human-readable interpretation. S26 specifies that: − the data area title shall be printed (or engraved) in 8 to 12 point font, left justified above the bar code and separated from it by a vertical space of not less than 2 mm and not more than 5 mm; − the human-readable interpretation: − shall be preceded and followed by an asterisk (*); − should preferably be followed by a two character validation check value, calculated and printed in accordance with the specification in UPU standard S40, but shall not be followed by any other information; − may contain spaces, in such a way as to group the characters into an easily readable sequence of short strings, or so as to space the characters in such a way as to appear beneath their bar code representation; − shall be printed in a font which is readable by OCR; − shall have a size of between 10 and 14 points; − shall be printed parallel to the centre line of the bar code and centred underneath it; − shall be separated from the bar code by a vertical space of not less than 2 mm and not more than 5 mm. © UPU 2002 – All rights reserved 11
  • 19. S37-3 Draft B NOTE 2: The location pattern defined in UPU standard S26 should not be used. It is reserved for use with licence plates. 6.3 Representation on the receptacle in other forms The receptacle asset number may optionally also be encoded: − in the content of a two-dimensional symbol constructed in accordance with UPU standard S28 10; − in a radio frequency identification (RFID) device, in accordance with UPU standards S20 10, S21 10, S22 10 and S23 10; and/or in any other form considered useful by the receptacle owner, provided that this does not interfere with the code 128 representation. However, parties other than the owner shall not be required, by virtue of this standard alone 6, to possess equipment capable of reading representations other than the code 128 bar code representation. 7 References to receptacle asset numbers in messages It is anticipated that receptacle asset numbers will be widely referred to in messages relating to the use of receptacles and/or about their content. This requires that references to a receptacle asset number may be represented in such messages, which may then be transmitted either electronically, from computer to computer, or using a physical support. NOTE: It is important to understand that a receptacle asset number corresponds to the identity of a physical device (a receptacle) and can only be used as a receptacle asset number in direct association with and in the presence of that receptacle. In all other circumstances, what is required is a reference to the receptacle asset number (or more exactly, to its associated receptacle). Unless otherwise explicitly stated in the message definition concerned, references to a receptacle asset number shall be represented in accordance with the following requirements. 7.1 ISO/IEC 15418 representation of receptacle asset number references When represented in ISO/IEC 15418 format, a receptacle asset number reference shall be comprised of: − the data identifier for a structured reference value, 18K, followed by − the value 5B, indicating that the reference value is that of a receptacle asset number (i.e. is structured in accordance with the specification for data identifier number 5B), followed by − the reference value itself, comprising up to 35 alphanumeric characters commencing with the IAC and ending with the equipment qualifier. NOTE: Data representation based on the use of data identifiers is recommended for use with linear bar code symbologies and is one of two representations supported by UPU standard S28 10 for use with two-dimensional symbologies. It may also be used (see below) with human- and OCR-readable character symbologies. NOTE 2: The above does not include any provision for the detection or correction of data capture or communication errors. Many symbologies, such as code 128, Data Matrix and PDF417, provide for in-built error detection or correction. Where the symbology used for representation of the data does not provide such protection, it is strongly recommended that protection be provided using a two character error detection code calculated and printed in accordance with UPU standard S40. 7.2 EDIFACT representation of receptacle asset number references Receptacle asset numbers may be incorporated in EDIFACT messages in PCI segments, or in any appropriate segments which also support the use of: − an identification code of up to 35 alphanumeric characters; − associated data elements 1131 (code list qualifier) and 3055 (code list responsible agency). 6 Other standards and/or private agreements or specifications may require the availability and use of more sophisticated data capture systems. 12 © UPU 2002 – All rights reserved
  • 20. S37- 3 Draft B For this purpose: − data element 3055 shall contain the value DAI, signifying that the identifier is encoded in accordance with ISO/IEC 15418; NOTE: The use of code value DAI to identify the ISO/IEC 15418 maintenance committee is the subject of an application, to the EDIFACT maintenance committee, for the allocation of DAI as a code list 3055 value. This application has not yet been accepted and the use of value DAI is therefore provisional and subject to change. − data element 1131 shall contain the value B5, signifying that the data identifier concerned is category B, definition number 5; NOTE: The above referenced application to the EDIFACT maintenance committee proposes that, for data element 3055 value DAI, data element 1131 should, for data constructs based on the use of data identifiers, commence with the data identifier category (B in this case), with the two following characters being derived from the construct number (5 in this case). Since the application has not yet been accepted, the use of value B5 is provisional and subject to change. − the receptacle asset number itself shall be placed in the identification field (data element 7102 in the case of the PCI segment). 7.3 ASN.1 representation of receptacle asset number references The present version of this standard does not specify an ASN.1 representation of receptacle asset numbers. Any user of the standard requiring such a representation is invited to contact the secretariat of the UPU Standards Board, so that an appropriate representation may be defined and added to the standard. 7.4 OCR and human-readable receptacle asset number references References to receptacle asset numbers which are printed as part of human- and/or OCR-readable messages shall comprise: − an indication that the data represented is a reference to a receptacle asset number; − the reference value itself, comprising up to 35 alphanumeric characters commencing with the IAC and ending with the equipment qualifier. NOTE 1: The fact that the data value is a reference to a receptacle asset number can be indicated in different ways. For example: − in human- and OCR-readable form, as a character string – e.g. “receptacle asset number reference”; − by using the ISO/IEC 15418 or EDIFACT representation (see above) in which the receptacle asset number value is prefixed with the data identifier or EDIFACT segment name for a receptacle asset number reference; − by position, for example, in a particular column of a table or in a particular box on a form. NOTE 2: The above does not include any provision for the detection or correction of data capture or communication errors. Where the reference may be used as the basis for data capture, it is strongly recommended that error protection be provided using a two-character error detection code calculated and printed in accordance with UPU standard S40. 8 Data capture and use of receptacle asset numbers 8.1 Data capture Receptacle asset number capture may be effected by any appropriate means. Care shall be taken to ensure: − that the captured data is correct (i.e. that the value captured is correct); NOTE: That is, care should be taken to protect against data capture errors. This may be particularly important where data is captured from representations (such as human-readable printing) which have no in-built error detection mechanisms. − that any processing action executed is applied to the receptacle from which the receptacle asset number was captured, and not to any other receptacle. © UPU 2002 – All rights reserved 13
  • 21. S37-3 Draft B NOTE: Particularly in the case of RFID capture, there is a risk that the captured receptacle asset number is not that of the receptacle under consideration, but that of another receptacle which happens to be in the vicinity of the radio antenna. 8.2 Decomposition of receptacle asset numbers In principle, the captured receptacle asset number is intended for use only as an identifier which serves as an access key for the look-up of data held in a computer-based database or communicated in an electronic message. For such use, decomposition of the receptacle asset number value is not necessary. However: − the last three characters of a receptacle asset number or receptacle asset number reference indicate the equipment qualifier and can be extracted and used by applications which need this information; − the initial one to three characters comprise the issuing agency code and can be extracted and used as needed. NOTE: The IAC may, for example, need to be extracted if it is required to determine the owner of a receptacle for which neither origin nor processing instructions are available. The length of the IAC is indicated by the first character. If this is: − A-J, the IAC consists of a single character; − K, the issuing agency is a sovereign state. The IAC consists of three characters, of which the two after the K represent the ISO 3166-1 10 two-character country code of the state concerned; − L-U, the IAC consists of two characters; − V-Z, the IAC consists of three characters; − numeric, the issuing agency is EAN/UCC. The IAC consists of a single character. In the case of receptacle asset numbers issued under the UPU IAC (J), the IAC is followed either by: − a three-character UPU issuer code, allocated in accordance with UPU standard S31 (and which therefore must commence with an alphabetic character), or − a non-zero numeric format code, of which the first digit specifies the number of following digits. In the first case, the identity of the issuer may be determined by reference to the S31 code list, which is published on the UPU world-wide-web site under URL http://upu.int, menu option Standards/Standard Code lists. In the second case, the numeric value, which should be one of those supported by this standard, defines how the remainder of the receptacle asset number can be decomposed. Supported values are defined in section 5.5.1. Further decomposition can only be performed by reference to the appropriate specifications of the issuing agency or, in the case of the UPU, the issuer concerned. NOTE: Further decomposition should be required only on an exceptional basis. If it is necessary and the relevant specifications are not to hand, the issuing agency (or UPU issuer) should be contacted directly. 9 Postal receptacle attributes This section identifies a number of receptacle attributes which might usefully be either represented on the receptacle together with the receptacle asset number, or exchanged electronically in association with a receptacle asset number reference. With the exception of equipment qualifier, an encoded representation of which is incorporated in the definition of the receptacle asset number, these attributes are not defined in detail in this document. Precise definitions and formats shall be developed over time, as the result of practical experience in the application of the receptacle asset number, and will be the subject of a reference specification such as, or similar to, UPU standard M82 10 or S25 10. NOTE: Reference specifications, such as UPU standard S25, define attributes for use in a range of applications and may be used as the baseline definition document for all attributes used in the applications and industry concerned. 14 © UPU 2002 – All rights reserved
  • 22. S37- 3 Draft B 9.1 Attribute list date of manufacture: date of manufacture of the receptacle, expressed in the form yyyymmdd. external dimensions: external height, width and depth of the receptacle, expressed as three values in mm. If the receptacle has a door, the side containing the door shall be regarded as the front; if not, the front shall be chosen such that width is less than or equal to depth. gross weight: maximum permissible weight of the receptacle and its contents, expressed in kg. tare weight: empty weight of the receptacle, expressed in kg. internal dimensions: internal height, width and depth of the receptacle, expressed as three values in mm, together with an indication of whether or not access7 is restricted. NOTE: See external dimensions for distinction between width and depth. manufacturer: name or data identifier number 18V identification code of the manufacturer of the receptacle. NOTE: Data identifier number 18V defines a system of organization identifiers based on a hierarchical system similar to that used for receptacle asset numbers. The use of this data identifier in a UPU issuing agency context is defined in UPU standard S35 10. owner: name or data identifier number 18V identification code of the receptacle owner. NOTE: In many instances, it is expected that the owner will be the issuer whose issuer code follows the IAC in the receptacle asset number. However, this may not be the case if the receptacle changes hands after the receptacle asset number is assigned. equipment qualifier: coded value indicating the type of receptacle. NOTE: This information is incorporated into the receptacle asset number itself and can normally be extracted from the receptacle asset number value. It is defined as a separate attribute: − for reasons of logical consistency; − for use in situations in which it is required to indicate the type of a receptacle, without actually indicating the receptacle asset number; − for use in cases in which the attribute relates to a receptacle for which no receptacle asset number has been allocated. The following values of equipment qualifier are supported: − any three-character value taken from UN/EDIFACT (ISO 9735) code list number 80538; − any two-character value taken from UN/EDIFACT code list 8053, preceded by a dash (-) character; − any single character value taken from UN/EDIFACT code list 8053, preceded by two dash (-) characters. NOTE: Code list 8053 defines codes of from 1 to 3 characters in length. Values of less than 3 characters are here left padded with dash (-) characters to permit extraction of the equipment qualifier value from receptacle asset numbers. If no padding were used, it would be impossible to determine whether the 8053 code was one, two or three characters long. NOTE 2: Code list 8053 defines many different values. Those likely to be commonly encountered in the context of receptacle asset numbers include: Receptacle Type Equipment Qualifier Bag BG Cage (pallet based) CG 7 Access limitations, such as constraints imposed by a receptacle door or by internal support rails designed for particular types of tray, are for further study. 8 EDIFACT code lists depend on the EDIFACT Directory which is in use. In this context, the use of the code list associated with Directory 99B or later is assumed. Earlier code lists should be compatible, but may not include some recent codes (e.g. the Directory 96A code list does not include values AG-AP defined in Directory 99B). © UPU 2002 – All rights reserved 15
  • 23. S37-3 Draft B Receptacle Type Equipment Qualifier Container CN Flats Tray GU Letter Tray PU Pallet PA Refrigerated Container AM Unit Load Device UL service history: history of repairs to and maintenance or inspection of the receptacle. NOTE: This may be needed, for example, to satisfy safety legislation. usage constraints: constraints on the use of the receptacle, including: − number of units which can be stacked on top of one another; − prohibitions, e.g. not suitable for foodstuffs; − safety limitations, e.g. is it flame retardant. usage history: history of usage of the receptacle. NOTE: This may be needed, for example, to satisfy safety legislation and/or to facilitate the execution of inspection and preventative maintenance procedures. value of receptacle: acquisition or replacement cost of the receptacle, with currency code. version/model: model type and version number of the receptacle. NOTE: Depending on the issuer’s specifications, this may have been incorporated into the receptacle asset number itself. However, other parties may not have access to these specifications and would not, in general, be able to extract these data from the receptacle asset number. Hence, if needed, these data should be provided separately from the receptacle asset number. weather resistance: indication of the extent to which the receptacle may be used outdoors without damage to itself and its contents by the elements. 10 Representation of receptacle attributes With the exception of equipment qualifier, which forms part of the receptacle asset number, this specification does not require that receptacle attributes described in section 9 are represented on the receptacle. If such representation is desired, it is recommended that: − Bar-coded data should be identified by the use of appropriate data identifiers and formatted in accordance with the appropriate specifications in ANSI MH10.8.2; − any other bar code information (which shall be printed in the area above the receptacle asset number bar code if this is printed with the bars perpendicular to the receptacle base; to the left of the receptacle asset number if this is printed with bars parallel to the receptacle base) should have the same orientation as the receptacle asset number bar code; − any other human-readable information on the label should be printed or written parallel to the bottom edge of the label (i.e. with the same orientation as the human-readable print-out of the receptacle asset number). 16 © UPU 2002 – All rights reserved
  • 24. S37- 3 Draft B Annex A (informative) 100 Examples of bar codes A.1Introduction This section is non-normative. It provides illustrative examples of bar codes and possible receptacle labels containing receptacle asset numbers. A.2Illustration of bar code for postal receptacle Mail Receptacle Bag, Tray, Wheeled Container, Pallet, ULD Data Title Code 128 Status ‘Fixed’ Barcode Unique Identity Can be changed only through the original RECEPTACLE ASSET No identifier allocation process *(5B) J GBA 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 - PA* <X7#> Data Issuing Issuer Serial Receptacle Identifier Agency Code Code Number Type Code RECEPTACLE ASSET NUMBER Gross weight Manufacturer Service History Internal and external dimensions Usage History Date of Tare Manufacture Weight Receptacle Usage Type Receptacle Constraints Compatibility Value Receptacle Weather Owner Asset Number Resistance Reference Model / Version OPTIONAL DATA © UPU 2002 – All rights reserved 17
  • 25. S37-3 Draft B A.3Illustration of bar code for postal receptacle label for a pallet RECEPTACLE ASSET No *(5B) J GBA 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 - PA * <X7#> A.4Illustration of bar code for postal receptacle label for a tray RECEPTACLE ASSET No *(5B) J GBA 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 - P U* <EO#> 18 © UPU 2002 – All rights reserved
  • 26. S37- 3 Draft B Bibliography This annex provides full reference and sourcing information for all standards and other reference sources which are quoted in the above text. For references which mention specific version numbers or dates, subsequent amendments to, or revisions of, any of these publications may not be relevant. However, users of this standard are encouraged to investigate the existence and applicability of more recent editions. For references without date or version number, the latest edition of the document referred to applies. It should be stressed that only referenced documents are listed here. UPU documents NOTE: UPU documents are available from the UPU International Bureau: Weltpoststrasse 4, Case Postal, CH 3000 Berne 15, SWITZERLAND; Tel: +41.31.350.3111; Fax: +41.31.350.3110; URL: http://www.upu.int [1] General information on UPU standards [2] UPU EDI Message Development Guide NOTE: The Message Development Guide, a companion volume to the UPU Technical Standards Manual, covers the use of EDI in the UPU environment. Divided in M-series standards, it defines the conventions used; the data model and associated entities, attributes and relationships (data constructs); the messages in which these are used and the circumstances of use of each message (the message exchanges, or data flows). [3] M82: Attribute definitions NOTE: Part of the Message Development Guide 10, UPU standard M82 provides a central repository of the definitions of attributes used in postal EDI messages. [4] S9: Postal receptacles NOTE: S9 is a data construct definition which defines the structure of an identifier for the content of postal receptacles within postal despatches. It is, in fact, mis-named, since it actually defines a dynamic identifier for the content of a receptacle (i.e. for a mail aggregate), rather than a (fixed) identifier for the receptacle itself. This (mail aggregate) identifier is used both to label receptacles and to refer to receptacle contents in EDI messages such as PREDES (see the UPU Message Development Guide 10). [5] S20: RFID: Identification and marking using radio frequency identification technology: Reference architecture and terminology NOTE: S20 defines the reference architecture for the use of radio frequency devices in the postal environment. [6] S21: Data presentation in ASN.1 NOTE: S21 is a data construct structuring standard. It defines the approach to the use of ASN.1 for the encoding of data. It is used for the representation of data both in radio frequency devices and in the form of two-dimensional symbols printed on postal items and supporting documents. [7] S22: Identification and marking using radio frequency identification technology: System requirements and test procedures NOTE: S22 defines the functionality, environmental and operating parameters for radio frequency identification (RFID) devices. [8] S23: Radio frequency identification (RFID) and radio data capture (RDC) systems – Air interfaces: Communications and interfaces NOTE: S23 defines common communication protocols for radio frequency identification (RFID) devices. [9] S24: Representation of postal information using data identifiers NOTE: S24 defines a general architecture for the definition of data constructs, including identifiers, for the representation of information about postal items. It provides the basis for this standard. © UPU 2002 – All rights reserved 19
  • 27. S37-3 Draft B [10]S25: Data constructs for the communication of information on postal items, batches and receptacles NOTE: S25 defines a set of data constructs which may be used in bar codes, two-dimensional symbols, RFID devices, etc. It includes licence plates and uses the mechanisms defined in this standard as the basis for defining the data identifier-based representation of data constructs. [11]S26: Licence plates for parcels NOTE: S26 specifies UPU application of the licence plate standard for the identification of parcels. [12]S28: Communication of postal information using two-dimensional symbols NOTE: S28 describes the use of two-dimensional digital indicia to convey postal information in the form of symbols printed on postal items, on item or receptacle labels and on accompanying documentation. [13]S32: Postal consignments [14]S35: UPU issuing agency – Assignment and use of organization identifiers ISO standards NOTE: ISO standards are available from national standards institutes or from the International Organization for Standardization (ISO): 1, rue de Varembé, Case postale 56, 1211 Genève 20, SWITZERLAND; Tel: +41.22.749.0111; Fax: +41.22.733.3430; http://www.iso.ch [15]ISO 3166–1: Codes for the representation of names of countries and their subdivisions – Part 1: Country codes [16]ISO/IEC 15459–1: Information technology – Unique identification of transport units – Part 1: General [17]ISO/IEC 15459–2: Information technology – Unique identification of transport units – Part 2: Registration procedures NOTE: Covers the allocation of issuing agency codes, which are used as part of the hierarchical mechanism which ensures the global uniqueness of licence plates. [18]ISO/IEC 16388: Information Technology – Automatic identification and data capture techniques – Bar code symbology specifications – Code 39 CEN standards NOTE: CEN standards may be obtained from national standardization institutes of CEN member states, or from: rue de Stassart 36, 1050 Brussels, BELGIUM; Tel: +32.2.550.0811; Fax: +32.2.550.0819; http://www.cenorm.be [19]EN1556: Bar coding – Terminology NOTE: Defines a large number of terms which are used in other standards relating to bar coding. Some of these terms are used in this standard. [20]EN 1572: Bar coding. Unique identifier for transport units NOTE: European standard which preceded the definition of ISO/IEC 15459–1 10 and 2 10. [21]EN1573:1996 – Bar coding – Multi industry transport label 20 © UPU 2002 – All rights reserved

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