The Collaborative Research Centre âGentelligent Components in their Lifecycleâ deals with the development of techniques for the creation and usage of innovative mechanical components. Developing manufacturing methods which enable data storage on the component itself is one major aspect. Here an approach using micro structures on component surfaces to carry the coded information is presented. These micro structures are created by a fast- tool-servo during a longitudinal turning process. Data, that has been stored in this way, can be read out by a newly developed optical method using directed illumination. The complete data storage system is described with an emphasis on micro-structuring and the readout process.