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RFID: Learning the Basics and the New Exciting Applications. Shaun McGorry Executive Briefing July 9, 2009. Introduction.

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rfid learning the basics and the new exciting applications

RFID: Learning the Basics and the New Exciting Applications

Shaun McGorry

Executive Briefing

July 9, 2009

  • Radio-frequency identification (RFID): the use of an object (typically referred to as an RFID tag) applied to or incorporated into a product, animal, or person for the purpose of identification and tracking using radio waves
  • A wide variety of electronic devices such as television, radio, and wireless telephone use RF technology to transmit or receive information
  • This Presentation : outlines the basic aspects of RFID technology, gives both the advantages and disadvantages of implementing RFID, and provides the new and exciting applications how RFID is changing businesses for the better
  • Three main components : an antenna or coil, a transceiver (with decoder), and a transponder (RF tag) electronically programmed with unique information
  • Antenna : emits radio signals to activate the tag and to read and write data to it
  • Reader (interrogator) : emits radio waves in ranges from anywhere from one inch to 100 feet or more
  • RF Tag (chip) : The chip typically is capable of carrying 2,000 bytes of data or less
  • Two types of RFID tags: active RFID tags which contain a battery and can transmit signals autonomously, and passive RFID tags, which have no battery and require an external source to provoke signal transmission
how it works
How It Works
  • The transceiver is either tethered (physically attached to the data accumulator such as laptop or scale head) or it transmits data to the accumulator wirelessly
  • When an RFID tag passes through the electromagnetic zone, it detects the reader’s activation signal
  • The reader decodes the data encoded in the tag’s integrated circuit (silicon chip) and the data is passed to the host computer for processing
advantages disadvantages
  • no line of sight is required
  • the tag can stand a harsh environment
  • the capability for long read range
  • multiple tag read/write: electronic memory similar to computers or digital cameras to store information about inventory or equipment
  • ability to track people, items, and equipment in real-time
  • Reader collision: occurs when the signals from two or more readers overlap; the tag is unable to respond to simultaneous queries
  • Tag collision: occurs when many tags are present in a small area
  • Barcode tags are still much lighter, smaller, and cheaper
  • lack of security



  • Document Tracking Applications as a way to improve the management of important document files in industries like insurance and legal where the loss of such files can cause severe problems
  • For sports events, concerts, and other leisure activities, RFID systems streamline ticket issue and validation; minimize losses from ticket fraud
  • Integral part of flexible manufacturing systems
  • Postal services are paying an active interest in RFID particularly for item management (auto-routing etc.), as are logistics service providers
  • Can enable the enhanced responsiveness expected within an E-Business environment through order authorization
  • The US military is currently one of the largest users and biggest markets for RFID systems
  • Baggage Tagging: most potential within the airline industry; handle approximately 3 billion bags each year; 2% of bags get lost each year, representing 60 million missing bags; each missing bag cost the airlines as much as $200 to replace; costing the industry around $12 billion per year plus the additional problem of unsatisfied customers
interesting news
Interesting News
  • China’s Daily RFID has released a new low-cost plug-and-play reader designed for use in industrial and outdoor environments
  • $48 per unit
  • low consumption of power appealing: the 13.56MHz reader can be powered via a USB interface with a PC or a PDA
  • reader has a read range of between 50 and 100 millimeters
interesting news1
Interesting News
  • By summer 2009 Ocean City, NJ plans to replace normal payment cards with waterproof, plastic wristbands containing passive RFID inlays
  • Proof of payment while also providing a means of payment for food and parking
  • Make a trip to the beach more pleasant and convenient for the many vacationers who spend much of their summer there
interesting news2
Interesting News
  • Canada-based SkyRFID Inc., a provider of RFID-enabled automated data collection systems, has announced the release of an Automated Self Serve Library Management system
  • A full range of library services with a swipe of their RFID-enabled library cards
interesting news3
Interesting News
  • Coca-Cola will try out a new RFID-enabled self-service beverage dispenser this summer which, if successful, would create a speedy and cost-efficient format for the soft drink giant to test market new products
  • Offers customers up to 100 beverage choices and uses an RFID-based monitoring system to report preferences back to corporate headquarters
  • Tested in fast food chains
interesting news4
Interesting News
  • Versus Technology Inc., a provider of RTLS systems for the health care industry, has introduced a Hand Hygiene Compliance System which deploys RFID and infrared (IR) technology to monitor the hand-washing habits of hospital staff
  • When a staff member uses the dispenser, their badge is read by the dispenser’s device, which logs the details of the event, including time, location, and the identity of the hand-washer
  • Armed with the record of a hospital staff’s hand-washing efforts, management can spot potential hygiene issues and resolve them before problems occur
  • RFID offers far-reaching benefits to many industries with fast registration, wireless data collection, and communication abilities
  • RFID is in use all around us
  • No denying RFID’s ability to improve the efficiency of inventory tracking and management