RFID stands for “radio-frequency identification”. It is a technology where digital data is encoded into RFID tags that is then captured by a reader using radio waves.
What are RFID Systems?
RFID systems are similar to barcode systems as data from a tag is captured by a device, usually to store it in – or read from – a database. But RFID has many advantages over barcodes when used for asset tracking. RFID tags can be read without line-of-sight, unlike barcodes which must be carefully aligned with a scanner. RFID can automatically identify objects, collect data and enter information directly into a computer system with little or no intervention from humans.
How Does RFID Work?
RFID systems work through radio waves. They comprise three components:
- an RFID tag or label,
- an RFID reader,
- an antenna.
RFID tags have an integrated circuit and antenna, which transmit data to an RFID reader. The reader converts the radio waves into usable data. Information from the tags is transferred through a communications interface to a computer system, where the data is stored in a database for later use.
What are RFID Tags?
An RFID tag (or “transponder”) consists of an integrated circuit and antenna. A protective material holds the pieces together and shields them from the environment. For example, employee ID badges with RFID tags have it tag embedded between layers of plastic. RFID tags are available in many shapes and sizes and can be either passive or active.
What are passive RFID transponders?
Passive tags are the most common. They are smaller and less expensive than active tags, but must be “powered up” by the RFID reader itself in order to transmit data.
What are active RFID transponders?
Active RFID transponders have an built-in battery so they can transmit data at all times.
What are RFID Systems Used for?
RFID technology has many, many uses including:
- Inspection monitoring
- Customer loyalty cards
- Asset tracking
- Controlling access to restricted areas
- Supply chain management
- …and many other – often surprising – things!
Most applications that use barcode technology can be upgraded to a system using RFID. RFID has many advantages over barcodes: most obviously, an RFID tag can hold much far more data than a barcode, but also RFID transponders don’t get worn out or damaged in the same way as barcode labels.
Digitalquill – Experts in RFID Systems
If you think that your business can be helped by RFID systems, contact the RFID experts at Digitalquill on 01482 424402 or office@Digitalquill.com.