- Demand expected to jump for RFID tags
Military and Aerospace Electronics, Vol. 17, No. 7, July
2006, pp. 38.
Manufacturers built more than 1.3 billion radio-frequency-identification
(RFID) tags in 2005, and by 2010, that figure will soar to
33 billion, reports market researcher In-Stat in Scottsdale,
Ariz. "By far the biggest RFID segment in coming years will
be supply-chain management." says Allen Nogee, In-Stat analyst.
"This segment will account for the largest number of tags/labels
from 2005 through 2010. Wal-Mart, the world's largest retailer,
has spurred this projected growth by mandating that its top
100 (and, later its top 300) suppliers begin to use RFID:'
The U.S. Department of Defense (DOD) also is expected to help
drive RFID production over the next four years.
- Enabling RFID in retail
Computer, Vol. 39, No. 3, Mar. 2006, pp. 25-30.
The past two years have witnessed an explosion of interest
in radio-frequency identification and supporting technologies,
due primarily to their rapidly expanding use in tracking grocery
products through the supply chain. Currently such applications
monitor store-keeping units (SKUs) rather than individual
goods, as the relatively high cost of RFID deployment and
the very low profit margin of supermarket products make item-level
tagging impractical. Yet, economic and technical concerns
aside, it is easy to envision a supermarket in which each
item is tagged with an RFID label and all shopping carts feature
RFID readers. The carts could potentially include onboard
computers that recognize products placed inside and that display
information and promotions retrieved wirelessly from the system
back end. RFID-enabled smart phones, which are commercially
available today and becoming increasingly popular, could carry
out the same function. Item-level deployment of RFID technology
would also allow for quick checkout aisles that scan all products
at once and thus eliminate queues, which are consistently
reported as one of the most negative aspects of supermarket
shopping. A simple extension of this system would be to embed
RFID devices in consumers' loyalty or frequent-shopper cards
to identify individuals. This could expedite system login
and charge the shopping cost directly to the customer's account
at the point of sale-unless removed at the POS, item-level
tags will inevitably follow the consumer home. This scenario
undoubtedly raises numerous privacy concerns.
- Ethical considerations and proposed
guidelines for the use of radio frequency identification: especially
concerning its use for promoting public safety and national
Amber McKee Anderson* and Vladimir Labay.
Science and engineering ethics, Vol. 12, No. 2, Jan 2006,
Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) is quickly growing
in its applications. A variety of uses for the technology
are beginning to be developed, including chips which can be
used in identification cards, in individual items, and for
human applications, allowing a chip to be embedded under the
skin. Such chips could provide numerous benefits ranging from
day-to-day convenience to the increased ability of the federal
government to adequately ensure the safety of its citizens.
However, there are also valid concerns about the potential
of this technology to infringe on privacy, creating fears
of a surveillance society. These are concerns that must be
addressed quickly, with sensitivity to individual interests
and societal welfare, allowing humanity to reap the benefits
of convenience and safety without paying an unacceptable price
in the loss of privacy. (Author abstract)
- Increasing security in the supply chain
with electronic security markers
Prod.Image Secur., Vol. 10, No. 6, Nov.-Dec. 2006
As counterfeiting increases, smart electronic security markers
using radio frequency identification technology (RFID) is
emerging as a valuable weapon. DNA Technologies, USA, has
estimated that counterfeiting has cost the US economy 750,000
jobs and US industry USD200bn in lost revenues. Counterfeiting
occurs at all levels of the supply chain but is most prolific
at the product stage. Brand name clothing, pharmaceuticals
and electronics are the most commonly counterfeited items.
Existing anti counterfeiting technologies are either overt
which are visible to the naked eye or covert which are invisible.
Overt technologies include optical variable inks and tamper
proof packaging. Covert technologies include UV or infrared
(IR) components and nanotexts. RFID based anti-counterfeiting
markers are inserted into a product and can be tracked at
all levels of the supply chain. Each marker is specific to
an individual product and cannot be modified. Product authentication
can be carried out either on or off a network. EPCglobal Inc.
is developing an item level on network authentication system
called Electronic Product Code (EPC). Off network authentication
systems rely on using public key infrastructure (PKI) technology
to programme a unique electronic signature onto an RFID, which
can then be read and authenticated. (1 fig, 5 ref)
- Initial clinical evaluation of a handheld
device for detecting retained surgical gauze sponges using radiofrequency
Alex Macario, Dean Morris and Sharon Morris.
Archives of surgery (Chicago, Ill.: 1960), Vol. 141, No.
7, Jul 2006, pp. 659-662.
HYPOTHESIS: A handheld wand-scanning device (1.5 lb, battery
powered, 10 x 10 x 1.5 in) has been developed to detect commonly
used surgical gauze sponges, which have been tagged with a
radiofrequency identification (RFID) chip. We tested the hypothesis
that this wand device has a successful detection rate of 100%,
with 100% specificity and 100% sensitivity. DESIGN: Prospective,
blinded, experimental clinical trial. SETTING: Stanford University
Medical Center, Stanford, Calif. PATIENTS: Eight patients
undergoing abdominal or pelvic surgery. INTERVENTIONS: Eight
untagged sponges (1 control per patient) and 28 RFID sponges
were placed in the patients. Just before closure, the first
surgeon placed 1 RFID sponge (adult laparotomy tape; 18 x
18 in, 4-ply) in the surgical site, while the second surgeon
looked away so as to be blinded to sponge placement. The edges
of the wound were pulled together so that the inside of the
cavity was not exposed during the detection experiments. The
second (blinded) surgeon used the wand-scanning device to
try to detect the RFID sponge. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: A successful
detection was defined as detection of an RFID sponge within
1 minute. We also administered a questionnaire to the surgeon
and nurse involved in the detections to assess ease of use.
RESULTS: The RFID wand device detected all sponges correctly,
in less than 3 seconds on average. There were no false-positive
or false-negative results. CONCLUSIONS: We found a detection
accuracy of 100% for the RFID wand device. Despite this engineering
success, the possibility of human error and retained sponges
remains because handheld scanning can be performed incorrectly.
- Item level RFID market sizes and growth
report: item level tagging is happening faster than many realise
USINGRFID, 17 July 2006, Vol. , No. , 2pp 2006
200m item level tags are being used in 2006, mainly for clothing,
books and drugs, according to IDTechEx, which predicts a 2007
market value of USD11bn rising to USD26bn in 2016. Anticipated
sales of item level radio frequency identification (RFID)
applications and markets in 2006 are drugs with 20m, library,
laundry and apparel with 65m, pallets and cases with 500m,
cards with 285m, tickets and secure documents with 56m, air
baggage with 85m, livestock with 50m, car clickers with 46m,
passports with 24m, and manufacture health, vehicles and miscellaneous
with 159m. RFID increases clothing sales by ensuring shelves
are not left empty. Clothing retailer Marks and Spencer will
be tagging parts of suits separately to ensure mix and match
sizes can be replenished in good time. Essex County Council
will use RFID tags in all its libraries. A BGN book store
in the Netherlands has tagged every item and Pfizer is tagging
every unit of a popular drugs sold in the USA. Average item
level tag price in 2006 is USD0.40, compared with USD0.18
for tags for pallets and cases. HF is the preferred frequency
for item level tagging, other possibilities include near field
UHF tags, printed thin film transistor circuits, printed electronics
and surface acoustic wave devices. (www.smartlabelseurope.com)
- New Tech Takes a 'Toll'
Security, Vol. 43, No. 12, Dec. 2006, pp. 54-55.
There's a shift in the way enterprises view access controls,
security management and life safety. While cards and readers
continue to pull heavy duty, more often chief security officers
center on the power of databases, security video and analytics.
Another business trend: the convergence of physical access
control with financial and transaction processes that support
business bottom lines. And nowhere are these changes more
visible than in operations that involve vehicles. Tollways
in many states now offer long-range radio frequency identification
(RFID) "tags" for vehicles so that cars and commercial vehicles
can access the tollway without stopping while also paying
for the privilege. Less sophisticated RFID systems act as
the access control into office building garages and gate-guarded
communities. Some healthcare and government buildings now
use security video connected to license plate recognition
to permit access.
- Prairie Trails deploys wireless RFID
Advanced Technology Libraries, vol.35, no.5, pp.8-9, Vol.
, No. , May 2006, pp. .
Checkpoint Systems, Inc. has announced the successful installation
of its radio frequency identification (RFID) based Intelligent
Library System (ILS) at the Prairie Trails Public Library,
Illinois; the first known totally wireless RFID system in
a US library. The wireless network was developed by Checkpoint,
in association with a specialist in wireless technology, to
design a system that has worked flawlessly since its installation.
The wireless system provides the library with the flexibility
of moving its self-check units to the most convenient areas
of the building, even if those locations change over time.
DiscMate, Checkpoint's system for securing and circulating
CDs and DVDs, is seamlessly integrated into its RFID-based
integrated library system (ILS). (Quotes from original text)
- Radio Frequency Identification (RFID)
Performance: The Effect o f Tag Orientation and Package Contents
Robert H. Clarke, Diana Twede, Jeffrey R. Tazelaarl and Kenneth
Packaging Technology & Science.Vol.19, Vol. , No. , pp. 45-54.
Jan.-Feb. 2006, no. 1.
The objective of this research was to determine the relationship
between different product types and tag orientations on the
readability of RFID tags on shipping containers in a palletload
that is driven through a portal type reader. This research
finds that the content of packages can dramatically reduce
the read rate. Only 25% of the tags on shipping containers
containing water filled bottles could be read. Rice filled
jars had a higher read rate (80.6%). Even empty boxes did
not have a 100% read rate. For the variables without appreciable
package contents, only 74-79% of loads had all of their tags
read. The orientation of the tag does make a difference, especially
when coupled with a filled package between it and the reader
antennae. Tags facing outwards, towards the reader antennae,
had the highest likelihood of a successful read. When tags
for the boxes of water filled bottles were all facing downwards,
no tags were read. Supply chain managers need to understand
these limitations of the technology and find ways to overcome
them before RFID can be successfully implemented in supply
- RFID and printed electronics: industry
analysts forecast the continuing growth of RFID to be USD10bn
in a decade
Ink World, Vol. 12, No. 5, May 2006, pp. .
Radio frequency identification (RFID) and printed electronics
technology is forecast to grow to USD10bn in the next 10y
and it is already used in road toll tags and exhibition security
tickets. Wal-Mart, USA, and other major retailers are requiring
the RFID tagging of pallets, and this is regarded as a step
towards ultimate item-level tagging. Such systems are being
trialled in Germany and Dubai. Further developments include
refrigerators that recognise expired foods and automatically
reorder produce and washing machines that recognise clothing
characteristics. A major obstacle is the unit cost of tags.
An adhesive tag currently costs 7-10c, which is acceptable
for a pallet but excessive for an individual pack. Ink manufacturers
are expected to help bring unit costs down, particularly by
supplying silver ink used to print antennas. Visa, MasterCard
and American Express are expected to require more than 4.5bn
RFID cards. China has a forecast requirement for 1bn national
ID cards. Item labels are expected to be worth USD10.85bn
by 2016 while item tags are expected to be worth USD5.5bn.
Sun Chemical, USA, has worked with companies, including formulators
and OEMs, to overcome barriers to growth. Markem has developed
RFID solutions that are purpose built for production lines
and the distribution centres. Other players include Poly IC,
Paralec, XINK, OrganicID and InkSure Technologies.
- RFID technical tutorial
Dale R. Thompson.
Journal of Computing Sciences in Colleges, Vol. 21, No. 5,
May 2006, pp. 8-9.
Radio frequency identification (RFID) uses radio frequency
signals to automatically identify objects. RFID is used to
pay for gas without going into the store, in automobile immobilizer
systems to prevent theft, in toll road systems to automatically
pay tolls without stopping, in animal identification, in secure
entry cards, and in the supply chain to manage the flow of
pallets, cases, and items. Most media accounts of RFID are
actually about one form of RFID the electronic product code
(EPC) system used by retailers to manage the supply chain.
EPC has standardized chip designs and protocols that have
enabled the mass production of low-cost passive RFID tags.
EPC provides identification of the product to which the EPC
tag is attached like a barcode, except that it can be read
at a distance and does not require line-of-sight aiming.
- RFID Technology and Applications
B. Nath, F. Reynolds and R. Want.
IEEE Pervasive Computing, Vol. 5, No. 1, Jan.-Mar. 2006,
Radio frequency identification is a wireless communication
technology that lets computers read the identity of inexpensive
electronic tags from a distance without requiring a battery
in the tags. As RFID technology matures, it will likely unleash
a new wave of applications that will exploit inexpensive and
highly available automatic identification.
- U.S. to issue passports embedded with
a chip: new US security passports to be introduced
S. A. Anderson.
Wall St.J., Vol. XXIV, No. 134, 10 Aug. 2006, pp. .
From Monday, 14 August 2006, the USA will begin to issue
e-passports, which contain an embedded radio frequency identification
(RFID) chip. The chip, mounted inside the back cover of the
passport, contains the holder's personal details with a digitised
photograph and includes an electronic seal issued by the government
to prove authenticity. The State Department has adopted the
chip technology to reduce passport forgeries and increase
border security. Countries in the U.S. visa waiver program
will be required to implement the same technology by October
2006. Customs officials will have special e-passport reader
machines to view the encrypted data. Concerns about privacy
and data theft are unfounded. Metal fibres built into the
document covers prevent the RFID data from being read when
the passport is closed. (Short article)
- Wandering children
Computing & Control Engineering Journal, Vol. 17, No. 5,
Oct.-Nov. 2006, pp. 2.
The Brampton Civic Hospital in Ontario, due to open in the
autumn of 2007, has ordered a $750,000 RFID system for child
'wander protection'. The system, provided by VeriChip, will
enable staff to receive notification remotely of children
leaving designated areas via any text-enabled device, including
PDAs and wireless phones. Kevin McLaughlin, Chief Executive
Officer of VeriChip said, "VeriChip has the potential to play
a significant role in providing RFID solutions for people.
Our experience in delivering RF locating applications in areas
such as infant protection, wander prevention, etc, has enabled
us to develop an advanced platform supporting implementation
on an enterprise basis:"
- Apparel Maker Tags RFID For Kids' Pajamas
Information Week, No. 1048, 18 July 2005, pp. 26.
Children's sleepwear with radio-frequency identification
tags sewn into the seams is expected to hit stores in early
2006. Made by Lauren Scott California, the nightgowns and
pajamas will be one of the first commercial RFID-tagged clothing
lines sold in the United States. The PJs are designed to keep
kids safe from abductions, says proprietor Lauren Scott, who
licensed the RFID technology from SmartWear Technologies Tine
a maker of personal-security systems. "You look at these kids
and think, 'I would do everything to protect them, '" Scott
says. Readers positioned in doorways and windows throughout
a house will be able to scan the tags within a 30-foot radius,
and an alarm will be triggered when boundaries are breached.
- Design considerations and tradeoffs
for passive RFID tags
Faisal A. Hussien, Didem Z. Turker, Rangakrishnan Srinivasan,
Mohamed S. Mobarak, Fernando P. Cortes and Edgar Sanchez-Sinencio.
Proc.SPIE, Vol. SPIE-5837, No. , 2005, pp. 559-570.
Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) systems are widely
used in a variety of tracking, security and tagging applications.
Their operation in non line-of- sight environments makes them
superior over similar devices such as barcode and infrared
tags. RFID systems span a wide range of applications: medical
history storage, dental prosthesis tracking, oil drilling
pipe and concrete stress monitoring, toll ways services, animal
tracking applications, etc. Passive RFID tags generate their
power from the incoming signal; therefore, they do not require
a power source. Accordingly, minimizing the power consumption
and the implementation area are usually the main design considerations.
This paper presents a complete analysis on designing a passive
RFID tag. A system design methodology is introduced including
the main issues and tradeoffs between different design parameters.
The uplink modulation techniques used (ASK, PSK, FSK, and
PWM) are illustrated showing how to choose the appropriate
signaling scheme for a specific data rate, a certain distance
of operation and a limited power consumption budget. An antenna
system (transmitter and receiver) is proposed providing the
maximum distance of operation with the transmitted power stated
by FCC regulations. The backscatter modulation scheme used
in the downlink is shown whether to be ASK-BM or PSK-BM and
the differences between them are discussed. The key building
blocks such as the charge pump, voltage reference, and the
regulator used to generate the DC supply voltage from the
incoming RF signal are discussed along with their design tradeoffs.
A complete architecture for a passive RFID tag is provided
as an example to illustrate the proposed RFID tag design methodology.
- Development of automatic system for
monitoring fishing effort in conger-eel tube fishery using radio
frequency identification and global positioning system
Keiichi Uchida, Nobuaki Arai, Kazuyuki Moriya, Yoshinori
Miyamoto, Toshiharu Kakihara and Tadashi Tokai.
Fisheries Science, Vol.71, No.5, pp. 992-1002. Oct 2005
- Dhl Plans Rfid Tags for Every Package
Information Week, No. 1043, 13 June 2005, pp. 34.
DHL INTERNATIONAL GMBH THIS MONTH starts developing a global
IT infrastructure that will let it affix a radio-frequency
identification tag on every package it ships by 2015. The
goal: gain tighter control of shipments, cut costs, and improve
operating performance by reducing paperwork and data collection.
DHL's plan to tag every package it handles is a lofty one
since the transportation and logistics arm of Deutsche Post
World Net ships more than a billion packages a year. This
week at DHL's Brussels facility, rep resentatives from the
company's 8,000 employee IT-services division plan to join
marketing, purchasing, and operations staff to discuss how
the company needs to change its global IT infrastructure to
- Effects of metallic plate size on the
performance of microstrip patch-type tag antennas for passive
L. Ukkonen, L. Sydanheimo and M. Kivikoski.
IEEE Antennas and Wireless Propagation Letters, Vol. 4, 2005,
Metallic objects are challenging for passive ultra high frequency
(UHF) spectrum radio frequency identification (RFID) systems
due to the effects of conductive materials on tag antenna
performance. In this letter, we analyze the effects of metallic
plate size on the performance of microstrip patch-type tag
antennas. Microstrip patch antennas with regular ground plane
and electromagnetic band gap (EBG) ground plane are studied
attached to two differently sized metallic plates. Analysis
is based on finite element method (FEM) simulations and practical
- Electronic tags for eggs, sperm and
New Scientist; 186 (2493) 2 Apr 2005, Vol. 186, No. 2493,
In a bid to prevent some of the mistakes that have taken
place in the course of in vitro fertilization (IVF) treatment,
the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority (HFEA) is
considering labelling all the containers of embryos, eggs
and sperm with bar codes or radio frequency identification
(RFID) tags. The idea is that an alarm will sound if containers
with the wrong eggs and sperm are brought close to one another
or if a doctor attempts to collect the wrong embryo to implant
into a recipient. (Quotes from original text)
- An Ethical Exploration of Privacy and
Radio Frequency Identification
Alan R. Peslak.
Journal of Business Ethics, Vol. 59, No. 4, July 2005, pp.
This manuscript reviews the background of radio frequency
identification (RFID) as well as the ethical foundations of
individual privacy. This includes a historical perspective
on personal privacy, a review of the United States Constitutional
privacy interpretations, the United Nations Declaration of
Human Rights, European Union regulations, as well as the positions
of industry and advocacy groups. A brief review of the information
technology ethics literature is also included. The RFID privacy
concerns are three-fold: presales activities, sales transaction
activities, and postsales uses. A proposal to address these
privacy concerns is detailed, generally based on past philosophical
frameworks and specifically on the Fair Information Practices
that the Federal Trade Commission has outlined for the electronic
- The hidden secret of the 5-cent RFID
tag: the falling cost of smart labels
Prod.Image Secur., Vol. 8, No. 7, Jan.-Feb. 2005
The effective cost of an RFID tag needs to be evaluated in
the context of overall business processes and benefits as
well as tag costs. Although production costs are expected
to decline as the technology is taken up more widely, some
industry experts predict that even simple tags will never
fall to USD0.05. Tags may be passive, active or semi-active.
Passive tags have no internal power source and rely on the
radio frequency energy from the reader to activate the transmission
of their identity. Some passive tags are encoded once only
but others can be recoded for reuse. Active tags have more
complexity, contain their own power source and can transmit
signals over greater distances. Passive tags with a 12 byte
tag code, such as those mandated by Wal-Mart, currently cost
about USD0.22 in quantities of 100,000. Active tags range
from a few USD to a few hundred USD each. Data can be rewritten
dynamically on the more sophisticated, active tags which enables
them to be reused many times. Even simple, passive tags can
be recycled. When reuse is taken into the equation, the effective
cost/tag falls dramatically. RFID use is enabling some companies
to make large cost savings. (2 fig)
- Homeland Security to Test Rfid at Borders
Information Week, No. 1024, 31 Jan. 2005, pp. 26.
THE DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY is experimenting with
radio-frequency identification technology to track foreigners
as they enter and leave the country. The agency hopes the
technology will improve border management without delaying
travelers. RFID tags will be tested at a simulated port this
spring, then at border crossings in Arizona, New York, and
Washington state from July through spring 2006. "Through the
use of radio-frequency technology, we see the potential to
not only improve the security of our country, but also to
make the most important infrastructure enhancements to the
U.S. land borders in more than 50 years," said Asa Hutchinson,
Homeland Security's undersecretary for border and transportation
security, in a statement last week.
- On ID Tech FYI on RFID
Security, Vol. 42, No. 9, Sept. 2005, pp. 34,36.
Radio frequency identification (RFID) devices cover a wide
range of frequencies and applications. By definition, RFID
is a technology that incorporates the use of electromagnetic
or electrostatic coupling in the radio frequency portion of
the electromagnetic spectrum to uniquely identify an object,
animal or person. It is increasingly used in many industries
as an alternative to barcode and magnetic stripe technologies.
The advantage of RFID is that it does not require direct contact
or line-of-sight scanning. An RFID system consists of three
main components: antenna, transceiver (usually combined into
one reader) and a transponder (tag). The antenna employs RF
waves to transmit a signal that activates the transponder.
When activated, the tag sends data back to the antenna. The
data is used to notify a programmable logic controller that
some form of action should occur. This action could be as
simple as opening an access point, such as a door or gate,
or as complicated as interfacing with a database to carry
out a payment transaction.
- Radio-frequency identification: its
potential in healthcare
Health devices, Vol. 34, No. 5, May 2005, pp. 149-160.
Radio-frequency identification (RFID) technology is just
starting to make inroads into healthcare. RFID uses radio-frequency
tags attached to people or objects to provide identification,
tracking, security, and other functions that fall under the
general heading of automatic identification and data capture
(AIDC). In the retail supply chain, RFID is already well established
as a way to reduce theft and track objects from manufacture
through shipment to delivery. In healthcare, basic RFID is
already being used to track patients for anti-elopement and
anti-abduction programs. As more sophisticated systems move
into hospitals, RFID is also beginning to see use to provide
more extensive patient identification than traditional bar
coding can, and to track and locate capital equipment within
the hospital. In years to come, RFID could be used for a variety
of applications, including tracking and matching blood for
transfusions, tracking pharmaceuticals, and combating the
counterfeiting of medical products. RFID may ultimately be
used for many of the functions currently carried out using
bar coding--but not until the cost of RFID comes down. For
the foreseeable future, the two technologies are likely to
be used in tandem in many hospitals. In this article, we describe
the components and operation of RFID systems and detail the
different ways in which these systems are being used, and
could be used, in hospitals.
- Researchers try to build a better RFID
Military and Aerospace Electronics, Vol. 16, No. 1, Jan.
2005, pp. 1, 10.
OAK RIDGE, TENN. - The new year marks the dawn of new technology
in military logistics. Pentagon leaders are requiring radio-frequency
identification (RFID) tags for most materials delivered to
the U.S. Department of Defense after Jan. 1, 2005. That order
today applies only to food, clothing, repair parts, and weapons
components, but will grow to include everything else by Jan.
1, 2007. RFID tags come in two flavors - active and passive.
Passive tags are inexpensive and have no batteries, so users
must hold a tag reader within three meters of the target.
In contrast, active tags cost more but use onboard batteries
to beam data to distant data readers up to 100 meters away.
Today, cost-conscious shippers use passive tags for everything
but 40-foot shipping containers and valuable items like battlefield
- RFID Tags Signal A Growing Market
CircuiTree, Vol. 18, No. 10, Oct. 2005, pp. 39, 40, 42.
If you haven't heard of RFID tags yet, you probably haven't
heard of Wal-Mart, either. Simply put, radio frequency identification
(RFID) is a generic term for technologies that use radio waves
to automatically identify products. There are several methods
of identification, but the most common is to store a serial
number that identifies the product, and perhaps other information,
on a PCB attached to an antenna (the small circuit board and
antenna together are called an RFID transponder, or an RFID
tag). The antenna enables the PCB to transmit the identification
information to a reader. The reader then converts the radio
waves reflected back from the RFID tag into digital information
that can be passed on to computers to make use of it.
- Silver Antennas Keep 'Smart Tags' In
Silver News, Third Quarter 2005, pp. 3.
From grocery items to pre-paid toll gizmos, Radio Frequency
Identification or RFID devices are coming on in a big way.
Not only are these tiny 'smart tags' fast replacing bar codes
at the checkout counter, but they're being used to prevent
shoplifting, trigger warehouse inventory counts and will soon
make an appearance imbedded in credit cards and passports.
RFID devices are usually passive - there's no battery power
- and are energized by radio signals from a transmitter generally
located a few feet away. The tag responds to the signal by
sending its own information identifying the product. At the
heart of the device is a computer-type chip, but it relies
on a flat, silver antenna to send and receive data.
- Technology Primer: Radio Frequency
National Law Enforcement and Corrections Technology Ctr (NLECTC),
2277 Research Boulevard, Mail Stop 8J, Rockville, MD 20850.
This article explains the technology and current and potential
criminal justice and homeland security uses of radio frequency
identification (RFID)--a wireless communications technology
that enables users to authenticate, locate, and track objects
or people tagged with a unique identifier. An RFID system
has three basic components: tags, which contain tiny semiconductor
chips and miniaturized antennas inside some form of packaging;
readers, which are composed of an antenna that communicates
with the RFID tags and an electronics module networked to
the host computer; and a host computer, which processes the
data readers collect from the tags. Correctional facilities
in California, Michigan, Illinois, and Ohio are already using
an RFID tracking system. Transmitters worn by inmates and
officers send unique radio signals every 2 seconds, enabling
the system to pinpoint the wearer's location and track and
record inmate and staff movements in the facility. The U.S.
Department of Homeland Security uses RFID technology to improve
security at U.S. borders and ports of entry. RFID technology
can locate, track, and authenticate the movements of people
and objects as they enter and depart the United States. Under
the Container Security Initiative announced in 2002, gamma
or X-ray imaging and radiation detection equipment is being
used to examine cargo containers before they are shipped to
the United States. Although law enforcement agencies have
not made extensive use of RFID technology because of privacy
concerns, applications have been in three main areas: evidence
handling and property control, tracking stolen vehicles, and
enhancing officer safety by tracking officers' locations throughout
their shifts. Privacy concerns have focused on secret and
intrusive uses of RFID that jeopardize individual privacy,
reduce or eliminate consumer anonymity, and threaten civil
liberties. These issues are being addressed by legislators.
- Tuning into RFID
David A. Kelly.
Oracle Magazine, Vol. 19, No. 3, May-June 2005, pp. 34-39.
RFID, or radio frequency identification, is a system for
tracking and identifying items through a combination of tags
placed on the items to be tracked and readers that interrogate
those tags (via radio waves) at appropriate points in a business
process. RFID tags contain tiny integrated circuits that have
small antennae for communicating with the RFID readers as
well as the ability to store identification information. Although
many companies are investing in RFID as a replacement or extension
of traditional bar coding processes, there are many differences:
RFID-tagged items hold more information. can be read in bulk
(for example, a pallet of items can be read all at once),
and do not require direct line of sight with the RFID reader
to transfer information (because it's sent via radio waves).
- Casinos lead the chip revolution
New Scientist, Vol. 181, No. 2429, 10 Jan 2004, pp. 21.
A new generation of casino chips with built-in radio frequency
identification (RFID) tags is providing insight into the way
banks and shops could keep track of real money if it were
tagged in the way that the European Central Bank is rumoured
to be considering. The RFID-tagged chips will be launched
in 2004 and will allow casino operators to spot counterfeits
and thefts and also to monitor the behaviour of gamblers.
(Quotes from original text)
- Implantable Radio-Frequency Identification
Device Shows Promise for; Health Care Uses
Internet Medicine, Vol. 9, No. 2, 3, February, 2004 2004,
Verichip, the world's first subdermal radio frequency identification
(RFID) device, has many potential applications for healthcare
and other fields. The technology is similar to the instruments
used for many years to identify animals. The device is a chip
the size of a grain of rice, which is implanted, usually in
the triceps between the elbow and shoulder in an outpatient
procedure under local anesthesia. Once inserted, it is invisible
to the naked eye. A material called Biobind prevents the chip
from migrating. Each Verichip has a unique verification number,
which is read by passing a scanner over the implantation site.
The Verichip emits a radio frequency signal that transmits
the verification number. The number is displayed on the scanner
and is transmitted to a secure data storage site by telephone
or via the Internet. The information stored in the database
is under the patient's control--the patient chooses what personal
information will be included. Verichip applications include
medical identification; emergency access to patient-supplied
health information; portable medical records; in-hospital
patient identification; patient/therapy integration; inter-facility
patient identification; and disease/treatment management of
at-risk populations. There are three main applications of
this microchip technology: Verimed, the application that accesses
patient medical history; Veripay, a secondary means of identification
to help in preventing identity theft; and VeriGuard, a security
application. The VeriMed application is awaiting Food and
Drug Administration (FDA) approval, but VeriGuard and Veripay
are available in the marketplace. The healthcare-related applications
of Verichip are already being promoted in countries such as
Mexico, where regulatory requirements are not as stringent
as in the U.S.
- Radio-frequency-identification for
security and media circulation in libraries
Electronic Library, Vol. 22, No. 4, 2004, pp. 317-324.
Radio frequency identification (RFID) systems have been in
use in libraries for five years for book identification, for
self-checkout, for anti-theft control, for inventory control,
and for sorting and conveying of library books and AV materials.
These applications can lead to significant savings in labour
costs, enhance customer service, and lower book theft and
can provide a constant record update of media collections.
In this paper the components and technical features of a modern
RFID library system are described to provide a guideline for
the evaluation of different systems. A short report of three
installations in Europe (one university library and two public
libraries) is also provided. It is noted that an important
point is that non-proprietary systems can be used for libraries
today since the new generation of RFID-chips with the ISO
standard 15693 are available. With this technology libraries
are not dependent on one company for their lifeline. (Original
- RFID Tags: Big Brother in a Small Device
August 2004, Law Enforcement Technology, vol. 31, no. 8,
pp. 130 - 133
This article envisions how RFID (radio frequency identification)
tags, which emit unique identifying codes when read by special
scanners, might be used in criminal justice contexts, as well
as by private entities; related privacy issues are discussed.
RFID is an emerging technology that is packaged in tiny tags
or devices that can be as small as a grain of rice. Distinctive
information can be written to RFID devices and retrieved by
RFID scanners. In corrections, RFID wristbands could be used
to track inmates and debit inmate accounts each time a purchase
is made from the commissary. In the public safety arena, RFID
tags could be used to automate vehicle registration compliance,
trace and track contraband, detect counterfeit, and locate
missing children. Privacy groups are concerned, however, that
RFID devices could be used by private organizations as well
as government agencies to track individuals without their
knowledge. When placed by manufacturers or retailers in their
products, it enables them to trace consumers by matching a
surreptitious scan of a product after it has been purchased
to purchase records, thus obtaining consumer contact information.
Police might use a drive-by scan of houses to detect RFID
information hidden in certain products that might be related
to criminal activity, such as guns and ingredients for making
bombs and methamphetamine. Federal law may be needed in order
to regulate the use of RFID devices in various contexts.
- RFID technology using active or passive
tags - a very hot issue
Traffic Engineering + Control, Vol. 45, No. 9, Oct. 2004,
The use of RFID (radio frequency identification) technology
will be familiar to anyone who drives regularly on the continent
or who has used the new M6 toll road. This article discusses
a new development in electronic tagging, the electronic number
plate or e-Plate), which could be used to replace or complement
conventional ANPR (automatic number plate recognition) deployments.
This active broadcast tag is embedded in the number plate
and has a range of over 100 metres and a wide field of view.
It is self-powered with its own built-in battery, with a life
of up to 10 years, and can be programmed with any suitable
- RFID gives impulse to screen printing:
a simple and effective way of producing radio frequency identification
Silk Screen, Vol. 51, no. 4, pp 29-32 2002, pp. .
Within the foreseeable future, all products bought in a supermarket
will be scanned in the trolley at the exit, by means of a
radio frequency identification signal and the product data
will be sent to a computer which will generate a receipt.
RFID makes it possible to send information contact free over
a small distance. Applications will include automatic entry
supervision for buildings and parking, registration and checking
of progress of postal packages, central car door locking,
anti-theft systems, registration and administration of library
loans, luggage handling at airports, protection of products
against theft. RFID is based on the closed loop principle.
The system consists of apparatus with an aerial, sensitive
to the particular radio signal and a sender/receiver with
decoder. The RFID label, attached to the product, is approximately
the size of a credit card. A coiled aerial is placed on the
transponder, connected to a chip, containing the unique information
on the product. Combined with a sender/receiver it is called
reader and can send radio waves in ranges from centimetres
to several hundred metres. RFID tags can be active or passive.
Active tags contain a ultra thin battery, giving a reading
distance of many metres. The chip is a read/write type. One
application is the toll booth on motorways. Passive RFID tags
have no battery or chip, with lower reading distance and long
life. They are read only. Three frequencies for RFID are permitted
in Europe. Active systems operate on 125kHz and 2.45GHz and
passive systems mostly with 13.56MHz. The aerial is made of
metal, generally copper, with minimum electrical resistance.
It can be made from copper or aluminium foil, laminated onto
polyester film and etched out. This is an expensive process.
The magnetic field sent by the reader creates a low voltage
in the aerial. The chip responds, or the tag responds by means
of a resonance signal. RFID aerials can be made by screen
printing. Aerials are very flexible, and can be bent over
180deg without loss of function. It can be applied onto polyester,
PVC or paper. It needs inks with good conduction, for example
silver or graphite inks. Developments in the area of screen
printable conducting polymers use Polymer Thick Film (PTF)
inks. Silver inks have the lowest resistance and copper is
not suitable because of oxidation.(4 fig, 1 tab)
- On the right wavelength
Financial Times; 21 Jan 97, Vol. , No. , p.15 1997
The use of radio based mini computers as a labelling technique
is known as radio frequency identification, or RFID, which
is now finding its way into a growing range of industrial
and commercial applications. It is well established in applications
such as locking cars, tagging animals, monitoring curfewed
offenders, charging motorists on toll roads and marking railway
containers. Nearly half of all RFID equipment is used in the
- What can packaging tell us?
Missets Pakblad, Vol. 18, No. 3, Mar. 1996
The use of radio-frequency identification (RF-ID) as an identification
technique is well known for animal identification, shop anti-theft
systems, entry control and logistics applications. The technique
is based on the detection of radio waves emitted by a transponder
placed in the object to be identified, such as a packaging
label. An antenna located remotely from the transponder picks
up the unique radio wave signal emitted and this is interrogated
by computer. Most RF-ID systems are based on the inductive
principle but the microwave principle is also used. Most transponders
contain an integrated circuit but only those to which the
EEP ROM or RAM technique is applied can both read and write
to the chip. A disadvantage of the RF-ID technique is that
it cannot read labels screened by metal objects, such as those
between cans. (1 tab, 2 fig)