What is RFID (Radio-Frequency Identification)?| How does it work?| Where can you use it?

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Radio-Frequency Identification (RFID) is an identification and information capturing tool which uses radio waves to read and capture data stored on a tag which is attached to an object.  This tag can be read from anywhere whether it is near or up to several feet away and it also does not need to be within direct line-of-sight of the reader so that it could be tracked. These RFID techniques are used in many companies.

When a person uses a handheld RFID reader to scan clothes, the attached label is having a unique no. which differentiate between a two pair of same clothes which means that each clothe has its own RFID tag and will have its own serial number.

The computer has all the information about each and every single product available in the store. It could also tell how much same products are available in the store.

Radio-frequency identification (RFID) is used to identify and track tags attached to objects with the help of electromagnetic fields to automatically. These tags consist of electronically-stored information. A passive tag collects energy from a nearby RFID reader’s interrogating radio waves and active tags have a battery source and can be operated from 100 meters from the RFID reader. In both the cases, there is no need for line of sight of the reader. Therefore, it is different from a barcode sticker, as the tag needs to be within the line of sight of the reader, so it may be embedded in the tracked object. Thus, with the help of RFID tags, you can easily move objects a few meters away.

 

 

How does an RFID system work?

An RFID system is always made up of two parts – The first one is a tag (also called a label) and the second one is a reader. These RFID tags are embedded with a transmitter and a receiver. This RFID part on the tags have further two parts and that is a microchip which stores and processes data, and an antenna which is used to receive and transmit a signal. Each of the tags contains a unique serial number for a particular thing.

Now, let’s go encoding part, to read the information encoded on a tag, a two-way radio transmitter-receiver also known as an interrogator or reader will send a signal to the tag with the help of the antenna. The tag (also known as a transponder) will respond with the data written in its memory bank. The interrogator (also known as a reader) will then transmit these read signals and send the results to an RFID computer program. After this, the computer will do the requested task by anyone who is using that PC. This completes the whole working process of RFID.

 

How many types of RFID tags are available?

There are two types of RFID tags- passive and active

What is a passive RFID tag?

A passive RFID tag works by using the interrogator’s radio wave to transfer its stored data back to the interrogator.  Passive tags collect energy from a nearby RFID reader which is interrogating radio waves.

What is battery powered RFID tag or active tags?

This type of RFID tag is embedded with a small battery which powers the transfer of data.  Active tags have a battery which is its power source and can be operated up to hundreds of meters from the RFID reader.

Where can you use RFID?

RFID tags are used in many industries; here are few examples where you can use it in many efficient ways –

  • An RFID tag can be attached to an automobile while production and can be used to track its progress.
  • Capable of Anti-theft technology.
  • RFID Tags can also be used in shops to expedite checkout and to prevent theft by customers and employees.
  • RFID Tags containing detection of the digital signature.
  • RFID Tags in a highly secured firm in which things are not allowed to be taken out.
  • RFID Tags in government high confidential office
  • RFID Tags in microchips can be used in livestock
  • RFID Tags in pharmaceuticals can be tracked through warehouses
  • RFID Tags on any personally-linked information
  • RFID Tags on cash counter
  • RFID Tags on clothing bill payment counter
  • RFID Tags on pets can allow us for identification of animals.

 

Some amazing and newly invented ideas of using RFID are –

  • RFID Tagged amusement park tickets – This is a credit-card style ticket which has reduced the burden for scanning and swiping tickets and waiting for a ride in a big line, thus it has reduced a long wait times and also reducing staff costs. In addition to this, such RFID tickets also provide information to park operators for tracking the visitor’s illegal movement on any confidential or not allowed areas.

 

  • RFID embedded poker chips – With the help of these RFID chips, the operator can know how much money you spend, where it is spent and uses this information to keep your stick into the game for more time longer. And in case if a person is using rolling chips, then the operator of that casino also knows this too.

  • RFID Tags on Weapon – These RFID tags are very useful in a safety point of view. RFID tags are attached to any kind of harmful weapons and which can be tracked, scanned, and detected which helps to avoid the burden of the employees of restricted area where any kind of weapons are not allowed. Nowadays, these weapons are used in almost all companies, to ensure safety.

 

  • RFID Tags on car rental – This type of tracking system are very essential and is used in a vehicle rental company, and it has reduced the burden of waiting for vehicle returns as it will automatically scan the total permitted duration of the rented car, and charge accordingly. Plus it can also track the cars using GPS system.