In the realm of the Internet of Things (IoT), there’s a player known for having not just one, but “four aces up its sleeve”: labels, antennas, readers, and application software. It’s not an individual but rather a formidable team, a widely recognized technology in the IoT arena—RFID (Radio Frequency Identification). Originally named Radio Frequency Identification, RFID is a contactless automatic identification technology. It engages in two-way data communication via wireless radio frequency, enabling the reading and writing of electronic tags or RFID cards. This facilitates seamless data communication between the reader and the tag, accomplishing the identification and data exchange objectives.
1. Is the RFID inlay tag legend coming to life? What exactly is it?
RFID can have the ability to read everything, thanks to the tag, antenna, read-write and application software synergy.
Tags, also known as electronic tags, radio frequency cards, radio frequency tags, radio frequency volume label, etc., can be divided into low-frequency, high-frequency, ultra-high-frequency and microwave tags according to the size of the frequency band, the RFID team of the four smallest partners, is the “group favorites”; but “concentration is the essence of the “, RFID inlay tags also proved the truth.
RFID tags are usually formed by the inlay (Inlay) plus surface encapsulation materials, and that’s why it is called as RFID inlay tag. Inlay for RFID inlay tags kernel, surface encapsulation material is printed visualization information as well as external label protection, label attachment / paste the use of the form. RFID inlay tags for the core components of the chip and antenna composition: the tag chip is the core part of the electronic tag, its functions include tag information storage, tag receiving signal processing and tag transmitting signal processing; antenna is the electronic tag transmits and Receive wireless signal device. The combination of chip and antenna generally use ordinary leakage printing technology.
Relative to the RFID inlay tag is small and exquisite, read-write is a “delicate big old man”. Read-write according to different occasions to dress themselves up carefully, the common general fixed, mobile, handheld, all-in-one, as well as split, contact, non-contact, serial, parallel port, USB, etc., can be described as a variety of shapes; sometimes also on a whim, with a group of tags CP, low-frequency, high-frequency, high ultra-frequency or microwave read-write face to show people. Read-write brain thief, IQ is also a thief, just need to label with a look, can be coupled by inductive or electromagnetic backscatter coupling quickly read the meaning of the label.
Antennas are tags and read-write “heel”, respectively, named tag antenna and read-write antenna. Because the two brothers outstanding eloquence, coupled with the leg speed, naturally became a tag and read-write between the messenger to pass information.
Application software is the RFID “brain”, but also a whole set of system scheduling center and data storage center, for the operation of the whole system and operation provides a detailed guide to action.
2. RFID System Appears Complex, Yet Each Frequency Band Has Its Gossip.
RFID according to the tag frequency band is different, can be divided into low-frequency, high-frequency, ultra-high frequency and microwave tags.
Low-frequency tags as a “group favor” in the non-directional little brother, the voice of the smallest, the frequency range of 30-300kHz, recognition distance of ≦ 60cm; and high-frequency tags, as inductively coupled with the corresponding band of read-write contact. Don’t look at it low frequency band, small amount of information, the cost is not low! Fortunately, the personality is free, not subject to the constraints of radio control, and environmental adaptability, good “live”, in the animal identification, agricultural products, food traceability, container tool identification, electronic locking burglary and other fields are quite popular.
High-frequency tags are the same as non-directional “old three”, the mouth naturally than the low-frequency tags, typical operating frequency of 13.56MHz, with a frequency range of 3-30MHz and up to 1m recognition distance; with the read-write exchange of information must be entered into the read-write antenna “field of vision”; legs and feet. The reader must enter the “field of view” of the reader antenna when exchanging information with the reader; it is leggy and has a high data transmission rate. In the access card, public transportation card, electronic remote control door lock controller, community property management, building access control system, electronic tickets, electronic ID cards and other areas of popularity.
As for UHF tags are more interesting – 433MHz and 860-960MHz, the two directional twins, very different characters, the former read distance is only 50-100m, the cost is higher than the latter is more penetrating, often found in asset tracking, mine underground positioning of people and vehicles, highway parking without charges The 860-960MHz, on the other hand, is more penetrating than the latter. And 860-960MHz is the opposite, the lowest cost, in the supply chain management, warehousing and logistics, production line automation management, mobile vehicle identification, container management, logistics management and other fields more colorful.
Microwave tags are 2.45GHz and 5.8GHz two sisters, the jianghu person “active tags”, all support ≦ 1m near-field and 50m far-field reading distance, directionality for the orientation; microwave tags, high cost, in recent years in the electric vehicle management exposure rate is high.
Below is a table summarizing the technology of RFID for different tag bands:
|Frequency band||Low-Frequency Tags||High-Frequency Tags||Ultra-High-Frequency Tags||Microwave Tags|
|frequency range||30-300kHz||3-30MHz||433MHz||860-960MHz||2.45GHz, 5.8GHz|
|Detection Range||≤60cm||Up to 1m||50-100m||Near field: 3.5m||Near field: ≤1m|
|Far field: 100m||Far field: 50m|
|Operating Principle||inductive coupling||electromagnetic coupling||directional|
|Power supply method||passive||passive||Active/Passive||Active/Passive/Semi-Passive|
|directionality (molecular biology)||pointless||directional||directional|
|Label Performance||High cost and low information content; not subject to radio frequency control; environmentally adaptable||Higher data rates and lower cost than low-frequency tags||Higher cost, long range identification, better penetration than 800-900MHz||Lowest cost, multi-tag recognition examples and best performance||Higher impact of working environment, other performance is comparable to 900MHz|
|Application Examples||Animal identification, agricultural and sideline products, food traceability, container and tool identification, electronic lockout and anti-theft, etc.||Access card, public transportation card, electronic ID card, electronic locking anti-theft, etc.||Asset tracking, underground mine man-vehicle locating, highway non-stop tolling||Supply Chain Management, Warehouse Logistics, Production Line Automation Management, Mobile Vehicle Identification, Container Management, Logistics Management, etc.||Mobile vehicle identification, container management, etc.|
In a nutshell, compared with traditional barcode identification technology, RFID has the following advantages:
(1) Fast scanning
RFID recognizer can recognize and read multiple RFID inlay tags at the same time, while the bar code can only have a bar code to be scanned each time.
(2) miniaturization and shape diversification
RFID in reading information is not subject to the size and shape of the limitations, so do not need to read the accuracy with the fixed size of the paper and printing quality. In addition, RFID inlay tags can be miniaturized and a variety of forms in order to apply to different products.
(3) Pollution resistance and durability
The carrier of the traditional bar code is paper, so it is easy to be contaminated, but RFID has a strong resistance to water, oil and chemicals and other substances. In addition, because the bar code is attached to the plastic bag or the outer carton, so especially vulnerable to damage; RFID roll labeling is the data exists in the chip, so it can be free from defacement.
Today’s bar codes can not be changed after printing up, RFID inlay tags can be repeated to add, modify, delete the data stored in the RFID volume labeling to facilitate the update of information.
(5) Penetration and barrier-free reading
In the case of being covered, RFID is able to penetrate paper, wood and plastic and other non-metallic or non-transparent materials, and is able to carry out penetrating communication. In contrast, barcode scanners must be in close proximity and without objects blocking the barcode to be able to read it.
(6) Large data memory capacity
The capacity of one-dimensional bar code is 50Bytes, two-dimensional bar code can store the maximum capacity of 2 to 3000 characters, the maximum capacity of RFID is a number of MegaBytes. with the development of memory carriers, the data capacity also has a tendency to expand. Future items need to carry the amount of information will be more and more, the volume of the label can be expanded capacity.
As RFID carries electronic information, its data content can be protected by password, so that its content is not easy to be forged and altered.
In recent years, RFID because it has a long distance reading, high storage capacity and other characteristics and attract attention. It can not only help a company to significantly improve the efficiency of goods and information management, but also allows sales and manufacturing companies to interconnect, so as to more accurately receive feedback information, control demand information, and optimize the entire supply chain.
3. The huge application scenario of RFID:
The Internet of Things is a huge and mixed rivers and lakes, what sensors, smart retail, smart cities, 5G, edge computing, cloud platforms, big data, communication and positioning …… schools, self-contained system, in the field of Internet of Things divided into their own; the only RFID is a freak, self-contained a school is not enough, but also “everywhere to stay,” and almost every field can be found in its traces; not to mention that the RFID power is really strong, and the other sects and factions are also powerless to take its place.
To ask what is the joy of contemporary young people: not overtime, not bald, not up rent …… can get off work on time to return to the small rental house to demolish the courier when the decompression of a great joy.
But for the express logistics industry, after a series of processes of picking, review, weighing, labeling, out of the warehouse, and then a huge number of parcels accurately placed to each address, parcel sorters may have lost the joy. Just recently, China Post EMS for express delivery face sheet plus RFID chip, realize automatic scanning, batch automatic review, wrong pieces of rapid positioning and other operations, shorten the staff time, while improving work efficiency and accuracy.
It is reported that the EMS new generation of Internet of Things RFID waybill, support for multiple read-write in the same area of work, reading distance up to 6 meters, a single link reading efficiency up to thousands of times the manual PDA scanning, channel reading operation in the whole tray to achieve 3-5 seconds “no residency” the whole tray through the maximum of 600 pieces / s. In fact, RFID in the logistics and transportation of the face sheet plus RFID chip, to achieve automatic scanning, batch automatic review, wrong pieces of rapid positioning and other operations to shorten staff time, while improving work efficiency and accuracy.
In fact, the application of RFID in the field of logistics and transportation is not rare. Take the recently known as “the world’s new seven wonders of the first” of the Beijing Daxing Airport, passenger throughput of up to 100 million people, to solve the problem of misdelivery of checked baggage, reduce the amount of compensation due to loss of baggage by the airlines, it is really not a small problem. Now travelers only need to print boarding passes, stick UHF RFID baggage strips, you can use your cell phone to track the baggage dynamics, improve the accuracy of baggage transportation, but also reduce the anxiety of passengers waiting for their luggage.
In the commercial scope, RFID in Walmart, shoes and clothing and jewelry management field also has the name. Mission Hills, Uniqlo, Zara, Decathlon, Lachapelle, Nike and other big brands have long been on RFID “to start”, the use of RFID’s ability to store inventory, inventory count, merchandise marketing data collection and analysis, real-time scheduling and other processes to establish a comprehensive supply chain management system; RFID inlay tags. RFID inlay tags with globally unique code become the independent “ID card” of the goods, effectively preventing counterfeiting, theft and counterfeit goods. Chow Tai Fook, IGC and other jewelry brands attach RFID inlay tags to valuable jewelry to achieve rapid inventory, real-time tracking, diamond traceability, jewelry anti-theft and other multi-functions to promote the construction of jewelry retail information technology.
In addition to the above areas, the current RFID typical applications also include:
- Railway car number automatic identification management.
- Vehicle road traffic automatic toll management.
- passenger air bag automatic identification, sorting, transit management.
- vehicle access control. Such as: parking lot vehicle access management, garbage dump, cement field vehicle access, weighing management.
- Campus cards, meal cards, bus cards and other ID cards with identification functions.
- Production line product processing automatic control. Such as automated assembly lines in large factories.
- animal identification (cattle, sheep, pigeon racing, etc.). Such as large-scale breeding plants and family farms.
- logistics, warehousing automatic management. Applicable objects are mainly large-scale logistics and warehousing enterprises.
- automatic identification management of gas storage containers.
- Automobile remote control door locks, electronic door locks and so on.
It can almost be said that: where there are people there is RFID, no one has RFID, RFID hit the mountain, at the moment is still relatively grand.
Overall, RFID technology is a powerful technology, but in the final analysis, it is just one of the technical means to help people get a more convenient life in the field of Internet of Things. People’s lives will continue to progress, the Internet of Things technology will continue to update the development; but in the long run, RFID in the Internet of Things technology tree in the core position is still unshakeable.