A look at RFID Technology

A look at RFID Technology

Radio-frequency identification (RFID) is a form of technology that entails capture of encrypted digital data in the form of RFID tags through the use of radio waves.

This technology uses radio-frequency electromagnetic fields for data transfer thereby enabling automatic tracking and identification of object attached tags.

Application of Radio-frequency identification technology in industry is quite diverse as RFID tags can be attached to any product and used to track it. For instance, the tags are often used to track pharmaceutical products in warehouses, merchandise in retail stores as well as vehicles during the assembly process.

The use of RFID technology is also not just limited to products as the tags can also be attached to clothing or implanted into individuals and animals for tracking and identification (in the case of animals) purposes.

How the RFID System works

The RFID system comprises a tag made of a microchip and a reader; both of which have antennas. The reader sends electromagnetic waves while the tag antenna receives them as it is tuned to do so. A passive RFID tag then pulls power from the field the reader has created and essentially use it to power microchip circuits after which it moderates waves sent by the tag. Moderated waves are then sent to the reader which in turn converts them into digital data.

Comparison of RFID technology and Barcoding

RFID technology and barcoding are somewhat similar due to the fact that labels are captured and the data read stored in a database. The two however contrast in the sense that a scanner must be used to read information on a barcode. In comparison, Radio frequency identification technology does not need alignment to a scanner as it can be easily read provided it is within a readers range. Similarly, RFID tag data can be updated, changed and locked unlike barcodes which cannot be altered once produced. Also, multiple RFID tags can be read at a time unlike barcodes which permit reading of one code at a time.