| FAQ | Announcements | Tech Support | Contact JETEC| About JETEC | What's New | Home|...
 

Mil-Std 130
UID Solutions
Provider

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

RFID

RFID Labels

JETEC offers RFID Smart Label stock in various sizes for Printronix and Zebra printers. These cerified Smart Labels combine the technology of thermal-transfer, pressure-sensitive labels with RFID.

What is RFID?
Radio frequency identification, or RFID, is a generic term for technologies that use radio waves to automatically identify people or objects. An RFID system consists of a tag, which is made up of a microchip with an antenna, and an interrogator or reader with an antenna. The reader sends out electromagnetic waves. The tag antenna is tuned to receive these waves. A passive RFID tag draws power from field created by the reader and uses it to power the microchip’s circuits. The chip then modulates the waves that the tag sends back to the reader and the reader converts the new waves into digital data.

RFID High Frequency Low Frequency
Reading Range

3"(passive tags)
10"-20"(UHF tags)
>300"(active tags)

< 1" (passive tags)
Storage <2KB <2KB

What’s the difference between passive and active tags?
Active RFID tags have a battery, which is used to run the microchip's circuitry and to broadcast a signal to a reader (the way a cell phone transmits signals to a base station). Passive tags have no battery. Instead, they draw power from the reader, which sends out electromagnetic waves that induce a current in the tag's antenna. Semi-passive tags use a battery to run the chip's circuitry, but communicate by drawing power from the reader. Active and semi-passive tags are useful for tracking high-value goods that need to be scanned over long ranges, such as railway cars on a track, but they cost a dollar or more, making them too expensive to put on low-cost items. Companies are focusing on passive UHF tags, which cost under a 50 cents today in volumes of 1 million tags or more. Their read range isn't as far -- typcially less than 20 feet vs. 100 feet or more for active tags -- but they are far less expensive than active tags and can be disposed of with the product packaging.

What’s the difference between read-only and read-write tags?
Microchips in RFID tags can be read-write or read-only. With read-write chips, you can add information to the tag or write over existing information when the tag is within range of a reader, or interrogator. Read-write tags usually have a serial number that can't be written over. Additional blocks of data can be used to store additional information about the items the tag is attached to. Some read-only microchips have information stored on them during the manufacturing process. The information on such chips can never been changed. Other tags can have a serial number written to it once and then that information can't be overwritten later.

Why is RFID better than using bar codes?
RFID is not necessarily "better" than bar codes. The two are different technologies and have different applications, which sometimes overlap. The big difference between the two is bar codes are line-of-sight technology. That is, a scanner has to "see" the bar code to read it, which means people usually have to orient the bar code towards a scanner for it to be read. Radio frequency identification, by contrast, doesn’t require line of sight. RFID tags can be read as long as they are within range of a reader. Bar codes have other shortcomings as well. If a label is ripped, soiled or falls off, there is no way to scan the item. And standard bar codes identify only the manufacturer and product, not the unique item. The bar code on one milk carton is the same as every other, making it impossible to identify which one might pass its expiration date first.

Are there any standards for RFID?
Yes. International standards have been adopted for some very specific applications, such as tracking animals. Many other standards initiatives are under way. The International Organization for Standardization (ISO) is working on standards for tracking goods in the supply chain using high-frequency tags (ISO 18000-3) and ultra-high frequency tags (ISO 18000-6). EPCglobal, a joint venture set up to commercialize Electronic Product Code technologies, has its own standards process, which was used to create bar code standards. EPCglobal intends to submit EPC protocols to ISO so that they can become international standards.

For more information on our RFID label stock visit our Online Store or contact the factory directly.

 

Contact JETEC:
info@jetec.com

Tel: (949) 477-6161
Fax: (949) 477-6167

 


RFID

 

 


 

 
Copyright 2004, JETEC Corporation. All rights reserved.