New RFID Tags Target Tracking in Container Shipping

A manufacturer of on-metal radio frequency identification (RFID) tags for asset-tracking has the maritime container shipping sector in its sights after launching a new product series.

Xerafy has added new additions to its Trak Series that are more versatile and accommodate multiple attachment methods for more applications.

The new Container Trak 902-928MHz tag has a 20-meter read range and a new anti-UV industry-grade polymer casing that is IP68 rated, meaning it can withstand harsh outdoor environments and exposure to water and contaminants.

Container Trak tags, attached by using a rivet hole, a cable tie, or with high-performance adhesives, have an operating temperature range of -40 degrees Celcius to +85 degrees Celcius.

Xerafy will officially debut the new tags at the RFID Tomorrow conference in Dusseldorf over September 27-28, 2017.


The new level of durability means that a tag can last up to 10 years in harsh industrial environments.

RFID tags can be attached to vehicle chassis and used in trailer tracking, unit load device identification, logistics and yard management.

Dennis Khoo, Xerafy CEO and Founder said: “With the launch of our new and upgraded Trak Series tags, our family of RAIN RFID tags is complete.

These new tags have expanded our high-performance RFID solutions to a wider variety of applications and environments.

“With the release of the new Trak Series tags, we can help our clients extend the value of our high-performance RFID tags, whether they are used in a warehouse, on a vehicle chassis, or exposed to water, extreme temperatures, or other harsh conditions.”


Danish ‘Super’ Hospital AUH Deploys Zebra Technologies’ RFID

AUH, the new university hospital in Aarhus, is the first of several super hospitals that will be built in Denmark over the next 5 to 10 years. Constructed to extend the existing hospital, the new site will cover 100 hectares and will be the largest hospital in Northern Europe, with 9,500 employees and a capacity for 4,000 patient visits daily. AUH is designed to offer all the latest technology and state-of-the-art equipment to keep up with constantly evolving healthcare systems. And one of its key requirements was the installation of a fully automated solution to provide visibility of the location of its resources including staff, medical equipment, medications and patient samples.


AUH’s staff were spending too long trying to locate resources such as equipment, medications and people. In keeping with the visionary ethos of the hospital, it set out to find a better way to track and locate staff, medical equipment, samples and medications.


Following an extensive search and pitch process from a number of IT providers, Det Nye Universitetshospital  Aarhus (DNU), who were responsible for the extension of the hospital, commissioned Zebra Technologies and its partner Lyngsoe Systems to deploy a new RFID solution throughout AUH. The decision was based on the accuracy and reliability of Zebra’s products and Lyngsoe’s experience in RFID systems, which spans 3,200 installations in 60 countries.

The implementation of RFID is part of a larger logistical solution provided by Systematic. As a partner and subcontractor to Systematic, Lyngsoe showed how its solution would interface with Systematic’s solution, Columna Service Logistics, used at AUH. The hub of the new system is Lyngsoe Live Logistics’ platform. The platform manages and ensures consistent data capture from all the RFID readers and antennas in real time.

It has a scalable, five-layer architecture and is designed according to EPC Global Network Architecture and GS1 standards. The first layer relates to the identification of the resources. This is achieved through the attaching of RFID tags: whether a tag embedded within an employee badge, or attached to a wheelchair or medicine packaging, for example.

Due to the extreme variance in resources that needed to be tagged, Lyngsoe Systems helped DNU select circa 20 different RFID tags, best suited to the size and material of each item used at AUH. Tags are read by Zebra’s FX7500 Fixed RFID Readers as the resource moves around the hospital.

Each reader has two AN480 RFID Antennas to ensure optimal scanning performance and has been positioned in a strategic location to ensure reliable data capture. The RFID data is captured and filtered by Lyngsoe’s EDECS RFID Integration Software, which has been installed on AUH’s central servers. EDECS also contains a Reader Management module and Network Management System, which controls the RFID readers, to ensure the system is operating optimally. These stages incorporate layers two and three of the platform.

Layer four comprises sharing and exchanging the data collected with Systematic’s Columna Service Logistics. Hospital personnel access the Columna application on their mobile phones, computers and tablets layer five and can locate the nearest equipment, medication, resource or best-qualified member of staff.


The RFID solution from Zebra Technologies, Lyngsoe and Systematic has proved successful during the intensive pilot stage; the new system has cut the time spent finding items such as beds, medical equipment, trolleys and medication significantly. Most importantly, staff can quickly find colleagues such as the nearest specialised doctor to ensure the best patient care in an emergency.

The FX7500 RFID Readers are reliable and accurate, with their next-generation reader platform ensuring excellent reader sensitivity and interference rejection, so personnel know they can rely on the data they are seeing on Columna Service Logistics. In addition, the tracking of patient samples minimises the risk of error and contributes to a solution that’s improving patient care and helping staff optimise productivity.


Implementing RFID


One really needs to look at this on a case-by-case basis to get at specific benefits for, say, a particular industry. And that is why there is a need for committing to a pilot to create a robust business case for utilising this technology. But clearly, automated reporting of real-time, accurate data can provide tremendous advantages in all kinds of industries from express parcel delivery, to healthcare and life science. In addition, RFID’s ability to support asset tracking is of great interest to a number of industries.


The basic but critical elements of an RFID system include tags, printer/encoders, reader/encoders (interrogators), sensors, middleware (for data-filtering and data-flow management), and, if needed, some software adaptations to enable legacy applications and systems to receive RFID-generated data.

RFID adopters should seek out companies that have had IMPLEMENTED an RFID System as they can greatly assist and expedite RFID adopters through their pilots and early adoption learning curves.


Yes. Cards are just a form factor. “Smart cards,” as they are called, are used in a variety of applications, including security/access control, employee identification, contact-less payment systems, and customer loyalty programmes, among others. Zebra provides a wide variety of card printers.


The biggest “pain point” with RFID is its potential to change your existing business processes because ultimately, you can collect much more relevant data and have it in real-time. RFID is an enabling technology. You can’t extract all the benefits of this technology without fundamental business changes, system changes, and data changes.


The networks that exist today to support barcodes will more than likely be able to support RFID. RFID and barcodes are both technologies that deliver data to a host system; however, there is a main point of difference. barcodes utilize one-way serialized and periodic data. RFID is two-way. Data passes from the tag to the reader/encoder and then can pass back again, depending on the application or need to update the tag. Data can be delivered from multiple tags effectively in parallel, and by virtue of not requiring human intervention can provide more data in real-time.

There needs to be bridge software, or middleware, incorporated into the overall architecture to prevent the amount of data that hits the system at the same time from overwhelming it. So RFID requires data filtering and data-flow management, to turn parallel, two-way data into the serialized data that a legacy system can handle. These functions can be also partially handled by the printer/encoders and readers.

Another consideration is the need for more bandwidth in the network depending on how much RFID increases the overall amount of data flow within the network. If existing networks can handle the additional traffic with the speed required by the applications, they should not necessarily need to be upgraded or be any more complex.


6 Ways RFID Technology is Shaping the Future


6 Ways RFID Technology is Shaping the Future

Radio-frequency identification (RFID) is a technology with a big future. In essence, it is a simple technology that uses electromagnetic fields to track tags attached to objects. However, it is the information stored in those tags and the applications it can be used for that are transforming everything from health care to retail. To illustrate this, we’ll look at six ways RFID is reshaping the future.

  1. Smart RFID fitting rooms for clothing stores

RFID is set to revolutionise the way we try clothes on in fitting rooms. The new technology equips the cubicles with interactive RFID kiosks that scan the clothing and give the shopper access to helpful information. They can find out more about the item they are trying, check to see if different sizes or colours are in stock, find similar items or search for matching accessories.

The outcomes for retailers who are already using this technology have been very positive. Helping customers find the right outfit has led to increased sales and improved customer satisfaction. At the same time, the system’s ability to receive customer feedback has been instrumental in allowing stores to understand more about what their customers want to wear.

  1. Theme park smart card passes

Disney World, Florida, has been reaping the benefits of RFID by replacing paper tickets with RFID plastic smart cards. As visitors no longer need their tickets to be swiped by an assistant when lining up for a ride, they have shortened queueing times, the one thing everyone hates about theme parks, and reduced the number of staff required.

In addition to happier customers, Disney has also benefitted from the valuable data that the ticket chips provide. They now have a much clearer understanding of how different visitors move around the theme park, which attractions they go to, where they eat and drink, and how long they stay. This has helped them to better manage the park and its attractions so that it offers an even more enjoyable customer experience.

What’s particularly exciting about smart card RFID technology is that it is readily available to all businesses. Manufacturers, like Universal Smart Cards, not only supply smart cards but also smart wristbands and keyrings.

  1. RFID drones in warehouses

A range of companies now employ RFID reading drones in their warehouse to undertake the stock taking work once done by staff. The drones, which can be programmed to access all parts of the warehouse, have many advantages over their human counterparts. They are quicker at moving around, can take data readings instantaneously and are not at risk from falling off ladders.

To increase the safety of humans working beneath them, scientists at MIT have now developed a solution called Rfly which enables much smaller and safer drones, made of plastic, to be used. Instead of having a scanner attached to them, Rfly drones are fitted with a small relay that sends signals between remote RFID labels and the readers.

  1. Intelligent casino chips

RFID embedded chips are now being used by many casinos. One of their main advantages is to prevent theft. When an armed gunman recently stole $1,5 million worth of chips from the Bellagio in Las Vegas, he didn’t realise that each chip was individually tagged. Should he ever try to cash them in, they’ll be scanned first and he’ll be put behind bars. The use of tagged chips means all the Bellagio actually lost were a few pieces of plastic.

However, RFID chips do more than prevent theft. They let the casino know how much gamblers spend and what they gamble on. This provides information to help the casino keep them gambling for longer; for example, they might provide the customer with free drinks just when it looks like they’re about to walk away from the table.

  1. Never lose another golf ball

Losing a golf ball in the rough is par for the course, most amateur golfers lose around four balls each round. However, RFID technology might be about to make that a thing of the past. Dutch company, Prazza, has now created a ball that can be scanned and found within a range of 100 yards. It means there’ll be much less time wasted on the fairway and a little extra cash spare to get a round in on the 19th hole.

If that wasn’t impressive enough, golfing giant, Calloway, is now developing RFID smart balls that can give players vital information about their playing style. A chip in the club activates the ball on contact and readers embedded in the course collect data about where it lands. This provides information about the golfer’s swing technique, aim accuracy, and distance. The hope is that these balls can give more accurate information to improve technique and assist with club customisation.

  1. Hospital hygiene monitoring

Hand hygiene is essential in hospitals to prevent the spread of infections such as MRSA. Using RFID, it is now possible to provide all hospital staff with tagged wristbands that can monitor the frequency of their hand washing regime. By putting a reader next to a tap or an antibacterial gel dispenser, it can log where and when they wash their hands.


RFID technology is making its mark in all sectors, in this post alone we’ve seen examples from retail, sports, entertainment and healthcare. Whilst the technology is quite simple, what is impressive is the innovative ways that people are finding to use it and the other technologies to which it can be applied. One only has to wonder what great things are to come in the future and how people and industry can benefit from them.