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How far can you track an RFID tag, or what is the read range of RFID tags?

  • Mahesh Tiwari
  • Feb 02, 2023
  • RFID
How far can you track an RFID tag, what is the read range of RFID tags

RFID (Radio-Frequency Identification) has a wide range of applications, ranging from public transportation to animal identification and the tracking of products. In industrial settings, RFID tags are used to identify assets or parts that are useful for automation or logistical purposes.Three frequency groups comprise nearly all RFID tags. The three frequency groups are low frequency (LF), high frequency (HF), and ultra-high frequency(UHF). Each frequency has its particular uses due to its own advantages.

The different types of RFID tags

There are three kinds of RFID tags:active, semi-active (or battery-assisted passive), and passive. 

Tags that are active constantly emit radio signals that are detected by readers. They are connected to batteries or another continuously powered source of power, as well as an antenna to send and receive radio signals. The size of the tag is dependent on its size. 

Active tags may hold different quantities of data, usually not exceeding 1000 bytes. The data can be recorded on or transferred to tags that are active RFID tags to be used for other purposes, like documenting or logging.

Semi-active tags, also known as tags that are battery-assisted (BAP), make use of batteries to power the tag's circuitry without transmitting signals, and the power for the signal is directly generated by the UHF RFID reader.Active and semi-active RFID tags function over longer RFID distances than passive tags.

Tags that are passively powered by the magnetic field emissions of the reader that create the current to the tag's antenna Active, semi-active, and active tags cost more and are therefore only suitable for assets with a higher value.

Low-frequency RFID

Low-frequency RFID has the lowest read distance, around 10 centimeters from both the RFID tag and reader. The read speed is slow, but low-frequency RFID has the lowest amount of radio interference. Low-frequency covers vary between 30 and 300 kHz. Low-frequency is not considered to be globally compatible dueto different frequencies and power levels across the world. Common applications to use LF RFID include animal tracking and access control.

High-frequency RFID

The high-frequency RFID technology is extremely widespread, operating in the RFID range of frequencies from 3–30 MHz. The reading distance is 10 centimeters up to 1 meter. The majority of HF RFID devices operate at 13.56 MHz. They have moderate radio interference.

Many uses of RFID with high frequency are based on near-field communication(NFC), which focuses on the transfer of data among two different devices. This is commonly used in smart cards for payment and other devices that can be activated by proximity. Other industries that utilize RFID HF for payments or cataloguing purposes include marketing, waste management, automation in medical and health care, and manufacturing.

RFID tags for HF can be found in a variety of dimensions and shapes to meet different needs. They can be used for read-only, write-only, or re writable tags. The memory capacities range from 64 bytes up to eight KB. Readers can accommodate up to 20 tags simultaneously.

Ultra-high-frequency RFID

Tags with ultra-high frequency come with the highest reading speed and have the longest reading range. Although near-range UHF tags are an option, in comparison to tags that use HF, near-range tags come with a smaller and shorter reading range. Near-range UHF tags, on the other hand, are less susceptible to interference, giving them a performance advantage.

Far-range UHF RFID tags are able to be read from as far away as 12 meters when using tags that are passive to RFID. Active tags can reach distances that extend to 100 meters or greater. The frequency of operation for UHF RFID tags canvary from 300 MHz up to 3 GHz. UHF tags are among the most susceptible to interference. To prevent interference from signals, UHF tag makers frequently create antennas and readers that are reliable in challenging conditions.

UHF tags are less expensive to manufacture than tags for HF (5–15 C labels when compared to 50 C/-$2), which is why they are utilized in a range of applications, including security management, inventory management, anti-theft,and wireless configuration.

RFID technology is growing in market share, as are UHF tags, which are becoming popular because of their low cost and comparable efficiency to HF and LF tags.If you're in search of the latest tag or tracking system that can increase the efficiency of your business, RFID could be an excellent option to think about.

Disclaimer: The information presented here is for general information purposes only and true to best of our understanding. Users are requested to use any information as per their own understanding and knowledge. Before using any of the information, please refer to our Privacy Policy and Terms and Conditions.

  • Created on Nov 29, 2022

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