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RFID implementation in Indian institute of Technology (IIT) libraries

  • Mahesh Tiwari
  • Feb 28, 2023
  • RFID
RFID implementation in IIT

The central library at IIT Delhi, which is a premier institute in the field of technology across the world, has 189,742 books on science and technology including chemistry, mathematics, physics, chemical engineering, computer science, electrical and electronics engineering, textile engineering, civil engineering, biochemical and biomedical engineering. In addition to this the Library also has a good collection of books on humanities and social sciences.

It also has 1, 03,942 bound volumes of journals and 13,430 technical reports, 5,550 CDs and 1800 video cassettes as well.

To manage this vast collection of books, theses and journals the central library became an early adaptor of RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) technology, as early as 2010.

But the Indian institute of technology, Delhi isn’t the only one to venture into this direction of Library automation. Indian Institute of Technology, Madras has also implemented RFID in the library to manage the day to day library operations including self check out and self check in (drop in) of books, theft prevention, sorting and managing an accurate inventory.

Some other IITs and educational institutes to use RFID are as followings:

1.British Council Delhi

2.American Center Library

3.Jamia Hamdard

4.NLU Delhi

5.Sapru House, New Delhi

6.NASSDOC, New Delhi

7.IIM Indore

8.IIM Lucknow

9.IISc Bangalore

10.IIT Madras

11.IIT Kharagpur

12.IIT Patna

13.IIT Roorkee

14.NCL Pune

15.University of Pune,

16.Nirma University, Ahmedabad

17.NIT Rourkela

18.NIT Surat etc.

RFID implementation at IIT Delhi

Since 2010, IIT Delhi has been using RFID technology for library automation and providing enhanced user experience. It provides students with self -check-out of books, self-check-in (book drop) options and also employs RFID to find misplaced reading material, sorting, stock verification, inventory accuracy, video surveillance, security control, people counter, Smart Card issuance, etc.

It has RFID enabled self check-out kiosk and RFID book drop box facilities to enhance user experience. Students can pick up the book from the self and can scan the book at the kiosk with their RFID library membership card and check-out. On completion of the issue period or before, students can simply scan the book at the drop box facility to deposit the book back to library.

Use of RFID tags on books has also helped in finding a particular edition of book, missing books etc. amongst the vast collections of books inside the library.

Global scenarios: RFID Implementation

University of Hong Kong Library is the largest academic library to implement RFID tags, replacing Electromagnetic strips (EM) and barcodes (mostly).  HKU has 2.6m printed books and journals in its library where it uses the RFID technology for shelf management, inventory and improving the patron experience inside the library.

Worldwide, the maximum use of RFID is found in United States, Singapore, United Kingdom, China, Japan etc.

In United States, Seattle Public Library is the largest public institution to implement RFID technology. It has 2.3m items and 27 branches as of now. Seattle Public Library switched to RFID technology in year 2006 to allow people to check out their materials without any assistance from the library staff and allowing the librarians to focus on matters other than circulation. Libraries in Santa Clara, North Carolina, Welmington, and University of Las Vegas are some other to use RFID system amongst many.

The Netherlands plans to use RFID in all of its public libraries,  the Vatican Library plans to tag its 2m articles out of 40m with RFID to keep track of historical documents without damaging any of them.

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  • Created on Feb 28, 2023

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