Radio Frequency Identification has been a prominent technology present in almost all industries around the globe. This technology allows businesses to automate and operate efficient AIDC operations. A subset/part of this technology is the RFID hard tag. These tags are specially designed to provide additional protection against various environmental dangers.
So, let’s not waste any more time and get right to it.
Brief About RFID Technology
It stands for Radio Frequency Identification. It is a type of AIDC technology that allows users to identify and track their assets/items/employees. These systems use work by using radio signals to communicate data between the components.
An RFID system consists of three primary components, namely – Tags, Readers, and Antennas. The tag has a microchip inside it that can be programmed to hold data about the item. The antennas send and receive signals and send them to the reader. The reader converts the signals from the tag into readable format.
Now that you know the basics of this technology, let’s discuss something more specific.
What are RFID Hard Tags?
Before we talk about hard tags, specifically, let’s check out what is the meaning of a tag. An RF tag is a small device capable of storing and communicating information using radio signals. The most basic component of a tag is the inlay. An inlay consists of an antenna that is connected to a microchip, these are then mounted on a substrate surface to provide it protection.
An RFID Hard Tag has one additional feature/component that stands for tags. These have a hard outer shell that acts as a protective layer. This shell provides the tag protection against a variety of environmental threats like extreme temperature, moisture, chemicals, physical damage, etc.
These tags also come with a variety of mounting methods like adhesive backsides, screw mounts, weld mounts, etc. There are two types of hard tags, active and passive. Active tags have an internal power supply (battery, generally coin cells) and can broadcast signals for a significantly longer range (up to 100 meters). Passive tags on the other hand lack any internal power supply. This means that they have to use a process called electromagnetic induction and signal backscattering to communicate information when working in the near-field and far-field of the antenna, respectively.
What are the Applications of RFID Hard Tags?
As we discussed above, the primary benefit of hard tags is the protection they provide against damage to the inlay or chip. This allows them to work perfectly in harsh environments. These tags are good for applications in industries like:
(A). Automobile Manufacturing, to keep track of the items on the production and assembly line.
(B). Construction Sites, to monitor and maintain inventory of tools and equipment.
(C). Vehicle Windshield Tag for automating access control for private/commercial parking.
These tags are essential to allow effective AIDC implementation in industries with harsh environments. Their hard outer cover can be made of ABS or Other Plastics, protecting the inlay from any outside damage. They are also water-resistant and can withstand extreme temperatures. Hard tags come with multiple mounting options like Screws, Rivers, Welding, Adhesive, etc.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q1. What are RFID tags used for?
Ans - There are many applications for this technology both currently practiced and hypothesized in the market. These systems can communicate data hundreds of feet apart using wireless communication, and at high speeds. Currently, the most popular application of this technology is asset identification & tracking, access control, inventory management, and security systems.
Q2. What are the two types of RFID tags?
We can classify RFID tags based on different criteria, like operational frequencies, range, application, and in this case, power requirement. On this basis, there are two types of tags, active and passive. Active ones use an internal battery to power up and broadcast their signals.
On the other hand, passive tags need the signal from the reader’s antenna to communicate using backscattering. Active tags can communicate up to 100 meters, as compared to 10 to 12 meters for passive tags.
Q3. Are RFID tags permanent?
Yes and No. Active tags require a power source to operate and become useless once the battery runs out. However, in the case of passive tags, they do not require any power source to function. Thus, virtually a passive tag has no limited lifespan and should be functional as long as it is not physically damaged.
But, when speaking practically, it is not possible to protect the tag completely from any environmental damage like moisture, dust, etc.
- Last updated on Jun 12, 2023