RFID labels are an important component of RFID technology that we use for track and trace applications. The Taffeta RFID labels are washable RFID tags where RFID chip is embedded into taffeta fabric, a high-end crisp and smooth women fabric made from silk, cuprammonium rayons, or polyester.
The word Taffeta itself is derived from Persian word ‘tafta’ meaning silk or linen cloth.
The RFID chip embedded with the taffeta fabric is the one that stores electronic data which can be accessed using an RFID reader. When in range, the RFID reader sends an RF (Radio Frequency) signal which RFID taffeta label uses to send back the encoded data in the form of an RF signal.
With the increase demand for durable RFID labels that can withstand harsh environmental conditions such as moisture, rain, and exposure to chemicals etc., Taffeta RFID labels find many applications in textile, supply chain and logistics, warehousing and retail businesses.
Before we talk more about Taffeta RFID labels and its uses, let’s see what the RFID technology is and why taffeta labels are in great demand.
Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) Technology
RFID is a prominent AIDC (Automatic Identification and Data Capture) technology which uses wireless RF signals to communicate between an RFID tag and an RFID reader with the help of an RFID antenna.
Most importantly, an RF subsystem, which is a software interface, is used to display the read data (from the tag) to the end user.
Over the last decade, RFID has become very popular for its efficient use in track and trace solutions as it can be used to track assets wirelessly, over a long distance, without a clear line of sight.
Even though the RFID technology has been around since the World War 2, when the British forces used this tech to identify allied aircrafts from the enemy ones, it has another popular reference as a listening device, the great seal bug, given to the United States ambassador Averell Harriman by the Soviet Union, on August 4, 1945, in the form of a gift, a carved wooden plaque of the Great Seal of the USA. It was passive and needed electromagnetic energy from outside source to energize and become active. It is considered a predecessor to the RFID technology we see today.
Some 75 years later, RFID now finds application in asset tracking and identification, popularly used in retail, healthcare, supply chain and logistics industry to identify tools, apparel, shoes, supply boxes and pallets etc.
The Cuprammonium Rayons that are used in Taffeta fabric
Now coming to the taffeta labels, it is made from silk, cuprammonium rayons or polyesters. The cuprammonium rayons are created by dissolving rayon in Schweizer's reagent, the metal ammine complex with the formula [Cu(NH3)4(H2O)2](OH)2. As clear from the formula, it is a complex compound made of copper hydroxide and ammonia. When copper (||) hydroxide is dissolved in ammonia solution, you get Schweizer's reagent, a deep-blue compound. It is then extruded into sulfuric acid (H2SO4) to get the rayon.
The cuprammonium rayons are very fine fibres with a soft silk/ tactile feel, quite similar in properties to cotton. It can be used to get soft, lightweight and sheer fabrics.
What's the use of Taffeta RFID Labels?
The Taffeta RFID labels are washable labels that can be used for specific set of use cases such as laundry management, textile industry, apparel tracking in retail etc.
The laundry management businesses prefer taffeta to other kinds of RFID labels as taffeta is a fine fabric and provides great quality of printing. More importantly, taffeta labels can withstand a finite no. of wash-cycle, so they don’t have to be extra careful while handling laundry.
The taffeta RFID labels can also be embedded with a good amount of data, so laundry businesses can encode the tags with client’s name, mobile no, or address making it easier to track laundry and bill the right customer.
Being a soft and plain fabric, Taffeta RFID labels are also increasingly used in retail industry to track apparels. These tags are encoded with relevant data and are woven into the apparel, which is quite helpful in keeping the retail store inventory up to date and to prevent ‘out of stock’ scenarios.
Apart from that, the textile industry uses taffeta labels as care labels where wash-care instructions are printed and attached to clothes.
What is the Cost of RFID Taffeta Tags?
Cost of RFID Taffeta Tags in India starts at INR 6 per tag (4-5 US cents) and can be purchased at EnCstore, a leading RFID and barcode products company in India. These RFID tags are slightly costlier than other RFID labels that cost INR 3 per RFID tag.
These tags are designed specifically for linen/garment/laundry tracking purposes.
To conclude, Taffeta RFID labels are proven to be more useful when it comes to wash care labels. These labels are made from silk, cuprammonium rayons, or polyester and offer great durability in harsh environment conditions such as moisture, rain and chemical exposure. The taffeta RFID labels are primarily used to track laundry and apparels besides asset tracking and supply chain and logistics management.