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Cold Chain Monitoring with RFID Technology

  • Akansha Sharma
  • Aug 09, 2023
  • RFID
Cold Chain Monitoring

Transportation and storage are essential and reoccurring steps in any supply chain. However, some goods cannot last long under normal circumstances; these are termed as perishable items/goods. To maintain the availability of such goods, manufacturers usually keep them in cold environments, during storage & transportation. This is known as a cold chain. Like any operation, especially one as vulnerable as this, careful monitoring is essential. That is why, many businesses perform cold chain monitoring with RFID technology.

What is a Cold Chain & Cold Chain Monitoring?

Cold chain is a type of, or more accurately, refers to the systems set in place all along the supply chain. A cold chain system consists of practices & equipment that ensure that assets/items/materials always stay within a set temperature range (mostly lower temperatures).

The main purpose of a cold chain is to preserve perishable goods like food, organic materials, drugs, etc.

Cold Chain Monitoring refers to the operations of a business that relates to tracking and keeping sight of cold chain operations. More accurately, it refers to the use of technologies like RFID, IoT, etc., to monitor the proper functions of the cold chain throughout the movement and storage of assets.

Importance of Cold Chain Logistics Management

Logistics and Transportation operations need to be meticulously operated, as they always have a high risk of the product becoming useless, in the event of overheating. For example, the transportation of medicine like insulin, all the way from the manufacturer to the pharmacist. Insulin requires to be kept under 2°C to 8°C, anything above that will become less and less usable with time.

Cold Chain Logistics Management is necessary to ensure that these items remain in optimal condition, from the moment they are made till they are in the hands of the consumer.

How to Conduct Cold Chain Monitoring Using RFID?

Radio Frequency Identification is a type of AIDC technology that uses radio signals to communicate data with the system. There are different classes of these tags, some even consist of temperature sensors. These sensors constantly provide the storage temperature at the checkpoints, allowing users to monitor the environment in which the goods are stored.

This technology is used heavily in industries like – Food Manufacturing, Vaccines, Medicines, Poultry, etc.

Benefits of Using RFID for Cold Chain Monitoring

There are numerous benefits of relying on RFID technology for Cold Chain Management, rather than the traditional methods. So, let’s check out the biggest advantages that RFID has over other alternatives, for cold chain monitoring:

(A). Quick & Dynamic

Unlike other systems, RFID constantly checks for temperature readings and alerts the system as soon as the temperature of the storage goes out of the acceptable limits. With IoT integration, the entire system is automated, and it reroutes the shipment to alternative storage and alerts the maintenance crew.

(B). Communicate Throughout the Chain

These systems are connected to each other throughout the supply chain. Meaning, that when one storage platform fails, the entire chain is rerouted and optimized to prevent any loss of items.

(C). Optimize Maintenance Schedules

With the help of RFID, the monitoring systems can provide the users with detailed and accurate data collected throughout the chain. This includes failures, regular maintenance schedules, compliances, etc., which allows analysis and further optimizes custom preventative maintenance.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q1. What is the application of RFID in a cold chain?

RFID technology can help businesses keep real-time monitoring over their cold chain and optimize its management & prevent spoiling of perishable items.

Q2. What is the cold temperature for RFID tags?

When it comes to cold temperatures, most users don’t have to worry about RF tags. These tags can withstand temperatures as low as negative 80° C and remain functional.

Q3. What is the range limit of RFID?

The range of an RF system can vary significantly based on factors like operating frequency, power input, type of antenna, type of tag, obstacles, etc. For example, RFID can have a range as small as a couple of centimeters, and as large as a little of 100 meters.

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 Aug 09, 2023

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