A4 Innovation in RFID Creates Performance

A4 Innovation in RFID Creates Performance

The Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) industry has grown considerably in the last 30 years however, system constraints can still limit the scope of a project. A4 Systems is solving a unique digital transformation problem involving RFID antennas.

RFID is the wireless use of radio frequency waves to transfer data. RFID tags contain digital data emitted to an RFID reader via an antenna. Tagging an item with an RFID tag can uniquely identify and track the item. The RFID tag, reader, antenna, and cables are all part of a system that must work together to provide the right configuration to meet the application need.

RFID is used in many different industries in a variety of ways.  Wholesalers and distributors used RFID tags on a variety of products for inventory tracking and retailers use RFID tags for reducing theft. Manufacturers use RFID to track tooling and equipment in and around facilities to manage assets. Highway toll payment systems used RFID to collect tolls from passing cars. Libraries used RFID tags in books to provide security and to track book location for inventory.

An A4 client needed an innovation for inventory tracking. The manual system of inventory management had been in place for decades. It was heavy in labor costs and did not have a high degree of precision or control. To improve performance and reduce costs, an RFID system was needed.

The RFID system would transform the antiquated inventory system into a state-of-the-art inventory management system with a substantial improvement in performance and cost.

The client required an RFID system for tracking with a tightly controlled configuration over a concrete coverage area several thousand feet long. Stock radio antennas are about 5 feet long and are not focused on a small field over a greater length. Concrete also creates a challenge because the signal can be absorbed by the concrete. It is not practical or cost efficient to deploy a thousand or more antennas working with dozens of multi-port RFID readers.

A4 has been researching and designing new RFID antennas to extend their reading distance while maintaining signal quality. New antenna designs now cover over 100 feet while maintaining a focus on a small field. The benefit to the A4 client is a considerable cost savings in equipment, labor, and maintenance. The number of readers and antennas needed for the project are reduced by 90%.

A4 focuses its efforts on energy, cannabis, manufacturing, mining, and agriculture. These industries have extensive need for improved RFID capabilities. When A4 invests time and effort into the production of an innovation such as a greatly enhanced RFID antenna, the innovation is reproducible and can be utilized in any of the target industries.

A4 regularly creates or invents solutions to meet client’s need and utilizes the solutions repeatedly over time with other clients. RFID is a technology used in all A4 target industries and any innovations in RFID can be utilized across the industry spectrum.