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RFID Tags Shrink in Size andExpand in Application

Originally Published MPMN July 2004

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RFID Tags Shrink in Size and Expand in Application  

Embedded identification system offers alternative to bar coding 

Corinne Litchfield
RFID tags from Maxell Corp. are small enough to be incorporated into test tubes.

Radio-frequency identification (RFID) tags have grown in popularity because they can track and store large quantities of data in comparison with traditional tracking systems. In response to the limitations that may arise from bar code-based identification systems, Maxell Corp. (Fair Lawn, NJ) has developed the Coil-on-Chip RFID system, which uses a 2.5-mm2 chip with built-in antenna coil and rewritable memory from 128 bytes to 4 Kb. The size of the RFID tag, its resistance to deterioration and contamination, and a large memory capacity makes it a viable alternative to other tagging systems. 

One application using this technology is of Maxell's own design: test tubes with embedded RFID tags for use in identifying laboratory samples. The tags comply with industry standards for test tubes. Most sterilization procedures will not cause damage to the RFID tag, according to Rumi Kitatate, product and marketing manager of Maxell's new product development group. 

A customized reader-writer module for storing and retrieving data on the RFID tag is also available. The user data area is divided into 64-byte blocks, and each block can be write-protected to prevent accidental deletion or alteration of data. Data can be retained for up to 10 years.

Other possible applications for the tags include handheld devices and any materials in which size and portability may be an issue. The read-write hardware can be configured for a wide range of uses and the accompanying software is compatible with several Windows operating systems.

The ME-Y1001 series of RFID tags has a memory capacity of 128 bytes and a data transfer rate of 26.48 Kb/sec. The ME-Y2000 series ranges from 1 to 4 Kb in memory storage and has a data transfer rate of 212 Kb/sec.

Maxell Corp.
22-08, Rte. 208
Fair Lawn, NJ 07410
tel: 201/794-5900
fax: 201/796-8790
url: www.maxell.com 

Copyright ©2004 Medical Product Manufacturing News

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