As a means of conveyed electronically stored information, Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) labels have many potential uses, making them a very versatile tool in a variety of different sectors. Using electromagnetic fields, RFID tags contain readable information that can be used to track and identify an object, an animal and even a human being.
The model for a technology that converts information via radio frequency is not an unfamiliar one. An early predecessor to RFID can be found in Léon Theremin’s listening device. Invented in 1945 for use by the Soviet Union, the device used vibration to recreate messages sent via radio frequency. Another early iteration of a similar technology can be found in the IFF responder: A technology that was used by allied forces during World War II to enable aircraft to identify other planes as friend or foe. This technology is still used by some aircraft today.
One reason for the rise in the use of RFID labels is accessibility. A RFID label can be scanned without the need for visibility, making them faster to scan then traditional barcodes. This fact also means it is possible to scan many RFID codes at the same time, meaning minimal human input in locations such as libraries where items are regularly noted as part of an inventory. RFID labels also open more possibilities for self-service stations in locations such as this due to their simple design and indirect scanning capabilities.
RFID labels also serve a purpose as an added level of security. In retail, RFID is used in item-level tagging. By using Electronic Article Surveillance (EAS) systems, stores can ensure that all RFID labels have been deactivated at the time of purchase, minimising incidents of theft. Another security application is being applied within passports. E-passports use RFID technology to store a digital photograph and other relevant information about the passport holder, all of which matches the information shown in the physical passport, indicating the authenticity of the document itself and confirming the identity of its holder.
Worldwide, an estimated 30 million library items are RFID tagged. The British Library alone has 150 million items. With so much to catalogue, the addition of equipment such as RFID labels and readers, self-service stations and security systems to prevent thefts can mean the difference between perfect order and chaos.
Using readers to scan hundreds of books in a fraction of the time with RFID technology could give your staff more time to assist borrowers. By enabling your borrowers to choose a self-service open, you are offering them a quick and easy way to access their items.
At D-Tech International, we offer security, self-service and inventory technology that is all compatible with any RFID label currently approved by book suppliers. Although our advanced digital radio frequency technology is able to scan any label, we also stock 13.56MHz RFID labels on the D-Tech Online Shop.
For more information on our security, self-service or RFID technology, contact us.