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RFID Wizards Inc.
                               RFID Equipment
 Implementing RFID Solutions
        Magically
           ...
Table of Contents

Background................................................................................................
Background
It should be noted that this document is not a hypothetical case study. All of the results in this
document are...
Category                        Condition/Parameter
Reader Configuration            Reader used
Antenna configuration     ...
Products Tested
Both pallets and individual items of Company A products were tested.

Radiolucent Materials

Some products...
Industrial Equipment Used During Tests
Tests used industrial equipment provided by Company A to determine tag reading and ...
Conveyor

Conveyor tests were specifically designed to test readability of
tags on and around problematic materials. The s...
Intermec Equipment
Intermec 915 MHz PA RS232 Stationary Reader

Four addressable antenna ports.       Designed for indoor ...
Intermec 915 MHz 45X85 Dipole Free Insert panel

Intermec recommends this read-write tag for all
products packaged in card...
Matrics Equipment
Matrics 915 MHz Stationary Reader
   • Four addressable antenna ports.
   • Designed for indoor industri...
Alien Technology Tests
8 ft. portal using 2 antennas mounted on Camera Tripods

Company A dock doors are 8 ft wide.
The an...
Conveyor Tests

For reading items on a conveyor, a circular
polarized antenna was placed 40 in. above
the floor and 24 in....
Intermec Tests
8 ft. portal using 4, 2, and 1 antennas mounted on PVC

Company A dock doors are 8 ft wide.
The antennas we...
Brake Rotors on Pallet (Donut configuration)

Due to less than 100% accuracy with tightly packed brake rotors in
the previ...
Matrics Tests
8 ft. portal using 2 antennas mounted on wood supports

Company A dock doors are 8 ft wide.
The antennas wer...
Conclusions
These tests demonstrate that it is feasible to use RFID technology to enhance supply chain
operations at Compa...
Appendix 1: Sample Test Results
This section contains a sample of the completed test results. It is designed to provide a ...
RFID Test Results - Warehouse
Page 16         ©2003, RFID Wizards Inc.
          http://www.RFIDWizards.com
Brake Rotors Tightly Packed On Pallet




                                                  RFID Test Results - Warehouse
...
RFID Test Results - Warehouse
Page 18         ©2003, RFID Wizards Inc.
          http://www.RFIDWizards.com
RFID Test Results - Warehouse
Page 19         ©2003, RFID Wizards Inc.
          http://www.RFIDWizards.com
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Page 20         ©2003, RFID Wizards Inc.
          http://www.RFIDWizards.com
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Page 21         ©2003, RFID Wizards Inc.
          http://www.RFIDWizards.com
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Page 22         ©2003, RFID Wizards Inc.
          http://www.RFIDWizards.com
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Page 23         ©2003, RFID Wizards Inc.
          http://www.RFIDWizards.com
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Page 24         ©2003, RFID Wizards Inc.
          http://www.RFIDWizards.com
RFID Test Results - Warehouse
Page 25         ©2003, RFID Wizards Inc.
          http://www.RFIDWizards.com
RFID Test Results - Warehouse
Page 26         ©2003, RFID Wizards Inc.
          http://www.RFIDWizards.com
Donut Configuration Test




                                     RFID Test Results - Warehouse
                          ...
About RFID Wizards Inc.

What We Do
RFID Wizards Inc. provides professional consulting services in the following areas:
  ...
Experience with RFID Technology
RFID Wizards Inc. staff is experienced working with equipment from numerous manufacturers
...
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RFID Equipment Test Results Warehouse

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Transcript of "RFID Equipment Test Results Warehouse"

  1. 1. RFID Wizards Inc. RFID Equipment Implementing RFID Solutions Magically Test Results Warehouse Prepared by: RFID Wizards Inc. 3330 Yorkshire Court Adamstown, MD 21710 Tel: 301 674-3546 Fax: 301 874-6977 2033 Ralston Ave. #126 Belmont, CA 94002 Tel: 650 804-1953 Fax: 650 327-0262 http://www.RFIDWizards.com http://www.BuyRFID.com
  2. 2. Table of Contents Background........................................................................................................................................................ 1 Objectives and Scope..................................................................................................................................... 1 Products Tested ................................................................................................................................................. 3 Industrial Equipment Used During Tests......................................................................................................... 4 Alien Technology Equipment.......................................................................................................................... 5 Intermec Equipment......................................................................................................................................... 6 Matrics Equipment............................................................................................................................................ 8 Alien Technology Tests ..................................................................................................................................... 9 Intermec Tests ..................................................................................................................................................11 Matrics Tests......................................................................................................................................................13 Conclusions ......................................................................................................................................................14 Appendix 1: Sample Test Results ..................................................................................................................15 About RFID Wizards Inc. .................................................................................................................................28 What We Do.....................................................................................................................................................28 Research and Development and Custom RFID Solutions.......................................................................28 Who We Work With .........................................................................................................................................28 Where We Work...............................................................................................................................................28 RFID Wizards Inc. Corporate Information ...................................................................................................28 Experience with RFID Technology................................................................................................................29 Information Technology Skills........................................................................................................................29
  3. 3. Background It should be noted that this document is not a hypothetical case study. All of the results in this document are real. Only the customer information has been removed to respect nondisclosure agreements. Customer approval was obtained prior to distributing this version of the document. Objectives and Scope The overall objectives of these tests are to determine: • the feasibility of using RFID equipment in the supply chain operations of Company A • the equipment best suited to Company A's environmental conditions and products • the most optimal configuration of the equipment Due to the presently defined requirements, testing is limited to products operating in the 915 Mhz frequency range. These products include currently available off the shelf products from: § Alien Technology § Intermec § Matrics Prior to the tests, each vendor was consulted and asked to recommend the RFID tags and equipment configuration that would be best suited for Company A. Test Conditions Test Facilities Tests were conducted at Company A’s Distribution Center. This facility is one of the key operational locations and contains the typical activity and RF noise anticipated in all operations. It should be noted that other Company A Distribution Centers may have slightly different conditions and therefore actual results could vary slightly. Test Measurements During these tests, many individual measurements are taken and evaluated. Combined, the measurements are used to help understand: 1. Tag readability – Are all tags read successfully under the given conditions? 2. Optimal equipment configuration - how does the equipment work best under the given conditions? Specific Test Measurements These tests are designed to determine tag readability and optimal equipment configuration under a variety of conditions. These conditions include: RFID Test Results - Warehouse Page 1 ©2003, RFID Wizards Inc. http://www.RFIDWizards.com
  4. 4. Category Condition/Parameter Reader Configuration Reader used Antenna configuration Number of external antennas used: 4, 2, or 1 Side mount, antenna(s) distance above floor Distance between antenna and object Tag Specific Tag used Tag orientation Vertical (Relative to floor) Horizontal Diagonal Objects tagged Pallets or Items Tagged Material Tag Location on object Number of tags Location of tagged objects On pallet on floor On pallet on mobile pallet jack On pallet on pallet jack On conveyor Tag motion passing antenna(s) Stationary Moving normal speed (< 5 mph) Moving high speed (5+ mph) On conveyor ~ 90 ft/min Hand Carried Tag reading challenges Reading tags through other cases of product on pallet Reading tags on and between cases containing metal products RFID Test Results - Warehouse Page 2 ©2003, RFID Wizards Inc. http://www.RFIDWizards.com
  5. 5. Products Tested Both pallets and individual items of Company A products were tested. Radiolucent Materials Some products and their packaging are radiolucent, that is, RF signals can easily penetrate their materials. Radiolucent materials include primarily organic and synthetic fibers with plastic or cardboard packaging. The wooden pallets tested are categorized as radiolucent. Problematic Materials Most of the Company A products contain metal (which can block RF signals). Other problematic materials include liquid (which can attenuate, absorb or divert RF signals). Problematic products used in these tests include: Brake Rotors housed in cardboard packaging Calipers housed in cardboard packaging Ball Joints housed in cardboard packaging The brake rotors were used in all pallet tests. All products were used in item tests. RFID Test Results - Warehouse Page 3 ©2003, RFID Wizards Inc. http://www.RFIDWizards.com
  6. 6. Industrial Equipment Used During Tests Tests used industrial equipment provided by Company A to determine tag reading and RF interference tests. Mobile Pallet Jack A Mobile Pallet Jack was used in some tests, both stationary and in motion. Normal speed is defined as 5 mph or less. High speed is defined as more than 5 mph. The primary challenges presented by a Mobile Pallet Jack or fork-lift include the potential influence of: • RF signals scattering off or shielded by metal components on the truck’s mast and reach mechanisms, especially when tags are in close proximity or in contact with such mechanisms. • Speed of tag movement through read window at forklift nominal speed and high speed. Pallet Jack The pallet jack was the most frequently used equipment in testing. It is a manually operated, metal apparatus with wheels and hydraulic lift. Its operating speeds are estimated to range from 0 to 5 mph (normal) up to about 5 mph (fast). Challenges presented by the pallet jack included the potential influence of: • RF signals scattering off or shielded by the metal steering column, especially when tags are in close proximity or in contact with it. • Speed of tag movement through read window at pallet jack nominal and high speeds. RFID Test Results - Warehouse Page 4 ©2003, RFID Wizards Inc. http://www.RFIDWizards.com
  7. 7. Conveyor Conveyor tests were specifically designed to test readability of tags on and around problematic materials. The single-case conveyor presentation of product in relatively close proximity to the antenna was deemed to be a more favorable condition for reading tags on and around metal and liquid materials versus presentation of multiple cases on a pallet. Only one type of conveyor was used in the tests: a roller conveyor. No Motorized belt conveyors are used at this location. The primary challenges involve the potential influence of: • RF signals bouncing off the metal rollers. • Movement/speed of tagged objects pushed manually through read window at an estimated average of 90 ft/min. • Noise induced by mechanical vibration. Alien Technology Equipment Alien Technology 915 MHz Stationary Reader • Two addressable antenna ports. • Designed for indoor industrial environments. • Connected via RS-232 cable to a Toshiba Satellite laptop. Antennas The reader was tested with two sets of Cushcraft 915Mhz antennas. Set 1 uses circular polarization (designed to increase signal reception in environments with significant RF signal scattering). Set 2 uses linear polarization (designed for longer range). Each antenna was connected via a 3' cable. RFID Test Results - Warehouse Page 5 ©2003, RFID Wizards Inc. http://www.RFIDWizards.com
  8. 8. Intermec Equipment Intermec 915 MHz PA RS232 Stationary Reader Four addressable antenna ports. Designed for indoor industrial environments. Connected via RS-232 cable to a Dell Inspirion laptop. Antennas The reader was tested with Cushcraft 915Mhz antennas with circular polarization (designed to increase signal reception in environments with significant RF signal scattering). Each antenna was connected via a 10' cable. Intermec 915 MHz 1555 Handheld The Intermec 1555 is a portable data collection device capable of scanning bar codes as well as reading & programming radio frequency identification (RFID) tags and labels. Although not thoroughly tested, the reader had no problems scanning any UPC product barcodes. RFID Test Results - Warehouse Page 6 ©2003, RFID Wizards Inc. http://www.RFIDWizards.com
  9. 9. Intermec 915 MHz 45X85 Dipole Free Insert panel Intermec recommends this read-write tag for all products packaged in cardboard. It is attuned to cardboard. Intermec 915 MHz 33x105 Container Tag Panel Intermec recommends this read-write tag for wooden pallets. RFID Test Results - Warehouse Page 7 ©2003, RFID Wizards Inc. http://www.RFIDWizards.com
  10. 10. Matrics Equipment Matrics 915 MHz Stationary Reader • Four addressable antenna ports. • Designed for indoor industrial environments. • Connected via RS-232 cable to a Toshiba Satellite laptop. Antennas The reader was tested with two Matrics general-purpose antenna. Unlike the Cushcraft antennas, Matrics antennas use separate transmit and receive channels in the same unit. This results in an antenna twice the size of a Cushcraft. One Matrics antenna is functionally equivalent to two Cushcraft antennas. Each antenna was connected via a 10' cable. Matrics 4"x4" Inlay in 4"x6" Smart label format This read only tag is designed for general- purpose use. RFID Test Results - Warehouse Page 8 ©2003, RFID Wizards Inc. http://www.RFIDWizards.com
  11. 11. Alien Technology Tests 8 ft. portal using 2 antennas mounted on Camera Tripods Company A dock doors are 8 ft wide. The antennas were mounted to the camera tripods using Velcro. Pallet Tests A wooden pallet was outfitted with a single tag. Three tags were tested: 'I', 'U', and the pallet tag. Results Read accuracy was 100% in all tests with the pallet tag and the 'U' tag, even with 1 antenna, both near side and far side. The 'I' tag had inconsistent results. Brake Rotors on Pallet Company A employees pack pallets with labels facing out. RFID tags were specifically placed inside containers at the edges as to match the orientation of the label. Results Numerous antenna combinations and heights were tested. Up to 97% accuracy was achieved in moving tests. The best configuration was seen from 2 linear polarized antennas, one at a 13.5" height and a second at a 30" height (see picture above right). The 'U' tag outperformed the 'I' tag by several percent. Further tests are required with 4 antennas. RFID Test Results - Warehouse Page 9 ©2003, RFID Wizards Inc. http://www.RFIDWizards.com
  12. 12. Conveyor Tests For reading items on a conveyor, a circular polarized antenna was placed 40 in. above the floor and 24 in. from the products. Tags were placed on the near side, far side, and at right angles to the antenna. Results Using the reader and only 1 antenna achieved 100% even at a very high rate of speed. RFID Test Results - Warehouse Page 10 ©2003, RFID Wizards Inc. http://www.RFIDWizards.com
  13. 13. Intermec Tests 8 ft. portal using 4, 2, and 1 antennas mounted on PVC Company A dock doors are 8 ft wide. The antennas were mounted to the PVC using Velcro. The upper antennas were 42 in. above the floor and the lower antenna were 24 in. above the floor. In tests with 2 antennas, they were mounted at 30 in. above the floor. In test with 1 antenna, it was mounted at 30 in. above the floor. Pallet Tests A wooden pallet was outfitted with a single tag in a horizontal orientation (as pictured right). Results Read accuracy was 100% in all tests, even with 1 antenna as long as the tag was facing the antenna. The closer the antenna was to the floor, the more reads per second were achieved. The handheld reader could read as far as 4 feet from the tag. Brake Rotors on Pallet Company A employees pack pallets with labels facing out. RFID tags were specifically placed inside containers at the edges as to match the orientation of the label. Results Read accuracy was between 50% (fast moving) to 76% (stationary) with 4 antennas. The handheld reader could not read all tags on the pallet. An accurate count could not be determined. RFID Test Results - Warehouse Page 11 ©2003, RFID Wizards Inc. http://www.RFIDWizards.com
  14. 14. Brake Rotors on Pallet (Donut configuration) Due to less than 100% accuracy with tightly packed brake rotors in the previous test, the pallet was re-packed in a 'Donut configuration'. The center column of products was removed. Results Even without the middle column, read accuracy was between 60% (fast moving) to 75% (stationary) with 4 antennas. The handheld reader could not read all tags on the pallet. An accurate count could not be determined. Conveyor Tests For reading items on a conveyor, the external antenna with circular polarization was mounted at a height of 30 in. from the ground and between 24 in. from the products. Tags were placed on the near side and far side of the product. Results Using the stationary reader and only 1 antenna achieved 100% even when the tag was on the far side of the product and moving at a very high rate of speed. The handheld reader would not read any tagged item until it was 5 in. from the container. Tests at 10 in. failed. The tag also had to be on the same near of the product as the unit. RFID Test Results - Warehouse Page 12 ©2003, RFID Wizards Inc. http://www.RFIDWizards.com
  15. 15. Matrics Tests 8 ft. portal using 2 antennas mounted on wood supports Company A dock doors are 8 ft wide. The antennas were mounted to the wood supports using screws. Pallet Tests A wooden pallet was outfitted with a single tag. Results Read accuracy was 100% in all tests, even with 1 antenna, both near side and far side. Brake Rotors on Pallet Company A employees pack pallets with labels facing out. RFID tags were specifically placed inside containers at the edges as to match the orientation of the label. Results Read accuracy was between 98% and 100% with 2 antennas in all moving tests with 2 antennas. The stationary tests consistently missed 1 tag. A third canopy mount antenna did not catch the 1 missed tag. Conveyor Tests For reading items on a conveyor, the general-purpose antenna was placed 24 in. from the products. Tags were placed on the near side, far side, and at right angles to the antenna. Results Using the stationary reader and only 1 antenna achieved 100% even at a very high rate of speed. RFID Test Results - Warehouse Page 13 ©2003, RFID Wizards Inc. http://www.RFIDWizards.com
  16. 16. Conclusions These tests demonstrate that it is feasible to use RFID technology to enhance supply chain operations at Company A. All vendors achieved 100% accuracy tracking wooden pallets and products traveling single file on a conveyor. Identifying the contents of tightly packed pallets of Company A products prove to be more of a challenge. The test results conclude that Matrics equipment is the best suited for tightly packed pallets of metal products. Alien Technology is a close second. The current Intermec equipment and tags do not appear well adapted for use with pallets of metal products. The most optimal configuration of the equipment for products traveling single file on a conveyor includes a single antenna 24" from the products. For tracking wooden pallets through dock doors, two antennas (one left, one right) are sufficient. For pallets of metal items such as brake rotors, Matrics only requires two antennas. RFID Test Results - Warehouse Page 14 ©2003, RFID Wizards Inc. http://www.RFIDWizards.com
  17. 17. Appendix 1: Sample Test Results This section contains a sample of the completed test results. It is designed to provide a more detailed example of how tests were documented. For complete results, please contact RFID Wizards Inc. Ball Joint on Conveyor tests RFID Test Results - Warehouse Page 15 ©2003, RFID Wizards Inc. http://www.RFIDWizards.com
  18. 18. RFID Test Results - Warehouse Page 16 ©2003, RFID Wizards Inc. http://www.RFIDWizards.com
  19. 19. Brake Rotors Tightly Packed On Pallet RFID Test Results - Warehouse Page 17 ©2003, RFID Wizards Inc. http://www.RFIDWizards.com
  20. 20. RFID Test Results - Warehouse Page 18 ©2003, RFID Wizards Inc. http://www.RFIDWizards.com
  21. 21. RFID Test Results - Warehouse Page 19 ©2003, RFID Wizards Inc. http://www.RFIDWizards.com
  22. 22. RFID Test Results - Warehouse Page 20 ©2003, RFID Wizards Inc. http://www.RFIDWizards.com
  23. 23. RFID Test Results - Warehouse Page 21 ©2003, RFID Wizards Inc. http://www.RFIDWizards.com
  24. 24. RFID Test Results - Warehouse Page 22 ©2003, RFID Wizards Inc. http://www.RFIDWizards.com
  25. 25. RFID Test Results - Warehouse Page 23 ©2003, RFID Wizards Inc. http://www.RFIDWizards.com
  26. 26. RFID Test Results - Warehouse Page 24 ©2003, RFID Wizards Inc. http://www.RFIDWizards.com
  27. 27. RFID Test Results - Warehouse Page 25 ©2003, RFID Wizards Inc. http://www.RFIDWizards.com
  28. 28. RFID Test Results - Warehouse Page 26 ©2003, RFID Wizards Inc. http://www.RFIDWizards.com
  29. 29. Donut Configuration Test RFID Test Results - Warehouse Page 27 ©2003, RFID Wizards Inc. http://www.RFIDWizards.com
  30. 30. About RFID Wizards Inc. What We Do RFID Wizards Inc. provides professional consulting services in the following areas: § Calculate Return on Investment: Evaluate RFID technology to determine if it will produce an ROI in 12-18 months § Business Process Modeling: How exactly will RFID technology impact your business? § Independently evaluate RFID technology based on our customer’s requirements § Installation and configuration of RFID equipment § Integration of RFID equipment with back-end systems (detailed list below) § Training: Using RFID Technology in Your Business Research and Development and Custom RFID Solutions RFID Wizards Inc. R&D team can work with you to design, develop, & build a proof of concept. Our engineers have designed custom RFID tags and antennas. We can manufacture RFID tags to specification including labels, cards, badges, and plastic injection molded forms. Our antenna design team can construct antennas to fit unusual areas. Who We Work With § Commercial (wholesale & retail) § Industrial § Manufacturing § Healthcare § Legal § Logistics and Transportation § Government Agencies (we offer services on GSA Schedule) Where We Work RFID Wizards' consultants have developed solutions for customers throughout North America and Europe. We have experience implementing products that operate internationally. RFID Wizards Inc. Corporate Information RFID Wizards Inc. is a Maryland S Corporation specializing in the design and implementation of RFID systems. RFID Wizards Inc. corporate headquarters is located just 45 minutes north of Washington D.C. Our west coast location is located in Silicon Valley between San Francisco and San Jose, California. We work with companies throughout the globe. Corporate & East Coast West Coast 3330 Yorkshire Court 2033 Ralston Ave. #126 Adamstown, MD 21710 Belmont, CA 94002 Tel: 301 674-3546 Tel: 650 804-1953 Fax: 301 874-6977 Fax: 650 327-0262 http://www.RFIDWizards.com AND http://www.BuyRFID.com RFID Test Results - Warehouse Page 28 ©2003, RFID Wizards Inc. http://www.RFIDWizards.com
  31. 31. Experience with RFID Technology RFID Wizards Inc. staff is experienced working with equipment from numerous manufacturers including: • Alien Technology • Matrics • Intermec • Feig Electronic • Diester Electronic • Texas Instruments • AARFID • AWID • NordicID • Samsys • Axcess Technologies • ThingMagic Information Technology Skills RFID Wizards Inc. has staff that can integrate RFID technology with the following: Relational Databases: • Oracle, MS SQL Server, Sybase SQL Server, IBM DB2 • mySql, PostgreSQL /Redhat • MS Access, Foxbase Object Oriented Database: • Lotus Notes and Domino ERP / SCM / WMS: § SAP § Oracle ERP § Advanced Logic Systems § CoreWMS Programming Languages & Environments • C/C++, Assembly (8x86,68K,6809,z80,6502), • XML, Java, JavaScript, HTML, PHP, Perl, PGP • Microsoft Visual Basic, MS.NET/ActiveX, ASP • Lotus Script, Notes API, Lisp, Natural Adabase. Platforms: • Windows XP/2000/NT/9x • Linux and *nix Other: • Numerous Warehouse management systems • 3D Programming experience in various modeling scenarios. RFID Test Results - Warehouse Page 29 ©2003, RFID Wizards Inc. http://www.RFIDWizards.com

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