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RFID from A to Z: From Automation to Access Control

Articles | By FEIG ELECTRONIC | 23 January 2017
The entrance to the Warnow Tunnel can be passed through faster with RFID. A windshield label is detected via UHF long range reader. Access to the road is unblocked and the costs for using the tunnel are booked. The user has the opportunity to check their driver‘s log via an internet portal at any time. The entrance to the Warnow Tunnel can be passed through faster with RFID. A windshield label is detected via UHF long range reader. Access to the road is unblocked and the costs for using the tunnel are booked. The user has the opportunity to check their driver‘s log via an internet portal at any time. Photo: Angelika Heim Photography

Finding the fitting solution for every application with LF, HF, and UHF

Bringing innovations to applications via solutions alongside trends is only one side of the coin. The other side is not to rely solely on trends and to meet a wide range of needs. The RFID hardware manufacturer Feig Electronic realises the latter with a broad portfolio of solutions in all three RFID frequency ranges. “Of course there are areas where one frequency substitutes another. Nevertheless, in 2016 all three frequencies have a right to exist,” Stephanus Becker from Feig Electronic says in an interview with “RFID im Blick Global”. He takes a look at example applications and explains which frequency fits which area of application.

Stephanus Becker, Sales Director Payment & Identification, Feig Electronic, in an interview with “RFID im Blick Global”

Global use of LF

“LF has a right to exist wherever there is a directed process: a reader, a transponder,” Stephanus Becker says. A complete system that manages without special application software suffices for simple read-only applications for access control. “If certain connections or emulations of interfaces to older systems are required, LF readers that do not only offer this ability to connect but that also have their own application software are used. The offline management of access authorisations is easily possible directly in the readers.” Globally, the level of development regarding the use of RFID technology is very different, so that even in industrialized nations Wiegand emulations would be partially needed. “Here, we can offer solutions. This applies to developing countries as well as to advanced industrial countries,” Stephanus Becker reports.

HF: faster and safer?

“HF solutions are comparable to LF solutions regarding their robustness, but they have the great advantage of much faster data communication. This is ensured via the higher frequency of 13.56 MHz. For use in an industrial environment in particular, this means that more information can be exchanged in a shorter time. Regarding applications in the field of automation, this advantage in operating speed is often decisive for commissioning,” Stephanus Becker states.

What is more, there is increased flexibility in terms of safety and data communication in contrast to the LF technology. “By using the ISO standard 14433 a wide range of safety-related aspects can be realised. It is not possible to use cryptography with LF. A secure exchange of data is increasingly being called on – whether it regards access control, ticketing, or automatic machines.”

Stephanus BeckerStephanus Becker “The answer to why there is a continuous demand for LF readers is simple: Worldwide, there is a broad and extensive license free installation base. Several million transponders are in use. A migration often cannot be deployed economically in an efficient manner and is technically unfounded in numerous cases.”

Higher operating range with HF for libraries

But the focus of users is not only on fast and secure processes: ranges of more than one meter would be required as well. “The ISO 15693 protocol allows the development of solutions that – depending on the transponder used – allow ranges of up to five feet. In combination with the possibility of bulk readings and the anti-collision function, the HF frequency is ideally suited for gate antennas in libraries. Each tagged medium is identified when passing through a gate.” With regard to the UHF technology, HF technology offers an advantage not to be underestimated, Stephanus Becker states: “The frequency range of 13.56 MHz is globally free for the use of RFID.

This simplifies the global certification of solutions. For example, UHF technology could never establish itself in the ticketing environment. For one solution either different readers would have to be used or broadband readers would come to use, making the way for approval even more difficult.”

UHF for train and vehicle identification

“UHF is the ideal technology for the fast and reliable detection of objects in industrial processes. This includes the detection of trains at full speed. RFID readers from Feig Electronic enable the detection of transponders at speeds of 180 km/h,” Stephanus Becker explains. Cars and trucks are not quite as fast at toll booths: “The vehicle detection via UHF RFID is a secure solution for toll collection.

Unlike camera-based systems, a UHF RFID has a small speed advantage, so that billings can be carried out faster. System integrators sometimes design combinations of access solutions for security-related areas consisting of RFID hardware from Feig Electronic and camera systems. A comparison of the captured data reduces the chance of a forged access permit.”

Close together? No problem!

UHF RFID readers always demonstrate their full performance when no other reading systems are installed in their immediate vicinity. “In logistics this ideal scenario rarely happens. For example, if several loading docks are to be monitored with UHF RFID, the distance between readers is often no more than three to five meters. Feig Electronic UHF readers allow the highest efficiency through their outstanding performance in cooperation with a wide array of different UHF antennas in such situations. This is a technological feature that was transferred from the HF portfolio to the UHF systems,” Stephanus Becker says.

Last modified on Thursday, 26 January 2017 12:45