Data Capture

Automatic Information Data Capture

Items, often referred to as assets, are tagged using combination bar code and passive UHF RFID tags known as Smart Tags. Smart Tags can be read by eye or by scanning the bar-coded label or detected using an RFID reader. Passive RFID tags are relatively inexpensive tags as they do not have an embedded power source, with the average price hovering around $1.00 per tag. The tags are powered by an energy wave prodcued by an RFID reader, once the tag is within range.

Smart Tags can be as simple as a peel and stick inlay, or as complex as a tag encased in a ceramic enclosure, protecting the tag from severe temperature extremes. Tags come in all shapes and sizes and are designed for specific application such as beig affixed to; documents, books, computers, furniture, vehicles, equipment, tools, cables, infrastructure fixtures and so on. They can also be used indoors as well as out of doors. Information is recorded into a small electronic chip that is part of the tag. Information is broadcast from the chip via the tag’s integral antenna to an RFID reader. Smart Tags can be read in large quantities, simultaneously without line of sight when using either stationary or portable RFID readers.

While the benefits are many, using handheld readers provides significant improvements for conducting physical inventory and reconciliation activities by reducing errors and the time required to count. Handheld readers can be used in a wireless mode allowing the Operator to scan, detect tags and compare the reads to existing data stored on a server thus counting and reconciling in a single step.

While stationary RFID readers are normally used to detect movement into, or out of, a specific room, building or area, they can also be used to conduct inventory by scanning all items within a specified range and report the results accordingly. Stationary readers are also used to detect tagged items as they enter or exit a location and can link tagged items to employee badges.

In summary the objective of AIDC is to capture information automatically using technology. While there are many benefits, speed and accuracy are considered the primary drivers for choosing to implement AIDC technology.

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