I have come across quite a few applications recently that required radio frequency identification (RFID) technology. The concept of RFID dates back to decades ago, but advances have been made to the platform which opened it up to many new markets. Many companies have adopted this technology and use passive and active RFID tags to account for key personnel onsite and, in some circumstances, even offsite.
The key difference between active and passive RFID tags is the distance at which the tag / card / object can be identified with active RFID being the longer range of the two. Active RFID platforms have embedded batteries or power sources built into the the tag which allows for longer range transmission and are well suited for tracking vehicles or other objects at great distances. Passive RFID is commonly used in shorter distance applications such as office buildings as they have antennas embedded in the tag with no power source which dramatically shortens the range of the tag.
Commonly, RFID technology is used with access control tags or fobs for employee accountability measures. I came across an application where a funeral home wanted to use RFID tags along with an IP surveillance solution so that they could view burials and after the fact, ensure that buried bodies remained not tampered with.
Most recently, an oil and gas company wanted to track their trucks when entering and leaving their various plant locations. The purpose was for the RFID technology to be integrated with their surveillance and access control systems to automate a good portion of their infrastructure. It was important for the company to be able to account for the timeliness of the drivers getting to the locations, to be able to track if trucks arrived with the precious cargo, and then track for how long the trucks were onsite dropping off their load and/or reloading in the loading docks.
RFID technology may be an old concept, but technological advances have made this platform exceptionally useful for monitoring your logical pipeline, restricting employee access at your facility, and safeguarding your bottom line.