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RFID Unbridles Pathogen Transmission Research
A University of Guelph research team is using active RFID to monitor contact between horses, as well as between the animals and humans, as they investigate technological solutions for preventing disease transmission.
Apr 21, 2017—
Researchers at the University of Guelph have been testing radio frequency identification technology to track the movements of horses and staff members to determine how disease may be spread. The technology uniquely identifies each of those wearing an RFID tag, while the tags themselves collect data about each contact they have with other tags. This solution eliminates the need for researchers to install readers in the harsh environments of horse stables and fields.
With the RFID data, "We are using computer simulation to look for trends that could lead to disease transmission," says Amy Greer, an assistant professor and Canada research chair in population disease modeling at the University of Guelph's Ontario Veterinary College.
Therefore, the group has developed a system that it has used at three sites to date, consisting of high-memory transponders worn by both horses and human employees that transmit data to each other and store information that can be downloaded at a later time. In that way, there is no need for a gateway to be installed in a stable or field.
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