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What Are the Best Tag and Reader to Use in Monitoring a Pallet?
Which technology provider should I contact?
I really couldn't answer that question without knowing a lot more about your particular application, and probably without conducting some testing.
One question would be whether the pallet is made of wood, plastic or metal. If it is plastic, many tags will likely work, since plastic is RF-friendly. If it is wood, there will be some readability problems since wood usually has high moisture content, and water absorbs RF energy in the ultrahigh-frequency (UHF) spectrum, preventing a tag from utilizing that energy. There are special tags that will work, but you would need to perform some testing.
If the pallet is composed of metal, then a standard UHF tag won't work, since the metal would detune the antenna. However, there are many on-metal tags that would work fine. The right one would depend on the read range required and the amount of protection needed for the tag. If the tag can be protected from the tines of the forklift truck, then you might not need a durable tag. If it can't, then you would need to use a tag that can survive repeated hits from the tines.
If you would like to speak via telephone and provide additional information, I can offer the names of some RFID tag providers to contact.
—Mark Roberti, Founder and Editor, RFID Journal
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