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How Can RFID Improve Library Management?
What are the recommended tags, antennas and readers for such a deployment?
Library management is one of the oldest applications of radio frequency identification technology. Bibliotheca sells complete RFID solutions for libraries (see Colorado Library Checks Out RFID), while 3M also offers a library solution (see 3M Launches Tag Data Manager for Libraries).
Most libraries employ passive high-frequency (HF) technology, partly because ultrahigh-frequency (UHF) tags did not yet exist when they began using RFID. Some libraries have since begun utilizing passive UHF technology, however, (see Grand Rapids Library Adopts UHF RFID Technology).
Most passive HF and UHF tags will work on books, which are RF-friendly. The antennas and readers required would depend, to some degree, on your library's particular processes. Most handhelds will work if you affix a UHF tag to each book's spine. HF systems might require specific types of paddle readers, depending on the tags used, as well as their placement.
The only real challenge here would be in tagging CDs, DVDs and other items that are not RF-friendly (Tags for CDs Get a Boost). It could be accomplished, though, and a good systems integrator could evaluate your processes and suggest the optimal solution.
—Mark Roberti, Founder and Editor, RFID Journal
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