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What Data Is Necessary to Be Stored on an RFID Tag for a Tool-Tracking Project?

Posted By RFID Journal, 01.22.2018

I am storing the calibration dates of rivet guns. The purpose is to alert users, and this would be accomplished by software. Would I need to regularly change the dates once the date line has passed? Is there a way I could automatically change the dates? Would the type of data stored on the tag affect my application? And would data be stored dependent on the application?

—Dinesh

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Dinesh,

Typically, the only data you need to store on an RFID tag is a unique serial number. That number is associated with a specific tool in a database. If you are using an active RFID real-time location system, with tags beaconing at regular intervals, the serial number of each tag would be interrogated by several readers and the location of the tagged tool would be plotted on a map. When a tagged tool is read by a passive system, the location is determined by the reader that interrogates it (each reader has a unique ID associated with a particular location).

So let's say you had a rivet gun that had a passive tag on it, and it moved from the assembly line to the repair shop. The reader in the repair shop would interrogate the tag ID, and that information would be stored in the database. If you looked up the rivet gun in the RFID application, it would show the location as the repair shop.

The best way to automatically change dates is with software. If you were to write the date of the next calibration on a tag, it would require someone to read the tag and act on that information. It would be better to store the next calibration date in a software application, and to have an alert sent to the appropriate person, along with the tool's location.

—Mark Roberti, Founder and Editor, RFID Journal

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