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BlogsAsk The Experts ForumHow Can an RFID System Be Tuned?

How Can an RFID System Be Tuned?

Posted By RFID Journal, 04.29.2009
How do you adjust, match and tune settings?

—Name withheld

We assume the question refers to communication between tags and readers. Therefore, we reached out to the experts at ODIN Technologies, a leading system integrator that has been involved in numerous deployments worldwide. Here's ODIN's response:

"To answer this question properly, we would really need additional information. For instance, is the party asking this question seeking to tune an LF, HF or UHF system? What products or materials are they trying to read tags on? What is the specific application, and how many tags are to be read in the field?

"These factors are critical to tuning an RFID system. You have to select the right antenna and reader, and make sure that the impedance on the reader, antenna and coax cabling is matched. Once the system is in place, you will then identify the read zone.

"If you are using an LF or HF system, the tank (LC) circuit on the antenna should be tuned to create an appropriate magnetic field—in other words, cover the required RF zone. Set the correct power-level setting. Select the correct communication protocol (e.g., ISO 15693).

"If you are using a UHF system, system tuning can be achieved by using an antenna with the correct gain and beam pattern. Other settings to consider are the power output setting, Q values, sessions and so on (if you are using the EPC Gen 2 protocol)."

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