MIT, Clustag, Silicon Labs, Arduino: RFIDJournal Roundup

Published: February 22, 2024

MIT researchers invent counterfeit detection tag, Clustag Demonstrates its RFID MOT Station for Warehouses, Silicon labs and Arduino Collaborate for Matter over Thread

MIT Researchers Invent Counterfeit Detection Tag

Researchers at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) have built an anti-tampering ID tag intended to help users identify a counterfeit product. The tag, an alternative to more traditional RFID tags, sends data via terahertz waves with a 1 mm wavelength.

After passing through the tag and striking the object surface, terahertz waves can then be reflected back to a receiver for authentication.

The tag, which measures about four square millimeters, comes with a mix of microscopic metal particles in the glue that attaches the tag to an object. It leverages the  terahertz wave transmission so that a user could identify the unique pattern the particles form. The random glue pattern can then enable that user to authenticate an item.

Researchers indicate that the terahertz tag is cheap to produce, small enough to attach to items that are otherwise too small for traditional RFID tags and has demonstrated a machine learning model to enable pattern detection.

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Clustag Demonstrates its RFID MOT Station for Warehouses

Clustag will be demonstrating its recently-released RFID-based technology solution for distribution centers and warehouses at MODEX 2024 in March. Clustag is the RFID company under the umbrella of technology firm Rielec.

The logistics solution, known as the MOT Station, is designed to enable capture of an RFID tag as well as a case’s volume and weight to improve the inventory management process. The technology can scan the contents of cases with dimensions up to 800 by 600 by 400 millimeters, scanning 400 tags per case at speeds of up to 1,000 cases per hour. The RFID station has been UL-certified and CE-marked.

Clustag solutions are designed to prevent stray reads, using RF signal shielding. The MOT Station increases the accuracy of shipments and reduces losses as well as cutting costs and operating time, according to the company. By scanning RFID tags in an enclosed space, the station can be used at full power —ensuring an accurate, reliable reading of all inventories.

Clustag provides support for their systems so that quality is maintained throughout the product life cycle.

According to Manolo Reguart, Clustag’s director of strategy and business development, the MOT Station can provide inventory accuracy up to 99.92 percent.

Silicon labs and Arduino Collaborate for Matter over Thread

Wireless intelligence technology company Silicon Labs and Arduino, an open-source hardware and software firm, are partnering to develop IoT-based Matter over Thread applications for Arduino’s 33 million member developer community. Arduino, in tandem with Silicon Labs, has released Matter software libraries with the xG24 Explorer Kit from Silicon Labs and SparkFun Thing Plus Matter MGM240P development board.

Matter is an open-source connectivity standard used for smart home and IoT devices compatible with devices that leverage technology such as Zigbee, Z-Wave and BLE.

Arduino is an ecosystem that offers accessible hardware products, software solutions and cloud services accessible. The Arduino programming language—used in the Arduino Integrated Development Environment (IDE)—has grown via input from its community and user base, including students and enterprise developers. This partnership is aimed at lowering barriers to entry to make developing a Matter device easier.