Do you know of any lighting switches or heating, ventilating and air-conditioning controls that employ radio frequency identification technology to sense when someone is in a room?
We haven’t seen any examples of companies using RFID to control HVAC equipment, but earlier this year, we wrote an article about Reebok employing the technology to control lighting (see Reebok, Music Festival Reach Out to Visitors With iGotcha RFID Solution). An RFID badge is placed near a reader to turn on the lights (see the top of page two).
It would be fairly easy to integrate RFID with lighting and HVAC equipment. New Near Field Communication (NFC) and passive ultrahigh-frequency (UHF) RFID tags have an I2C interface enabling them to send signals to other electronic equipment. This means, for example, that an NFC tag integrated with a thermostat could communicate with a smartphone equipped with an NFC reader. An app could be used to wirelessly send instructions to the thermostat.
Another way to do this would be to utilize the general input-output port on a longer-range UHF reader. If each employee were wearing a battery-assisted passive UHF tag in his or her name badge, the reader could detect a person in the room and then turn on the lights or adjust the heating and ventilation to that individual’s personal preferences.
—Mark Roberti, Founder and Editor, RFID Journal
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