Can RFID Track Work-in-Progress at a Textile Mill?

By RFID Journal

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Ask The ExpertsCan RFID Track Work-in-Progress at a Textile Mill?
RFID Journal Staff asked 4 years ago

If so, what type of RFID technology would be appropriate for tracking materials during WIP with regard to textile spinning?

—Debajit

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Debajit,

RFID could certainly help you track work-in-progress at a textile mill. The right type of RFID would depend on a number of different factors, including the distance from which you would need to read the tags, other RF equipment that might be used, the material of the items being tagged, and whether or not those materials would be wet or absorb moisture from the air. Passive UHF RFID technology provides a read range of up to 30 feet (9.1 meters), so it would be a good choice if you were reading items from more than 3 feet (0.9 meter) away.

However, you might run into some issues that you would need to address if there were other RF devices using the same frequency band, or if the items to be tracked contained metal or metallic elements, or if they were wet or moist. Water absorbs RF energy, so if you had a tag embedded in the center of a roll of wet fabric, you would have problems interrogating that tag.

HF RFID can be used if you are reading items at short-range (within a meter or so). It functions better in the presence of water than UHF RFID does. I would recommend that you start your project by engaging a good systems integrator to visit your facility, perform a site survey and recommend a solution that would meet your specific needs.

—Mark Roberti, Founder and Editor, RFID Journal

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