We seek a solution that could help our client detect and track water bottles that arrive from the market for refilling. What would you suggest? (We are located in Kenya.)
To do this, you would need to identify tags that would work on the water bottles, both when they were full and when they were empty, since you would want to track when and where they were shipped and when they were returned. Water absorbs RF energy in the UHF spectrum, so you would need a tag designed to work around liquids, and you would require a tag that could withstand repeated trips and any banging that might occur during shipping and use. You would also need to determine the appropriate readers and where to place them, and you would need software that could manage the unique serial numbers and take data feeds from the readers.
I would recommend that you attend RFID Journal LIVE! 2018, which will take place in Orlando, Fla., on Apr. 10-12. The conference is still a month away, but you would learn about RFID systems and be able to source the right tags, readers and software for your particular application. I would bring photos of the water bottles, as well as photos or video of the process of them arriving and then being washed, refilled and shipped out again. This would help companies at the event suggest the best options for you. The only other alternative would be to hire a systems integrator to do the work for you, but I do not know of anyone in Kenya who could do that.
—Mark Roberti, Founder and Editor, RFID Journal