What do I need to know to go about making my own chips?
The first thing you need to do is decide what you want to produce. Passive RFID tags are made up of a microchip and an antenna on a substrate. This is inserted into a label or other form factor, such as a key fob. The antenna is attached to the chip, mounted on a substrate, and then inserted into a label or key fob. You could make each component yourself and assemble them into a finished RFID label. Or you could buy some or all of these components and assemble them into a finished label.
You would almost certainly not want to make your own chips, because doing so is expensive and you would never be able to compete on price with companies such as NXP Semiconductors and Impinj, which produce billions of chips and thus benefit from economies of scale. So you could buy your chips from a chip supplier, buy or produce antennas, buy machines to attach each antenna to a chip on a substrate, and then convert it into a label. Or you could buy transponders and simply convert them into labels.
My recommendation would be that you attend RFID Journal LIVE! 2018, which will take place on Apr. 10-12, in Orlando, Fla. You will be able to meet chip makers, as well as companies that can provide antennas and machines that attach antennas to chips and convert transponders into labels. We will have a preconference seminar called Packaging and Labeling Converting that would be helpful to you.
—Mark Roberti, Founder and Editor, RFID Journal
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