How Can RFID Tags Be Pinpointed in 3D?

By RFID Journal

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Ask The ExpertsHow Can RFID Tags Be Pinpointed in 3D?
RFID Journal Staff asked 14 years ago

What technologies exist for locating individual passive RFID labels in three dimensions, and how precise are they?

—Name withheld


The only systems currently available that can locate tags in three dimensions are RFID systems that use phased array antennas. These systems focus an RFID reader antenna in a narrow beam that is swept across the read zone. With two such interrogators covering the same area, a system can locate a tag in 3D within one foot or so.

There has also been some work conducted on handhelds that shine a laser on a tagged object when one looks for that specific object. This could be helpful in a large warehouse where there are many boxes if one needs to locate a single box. To my knowledge, however, no system using this technology is yet on the market.

—Mark Roberti, Editor, RFID Journal

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