We seek a solution to track domestic LPG cylinders nationwide in a Sub-Saharan African nation. Are there any off-the-shelf gas systems available?
To my knowledge, there is no off-the-shelf gas cylinder tracking system. You would need to purchase special tags that would work around metal, as well as readers and software, and also hire installation services. The right tag would depend on the type of cylinders being used, the distances from which you would need to read them, the data you would need to collect and other factors.
We have written articles (see below) about companies employing passive, low-frequency (LF) transponders tags, which perform well around metal objects. But LF tags have a short read range—about 3 feet or so. Some businesses have used special ultrahigh-frequency (UHF) transponders that are designed to work on metal objects. These tags typically have a read range of 20 feet or more.
You can purchase fixed and handheld readers for either system, then transmit the data collected into RFID asset-tracking software applications. There are any number of systems integrators who offer software that could be used for this application. I would recommend finding a skilled integrator in your area who can create a system to meet your needs.
Here are some articles we've written that you might find relevant:
• Manufacturer to Track Half a Million Gas Cylinders
• Malaysian Propane Supplier Fills Up on RFID
• Gas Manufacturer Fills Up More Often With RFID
• 15x More Efficient: Tracking Propane Containers With RFID
• RFID to Ensure Safe Refueling of Natural Gas Vehicles
I hope this information is helpful.
—Mark Roberti, Founder and Editor, RFID Journal
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