Is It Possible to Tell RFID Chips Apart from Their RSSI Values?

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Ask The ExpertsCategory: QuestionsIs It Possible to Tell RFID Chips Apart from Their RSSI Values?
Thoralf Barthel asked 2 weeks ago
Let’s assume one has two identical passive UHF RFID tags (same antenna structure, dimensions and material) in the exact same environment (same geographic location, surroundings, reader type and reader settings). The only difference is that one of the tags has a different type of IC chip. Can one expect the same RSSI value, or can a different chip (memory size) also have an influence on the RSSI?

—Thoralf

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Thoralf,

I am not an RF engineer, but I will give you my opinion, based on covering RFID deployments and technology for the past 20 years. Readers with more RF knowledge than I have are welcome to chime in with their comments below.

The difference in the IC may make some very small difference in the received signal strength indicator (RSSI value) because ICs from different manufacturers have different sensitivities and performance. However, my guess is that the difference is so slight that it would be impossible to tell the chips apart from the RSSI value, which is not extremely precise. Having memory on the chip should not make any difference in RSSI value, to my knowledge. Again, though, I encourage any readers with more knowledge of RF engineering to weigh in.

Mark Roberti
Founder and Editor
RFID Journal

 

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