I plan to deploy RFID technology. What problems should I expect to face?
There are three main issues with using RFID in the steel industry. The first is that, when tagging anything made of metal, you need to use a special RFID tag designed to work on metal. Metal detunes tag antennas and makes it difficult to read tags. On-metal tags can solve this problem by having a spacer that keeps the antenna off the metal.
The second issue is that radio waves bounce off metal, so in a metal-rich environment, the waves will bounce around and sometimes you might read tags you don't want to. Multipath can make it difficult to read some tags you are trying to interrogate. These issues can be solved with a good system design.
The final issue is the high amount of heat used in manufacturing. In many cases, you can add a tag to a product when it is being made, but when steel comes out at a high temperature, you need to use a tag that can withstand the high heat.
None of these issues should prevent a steel company from using RFID, however. Here are some articles we've published about successful deployments at steel plants:
I hope you find these articles helpful.
—Mark Roberti, Founder and Editor, RFID Journal