Which Active RFID Tags Can Be Used in Airplanes?

By RFID Journal

  • TAGS
Ask The ExpertsWhich Active RFID Tags Can Be Used in Airplanes?
RFID Journal Staff asked 14 years ago

Are there any restrictions regarding which types of tags can be utilized in flight?

—Name withheld


Any active tags may be used on airplanes in the United States, but they can not transmit, or beacon, while in flight. Some airlines utilize active tags on cargo containers and galley carts, but the tags are deactivated when an aircraft is not on the ground, because most active tags are not currently certified to transmit while in the air.

The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has published an Advisory Circular, AC 20-162, describing the documentation and process steps to certify active tags to transmit in flight. Savi is the only firm, to my knowledge, that has gone through this certification process; it did so as far back as 2003. Savi's ST-602 tag has been certified by the FAA, and the company has also received certifications from the U.S. Air Force for the use of an active RFID infrastructure and tags on all types of aircraft used by the military.

Other countries have different rules, so be sure to check with the appropriate regulatory authorities before using active tags on planes.

—Mark Roberti, Editor, RFID Journal

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