RFID News Roundup

By Beth Bacheldor

Avery Dennison intros new RAIN RFID inlay for apparel industry ••• Impinj stock climbs 26 percent on first day of trading ••• Omni-ID releases slimmer printable on-metal UHF label ••• Bluvision integrates sensor-enabled manufacturing solutions with Siemens technology ••• A.C.C. Systems announces multiprotocol UHF RFID reader.

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The following are news announcements made during the past week by the following organizations:
Avery-Dennison;
Impinj;
Omni-ID;
Bluvision; and
A.C.C. Systems.

Avery Dennison Intros New RAIN RFID Inlay for Apparel Industry

Avery Dennison has introduced a new inlay supporting the ISO-18000-6C and EPC Gen 2 (RAIN) specifications ideal for denim and other apparel items.

According to Avery Dennison, the new inlay meets or exceeds all category performance requirements specified by Auburn University‘s ARC testing program. The AD-237 features an antenna that measures 2.756 inches by 0.571 inch (70 millimeters by 14.5 millimeters), which Avery Dennison calls a perfect fit for a 3-inch by 0.8-inch label, and a common size adopted by many leading retailers worldwide. The new inlay replaces the AD-233m5, the company’s long-standing staple for this category, according to Avery Dennison.

The AD-237inlay

The AD-237 performs well in both the FCC and ETSI frequency bands on materials such as corrugate, plastic, wood and denim, Avery Dennison reports, and is an option for applications including, but not limited to, supply chain management and home essentials.

The inlay is available in two versions: the AD-237r6, made with Impinj‘s Monza R6 chip and offering 96 bits of Electronic Product Code (EPC) memory, and the AD-237r6-p, made with the Monza R6-P chip and offering up to 128 bits of EPC memory and up to 64 bits of user memory.

The AD-237 inlay is available for purchase in three formats: as a dry inlay, as a wet (adhesive) inlay or as a pressure-sensitive paper label.

Impinj Stock Climbs 26 Percent on First Day of Trading

This morning, Impinj‘s common stock began its first day of trading on the NASDAQ Global Select Market, under the symbol PI.

On July 20, 2016, the manufacturer of RFID tag chips, readers and software complying with the EPC Gen 2 (RAIN) specifications announced that its initial public offering (IPO) would consist of 4.8 million shares of common stock priced at $14.00 apiece. In addition, Impinj has granted the underwriters a 30-day option to purchase up to an additional 720,000 shares of common stock.

At the opening bell, Impinj’s stock was selling for $18.00 per share, with subsequent prices bouncing between a high of $18.44 and a low of $16.36 throughout the day. When the market closed at 4 PM, the volume of sales that changed hands surpassed 4.7 million and the stock price was $17.97—more than a 28 percent gain over $14 on a day when the NASDAQ Composite Index dipped into negative territory.

Last month, the company registered with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) its plans to launch an IPO, indicating its goal of raising $60 million (see Impinj Hopes to Raise $60M From IPO). On July 11, the company filed an amendment to that filing, indicating that it planned to issue 4.6 million shares of common stock (see Impinj to Issue 4.6 Million Shares Of Common Stock in IPO Bid).

To celebrate the launch of his company’s IPO, Chris Diorio, Impinj’s chief executive officer, vice chairman and co-founder, rang the closing bell at the NASDAQ MarketSite in New York City’s Times Square. According to an SEC Form 3 filed yesterday, Diorio owns 383,332 shares of PI directly, as well as 699,999 shares indirectly, through an entity called DFT LLC.

Omni-ID Releases Slimmer Printable On-Metal UHF Label

Omni-ID has announced a new version of its IQ 400 ultrahigh-frequency (UHF) EPC Gen 2-compliant printable label that provides on-metal functionality. The IQ 400 is part of the company’s next generation of RFID labels that Omni-ID announced in March 2016, which includes the IQ 100, IQ 150 and IQ 600 models (see Omni-ID expands line of printable on-metal RFID labels).

The IQ 400 is an updated version of the printable label that the company first released in 2012 (see Omni-ID Introduces Printable On-Metal RFID Labels).

IQ 400 labels are optimized for thermal printers.

According to Chris Gilman, Omni-ID’s marketing manager, compared with the previous label, the new IQ 400 is significantly narrower, measuring 96.0 millimeters by 12.5 millimeter by 1.0 millimeter (3.78 inches by 0.49 inch by 0.04 inch) versus 103.0 millimeters by 28.0 millimeters by 0.8 millimeter (4.0 inches by 1.0 inch by 0.03 inch), and lighter, weighing 0.3 grams (0.01 ounce) vs. 2.8 grams (0.1 ounce). “Additionally,” he says, “the new labels provide the most consistent read performance on the market, regardless if they are used on or off metal or near liquid.”

The IQ 400 is designed to easy to deploy, Omni-ID reports, and has been optimized for thermal bar-code printers. It is suitable for a number of use cases, including IT and office asset tracking, hospital and medical equipment, weapons, pipes, road signs, tools and kitchen assets. The IQ 400 has an IP68 rating, indicating protection from water, dust and chemicals, and a self-adhesive suitable for attachment to curved surfaces.

The standard version of the IQ 400, made with Impinj‘s Monza R6 chip, offers 96 bits of Electronic Product Code (EPC) memory and a 48-bit tag identifier (TID), and supports a read range of up to 4.2 meters (13.8 feet). Also available is a custom version made with a Monza 4QT chip, offering 128 bits of EPC memory, 512 bits of user memory and a 48-bit TID, and supporting a read range of up to 3.5 meters (11.5 feet).

Bluvision Integrates Sensor-Enabled Manufacturing Solutions With Siemens Technology

Bluvision has announced that it is working to integrate its suite of connected manufacturing solutions, including real-time location system (RTLS), proximity location system (PLS) and Motor Condition Monitoring solutions, with Siemens‘ technology so that data collected from sensors can be fed into a machine’s so-called digital twin for monitoring, diagnostic and prognostic purposes. According to Siemens, a digital twin is a digital copy that is created and developed simultaneously with an actual machine. Siemens offers software systems for the development of these digital twins.

Bluvision’s connected manufacturing solutions provide visibility and documentation into the location, health and performance of assets and the workforce within a location, the company reports. Bluvision’s RTLS is a software-based solution that provides greater than 1-meter (3.3-foot) accuracy in locating an asset, requires no wired hardware and, according to the company, comes with the lowest cost of ownership on the market. Bluvision says its PLS is used to track assets into and out of specific areas within a facility, and is a better alternative to RFID-based solutions. The firm’s Condition Monitoring system tracks the health and condition of motors and motorized equipment by monitoring critical telemetry data, including vibration and temperature, in an agnostic, low-cost fashion.

Bluvision’s RTLS solution can be integrated with a digital twin to provide a virtual version of an employee wearing a Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) badge. When the worker approaches a specific workstation within a simulated work environment, his or her pertinent process metrics can be loaded into the virtual model, which can then be used to evaluate workflow process and workforce optimization. Using Bluvision’s PLS, the same BLE badges can be configured to facilitate collaboration and safety measures through the creation of user-defined alerts. The beacons can be programmed to issue alerts to the supervisor when a worker requires assistance or additional materials. When Bluvision’s Condition Monitoring system is integrated with a digital twin and Siemens’ X-Tools, it can be used to minimize manufacturing downtime due to motor failure, as well as optimize the production process.

Bluvision demonstrated the integration at the Siemens Digital Summit, held at the Digital Manufacturing and Design Innovation Institute (DMDII), a manufacturing hub in Chicago, chartered to foster innovation and collaboration in manufacturing.

“Bluvision continues to drive value to the Connected Manufacturing process by equipping enterprises with real-time insights and visibility into the location and condition of their assets,” said John Sailer, Bluvision’s COO, in a prepared statement. “The Siemens Digital Twin Summit is aligned with our vision of providing customers with innovative Industry 4.0 solutions and DMDII is the perfect venue to showcase. We are thrilled to have partnered with Siemens and DMDII to be a part of this event.”

A.C.C. Systems Announces Multiprotocol UHF RFID Reader

A.C.C. Systems Inc., a manufacturer, distributor and supplier of RFID readers, tags and accessories, has announced the commercial availability of a new desktop ultrahigh=frequency (UHF) multiprotocol reader that is smaller than an Apple iPhone. According to A.C.C. Systems, the new reader is suitable for stores and offices, as well as for developing and deploying interactive read-write applications. The ACC-809 supports a variety of practical uses, the company reports, including RFID tag programming stations, manufacturing tracking work-in-progress (WIP) workstations, checking in and out of such assets as tools and supplies, health-care patient or club member checking in and out, document tracking, and retail point of sale.

The ACC-809 supports the ISO 18000-6B and -6C and EPC Gen 2 RFID specifications. It offers a software-adjustable read distance of up to 200 millimeters (7.9 inches) and operates in the 902 to 928 MHz frequency band (other options are available). No external power source is required, as the ACC-809 reader plugs into the USB port of a desktop or notebook PC and can be integrated with existing hardware systems to instantaneously enable a wide range of data-entry applications.

A.C.C. Systems is offering a limited number of demonstration units at a price of $239 apiece.