RFID stands for Radio Frequency Identification, which is a type of communication that makes use of radio frequency for purposes of locating and acquiring certain data about a person, animal or any object to which a transponder is attached.
It allows wireless communication via a system consisting of a scanning antenna, a reader-interrogator or transceiver, and of course, the transponder.
The Interrogator or Transceiver, which the system calls a RFID Reader is a network-connected component that activates and communicates with the transponder by transmitting radio frequency waves through the scanning antenna. An RFID Reader may serve its purpose while permanently attached to another device or as a portable device by itself.
The Transponder on the other is called the RFID Tag, which sends back frequency waves to RFID Reader, which the latter translates into data. In order for an RFID Tag to work, it must have an antenna, a microchip and memory, whilst attached either permanently or temporarily to a person, animal or object.
An RFID Tag may be of an active or passive kind. It is an active RFID Tag if it comes with a power source usually in the form of a battery. A passive RFID Tag, on the other hand, activates only whenever its antenna receives electromagnetic waves that induce electrical current.
Some RFID Tags are semi-passive, if its circuitry runs on battery power, but can send radio frequency waves only when it receives power from the RFID Reader. Generally, active RFID Tags have a broader read range, by having its own power source.
Popular Applications and Uses of RFID Systems
The most popular use of RFID Systems is for tracking and management of livestock, merchandise inventory, business asset, and transport cargo. A robust RFID system gives users instant visibility, access and control over animals, goods and transported products, enhancing security conditions, as well as improving the flow and distribution of goods within the supply chain.