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RFID Transponders : Link between information and material flows. How reliable are identification procedures?

  1. Prof. Dr.-Ing. Karl-Heinz Wehking Institute of Mechanical Handling and Logistics, University of Stuttgart
  2. Dipl.-Ing. Frank Seeger Institute of Mechanical Handling and Logistics, University of Stuttgart
  3. Dipl.-Ing. Stephan Kummer Institute of Mechanical Handling and Logistics, University of Stuttgart


Along with the growing complexity of logistic chains the demand for transparency of informations has increased. The use of intelligent RFID-Technology offers the possibility to optimize and control all capacities in use, since it enables the identification and tracking of goods alongside the entire supply chain. Every single product can be located at any given time and a multitude of current and historical data can be transferred. The interaction of the flow of material and the flow of information between the various process steps can be optimized by using RFID-Technology since it guarantees that all required data is available at the right time and at the right place. The local accessibility and convertibility of data allows a flexible, decentralised control of logistic systems. As additional advantages of RFID-Components can be considered that they are individually writable and that their identification can be achieved over considerable distances even if there is no intervisibility between tag and reader. The use of RFID-Transponder opens up new potentials regarding process security, reduction of logistic costs or availability of products. These advantages depend on reliability of the identification processes. The undisputed potentials that are made accessible by the use of RFID-Elements can only be beneficial when the informations that are decentralised and attached to goods and loading equipment can be reliably retrieved at the required points. The communication between tag and reader can be influenced by different materials such as metal, that can disturbed or complicate the radio contact. The communications reliability is subject of various tests and experiments that analyse the effects of different filling materials as well as different alignments of tags on the loading equipment.


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