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  • Editing Team 18:14 on December 18, 2013 Permalink | Reply
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    RFID-enabled Band-Aid-like Device Can Measure Body Temperature 

    Members from the Institute of Advanced Manufacturing Technology (IAMT) of Hong Kong University of Science and Technology in Zhejiang have developed a new Band-Aid-like device that can take one’s temperature, with an error of just between 0.05℃ to 0.2℃, and it doesn’t need any embedded battery to monitor body temperature in real time.

    The embedded temperature sensor’s passive UHF RFID smart measuring chip seamlessly combines a micro sensor and a passive RFID chip, which is world-leading, said Dr. Zhao Li, deputy director of the IAMT.

    Zhao said, the smart chip has a vast market — it can be used in health care, logistics, automobile, environment-protection, livestock, winery, etc. Two devices, one for body temperature measurement and the other for the cold chain, has been developed, both with a read range of more than 4 meters.

     
  • Editing Team 18:06 on August 21, 2013 Permalink | Reply
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    RFID System Identifies Drunk Customers before They Drive 

    Pee-Analyzer-Drunk-driving-RFID-blogZouk, a popular Singapore nightclub, has trialed an RFID system which can warn parking attendants not to hand over car keys to drunk customers, in order to prevent alcohol-related traffic accidents.

    The solution is known as the Pee Analyzer, which aims at making it easier to ascertain an inebriated customer’s blood-alcohol level before he begins driving. The trial focused only on men, the company reports, since they account for 90% of drunk-driving arrests in Singapore.

    “Almost every drunk driver thinks he is sober enough to drive, so we decided to catch drunk drivers even before they started driving,” says Sofie Chandra, head of Zouk’s business development.

    At Zouk Singapore, two urinals were equipped with devices that measure the blood-alcohol content of an individual’s urine.

    During the pilot, when a male customers arrived at the club, he was provided with a valet ticket containing an embedded passive UHF RFID transponder. As the customer used the urinal throughout the evening, the sensor in the toilet determined the amount of alcohol in his urine. If the number exceeded the legal limit, the sensor transmitted a prompt via a wired connection to a computer, which, in turn, wrote that information to the customer’s ticket. The sensor then instantly reset, thereby allowing consecutive readings.

    For those possibly unfit to drive, the system displayed an alert on a video monitor above the urinal, stating: “You may have had one too many to drive. Call a cab, or use our drive home service.”

     
  • Editing Team 07:44 on April 18, 2013 Permalink | Reply
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    Reducing Food Wastage via RFID 

    CATRENE-Pasteur-project-reduce-food-wastage-RFID-blogEveryday countless foods are wasted all over the world. Recent European research shows that 40%-50% of all food production is being wasted. This has serious implications on the global supply of adequate food stocks and also contributes to escalating food costs. In addition to consumer food waste, the food industry discards €28 billion of spoiled goods every year while within the home €400 worth of fruit, bad meat and other perishables are thrown away by every household every year.

    However, RFID can make a difference. Europe’s CATRENE-Pasteur project has developed a flexible tag combining RFID and sensor technology that can drastically cut food wastage. The tag attaches to bulk transportation containers and provides continuously updated data on how long the food they contain will stay fresh. This could help food distributors cut the amount of food spoiled before it reaches to the shops.

    Further models for food quality prediction are being developed based on available sensor data and will be translated into algorithms that can be implemented on the smart sensor tag. In addition, technologies are being developed to reduce power requirements and boost read efficiency.

     
  • Editing Team 17:04 on April 4, 2013 Permalink | Reply
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    Smart Basketball Embedded with Wireless Sensors to Track Athlete’s Performance 

    smart-basketball-94Fifty-wireless-sensors-rfid-blogMotion sensor solution developer InfoMotion Sports Technologies has recently unveiled a new version of its 94Fifty basketball — a ball fitted with wireless sensors designed to transmit data regarding the ball’s speed, arc, spin and dribble force, as well as an athlete’s performance.

    The new 94Fifty ball aims to attract individual users. It is fitted with a small module incorporating a total of nine sensors that measures such properties as the angle and speed of a ball’s movements, as well as a chip that processes that information, a rechargeable battery and a Bluetooth transmitter to forward the relevant details to a mobile phone, tablet or other handheld running an Android or Apple operating system.

    The phone or tablet then uses the 94Fifty app to enable individuals to view the quality of their performance, compete or compare it with others’ performances using the same technology, set up challenges, and share data with others via social networks.

    The company hopes to start shipping the balls with the wireless charger and app in October 2013. The balls will be available for sale online at the company Web site.

     
  • Editing Team 09:32 on December 18, 2012 Permalink | Reply
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    The RFID-enabled Scrabble Board Costs £20,000 

    Mind-Sports-Festival-Scrabble-board-rfid-blogMind Sports is the company behind the “world’s most advanced and expensive Scrabble system.” The company has spent 20,000 pounds ($30,000) to build a custom, RFID-enabled Scrabble board.

    The reason why it cost so much? That’s because there is an RFID tag on every tile and an RFID antenna on every square. The function of these RFID chips is to “read” what is happening on the board and transmit it over the internet for people all over the world to watch it on live.

    The technology allows scores to be calculated instantaneously. The RFID chips monitor the board almost continuously (every 974 milliseconds) and transmit the data via a specially developed software.

    There are 100 letter tiles with RFID tags, 225 RFID antennas (one for space on the 15×15 game board), nine circuit boards embedded under the game board, and seven sensors on every tile tray.

    This is all part of MSI’s Mind Sports Festival, where top Scrabble players from around the world will compete. The high-tech tweaks will make it the most spectator-friendly Scrabble competition ever. Live HD video streams will also be available online.

     
  • Editing Team 01:14 on October 11, 2012 Permalink | Reply
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    Using RFID to Reduce Energy Consumption in Data Center 

    reduce-data-center-energy-comsumption-rfid-blogThe New York Times once published an article titled “Power, Pollution and the Internet”, which said “Data centers (in the U.S.) used about 76 billion kilowatt-hours in 2010, or roughly 2% of all electricity was used in the country that year.”

    But it’s not the only problem. Many data centers are overcooled, since IT departments don’t want to risk infuriating customers by having servers overheat and go down. In fact, some estimates are that for every megawatt directed toward powering a data center, another 0.5 megawatt is consumed in maintaining proper temperature levels. And as it’s impossible to know the temperature at any one location within a room, most companies simply turn the air conditioning up high.

    Companies can choose to use environmental sensors which can track temperatures around server racks, but they cost much. On the other hand, wireless monitoring systems that leverage RFID and sensor technologies can be installed quickly and cost less. They can gather environmental information in real time.

    In 2008, California’s Franchise Tax Board, in Sacramento, deployed an RFID-based environmental-monitoring system. With the RFID system in place, the company saw cooling costs drop by nearly 75%.

    Microsoft has also installed over 700 RFID sensors to track temperatures on individual racks and shelves within its data centers around the world, enabling it to monitor the temperature or humidity levels around every rack of servers.

    In addition, Microsoft Research has developed software, allowing sensor data to be visualized on a map. The map displays the data center’s layout, highlighting any hot zones in real time. It also stores information that can be used for business analytics in the event that Microsoft chooses to evaluate the data center’s condition at a particular time in the past.

    In that way, when the temperature threshold is exceeded at any specific location, an alert will be given. The company uses this information to evaluate the conditions throughout the data center, and to adjust temperatures or fan speeds. What’s more, an overheated server can be powered down, or data can be redirected to a different server.

    All in all, companies can benefit a lot from RFID-based environmental-monitoring system, both in cutting energy costs and delivering a quick return on investment.

     
  • Editing Team 20:39 on September 24, 2012 Permalink | Reply
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    MasterCard Announced NFC PayPass for Ultrabooks 

    MasterCard-NFC-PayPass-Ultrabooks-rfid-blogYou may have heard about MasterCard’s PayPass, which allows you to pay by tapping your credit card against a sensor at particular retail locations. Now, the company has taken the same experience to Ultrabooks, letting you to tap your credit card against an NFC sensor below your computer keyboard, to send all your payment information to your favorite online vendor.

    With the NFC PayPass on the Ultrabooks, users can log into participating etailers’ site, simply put a product in the shopping cart, select PayPass as the payment method and Tap&Pay as the login method, and swipe the card against the notebook deck. Then the website will automatically enter all of the cardholder’s information, including name and billing/shipping address. Now, you can buy something with one swipe and a few clicks, no need for filling out a quantity of online forms.

    Although Intel expects future Ultrabooks to come with NFC, currently the soon-to-be-released Toshiba Satellite U925t is the only Ultrabooks with NFC embedded and supports Tap&Pay.

    In another upcoming PayPass Wallet Services, when you visit a participating etailer’s site and choose PayPass as your payment method, you’ll be able to verify your identity either with a password or by NFC swiping.

    Perhaps the best thing about PayPass Wallet Service is not the convenience, but the security. It is said that the vendor just gets a verification from MasterCard instead of getting your actual credit card number. Thus, if you use PayPass to buy something and the vendor’s computer systems are later hacked, the hackers won’t find your credit card number.

     
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