Ford Motor Co. is the first business to adopt a new high-memory passive ultrahigh-frequency (UHF) RFID tag from Omni-ID. The carmaker had asked Omni-ID to design a passive tag that operated in the 860 to 960 MHz UHF band, and that could be fastened to metal carriers for tracking engine components throughout the manufacturing process. That collaboration led to the Adept 850, says Ed Nabrotzky, Omni-ID's chief solutions officer. The Adept 850, which comes with 64 kilobits of user memory, can be encoded at a distance of up to 4 meters (13 feet) and has a read range of up to 8.5 meters (28 feet). The EPC Gen 2 RFID tag, which measures 65 millimeters by 45 millimeter by 8 millimeters (2.56 inches by 1.77 inches by 0.31 inch), is sealed in a tough ceramic casing, earning it an IP68 rating, which signifies it as being dust- and water-tight.
Ford is already using the new on-metal tag to monitor engine-assembly work-in-progress at multiple sites, while another automotive firm (which has asked to remain unnamed) reportedly is tracking transmissions.
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