Metal Mount RFID Tags Benchmarked by ODIN Technologies Myth Busted: ODIN Engineers Show RFID Works on Metal and Which Tags Lead the Pack

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Today ODIN technologies, the leader in RFID deployments, research and automation software released the industry's first scientific evaluation of passive RFID tags designed to work on metal objects.

While the metal mount tag performance has improved substantially over the past two years, the benchmark reveals some vendors clearly outperform their peers

Today ODIN technologies, the leader in RFID deployments, research and automation software released the industry's first scientific evaluation of passive RFID tags designed to work on metal objects. There is a well circulated myth that passive RFID does not work on metal. There are other myths that only one or two tags will actually work reliably on metal objects. Both myths are conclusively "busted" by the Metal Mount RFID Tag Benchmark™. In fact, the findings show that some of the more popular tags designed for metal are not the top performers. Physicists and engineers from seven passive RFID tag vendors have been steadily improving performance on and around metal surfaces.

The Metal Mount RFID Tag Benchmark™ is the 11th installment of ODIN's RFID Benchmark Series™ which independently evaluates RFID equipment performance based on physics. The report compares 17 UHF RFID tags designed specifically for use on metal. End-users employ metal mount RFID tags today to track a large variety of items such as data center assets, work in process components, laptops, tools, pipes, and airplane parts.

"While the metal mount tag performance has improved substantially over the past two years, the benchmark reveals some vendors clearly outperform their peers," commented Patrick J. Sweeney II founder of ODIN technologies. He added, "RFID use is developing more rapidly than ever before with new use-cases coming of age in months rather than years. Many companies are now adopting RFID and trying to tag challenging items such as blade servers, laptops, critical spare parts and tools for manufacturing. A mistake in tag selection can compromise the entire solution. The findings are so important to end user success that ODIN decided to release a sanitized, redacted version of the report for free on the company website (Download Here). This benchmark offers end-users clear guidance in fast-changing tag world."

Six Scientific Tests in the Benchmark
The report summarizes findings from six scientific tests that were conducted on each of the 17 tags evaluated. The tests include:

1.    Tag Sensitivity: the minimum RF power each tag requires to operate
2.    Power Effectiveness: tag performance results from one milli-watt to one watt
3.    Orientation Sensitivity: tag performance over multiple power levels and orientations
4.    Distance: how well tags are read at distances ranging from 1 to 17 feet
5.    Metal Proximity: tag read performance when placed next to other metal surfaces
6.    Material Dependency: metal mount tag performance when affixed to other materials

Loyal readers of ODIN benchmarks with recognize that Metal Proximity and Material Dependency are new tests included in a benchmark for the first time. Just choosing a tag that can read on an item when it is sitting alone on a test table is insufficient. Tags will be read in operational settings where other metal surfaces such as other assets, shelves, server racks, cubicles and material handling equipment will be present and potentially inhibit successful tag reads. It is essential to select tags that can function in optimal and suboptimal settings. Metal Proximity testing addresses this issue directly and provides critical insight for proper tag selection.

Similarly, material dependency takes on the notion that one tag will work on all material types. The testing shows - buyers beware - several metal mount tags fail to function when applied to non-metallic surfaces. These findings, and others, can be leveraged to determine which type of tag performance is most critical to end user requirements and which vendors have the strongest offerings in those areas.

Tags and Vendors in the Report
ODIN engineers selected tags for the report based on a number of factors including size, popularity and uniqueness. In all there are six large-sized tags represented, seven medium-sized tags, and four-small sized tags. Tag size was measured based on horizontal footprint of the tags which indicates the size of the surface area required to affix the tag to an item. This is an important factor because many tags simply cannot fit on the front of a blade server or on small objects. The vendors and tags evaluated in the benchmark include:

Avery Dennison: AD-900, AD-902, AD-908
Confidex: Halo, Ironside, Steelwave
Emerson & Cummings: Ecopad
Intermec: Large Rigid, Small Rigid
Omni-ID: Flex, Micro, Mini
Sontec: C0101, P01016BT
TROI: MMT-3001, MMT-3004, PC-102

ODIN technologies established itself as the leading RFID integrator by leveraging labs in the United States and Europe to learn more than anyone about RFID equipment performance for end user applications. By scientifically testing each new RFID technology and product offering, ODIN brings a level of expertise to end users unmatched in the RFID industry. Additionally, through the RFID Benchmark Series™ we hope to make RFID buyers better consumers of vendor information and increase the likelihood of successful implementations.

To download the report please go to: Download Report Now    

About ODIN technologies
ODIN technologies is the leader in the physics of RFID infrastructure for solution design, deployment services and automation. RFID is all we do. Global corporations on five continents leverage ODIN technologies' expert engineers and patented RFID deployment automation tools to achieve accuracy, speed and visibility for their RFID deployments. In addition to consulting services, ODIN technologies is also the publisher of the RFID Benchmark Series™, the industry's first and most referenced head to head performance analysis of RFID equipment. ODIN's RFID optimization software EasyRFID™ has been successfully used at dozens of companies across more than 150 sites worldwide to ensure accurate and scalable RFID implementations. ODIN serves clients from offices in Virginia, USA, Tokyo, Japan and Budapest, Hungary. http://www.ODINtechnologies.com

Contact:
Heike Schuster                    
hschuster(at)odintechnologies.com
ODIN technologies, Trusted RFID Experts
703.968.0000

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Bret Kinsella
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