Ottawa-based XINK Laboratories showed what it claims to be the world's first successful, fully functional UHF on-press RFID transponder labels. The solution was demonstrated in late April at the Mark Andy RFID Focus Seminar. Mark Andy, a prominent narrow-web printing equipment manufacturer, printed the antenna using XINK Silver UHF Antenna inks on a Mark Andy 2200 press and then attached prototype Texas Instruments EPC Gen 2 straps with a Tamarack P500 RFID inline strap attachment machine. The reuslt was four-color adhesive RFID labels immediately read from over 14 feet.
One advantage of the XINK solution is its apparent simplicity: It does not require clean-room facilities; room-temperature blown air suffices; it uses straps from suppliers such as TI and Alien Technologies; and it uses XINK Flexographic Antenna ink on simple narrow-web flexographic printing equipment. This makes it possible even for nonspecialized label converters to produce, in one simple step, fully functional RFID transponder labels. Converters can even produce transponders directly on packaging substrates, thus avoiding the need for adhesive labels.
PLUS: Researchers at UCLA are busy developing a system which would embed an RFID tag into a DVD. The tagged DVD would have to be played in a DVD player with hardware for reading the information in the tag. The system's protoptype, part of a campaign to make Digital Rights Management (DRM) more robust, will likely be avaliable in late summer. Story
ALSO: Jamshed Dubash of Gillette calls his company's implementation of RFIDs a "launch-and-learn" approach. How do other RFID-deployment pioneers assess the benefits and costs to their companies of RFID intallation? Report
FINALLY: The pharmaceutical industry is relying more and more on RFIDs to battle counterfiet medications. Story