As radio frequency identification tags get cheaper, they’ll do the work that barcodes have traditionally done. Texas Instruments has crossed the border to help Mississippi Blood Services, utilizing RFID tags to keep better track of the inventory, making them safer for distribution and use at hospital.
Of interest, the technology had to be adapted to work in a blood-bag environment:
“Challenges in implementing an RFID system on liquid blood products include both the plasma content and -30 degree Centigrade storage temperature required for preservation purposes. The content of the blood bags creates a dampening effect on the radio frequency signals, causing the resonant frequency to degrade. Special RFID tag technologies are needed for accurate and reliable performance. Using its integrated chip-to-inlay manufacturing capabilities, TI’s laser tuned each inlay so that the RFID labels operated at 13.56 MHz, the optimal frequency for this application, while affixed to the bags.”
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