Drones to Save Billions in Inventory Control by Relaying RFID Signals

RFID or Radio Frequency ID tags are the latest in supply chain management and they are in, to revolutionize the world. As they are very cheap and do not require any battery to operate, they were considered the next big invention to shake the supply chain management processing. Just as this very powerful and most useful invention was considered to shake the world; it was deterred by many flaws that came with it. In 2013, Wal-Mart found that there was a complete mismatch in its inventory review, when it used RFID technology, which proved very costly when it lost almost $3 billion through it.

Rectifying Stage

To make such a valuable invention usable, a system has been developed by MIR researchers, by which aerial drones have been put into work, to rectify this fault by RFID. Drones are equipped to read the RFID tags, even from a distance of about 10 meters away. They can identify the tag locations and can be used to protect mismatches from occurring through RFID signals. The challenging feature in this system is the small size of the drones, as they were not heavy enough to carry RFID readers required. This challenge was met by researchers by making the drones relay signals, for which the existing RFID system for inventory was sufficient.

The Future of RFID

The RFID technology which uses drones for assistance is still in its initial stage. There are still some flaws which are systematically being rectified. The array of antennas, the analog filter, equipping drones with their own RFID tag, are some areas in which the drones are being faulted and measures are taken to rectify them. This wonder invention will soon be a blessing to supply chain management, with its great power of logging inventory and helping warehouse managers in their work of managing inventory. These small and safe drones that are air-borne will soon be a common sight in warehouses and other places for inventory management.