5 Ways RFID Will Create Smart Cities

Posted by on Nov 15, 2015 11:17:06 PM

Libelium Smart World

The smart city concept is taking off around the world, and it will allow us to live our daily lives and do our jobs more efficiently.

Another extension of smart cities is the smart environment. Which can use an IoT system to detect natural disasters such as earthquake, landslide and avalanche. With a system in place, there can be early warnings, and a better way of contacting people that live in an affected zone. Often times with disasters such as these even a few minutes of earlier warning can make a huge difference. In addition to natural disaster relief, there is advancement in using IoT to detect forest fires and air pollution. Again, as with natural disasters, detecting forest fires as early as possible will have great benefit.

1. Security - Explosive Detecting Tags

With more goods passing through the world's shipping terminals and airports than ever before, hunting explosives with large, static detectors or teams of inspectors armed with detecting devices and reagents is a bottleneck that increases the chances of evasion. To help US counterterrorism efforts, GE has developed RFID stickers that act as wireless, battery-free explosives detectors that can be placed almost anywhere.

Though inexpensive to produce, they have the ability to wirelessly detect and measure very low concentrations of explosives, oxidizers, and other chemicals in real-time. According to GE, they require no batteries; can operate continuously in areas with heavy, multiple sources of interference; and can be read with a device the size and portability of a mobile phone.

2. Retail – the Trailblazer Industry for RFID Usage

In the retail environment things have been happening fast. Macy’s and several other retailers are now tagging individual items achieving an unprecedented level of inventory accuracy.

Some stores are now installing systems that allow your phone to receive messages when you walk into that store. Alerts are sent to your phone advising you of the offers available in that store and giving you the ability to have a smarter shopping experience.

Today with the use of IoT technology shipping is quicker, more accurate, and more transparent. With these advances online retailers are especially able to utilize RFID to create a superior customer experience.

3. Industrial Use

In the industrial world we are just starting to see the use of IoT in large ways. This area is likely to be one of the most highly organized uses of the IoT that we will see- although many people will not be aware of it most organizations realize the fact that they need more information to increase the efficiency of their business processes.

Whether they are monitoring manufacturing machines, the progress of products within the supply chain, or whether they are trying to keep the optimal environment for the workers in the building. New technologies constantly coming out provide us with more and more information. 

4. Smart Agriculture

In the farm world they are looking at ways to utilize technology to grow crops in more efficient and successful ways. Such as monitoring compost to create the correct conditions, analyzing a greenhouse environment for optimal use, or just even looking at the outside conditions to determine when the best time is to plant wheat or corn.

This leads to smart animal farming, in Europe this has become regulated in many ways.  The consumer is given the ability to know a lot more about the animal foods stuffs they are consuming.

 “Farm to plate” is a term that is used where it is possible to know the cow that provided the steak that you’re eating was brought up in an optimal way with no exposure to disease or other problems. Which obviously would be helpful to tracking down causes to food poisoning epidemic or other problems that result in food causing people harm.  

5. eHealth

There are many aspects of healthcare that are going to be affected by the Internet of Things. Today we see people wearing fall detection devices. Surveillance devices are able to do real-time monitoring of their conditions providing that information through an internet link and sending it back to some type of central data station.  In the future we will see even more of this, there are companies out there looking at how we can better get information on our health, and on the operations and procedures we have done on us – to ensure the best quality of health as we move forward.

Issues That Still Need to be Resolved in IoT

Before IoT can become ubiquitous there are issues that still need to be resolved, mainly centered on security and privacy. We must take care to ensure that we take all the steps necessary to provide the security and privacy our customers need.

In addition, we must be wary of regulations of the government regulations of how much radio waves a human body should be exposed to. As of today, most of the RFID devices used in IoT tech fall into way below these regulations and are considered very safe for human or animal use. Yet, there will always be a need to keep an eye on this issue to understand what effect long term exposure to radio waves has on us.

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