Q. Is the product certified for use in Europe at 868 MHz?
A. Products are certified for use in Europe (CE) and North America (FCC / Industry Canada). RFind’s wireless hardware is set, at the time, of deployment to work at appropriate, available channels within the ISM band allocated in each country for RFID use, between 865 & 928 MHz.
Q. Tags may be fitted to assets that travel between Europe and North America
or vice versa. How can the different frequency bands be handled?
A.The same tag can be configured to operate at different frequencies, e.g. 868 MHz in Europe and 915 MHz in North America. Tags could be reconfigured to the new frequency before, during or after shipping, by the RTLS.
Q. Why do we use the 900MHz ISM band?
A. This band is well suite to long ranges, metal environments and low power applications. It does not absolutely require line-of-sight for effective signals to be sent and received. It is also unlicensed and authorised for use by RFID technology in almost every country, making is more cost effective for the end-users.
Q. We have other radio frequency systems on site. Will that impact the RFind system?
A. Other radio frequency systems may interfere with the RFind system if they operate at the same frequency and on the same channels. RFID systems operating on other bands (LF, HF, UWB etc.) should not interfere with RFind. A site survey would determine whether any such interference is present and could impact the RFind system. Wireless LAN systems operating on 2.45 or 5.8 GHz do not interfere with RFind and vice versa.
Q. Do you use frequency hopping (FHSS)
A. No, we use spectrum selection.
Q. Does the system use Received Signal Strength (RSSI) or Time of Arrival (ToA)?
A. The RFind system is a Received Signal Strength (RSSI) system. Coupled with our advanced location algorithms, accuracy of location to suit all, but the most precise positioning needs (e.g. inch or cm accuracy) is possible to achieve with RFind.
Q. Can we do Power over Ethernet (PoE)?
A. PoE on Gateways can be support using a third party module. Different modules are available depending on your existing network hardware.
Q. Can the system be installed in multi-storey facilities?
A. Extra care must be taken when installing the system on multiple storeys to avoid bleed between different levels. Bleed could be reduced by increasing the number of reference tags, reducing the power of reference and asset tags.
Q. Does a lot of metal (structures, walls, machines, vehicles) prevent RFind’s RTLS from working correctly?
A. No. The affect of any metal in the RTLS environment is checked at the time of the site survey. RFind’s RTLS hardware was specifically designed to work well in environments containing lots of metal structures, surfaces or objects (e.g. in factories, workshops etc.).
Q. How does a changing environment affect the system?
A. The RFind system is designed to cope with a changing environment. Even if a tag is partially shielded by metal (for example, if a forklift drives in front of it), so that it can no longer communicate with all the nearby reference tags, it can still be located from responses from other reference tags. In a highly dynamic environment, the density of reference tags and gateways can be increased to improve coverage.
A. The RFind system does not need to be calibrated.There is no need for timing cables to be installed between Gateways. Gateways synchronise their internal clocks with the RFind server at an appropriate user-defined interval.
Q. What happens if a Gateway loses network connection to the RFind server?
A. The Gateways are also ‘data-logger’ devices, capable of storing up to 5000 time-stamped, location events in the event they lose connection to the RFind server. However, instant notification of the loss of connection is provided to users, as the Gateways send a ‘heartbeat’ to the server at an appropriate, user-defined interval. This allows for prompt detection of loss of connection between the server and Gateway. Upon re-establishment of the connection, all data is downloaded to the server and processed through the location algorithms.
Q. Can redundant Gateways be set up on a site?
A. Yes. Tag data received simultaneously by two or more Gateways is processed by the server without duplication of location events occurring as a result of this. Where the RTLS serves a mission critical service, it is recommended to install redundant Gateways to ensure uninterrupted functionality of the RTLS in the event of any hardware or network failure at a specific Gateway.
Q. What is the easiest and most cost-effective way to install RFind’s RTLS?
A. For one, install battery powered Asset, Reference and Gatepost tags, rather than require them to be wired to power. This allows tags to be installed in place within minutes with screws, straps, Velcro or even magnets, meaning that hundreds of tags can be deployed on-site per day. Tag battery replacement will be typically required only every few years.
In addition, Gateways should be installed as close to existing power and network connection points as is possible. This minimises the need to retro-fit power and LAN cabling. Sometimes Gateway locations have to be in specific places simply to ensure they collectively provide complete wireless coverage of the site – RFind will advise if this is the case after conducting a Site Survey.
Q. Why must RFind conduct a site survey prior to confirming the exact quantities of hardware required, and the exact locations to install each item?
A. All wireless / RF systems require some form of site survey and performance testing on each site they are to deployed at. This ensures that any sources of RF interference can be identified, and intended RTLS functionality (transmit range, signal quality, location accuracy etc.) can be achieved. The results of the survey may allow for less hardware to be deployed, or show that some additional components will be needed to achieve the desired functionality of the RTLS. Finally the survey allows for all cabling and other installation accessories (lifts, mounting brackets and so on) to be properly identified, routed, positioned and quantified. The survey also produces an Installation Manual that is used to plan the deployment time frame and identify all other resources required. This information is important for the proper management and execution of the deployment project.
Q. Must I install power or network cabling to each Reference Tag position?
A. No, Reference Tags are typically powered by their replaceable batteries. They never require a LAN connection.
However, if you wish to have them powered via the mains, or a low voltage circuit (e.g. by a battery or from solar), then, yes, you will need to run power cable (and conduit if required) to each tag location.
Q. Must I dig trenches in my yard to install RFind’s RTLS?
A. No, this is not usually required. High capacity, long life batteries and/or solar power can be used to power Gateways or tags in remote locations. In this way you avoid the hassle and cost of installing electrical cabling throughout your yards or to remote sites. Also refer to RFind’s Gate Master – a cost effective device to extend both your RTLS and corporate LAN to remote satellite sites or to outlying parts of your site.
Q. Do my light poles/stanchions have to be of a certain height if I install Reference tags or Gateways on them?
A. No, they do not. Reference tags can be installed anywhere from ground level to high up. The most appropriate positioning is determined at the time of the site survey, when any constraints present are also taken into account.
Q. Must I draw power from the lights or other power sources in my yard for RFind hardware?
A. No for Reference tags installed on your light stanchions. Yes for any Gateways installed on them. RFind recommends that Gateways be installed close to existing power sources, such as on buildings in your yard. If power is not available 24/7 for the Gateways, battery backup & recharge options can be used to ensure uninterrupted service.
Q. Must I install gantries or poles for Reference tags in my yard?
A. Gantries and poles are not normally required to be installed. Reference tags can be installed on ground level (under protective road ‘bumps’) or buried just below ground level, if no existing infrastructure (poles, fences, walls, stanchions, canopies, roof supports, etc.) is available to install them onto.