Wireless Applications

Leading Wi-Fi-Based Active RFID Tag Now Integrates Sensors

August 15, 2006

AeroScout T2 Tag features built-in temperature and motion sensors. It is one of a growing number of active RFID products using standard Wi-Fi networks, which offer hospitals, manufacturers, and others compelling value without high infrastructure costs.


ORLANDO, Fla. /PRNewswire/ -- AeroScout, Inc., the leading provider of Wi-Fi-based Active RFID visibility solutions, yesterday announced several enhanced features and capabilities for its AeroScout T2 Tag which the company says are unique and unparalleled in the market. The T2 tag is the industry's leading Wi-Fi-based Active RFID tag for asset tracking and management, with tens of thousands of units being shipped each month to customers around the globe.

New features on the AeroScout T2 Tag include a built-in temperature monitor and motion sensor, for unmatched asset management capabilities. The motion sensor provides transmission control based on movement of the tag, improving real-time location accuracy and enabling a 4+ year battery life in most customer environments. The temperature sensor provides an additional stream of asset management data for environment-sensitive assets, enabling the tag to wirelessly trigger a remote alert if the temperature goes above or below a certain threshold. In addition, advanced call button and LED functions, intrinsically safe and electromagnetic certifications on the tag, and extendable battery life (up to 8 years) all enable customers to further enhance their asset management capabilities.

"These new features not only demonstrate how AeroScout continues to deliver trusted location based services solutions to the healthcare market, but also extend the Wi-Fi-based Active RFID capabilities currently available in the Cisco Clinical Connection Suite," said Kent Gray, Healthcare Industry Solutions Manager, Cisco Systems, Inc.. "The new tag functionality is particularly attractive to our hospital customers because extended battery life and advanced security are critical for effective asset management and loss prevention."

AeroScout introduced the industry's first Wi-Fi-based Active RFID tag over 3 years ago, and its tags continue to lead the market in advanced features, long battery life, and attractive form factor. Customers in healthcare, manufacturing and other industries use the T2 Tag along with their standard wireless networking infrastructure to track high-value assets and people at a low total cost of ownership. The T2 Tag, together with AeroScout's MobileView application software and other products, provides a complete solution for improving business processes through accurate, real-time location.

AeroScout currently ships tens of thousands of T2 tags to customers each month, and has already deployed the tags in more than 150 customer sites worldwide. For example, numerous hospitals including Catholic Medical Center -- KangNam St. Mary's Hospital in South Korea use the tags to track patients through their diagnostic process; mining giant Inco uses the tags to improve production within a Canadian mine, Holmgrens auto distributor in Sweden uses the tags to provide superior service by monitoring vehicles on their lot; and various semiconductor and aerospace manufacturing facilities use the tags to track high-value tools and inventory. The T2 Tag promises:

  • Over 4 years of battery life -- the longest of any currently available Wi-Fi tag

  • Seamless tracking between indoor and outdoor environments

  • The market's only Wi-Fi tag with integrated choke-point capability

  • Compact size and rugged, water-resistant casing

  • Full compatibility with Cisco Wi-Fi networks

  • Multiple fixed and removable mounting options

  • Wi-Fi standards-based, for simplified deployment, integration and scalability

  • Telemetry and sensor capability, for connecting to and transmitting sensor data such as pressure and humidity

  • Wireless tag management and in-field programmability

"Active RFID solutions that utilize standard Wi-Fi wireless networks are growing fast, because they offer hospitals, manufacturers and others the compelling value of Active RFID without the high infrastructure costs," said Drew Nathanson, Practice Director -- RFID for analyst firm Venture Development Corporation (VDC). "AeroScout has long been a pioneer in this market, and continues to deliver innovative and enterprise-ready RFID tag and software solutions."

New Features
The new tag features enhance the value and functionality of the T2 tag, delivering innovative solutions to solve real customer needs.

  • Built-in motion sensor gives greater efficiency to the tag's performance and advanced real-time visibility. The tag can be configured for different transmission rates when static or in motion. For example, an infusion pump in a hospital can be set to transmit every ten seconds while in motion, updating its location in real-time, but will transmit only once an hour while stationary to conserve energy and reduce network overhead. Using the AeroScout MobileView software application, users can confirm whether an asset is in motion or stationary.

  • Optional built-in temperature sensor is a valuable tool for managing assets that are affected by their environment. The T2 Tag can be programmed to wirelessly report its temperature, enabling customers to view both the asset's location and its temperature from the Web-based MobileView interface. In addition, customers can enable automated temperature-based alerts. For example, a refrigerated trailer in a shipping yard can trigger an alert to the yard manager's pager, if the internal temperature in the trailer is too high and threatens spoilage.

  • Advanced call button functionality enables the tag's call button to be used for multiple business purposes simultaneously. Customers can configure different patterns, such as multiple clicks or long-versus-short clicks, to represent different assets statuses or alerts.

  • Electromagnetic compatibility certification ensures that the T2 tag is safe for use within environments with other critical electronic

    devices, such as hospitals. This certification, IEC 60601-1-2, is recognized by the FDA in the United States, as well as all EU nations and several other countries worldwide.

  • Optional intrinsically safe tags ensure safety for customers in explosion-prone environments such as mining and oil refineries. The Intrinsically Safe T2 Tag follows the same dimensions as the standard tag, and is available with or without the call button.

  • Expanded LED functionality adds the option for up to three different colored LED lights on the tag when unique visual identification is needed for large inventory settings.

  • Optional extended battery life configuration enables to extend tag battery life for up to 8 years.
"As our worldwide install base within healthcare, manufacturing and other industries has grown, so has the demand from our customers and partners for advanced tag features that meet the business needs of these markets with a single, flexible platform," said Gabi Daniely, VP of Marketing, AeroScout. "These expanded and enhanced features of the T2 tag show our dedication to continued tag innovation, providing the market with the most advanced functionality for RTLS."

The T2 tags are a key component of the AeroScout Visibility System, a complete suite of products utilizing Wi-Fi standards for asset visibility and process improvement. The system can employ existing wireless access points to act as Active RFID readers, without needing additional networking equipment or disrupting voice and data communications.


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