Wireless Applications

RuBee Approved as New IEEE Standard

February 12, 2009

IEEE 1902.1 is a long-wavelength, packet-based, magnetic-transceiver protocol that provides high security and is described as a harsh-environment RFID alternative.


STRATHAM, NH -- Visible Assets Inc. announced that the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) has approved RuBee, a long-wavelength, packet-based, magnetic transceiver protocol, as a new international standard, designated IEEE 1902.1. Visible Assets and Seiko Epson Corp. sponsored creation of the standard and the workgroup and are responsible for its development.

RuBee overcomes many of the problems seen with RFID and other wireless asset-visibility solutions in harsh environments through its ability to work on steel and in liquids. RuBee tags and antennas are volumetric in harsh environments, not line-of-sight, as is often the case with other wireless technologies and bar codes. RuBee tags work over a range of 1 to 50 ft., depending on antenna configuration, and can be powered by a single coin-size lithium battery, with field-proven battery life from 5 to more than 15 years. RuBee tags and systems are easily combined with sensors, buttons, displays, and LEDs. RuBee tags with sensors have been directly embedded into items such as firearms, weapons, mission-critical tools, medical devices, and mobile phones.

IEEE 1902.1 has been used to ensure the visibility and safety of government-owned firearms, high-value evidence, military weapons, patient visibility and optimal patient flow in hospitals, hospital disposable and implantable inventories, livestock, disaster-recovery equipment and safety systems, mission-critical tools, aircraft-maintenance tools, and many other categories of highly valued goods and services. RuBee wireless asset-visibility networks are cost-competitive with other wireless networking solutions, including RFID.

"RFID loses its ability to read and write reliably when it is near steel, liquids, people, and animals," said John K. Stevens, CEO of Visible Assets Inc. "IEEE 1902.1 signals are not affected by liquids, and steel can actually enhance RuBee's range. RuBee has no eavesdropping, target, or tempest risk, as seen with other wireless technologies. In addition, since each tag has a clock with date and time stamp enabling high packet security, IEEE 1902.1 has met the highest possible standard for wireless data security. RuBee is in use at many high-security government sites."

Human and intrinsic safety of RuBee has been extensively tested. The IEEE 1902.1 protocol produces no significant RF energy (40 nW) and very low magnetic energy (600 mGauss). It presents no known human safety risks. In July 2006, the FDA classified RuBee as a Non Significant Risk (NSR) Class 1 device for hospital operating room applications. In May 2007, a peer-reviewed study was published by the Mayo Clinic that showed RuBee has no effect on pacemakers or ICDs, and other recent studies show that RuBee has minimal adverse EMI or EMC issues in hospitals. RuBee tags are NEBS GR-1089-CORE compliant for no EMI, and have passed MIL STD 810F for use in harsh physical and chemical environments. RuBee received the 2007 Logistic Technology of the Year Award from Frost and Sullivan.

"RuBee has proven itself in many real-time, real-world visibility applications," Stevens added. "We are excited about approval of IEEE 1902.1 as a standard and expect that it will expand use of RuBee in many new visibility applications."

IEEE 1902.1 is available for licensing from Visible Assets Inc. Tags, routers, and systems are available from a variety of sources.

About Epson
Seiko Epson Corp. is a global leader in imaging products, including printers, 3LCD projectors, and small- and medium-sized LCDs. With an innovative and creative culture, Epson is dedicated to exceeding the vision and expectations of customers worldwide with products known for their superior quality, functionality, compactness, and energy efficiency.

Epson is a network of 93,279 employees in 107 companies around the world, and is proud of its ongoing contributions to the global environment and to the communities in which it is located. Led by the Japan-based Seiko Epson Corp., the group had consolidated sales of 1347 billion yen in fiscal 2007.

About Visible Assets
Visible Assets Inc. designs, manufactures, and supports wireless real-time asset-visibility solutions and networks based on the IEEE 1902.1 standard. The company additionally maintains an active RuBee licensing program. Integrated visibility solutions from Visible Assets address a variety of markets through RuBee application partners, including Epson and Sig Sauer, and visibility networks based on its technology are installed and working in numerous commercial facilities and government sites. Privately held, Visible Assets is based in Stratham, NH.

RuBee is a registered trademark of Visible Assets Inc.


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