Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM) is the first institution in the country to develop a data identification system using radio frequency (RF) technology, which is far superior to the current system used in the country.
Apart from being the first of its kind, the product, better known as Contactless Active Integrated RFID System (CAIRFID) is capable of identifying data at a distance of between 30 to 45 meters.
The capacity of CAIRFID which has touched 2.45 GHz, is also the first product in the world to incorporate Zigbee technology.
Dr. Widad Ismail, head of the research team from PPKEE that developed this product and who is also a lecturer at the School of Electrical and Electronic Engineering (PPKEE), USM said that the product was multi-functional.
He said that the most significant function is that it simplifies the various data identification systems in many sectors including medical, banking, housing, schools, institutions of higher learning and also on the highways.
” We can apply this technology according to what is appropriate and suitable to our needs. This is because it not only can be modified but is also portable as the size of the product is small.
“Most interesting is the fact that it is a purely Malaysian-made product, and has the potential to be used widely in the country as it is cost-effective but without compromising the quality and sophistication of the product,” he explained.
He added that data identification technology presently used in the country is imported at a much higher cost but with a limited reading range.
“Take for example the Smartcard used to pay tolls on the highway. The various problems associated with the smartcard involve touching the card against the scanner or slowing down the car in order to facilitate reading of the data in the card.
“This is because the present system does not utilize RF technology but rather infrared rays. This limits the reading range to between 3 to 5 meters only, which is far lower than the capacity of the product we have developed,” he said.
Dr. Widad said with the introduction of this new technology, users do not have to slow down or wind down the car window to touch the card against the scanner as the CAIRFID reading range is much higher.
He added that CAIRFID was successfully developed in less than a year from the time the AUTO-ID Lab was set up at PPKEE, USM in January of last year.
The product was developed with the Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation (MOSTI) pre-commercial grant of RM 2 million. Once the product receives the attention of the industry, it will be ready to be commercialized.
He said that for now, the system has been used for the purpose of in-depth study at PPKEE to record information systematically on student attendance and also at the staff car park.
Dr. Widad also added that USM’s latest invention will contribute to the development of technology and has the potential to bring in high economic returns to the country.
Mohamad Abdullah | ResearchSEA
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