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Application of RFID for Shopping Cart Scenario

Application of RFID for Shopping Cart Scenario

At checkout lines, people can just walk through a checkout area where a reader is placed and get a bill for the merchandize purchased within seconds. The system is based upon the Skyetek ISO 15693 reader, TI HF-I tags, and external metal plate antenna.
Barcodes have been in existence for many years and have been used by department stores and supermarkets to manage purchases of merchandize by customers and keep track of inventory. However, the barcode system is no longer the best way to business operation. Customers are tired of waiting in a long, slowly moving checkout line in department stores, especially, in holiday seasons. With the decrease of prices through efficiencies of technology and large-scale production of semiconductor wireless components, there has been a search for new markets in which semiconductor chips can be used. This has led to the innovation of RFID also known as smart tags.


RFID stands for radio frequency identification. A basic RFID system has two main components: reader and transponder. The reader consists of an antenna, transceiver, and decoder. The transponder, also called tag, is electronically programmed with unique information. Figure 1 illustrates the basic operation of RFID system.

The RFID Shopping Cart Scenario has the Skyetek ISO 15693 reader, TI HF-I tags, and external metal plate antenna. Compatible with 13.56 MHz RFID tags, the reader, which has basic features of reading and writing, solely offers approximately 5cm of reading range. TI HF-I Transponder is selected due to its thin and flexible structure.

An external antenna is added to the system for reading range improvement. Two kinds of antenna are proposed and built for better selection: plate antenna and loop antenna.

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