Project yields bulk pharma RFID reads

Netherlands-based semiconductor company NXP has announced an effort with Siemens on a pharmaceutical RFID-based supply chain. Using an NXP facility that provides real-life conditions for evaluating RFID apps, the Siemens team created a custom system to ensure a high read accuracy throughout the supply chain.

The project uses NXP ICODE high-frequency RFID technology embedded in the labels of pharmaceutical products. System configuration complies with the HF Gen2 standard in final review with EPCglobal. According to NXP, the aim of the project is to accurately bulk read several hundred labeled packages, which would allow manufacturer to keep a thorough stock inventory at all points along the supply chain. Using RFID chips and the facility from NXP, the Siemens IT team achieved "industry-benchmark HF read accuracy results" via a high-speed anti-collision concept and system optimization, the company says.

Separately, an IBM study of midsize organizations in 17 countries shows that companies have not been deterred from their plans for strategic IT initiatives-including RFID-despite a clear recognition of the need to cut costs in a difficult economy.

Some 83 percent of respondents say improving efficiency is a key priority, while 74 percent place enhancing customer service and prospecting for new customers high on the list. Pharmaceuticals manufacturer and specialty packager Golden State Medical Supply for example, worked with IBM to develop a system for pharmaceutical tracing that serializes products at the saleable unit and deploys RFID tagging for case shipments. "This has helped us enhance customer service, differentiate our services from the competition, and strengthen the security of our processes," says Jim Stroud, CEO, in an IBM announcement.

- here's the NXP release
- see the IBM study announcement