Tokyo Hospital Tracks Equipment via RFID-Enabled Shelving

Aug 29, 2017—Tokyo’s St. Luke’s International Hospital has completed a pilot of RFID technology to track the movement of equipment. The facility found that the technology identified stock levels at each of its wards in real time, and reduced the number of staff visits to the central clinical engineering room by approximately 55 percent. The technology, known as Recopick, is provided by Japanese carbon-fiber and plastics technology company Teijin Ltd.

St. Luke’s serves approximately 2,550 outpatients daily and has 520 beds for patients staying at the facility. It includes 13 floors and a total of 60,000 square meters (646,000 square feet) of facility space in its main building The hospital is growing with the demands of its community; recently, it added an annex and birth clinic containing 19 beds.

St. Lukes Hospital - CSL RFID

Much of the hospital’s equipment used to treat patients, such as infusion pumps, syringe pumps, low-pressure continuous suction devices and oxygen flow meters, was stored in centralized clinical engineering rooms when not in use. This meant that employees seeking equipment had to walk to and from these centralized rooms many times during each shift. To create a record of which personnel took which items, the hospital used a bar-code system so that workers in the engineering rooms could scan each asset as a nurse borrowed or returned it. Because this process was so time-consuming, nurses often kept medical devices in their own wards so that they could easily access them again. For the hospital, that meant the items appeared to be missing, and stocks were thus replenished unnecessarily.

St. Luke’s began seeking a better, more automated solution in 2016 and deployed Recopick in the spring of that year. About 1,300 pumps and oxygen flow meters were tagged with passive ultrahigh-frequency (UHF) RFID tags with a waterproof casing, so that they could sustain cleaning and sterilization processes.

All shelves in the medical engineering center, as well as throughout 22 wards, were retrofitted with Recopick RFID-enabled sheets that are laid over each shelf, says Natsuki Aramoto, the company’s team leader of new application development for smart sensing. Tagged items are placed directly onto those sheets, he explains. Each shelf unit comes with a Convergence Systems Ltd. (CSL) CS468 reader and Teijin’s proprietary antenna sheet to capture tag ID numbers.

The readers forward the collected data to software, indicating which specific item is stored on which shelf. Recopick also provides RFID-enabled disposal units so that users can view what has been discarded. The engineering room shelves are divided into two categories: those on which devices are awaiting cleaning and maintenance after being returned by a nurse, and those that have been serviced and cleaned and are ready for reuse.

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Forensics Lab Piloting RFID System for Automated Supply Tracking

To make the management of its equipment and evidence automatic, HFSC is piloting an ultrahigh-frequency (UHF) radio frequency identification system, initially to track lab equipment and supplies. In the long run, the same technology will automatically track and manage the locations of firearms, biological evidence and evidence collected at crime scenes. JPL RFID, a software and hardware integration company, provided the tags and readers, as well as its own software and database to manage the data, says Jason Pitcock, JPL’s president.

With the use of RFID technology, the lab was able to create a single storage room for all of its lab supplies, with an RFID reader installed at the doorway and tags on each piece of equipment and every box of supplies

The badge’s unique ID number is linked to the user’s identity in the lab’s software. As a worker enters the storage area, that person’s tag ID is captured, and as he or she leaves with a piece of equipment, the item’s ID is captured along with the badge ID, in order to identify what was taken. In that way, the software has an up-to-date record of what is in the storage room and what needs to be replenished at any given time. HFSC uses a kanban method to identify low supply levels and place reorders.

To conduct periodic inventory counts, staff members carry a Convergence Systems Ltd. (CSL) CS108 ( handheld RFID sled reader through the storage area to reconcile what is in the system with what is actually on the shelf. While those counts took hours to complete when performed manually, they can be accomplished within a matter of seconds with the RFID reader. For the RFID handheld reader, says Jerry Garrett, CSL’s managing director, “We are using the same composite antenna material that we used in the powerful CS101 handheld reader. This antenna provides the key element for the CS108 to achieve an 18- meter reader range—the longest read range in the industry for a handheld. More power means a high reliability in data capture.”

The next phase will include tracking firearm and toxicology evidence. When it comes to firearms, without an RFID system in place, the lab sends two workers to count all guns periodically—a process that takes two days to complete. Now, the lab will apply RFID tags to each gun, thereby reducing that inventory count and enabling Geiger counter functionality. All guns are expected to be tagged by the end of this month. In that way, guns can be accounted for in inventory counts, and individual guns can be easily located when needed.

Read Full Article at RFID Journal

Best of Both Worlds with Hybrid RTLS

To capture the benefits of real-time location technology while overcoming traditional disadvantages, Convergence Systems Limited (CSL) offers a hybrid RTLS system that uses both passive UHF tags and active RFID technology. With CSL’s hybrid RTLS solution, assets can be tracked, located and monitored with ease and accuracy, using a system that is affordable and easy to maintain.

In the hybrid RTLS system, assets are tagged with passive UHF tags that cost less than $0.10 each, greatly reducing the cost to implement the system. RFID Fixed Readers (known as “anchors”) are positioned at the perimeter of the area to be monitored and connected to the Ethernet. In the middle of the area, omni-directional Fixed Readers (termed “slaves”) provide ubiquitous coverage. Each coverage area is known as a “cell”, and multiple cells are possible


Example of CSL RTLS system with various beamwidth anchors

Next, UHF RFID Handheld Readers are coupled with a RTLS signal to send asset positioning information to the RTLS Fixed Readers, which then transmit that information to the company network.

When a worker is seeking a specific tagged asset, the system provides the last known location for a starting point. Using the RFID Handheld Reader, the worker scans the tracking area and picks up the tag at approximately seven meters away.

The Handheld Reader emits an audio signal, much like a “Geiger counter”, to locate the tagged asset. As they walk toward the item, the beeping frequency increases. If the worker walks away from it, the beeping frequency will decrease.


The combination of active RFID technology and passive tags provides the best of both worlds – complete real-time visibility for accurate tracking in a cost-effective solution. Staying connected to yard operations in real-time provides up-to-the-minute information and complete visibility, enabling intelligent work processes that allow you to optimize yard operations and improve the flow of goods in and out.

2015 RFID Journal LIVE in San Diego

unnamedConvergence Systems Limited wants to thank all our partners and customers for stopping by our booth at RFID Journal LIVE last week. CSL featured the ruggedized CS208-3G for high performance and 3G connectivity as well as our portfolio of UHF RFID tags, readers and antennas. Visitors were happy to find stationary reader solutions from 4 to 16 ports at the right price and performance to enable automatic inventory management and people tracking.   We were also pleased to see many inquiries regarding our Time-of-Arrival based RTLS solutions.

New CS6821 Passive ID Access Card Delivers More Power and Punch

Here at CSL we’re excited to announce the new CS6821 ID access card tag, delivering much higher read range performance than previous tags. In addition to its increased power, the CS6821 tag design offers the ability for hole punch on all four sides for exceptional versatility.

The new CS6821 RFID tag has a read range of up to 15 meters, enabling accurate and reliable tracking and identification of personnel.

The CS6821 ID access card tag is a member of the CSL customized passive ID access card EPC C1G2 RFID family. This diverse product series consists of tags specially adapted to be worn or carried on the human body – either hanging from the neck, placed inside a shirt or pants pocket, or in a handbag.

The CS6821 can be custom ordered in numerous configurations of pre-punched holes for use with lanyards or for permanently mounting to assets.

CSL offers a range of RFID tag solutions, working in conjunction with our RFID readers and antennas for complete solution offerings to suit nearly any application.

CSL RFID Solutions for Internet of Things at Computex 2014

We just returned from a very successful week at the Computex Taipei exhibition — Asia’s largest information and communications technology (ICT) show and the second largest in the world.

CSL RFID readers, RFID antennas and RFID tags were on display in the ClarIDy booth in Exhibition Hall 3 where all manner of smart, connected technologies and mobile products were demonstrating the Internet of Things (IoT). Be sure to read about the collaboration between CSL and the ClarIDy IDSmartTM library solution in today’s news announcement – “Mapua Institute of Technology Streamlines Library Processes With Automated UHF RFID Solution”.

At Computex we met with a significant number of visitors to the booth who were interested in CSL IoT solutions, and many commented on CSL’s speed and performance for Internet-connected inventory management.

A number of 3D printers and wearable devices were seen throughout the IoT Exhibition Hall, along with CSL’s RFID solutions such as the 3G mobile enabled CS208-3G Intelligent Integrated RFID Reader with GPS.

RFID Journal LIVE 2014 Show Report

RFID Child Tracking on School Bus CSL just returned from a very successful RFID Journal show in Orlando, Florida. Joining CSL this year was Roc Lastinger, one of our new VARs that has been providing projects for healthcare and cold chain transportation. There was close to 3,000 attendees and we received some high quality sales leads for the new products as well as additional requests from companies want to become a CSL VARs. A large percentage of the visitors were international.

We also introduced a change in our company focus from just being a hardware provider to a solution provider. As an example, the back drop of our booth depicted a use case for child security by tracking them on school busses with the new CS208-3G Intelligent Integrated RFID Reader with GPS and CSL’s Dual Mode BAP ID card for the child ID card.

We were a finalist for the best show demo award with our live demonstration of the CS208-3G communicating RFID tag data via SMS to a mobile phone. In addition, we showed a demonstration of our new CS8304 ColdChain Data Logging Tag communicating with our CS101 handheld reader. Click here for a copy of the CS8304 Datasheet.

Next year the show will be in San Diego, California on April 15-17, 2015. We plan to continue to innovate our product line and develop solutions further for the key RFID solution categories.

XpresWash Uses RFID to Increase Clients ROI and Revenue

TransTech partner XpresSystems has developed an innovative automated system that uses tamperproof UHF RFID tags at a point of sale, coupling the tag ID with a specific customer’s billing profile. As customers pass through a carwash tunnel equipped with a CS203 reader, the tag is read and the customer can be automatically billed for the wash.


XpresWash has done an excellent job offering its client base of car wash vendors a clear and superior ROI using RFID, which is a primary challenge for many RFID integrators. By automating the sign up and billing process, XpresWash offers clients savings by reducing demands on attendants, increasing customer loyalty and repeat visits, adding easy up-sale opportunities and reducing instances of free washes. This system also offers a great benefit and added value for car wash users, by eliminating the need to stop and pay per wash, customers can simply drive through a CS203 equipped tunnel, leveraging ease of use and reduced wait times.

The CS203 Integrated reader/antenna is the perfect RFID reader for this application. It’s fully integrated form factor and single cable POE connectivity allows for quick and simple installation in varying physical layouts. The CS203 is one of the only IP68 rated RFID readers on the market, making it ideal for an application that is going to be outdoors and exposed to water on a regular basis.

Click here for more about the CS203.

RFID Heating Up Global Cold Chain

RFID use in cold chain, has been moving slowly mainly due to high costs and the criticality of the technology. However, the implementation of various government mandates related to food safety and drug traceability in the U.S. and Europe, have injected new life into the market. Frost & Sullivan’s Strategic Analysis of RFID in Cold Chain Market project over 200% market growth in the next five years.

Good news for CSL which recently released its CS8300 Temperature Sensor Tag and CS8301 Rugged Temperature Sensor Tag for the cold chain market. CSL designed the products to be fully ISO and EPC Class 3 Gen 2 compliant and affordable. To further enable system integrators, CSL provides a complete temperature monitoring system including demo software, CS101 Hand Held Reader, and Temperature Sensing Tags.

CSL is working with partners around the world on these top RFID Cold Chain Logistics Applications:

  • Temperature-controlled supply chain
  • RFID Temperature Sensing and Data Logging
  • Food Inspections and Food Safety Audit
  • Temperature Controlled Storage
  • Product Authentication
  • Quality Control
  • Recall Management
  • Perishable food transportation
  • Pharmaceutical temperature sensitive drug management
  • Living organic materials
  • Floral Management
  • Industrial composites and chemicals tracking

How Does EPC Work, And Why Should You Care?


EPC is short for Electronic Product Code. Its standards are created and run by EPCGlobal, made up of the same people who created the Barcode standards. In fact, an EPC works a lot like a barcode, but is much more powerful.

An EPC is a number used to uniquely identify a specific product. Unlike with barcodes, two identical products sitting one behind the other on a store shelf can have two unique numbers. In other words, if a company manufactures 1,000 bottles of the same exact shampoo, for example, every bottle would have a different EPC number. These numbers can be associated with lots of different, specific information, such as when and where it was manufactured, and what store it’s headed to.


An EPC is stored on a microchip that is attached to an antenna. The chip and antenna sit on a tag; more specifically, an RFID tag. The tag itself doesn’t hold any power, and the EPC doesn’t hold any information other than the unique number/letter combination. Because EPC tags are usually small, their antennas aren’t that strong. So an EPC will not transmit to an RFID reader until it is less than about 10 feed away.

When an RFID reader goes to read the tag, it sends just enough power to the tag to tell it to send the EPC number back to the reader. Once the reader receives that EPC number, it transfers that number to a computer or server that holds all the information about all of its EPC tags. This is where the information about the EPC-tagged item is stored, not on the tag itself. This helps tremendously with keeping an item’s information secure and safe.


EPC provides numerous benefits for both the consumer and for businesses. For businesses, EPC can help improve its supply chain visibility and efficiency. For the customer, this means better product availability, better quality assurance (help with monitoring the freshness of expiring food, for example), and speedier service (faster checkout, faster product returns). By providing better tracking possibilities, it can also help shield both manufacturers and consumers from fake merchandise and help with product recalls.

And finally, in a world where A) customers want that thing they want now, and B) businesses don’t want to sit on inventory, EPC allows retailers to more accurately keep track of their inventory, allowing them to more efficiently reorder products. It also helps them to always have what products their consumers want in stock.

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CSL CS6720 Vehicle Access Control Label

CS6720 Windshield RFID Label
CS6720 Windshield RFID Label

CSL’s Vehicle Access Control (VAC) Label provides automatic vehicle identification (AVI) with the speed, read distance, and security capability to meet electronic vehicle recognition (EVR) standards. The VAC Label provides security features such as tamper resistance, tamper evident, and non-cloneable RFID identification. The VAC label is designed to mount inside of windshields of cars, buses and trucks and sends a long range RFID signal that can be identified at highway speeds without battery assistance.


  • Fast Identification and Authentication with ultra-high frequency transferring 64 bit ID in .0001 seconds.
  • Tamper Evident and Tamper Proof Security: sticker is tamper evident and RFID tag is destroyed upon removal
  • Automatic Vehicle Identification with 64 bit unique ID and 800 bits of total memory
  • Long Life Battery-Free passive RFID technology
  • Electronic Vehicle Registration
  • Integrated Payment and Security solution with compliance to EPC C1G2/ISO18000-6C

Link to read press release on CSL’s Windshield RFID Label Speeds Past Competition for Automatic Vehicle Identification

Intro to the CS101 Temperature Tag App

The CS101 is capable of reading Temperature Sensor Tags (part #CS8300-2), which send information about what the temperature is in/around the tag. After installing the CSL Temp Tag App on the CS101, you can enable this capability and read these tags. Here is a quick introduction to this application:
At first when you start up the application, no tags will be shown.

Temperature App Select

You can find nearby tags by clicking on the ‘Start’ button, or you can look for a specific tag by clicking on the ‘Find’ button. Once you’ve clicked on the ‘Start’ button, for example, all nearby Temperature Sensor Tags will be shown, as you see here:

Temperature App Select 2

To change certain settings in the tag such as the temperature threshold, click on the Configure tab, where you will be provided with the following options:

Temperature App Configure

You may also associate the tag with certain assets, using the Associate tab:



You may notice when you first scan for Temperature Sensor Tags, that under the temperature column, they are turned “OFF.” This is the default state, to save the battery in the tag. Once you are ready to turn it on and use it, you can do this in the Commission tab:

Temperature App Commission

Just click on the tag to highlight it, then click on the ‘Tag Commissioning’ button. This will turn the tag on. You can see this by going back to the Select tab. When you first go back to the Select tab, you will see nothing, and will need to click on the ‘Start’ button again to find the tag. Once found, you should now see the tag telling you what temperature it is at:

Temperature App Select

At this point, you cannot change any configuration settings. To change them, or to save the battery when the tag is not in use, you will need to turn the tag off. Just click on the tag, then go to the Configure tab, which now looks like this:

Temperature App Configure

To turn the tag off, click on the ‘Disable Monitoring’ button. When you’re ready to exit the application, just click on the Exit tab in the upper right corner.

Battery Assisted Passive RFID Technology Brings Low Cost Smart Temperature Monitoring To Cold Chain

CSL’s RFID temperature sensor portfolio makes cold chain temperature monitoring at the carton and item level convenient and affordable with their UHF EPC Class 3 Gen 2 Temperature Sensor Tags. Designed for operating under difficult and harsh cold chain environments, CSL’s Temperature Sensor Tags have the ability to monitor cold chain temperatures in cold storage applications, mobile overseas containers, and trailers moving from coast to coast. In addition, the tags are user programmable to set alerts according to business rules.

“Finally, there is a product that can perform well in the harshest, coldest and most demanding environments,” said Michael McCartney, Principal, QLM Consulting. “Companies can now feel confident in measuring and monitoring temperature through out the perishable cold chain.”

The Temperature Sensing tags are available now and CSL is working with partners on important applications such as tracking salmon in Europe, monitoring perishable fruit in a global cold chain application, and product verification in temperature controlled warehousing and transportation.

“We are excited to partner with CSL in providing a cost effective and reliable temperature monitoring system based on a UHF RFID tag,” claimed Viktor Varan, CEO of Enlight AS and HRAFN AS.

“One of the major advantages of our Temperature Sensing Tags, as compared to other tags on the market, is that our tags are fully EPC Class 3 Gen 2 compliant and can be read by ALL EPC Gen 2 readers,” reports Jerry Garrett, managing director, CSL. “Moreover, CSL’s Temperature Sensing Tags provides a cost-effective solution for cold chain monitoring to extend temperature logging down to the carton level.”

CSL’s Temperature Sensor Portfolio is available in several versions with options for multiple LEDs, push button, data logging, custom graphics, and more. The CS8300 Temperature Sensor Tag has a slim profile, is light weight, and low cost for cold chain tracking at the carton and item level. The CS8301 Rugged Temperature Sensor Tag is designed for the harshest, coldest and most demanding cold chain applications. The CS8301 Tag is fully enclosed by a plastic case to meet IP67 standards with LED lights to indicate temperature violations and battery life status. CSL provides a complete temperature monitoring system including demo software that is compatible with CSL’s full line of handheld and fixed readers, and antennas. For a demonstration, visit RFID Journal LIVE!, at CSL’s booth #229.

Link to PR Web Release: