Development of an inventory tracking and monitoring system for chemicals using conductive paper -based passive radio frequency identification technology

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University of New Brunswick


Laboratory safety has always been a concern for many institutions and companies. New safety protocols are always being implemented in order to ensure the safety of employees working in potentially hazardous chemical environments. A central chemical database through Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) readers of which the antennas are positioned at the entrance and exit of the chemical storage room was built to achieve automatic inventory management, real-time monitoring and enhanced safety functions. The results show that the chemical inventory system can update automatically without any manual input, the system can alert potential risks including expired chemicals and incompatible chemicals. RFID is a wireless method that utilizes radio-frequency electromagnetic fields to transfer information and identify objects. A passive RFID tag consists of substrate, a chip and antenna. Whereas most RFID tags exploit a classical metallic conductor as the antenna, this project aims to develop and characterize a carbon-based one, which is more environmentally friendly. A RFID antenna was prepared using cellulose nanofibrils (CNF), polyvinyl alcohol (PVA) and reduced graphene oxide (rGO) as raw materials. An antenna with high conductivity and mechanical properties was obtained.