Inside Logistics

Tracking assets

Ekahau's RTLS can track passive RFID and barcode labels


June 23, 2011
by MM&D staff

RESTON, VA: Wi-Fi-based real-time location systems (RTLS) provider Ekahau has developed a solution for adding location information to passive RFID and barcode labels. The solution, developed in conjunction with Nordic ID, tracks low-cost assets like surgical implements, drug supplies, and other inventory.

Since 2002, Ekahau’s RTLS technology has enabled users to track assets in real-time throughout hospital campuses using active Wi-Fi tags. Now, working with Nordic ID, Ekahau’s RTLS can track passive RFID and barcode labels, as well as managing, storing and viewing assets and their location histories in the same database.

“The Ekahau-Nordic ID solution changes the game without installing any additional hardware,” said Arttu Huhtiniemi, vice-president of product management at Ekahau. “All you need is Ekahau software and Nordic ID handheld scanners. With those, you can walk into a room and press a button on the scanner to audit and put your assets in the database and on the map.”

The Ekahau-Nordic ID solution consists of Ekahau RTLS software and Nordic ID Merlin and Morphic mobile computers (handheld RFID and barcode scanners). The scanner’s location is determined through RTLS and then associated with RFID/barcode information on the asset being scanned. The location and asset information can then be viewed and managed with the Ekahau Vision business logic and analytics software, which lets users see asset locations on a real-time map, generate asset reports and audit trails, and alert users if any items are low or in the wrong location.

“We are excited to work with Ekahau to bring more convenience to tracking RFID and barcode assets,” said Teemu Ainasoja, CEO at Nordic ID. “For example, our newest RFID scanner, the Nordic ID Morphic, is known for its extremely small size, light weight, ease of use, and affordable price point, in combination with Ekahau RTLS, makes it ideal for everyday use in hospitals, logistics, retail, manufacturing and warehousing.”