Microwave Frequency (SHF) RFID Tags & Systems

What are Microwave RFID Tags and Systems? What are their applications and advantages over HF, HF and UHF RFID systems? What frequencies do SHF tags operate at?
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Editorial Team - everything RF

May 2, 2018

RFID systems that operate at microwave frequencies at 2.45 GHz and 5.8 GHz are known as SHF (Super High Frequency) RFID Systems. The frequency range in which SHF RFID systems operate are those which are globally unlicensed, allowing these systems to be used globally. However, these frequency bands are crowded and can be prone to interference as many devices such as cordless phones and microwave ovens use these frequencies.

SHF RFID systems are based on far-field radiative coupling or backscatter coupling principles. They have short wavelengths and can thus be used with metals.

They use a mix of passive, battery assisted and active tags based on what the application requires. These tags also have a large read range of over 300 feet. The read range for SHF Active RFID tags is significantly higher to active tags as compared to SHF passive tags.

SHF RFID Tag Properties

Tag TypePassive / Battery Assisted / Active
Frequency2.45 GHz and 5.8 GHz
Read RangeCan go over 300 feet
Read SpeedVery Fast
Read Multiple Tags SimultaneouslyYes
Works with MetalYes
Works with LiquidsYes