Schreiner Group Combines NFC, Printed Electronics and Digital Know-how.
NFC is primarily associated with mobile payment transactions at retail points of sale. However, Schreiner Group’s most recent innovation demonstrates that this wireless technology is equally suitable for other scenarios: The ((rfid))-Digital Void Label provides electronic tamper evidence and can be read using smartphones. It makes label tampering visible, indicating a potential risk to consumers.
Manufacturers benefit from this solution as well because integrated geotracking as a monitoring function allows them to see where their products are used. These features were achieved by combining specialized expertise such as printed electronics and digital know-how in this thin, flexible high-tech label.
Reading the label requires an NFC-capable smartphone, in the case of iOS devices Version 11 of the operating system. Users point the phone with the activated NFC feature or reader app toward the label from a distance of a few centimeters. A browser window will then show that the label is intact and display additional information.
Via a button users can also access the integrated geotracking feature that shows in what regions of the world the label has been read before. The label indicates tampering in two ways: Peeling the label off the surface produces a void effect as visual tamper evidence. In addition, when scanning the label with a smartphone, a printed electronic sensor signal will indicate a tampering attempt.
Hybrid Electronics, RFID Technology and Digital Know-how Combined
The ((rfid))-Digital Void Label produced exclusively by means of printing technology is based on the ISO / IEC 14443 industry standard and includes NFC Forum Tag 2 conformant Tag ICs with an operating range of up to 10 centimeters. The sample label brings together Schreiner Group’s various areas of expertise using a combination of a silicon chip and printed conductive track. It includes an invisible sensor of printed electronics that is severed in a tampering attempt.
The contactless radio wave transmission via RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) operates via a chip and an antenna. Schreiner Group performs chip programming and encryption in-house. Integration of UHF chips for industrial applications is available.
The integrated void effect serves as visual tamper evidence: Due to the use of a special film the label surface is partially destroyed in a tampering attempt, which is irrevocable and readily visible. A digital information system reads the label’s tampering condition and saves it in a database, paving the way for monitoring in the form of geotracking, for example. Complementary security features such as holograms, color-shifting inks or thermochromatic inks may be added.
Ready for Production, Open to New Applications
The high-tech label for roll-to-roll processes offers optimum prerequisites for automated further processing and industrial manufacturing. The thin, flexible and multi-layer film-based products can be provided with additional features such as a logging function to indicate the time at which the label was tampered with or a temperature sensor. The ((rfid))-Digital Void Label supports a wide range of applications such as interactive advertising, proximity retail marketing, product authentication and product parameterization or on-package and on-product information exchange.