HycoWare project: development of hybrid tag
The HycoWare research project was started two years ago by the University of Ghent in collaboration with Aucxis, Dematic and Intation. The aim was to improve the operation and efficiency of warehouses by means of hybrid connectivity solutions. Click to see video footage about this study.
Aucxis' focus was mainly on technological research into wireless passive and active technologies and open communication standards that fit within the Internet of Things.
Aucxis developed a hybrid intelligent tag that can handle a variety of modern technologies: it is easy to use for various applications, and this in the most energy-efficient way possible. On the basis of intelligence and the environment of the tag, it will autonomously decide which technique is preferred.
Applications/technologies hybrid tag:
- Indoor localisation
- Short Range: NFC and UHF Gen2
- Long Range: Active RFID, BLE, Wifi
- Outdoor localisation:
- LoRa / Sigfox
- GPS / DGPS
- Sensors: temperature, movement, humidity, distance, light,...
- Interaction: E-Ink, Sound, LED
- Energy recovery: solar, wireless, movement,...
- Combination of different technologies
- Passive RFID detection
- Short distance, high precision localisation
- Large distance, reduces precise localisation
- Limited data communication
- Low cost
- User interaction
- Fusion sensor
- Efficient energy use
- Embedded software, configuration, ... over-the-air updateable
User case: Flora Holland flower auction
The user case concerned the tracing of flower trolleys at Flora Holland, which is implemented for the storage and transport of flowers, located at the auction and customer site. The flower trolleys must be monitored via the hybrid tag at all times.
For example, in critical working areas it is very important to know the position of the trolleys very accurately (better than 50cm accuracy): for this purpose, the BLE-based Angle of Arrival is used.
In storage rooms, it is sufficient to know in which sector a trolley is located: this is realised via multilateration with BLE beacons (also called Bluetooth beacons).
Detection at special locations such as input and output is done with passive UHF RFID. Outside the warehouse (in this research project all over the Netherlands),LoRaWAN technology is used to track - with the aid of a new localisation algorithm - the trolleys to customer locations with accuracies of up to 100 metres.
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