How do RTLS systems work? originally appeared on Quora: the place to gain and share knowledge, enable people to learn from others and understand the world better.
There are different types of RTLS systems depending on the type of technology used. In general, there is a locator (also known as a gateway or receiver) that “communicates” with a tag. The message communicated between the tag and the locator makes it possible to calculate and share the location of the tag.
There are two types of RTLS systems, namely: passive and active. In a passive system, the tag has no battery. When it comes close to the seeker (eg passive RFID exciter), the tag receives enough energy from the exciter, which causes it to return its unique ID. Just by knowing where the RFID exciter is, we can determine where the tag is. In this case, the tag is only visible at the location AND the time it was wound due to the proximity of the exicter. Once it goes past that “choking point”, visibility is lost and we can only claim the “last seen” option for this tag.
The other type of RTLS systems is active. In active systems, tags have a radio that runs on batteries (e.g., Bluetooth Low Energy, Wi-Fi, Infra-Red, Ultra Sound) and continues to “chirp” or “chirp” at a certain frequency and transmit power (loudness level). The receivers get these chirps and perform some interesting operations on them (eg triangulation, angle of arrival, flight time, flight time difference, …) and estimate the location. This ubiquitous, site-wide visibility is valuable in many use cases, BUT comes at the cost of increased tag complexity/power consumption/cost AND requires site-wide deployment of receivers.
Finding the optimal trade-off between the required visibility of tracked objects, costs (tags and recipients) and support is usually a difficult exercise that requires various stakeholders, including IT/network managers, to work with vendor system engineers to work together to achieve the right design and build .
Many RTLS solution providers offer their customers requirements gathering and design services. PenguinIN – Complete indoor tracking and positioning is always keen on supporting clients with requirement. We are happy to be of service and discuss new wishes.