Mojix, Inc. has launched the European version of its Mojix STAR system, a UHF passive RFID system that is claimed to bring unprecedented levels of precision, scalability and return on investment to radio frequency identification applications.
Developed by noted experts in deep space communications, the Mojix STAR system reportedly breaks through the economic and technical barriers to ubiquitous RFID deployment, enabling organisations to deploy a single, cost effective, EPC/ETSI/ISO standards based system to address the full spectrum of supply chain management and real-time location and tracking needs.
We are excited to bring the superior power, utility and economics of the Mojix STAR system to the European market, where the STAR system underwent some of its earliest field trials, said Dr. Ramin Sadr, Mojix founder and CEO. The STAR system enables organisations to realise the full promise of passive RFID in an extraordinarily cost effective manner, and in addition, opens the door to additional UHF passive RFID utility, including highly economical and accurate real time location estimation and tracking, that was unfeasible with EPC standard technology before the launch of the Mojix STAR.
Advantages of the system are reported to include:
- 100,000 times the indoor receiver sensitivity of previous UHF passive RFID solutions
- 20 times the read range (200 metres) of conventional passive RFID readers
- 100 times the coverage area (25,000 sq metres) of traditional RFID readers
- Non line-of-sight read capabilities
- Accurate real-time location determination to within one metre
A single Mojix STAR system handles multiple concurrent applications across an entire warehouse, retail complex, distribution centre, transportation yard or other large contiguous space with a single point of data collection and management. These applications are not limited to traditional RFID tag reads, but can also include numerous other high-value functions in a passive ETSI-compliant RFID environment such as real-time location estimation and tracking, virtual fences and electronic proof-of-delivery. This in turn greatly extends the utility of passive RFID while allowing for even faster and greater returns on investment.
Innovative RFID system architecture
Conventional passive RFID systems rely on RFID readers that fulfill the dual function of both energising tags and receiving/reading the resulting signals. This constraining architecture results in high-cost, low-scalability deployments. In contrast, the Mojix STAR system separates the transmit and receive functions to lower the cost and phenomenally increase the flexibility and extend the scalability of RFID deployments.
Functioning as a single network element at the enterprise edge, a Mojix STAR system consists of one or more Mojix STAR Receivers each managing up to 512 low-cost Mojix eNode transmitters, which are oriented to define the system's potentially huge, three dimensional coverage area. Mojix eNode transmitters provide energy to all passive RFID tags within their specified interrogation spaces. The centralised, high-sensitivity Mojix STAR receiver processes the resulting tag signals from across the system's 25,000 sq metre coverage area, including non line-of-sight tag signals. This unprecedented receive sensitivity is the result of Mojixs use of advanced digital signal processing, phased array receiver, digital beam forming and digital packet radio to detect the faintest signals across large distances in noisy RF environments.
From a system management standpoint, the Mojix STAR provides a single point of control, and management for all its distributed Mojix eNodes, and a single point of integration with enterprise systems. Mojix eNodes, meanwhile, work in conjunction with the STAR Receiver to simultaneously support multiple business processes in a single system.
Mojix eNodes flexible, economic RFID visibility
The fundamental building blocks of the Mojix STAR system, low-cost Mojix eNodes are deployable, and re-deployable, as needed to define shape discrete, overlapping or contiguous interrogation spaces. They operate within ETSI-compliant power limits to provide energy to all passive RFID tags within their designated interrogation spaces. All Mojix eNodes are sensor capable.
Mojix offers a full line of Mojix eNodes to cover any type of location and use case. These include wired eNodes for fixed location deployment, indoors or outdoors, where power is delivered to the eNode through the STAR system via coaxial cable. The line also includes wireless eNodes for mobile use cases (forklifts, hand held tag interrogation, etc.) and other applications where local power (battery, solar cell, etc.) is preferable to coaxial power delivery.
Most recently, Mojix has also introduced a family of multiple port eNodes that provide the ultimate in flexible, economic and reliable tag interrogation. Wired or wireless, a multiple port eNode possess between one and four external antennas (available in a variety of types) that can be positioned in a variety of ways to precisely fit particular application needs. As a result, equipment, deployment, maintenance and IT infrastructure costs are substantially reduced, while comprehensive, accurate reads of large tag populations are ensured.
Mojix eLocation -- the first UHF passive RFID real-time location tracking
To make real-time location estimation and tracking an integral part of passive RFID deployments, Mojix has developed the Mojix eLocation solution, a software component of the Mojix STAR system. The eLocation solution continuously determines the location of passive RFID tagged items to within one metre, indoors or outdoors, and enables organisations to accurately and economically track the movement of these items in real time.
The Mojix eLocation solution represents the markets first Real Time Location System (RTLS) utilizing passive RFID, said Dr. Sadr. This means that organisations can now deploy a single standards-based system for all supply chain management, yard management and asset tracking needs, and can for the first time achieve ubiquitous real-time visibility across all assets.
The Mojix eLocation solution eliminates the need for use of much more costly active RFID tags, separate WiFi infrastructure and more costly proprietary systems to perform real-time location tracking. Consequently, a single system can be used to read tags and determine location, which removes the need to special-tag items just for location tracking in a passive RFID environment.
The eLocation solution can be widely deployed in such areas as shipping docks for visibility into items passing through near or staged around dock doors; outdoor areas for more efficient yard operations and improved loss prevention; retail facilities for real-time shrinkage control and improved inventory management; and manufacturing facilities for improved exception handling and real-time visibility into build status and resource utilisation.
The ETSI compliant Mojix STAR system is available now. Mojix wired eNodes are available now and Mojix wireless eNodes will be available in Q1 2009. The Mojix eLocation solution is currently in field trials in Europe and is expected to be generally available in Q1 2009.
The Mojix STAR system is currently undergoing ETSI certification testing at a leading certification lab and is expected to be officially ETSI certified by November 15, 2008.
Headquartered in Los Angeles, Calif., Mojix, Inc. was founded in 2004 by a team of former JPL/NASA scientists and engineers with the vision of applying breakthroughs in deep space communications to exponentially refine the precision, reach and scope of RFID technology. The first in a game-changing new class of RFID systems, the Mojix STAR (SpaceTime Array Reader) system introduces capabilities orders of magnitude beyond conventional passive RFID offerings to enable economical, large-scale and high-volume RFID deployment. Mojix is privately held with funding from Oak Investment Partners, Red Rock Ventures and InnoCal Venture Capital.