10 Myths about Near-Field Reader Antennas


There are many common misconceptions when it comes to Near-Field Antennas and their design capabilities. Thankfully, Times-7's RF Specialist and Head of Engineering, Dr. Prabakar Parthiban, is here to bust some myths on Near-Field Reader Antennas in a quickfire FAQ.

Near-Field Reader Antennas FAQs

  1. Can they only read near-field tags?
    No, they can read both near-field and far-field tags.

  2. Is their read range limited to their surface?
    No, the read range is dependent on a tags’ sensitivity and tag antenna design.

  3. Can they read multiple tags at a time?
    NFC cannot but RAIN near-field antennas can read up to 1000 tags per second!

  4. Are they only suitable for ‘tap and go’ applications?
    No, RAIN near-fields are suitable for long-distance tag reads too and can read up to 500mm.

  5. Are they low gain far-field antennas?
    No, low gain far-fields have surface dead zones, and near-field reader antennas are designed to have zero dead zones!

  6. Are they always linearly polarized?
    No, polarization is not applicable as it relies on the inductive coupling. However, a dipole-like tag can be more sensitive in one orientation than the other.

  7. Are there only magnetic loop antenna types?
    No, there are multiple types of near-field antennas such as leaky strip-lines and traveling-wave antennas.

  8. Do they radiate at all? 
    It can be an inefficient radiator, operating in the radiating near-field zone.

  9. Do they have surface dead zones?
    No, a near-field antenna would not have surface dead zones.

  10. Do their magnetic fields cause electromagnetic interferences?
    No, these are not EMI generated in a transceiver device but are generated by an antenna design.

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