Michelin has developed new RFID modules that will be embedded into tires in partnership with Murata Manufacturing. The tags are robust and require no external power supply. They’ll operate passively even for extremely high mileages.
The development provides easy and low-cost traceability for the tire throughout its lifespan. This will boost inventory logistics, recycling operations, and aftermarket maintenance. At the moment, Michelin uses RFID tags in commercial vehicles and passenger cars.
The company is working to expand this to 100% in all Michelin tires starting 2024. It hopes that all key players will embrace the technology for improved tire traceability. Murata concentrated on improving the reliability of the tags while cutting costs. The manufacturer has extensive knowledge and experience in RF technology and downsizing.
The module takes the form of a grain of rice. it measures 1x1x6 mm. It provides a basic form of communication architecture once it’s inserted into a simple spring of antenna that was designed and manufactured by HANA Technologies. This allows it to link to the tire ecosystem.
Murata will also offer its id-Bridge platform (RFID middleware) alongside the RFID module. This helps to process and interpret the data transmitted from the tire embeddable RFID tag in adherence to ISO standards. The tire industry is already in agreement on the RFID communication protocol at the ISO level.
In 2019 and 2020, four ISO standards were published – ISO 20909, 20910, 20911, and 20912. The tire serial number format (SGTIN96), the tire tag definition, their attachment to tires, and conformance test methods were agreed upon. RFID refers to quite a number of technology and frequency ranges.
The tire industry adopted the Radio frequency Identification (RAIN) which refers to a battery-free (passive), Ultra High Frequency (UHF) RFID wireless technology that according to ISO/IEC 18000-063 operates from 860 MHZ to 930MHz.
Also, a new organization called Global Data Service Organization for Tires and Automotive Components (GDSO) has been created to ease access to tire data among several manufacturers. Its purpose is to provide an information service that will enable people to retrieve data associated with all tire IDs (SGITN96) in the relevant database.
All the standardized data will be listed on a data referential list that can be communicated through private and public access via standard API. The use of RAIN RFID embedded tags into tires and the formation of GDSO are key in the digitization of the tire industry. They allow the development of new services connecting tires from different manufacturers.