Glove-Integrated Passive UHF RFID Tags—Fabrication, Testing and Applications

Zahangir Khan, Xiaochen Chen, Han He, Jinxiong Xu, Tao Wang, Lianglun Cheng, Leena Ukkonen, Johanna Virkki

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Passive radio-frequency identification (RFID) technology enables versatile energy- and cost-efficient wireless platforms. We present passive ultra-high frequency (UHF) RFID tags integrated into normal work gloves for wearable RFID applications. The tags were designed to be functional throughout the global UHF RFID frequency range. The use environments of work gloves are challenging, for example due to moisture and mechanical stresses, which means the glove-integrated solutions have unique reliability issues to consider. We introduce 3-D printing of a flexible thermoplastic material directly onto the glove and embed electro-textile antennas and RFID microchip components inside the 3-D-printed structure. This manufacturing method solves the above-mentioned reliability challenges and enables the practical use of glove-integrated passive RFID tags. The performance of the fabricated glove-tags is first evaluated on a male test subject in an EMC room and in an office environment. Based on the wireless measurement results, the read ranges of the glove-tags are around 2-3 m throughout the frequency range of 800-1000 MHz. These results meet the requirements of many practical applications of glove-tags. Further, these glove-tags are found to endure extreme moisture and mechanical stresses, which supports their use in versatile use environments. Finally, the developed glove-tags are successfully tested in actual use situations for identification and access control. These results are very promising, especially considering the cost-effectiveness and the easiness of tag integration into different types of gloves.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)127-132
Number of pages6
JournalIEEE Journal of Radio Frequency Identification
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2019
Publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


  • radiofrequency identification
  • passive radio-frequency identification technology
  • cost-efficient wireless platforms
  • ultra-high frequency
  • normal work gloves
  • wearable RFID applications
  • global UHF
  • glove-integrated solutions
  • RFID microchip components
  • glove-integrated passive RFID tags
  • tag integration
  • glove-integrated passive UHF RFID tags
  • glove-tags
  • frequency 800.0 MHz to 1000.0 MHz
  • Radiofrequency identification
  • Antennas
  • Reliability
  • Three-dimensional printing
  • Integrated circuits
  • Antenna measurements
  • Wireless communication
  • Electro-textile
  • glove-tag
  • passive UHF RFID
  • reliability
  • wearable antenna
  • 3D printing

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