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NXP and Siemens Collaborate on Pharmaceutical RFID Innovation

July 8, 2009
NXP, the independent semiconductor company founded by Philips, today announced a collaboration with Siemens on an RFID-based supply chain pharmaceutical project designed to improve efficiency from manufacture to retail. Using NXP’s Application and System Center (ASC, formerly known as RFID Reference Design Center), a facility that provides real-life conditions for evaluating and optimizing RFID applications, the Siemens IT Solutions & Services team created a customized RFID system to ensure a high read accuracy throughout the supply chain.

The project focuses on creating a system based on NXP’s ICODE high-frequency (HF) RFID technology incorporated into the labels of pharmaceutical products. The whole system is configured to already comply with the latest edition of the HF Gen2 standard, which is currently under final review by EPCglobal. The aim of the installation is to accurately bulk read several hundreds of labeled packages quickly, allowing the manufacturer to keep a thorough stock inventory at all points along the supply chain. The ASC enabled the Siemens IT Solutions and Services team to achieve industry benchmark HF read accuracy results. This was accomplished through the use of an advanced high-speed anti-collision concept and the optimization of the entire system.

"We selected NXP as the chip supplier for our innovative RFID pharmaceutical project. During project planning, NXP offered us the services of its highly sophisticated ASC,” said Matthias Bruckschen, principal consultant SCM/RFID, Siemens IT Solutions and Services. “The facility supported our engineers, enabling them to evaluate and tune the design of the HF RFID labels. By simulating the interactions between the readers and samples, we were able to obtain first qualitative results and calibrate the solution accordingly. The support provided by NXP's ASC saved us a lot of development time and we look forward to a renewed cooperation between NXP and Siemens IT Solutions and Services in future."

Based near Graz, Austria, the ASC was created with the aim of driving the adoption of RFID technology. NXP’s team of engineers based at the ASC can help systems engineers tackle common problems and support the development of RFID projects. In addition, the facility can be used to build and test full-scale supply-chain scenarios to evaluate the robustness of an RFID-based system – enabling the development of a business-ready solution and reducing development time.

“NXP’s aim in founding the ASC was to create an environment which would spur the advancement of RFID and industry-wide research through methodological analysis, test, and validation of all elements of an RFID system”, said Dirk Morgenroth, director marketing, RFID, NXP Semiconductors. “We are pleased to support Siemens IT Solutions and Services in the optimization of their implementation for pharmaceutical supply chain management, by delivering a future proof RFID system set-up prepared for HF Gen2-specified solutions”

End customers integrating RFID solutions in their businesses are demanding a fully integrated, turnkey solution which provides them with a high level of business intelligence. NXP’s systems level approach and leadership in RFID technology enables systems integrators to design and build business ready solutions and reduce the complexities of the technology.

NXP is a leading semiconductor company founded by Philips more than 50 years ago. Headquartered in Europe, the company has about 28,000 employees working in more than 30 countries and posted sales of US $5.4 billion (including the Mobile & Personal business) in 2008. NXP creates semiconductors, system solutions, and software that deliver better sensory experiences in TVs, set-top boxes, identification applications, mobile phones, cars, and a wide range of other electronic devices. For more information, visit www.nxp.com.