Issue Date: March 3, 2008
ID Tags Venture Launched
The German companies BASF, Evonik Industries, PolyIC, Siemens, and Elantas Beck, an Altana subsidiary, have launched an alliance to develop printable radio-frequency identification (RFID) tags. Called MaDriX, the project is sponsored by the German Federal Ministry of Education & Research (BMBF). The project's goal is to employ new materials such as electrically conductive and semiconducting plastics in high-throughput printing processes. RFID tags made in this way, the partners predict, will be less expensive than current silicon-based RFID tags and cheap enough to replace printed bar codes. The three-year project will cost roughly $22 million; BMBF will contribute about half of this amount. PolyIC is involved in component characterization, process development, and demonstrator setup. Chemical makers BASF, Evonik, and Elantas Beck will supply new materials for semiconductors and circuit insulators. Siemens is developing real-time inspection processes for quality control. A number of universities and research institutes are also involved in the MaDriX project.
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