McCarran International Airport in Las Vegas implements RFID in luggage handling
February 26, 2004
Here's something that's going to have an impact on how we travel in the future (or rather, at least what happens when something goes wrong when we travel: )
McCarran International Airport in Las Vegas is overhauling its baggage-handling systems to incorporate radio-frequency identification tags, a costly move that will help the facility keep up with federal security regulations and reduce occurrences of lost baggage. McCarran is the first U.S. airport to commit to RFID on a large scale. (source nwc.com)In the future, tracking lost luggage may be a much more automated process, checking which RFID tag readers the bag last passed on its way to wherever it ended up... requireing, of course, that all the airports/airlines standardize the tagging process and data recording. This has worked reasonably well for today's barcoded labels, so one should expect progress over the next years for RFID:
By April, McCarran will begin affixing stick-on RFID tags to bags. At the same time, the explosive-detection systems will be moved from the terminal floor to a separate bag-screening area. By December, the RFID chips will be embedded into bag tags. The chips and readers are being supplied by Matrics. [...]Read the whole story here.
Airport operators are no doubt looking forward to the day when all airports use RFID. When that happens, a bag could be tracked across its entire journey, from drop-off to transfer to pickup. But it could take 20 years for RFID to reach that critical mass.
Posted by andersja