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National RFID Centre creates diverse RFID eco-system in Singapore

Zafar Anjum | Oct. 1, 2009
Institute of Technical Education partners NRC to set up ITE-NRC RFID Technology Centre

SINGAPORE, 1 OCTOBER 2009 The National RFID Centre (NRC) will accelerate the adoption of RFID technology in the hospitality, healthcare and construction industries in Singapore, the government agency has said.  

The agency has been championing the RFID initiatives in the country since 2006. Its latest move is signing of a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the Institute of Technical Education (ITE) to catalyse RFID technology adoption in the service industry through the academic curriculum in ITE. The NRC is also awarding two RFID Innovation Platform grants to Tan Tock Seng Hospital and Transvert Scaffold and Engineering.

MOU between ITE and NRC

The MOU signed with ITE provides NRC the opportunity to assist in the setup of the ITE-NRC RFID Technology Centre at the new ITE College West at Choa Chu Kang, said the agency spokesperson. This new centre will seed RFID adoption in the mindset of students and will also enhance the training of some 850 students who have enrolled in the Nitec and Higher Nitec courses in info-communications technology and electronics engineering. ITE students and staff will be provided with free access to NRC's training materials on RFID applications and have opportunities to undergo Industrial Attachment in companies.

RFID Innovation Platform Grant

NRC awarded two new RFID Innovation Platform grants to help enhance patient safety and ensure construction worksite safety. The first winner Tan Tock Seng Hospital got the grant on the use of RFID technology to enhance patient safety.

The project will develop a very useful and practical tool to trace all stages of the sterilisation process from the point of usage to decontamination of a surgical instrument set to ensure patient safety, a priority in the hospital, the agency told the media.

The second grant went to Transvert Scaffold and Engineering for the use of RFID technology to ensure worksite safety in the construction industry, particularly when scaffolding structures are used.

A unique feature of this collaboration is the use of battery-assisted passive (BAP) RFID technology to give supervisors and inspectors a better read range in the harsh environment, NRC told the media. This is the first BAP RFID project on a full-scale basis in Singapore for the construction industry. By implementing this project, safer scaffold structures are expected to be built more efficiently, reducing accidents at worksites.

Boon Swan Foo, executive chairman of Exploit Technologies and chairman of NRC Steering Committee, said that since the launch of the Ministry of Trade and Industry's US$3.2m RFID Innovation platform in 2008 to co-fund 30 RFID pilot projects, some 21 applications were received and 13 were awarded to local SMEs, public hospitals, and government agencies. I am encouraged by the response, he said. Congratulations to Tan Tock Seng Hospital and Transvert Scaffold and Engineering for winning the award this time round. We look forward to more of such proposals that promote innovative use of RFID in Singapore.


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