Two Hundred and Fifty Thousand Runners Save Time by Using RFID Technology from Alien Technology®


Racetimer Offers Alien RFID Solution for Race Events

October 16, 2007, Morgan Hill, Calif.- Alien Technology, an industry leader in Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) products and services, today announced the use of RFID to save time and money for athletic event organizers and participants.

Racetimer of Sweden, an Alien Technology Value Added Solutions Provider (VASP), has implemented RFID at race events around Europe to benefit more than two hundred and fifty thousand runners.

Assigning a unique identification (ID) tag number to runners has been a common practice for more than a decade. The unique ID has primarily consisted of attaching bar code labels or lowfrequency (LF) RFID tags to the laces of runners' shoes. In conjunction with the tags, costly and cumbersome mats were spread on the ground to track runners at checkpoints throughout the race track. The mats incorporated an integrated Radio Frequency (RF) antenna to track the runners' time at these designated checkpoints.

"Race organizers have long been dissatisfied with older technology options for tracking runners," said Ronnie Skoeld, Marketing Director for Racetimer. "By making use of Alien's RFID products to reliably and cost-effectively track the runners, Racetimer's event customers are saving money and time associated with tracking the runners, while benefiting the runners in time-saved at the end of the race. With RFID, everyone wins."

With Alien's highly consistent and reliable UHF readers and antennas, there is no need for runners to stand in line after crossing the finish line to have their unique ID tag be scanned by the organizers. Race administrators benefit from RFID accuracy reads up to 20 meters (approximately 60 feet) to identify runners within seconds, saving up to several minutes per runner using UHF RFID over barcode or LF RFID.

Mr. Skoeld adds: "Racetimer is one of the fastest growing companies in Scandinavia and currently under contract for numerous diversified sporting events including a major cycling event, BMX race, cross-country, triathlons and horse races. Relying on Alien's field-proven UHF reader and tag solutions has made our operation significantly more efficient, saving Racetimer 20 percent on costs per event and up to 5 hours per event in manpower and resources, as compared to barcode or LF RFID."

Racetimer is making use of Alien readers and tags at the well-known "Blodomloppet" race, the second largest cross-country race in Scandinavia. The "Blodomloppet" race, which means "Giving Blood" in Swedish, is a series of marathon races throughout the Scandinavian countries which involve more than forty thousand marathon runners. Each runner will be equipped with a disposable UHF passive EPC-compliant Gen 2 Alien Squiggle® tag, providing significant time and money advantages over previous timing tracking methods.

"Collecting the tags after the race completion can be a time-consuming and inefficient distraction for race organizers and runners alike," said Stephen Crocker, Director Sales and Channels EMEA/India for Alien Technology. "Our Squiggle tags are low-cost and disposable, which allow the race organizer to give away the race tag as a keep-sake to runners at the finish line."

About Racetimer:

Racetimer has its background in organizing and timing large running events. Racetimer was founded in the fall of 2004. The Racetimer system is very different from other systems on the market. Racetimer uses high-frequency tags which gives the company several magnitudes higher read speeds, enabling Racetimer to handle high densities of runners - an absolute requirement when tracking individual start times. For more information, please visit www.racetimer.se

About Alien Technology

Founded in 1994, Alien Technology is a leading technology and product provider of UHF Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) Integrated Circuits (IC), tags, readers and professional services. Alien Gen 2 products, along with software solutions from partners, help solve business problems for customers to improve productivity, processes, security and asset tracking for closed-loop and supply chain systems for consumer packaged goods, retail, manufacturing, transportation, airports and cargo logistics, government and defense, and other industries. Alien's patented Fluidic Self Assembly (FSA(TM)) technology and related proprietary manufacturing processes are designed to enable the manufacture of high volume, low-cost RFID tags. Quatrotec, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Alien Technology, is a specialized professional services and technology firm that provides complete solutions to meet the sophisticated requirements of the transportation industry. Quatrotec provides products and services that help increase security, efficiency, and visibility within the transportation sector. Alien's facilities include: its corporate headquarters in Morgan Hill, CA; RFID tag manufacturing facility in Fargo, ND; the Alien RFID Solutions Center in the Dayton, OH, Quatrotec's offices at the San Francisco International Airport (SFO); and sales offices in the US, Europe and Asia. Alien is a member of EPC Global. For more information please visit www.alientechnology.com

More from Material Processing

All Topics