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Publication Title

Journal of Engineering, Project, and Production Management








Radio Frequency Identification (RFID), which was originally introduced to improve material handling and speed production as part of supply chain management, has become a globally accepted technology that is now applied on many construction sites to facilitate real-time information visibility and traceability. This paper describes a senior undergraduate project for a Construction Management (CM) program that was specifically designed to give the students a greater insight into technical research in the CM area. The students were asked to determine whether it would be possible to utilize an RFID system capable of tracking tagged equipment, personnel and materials across an entire construction site. This project required them to set up an experimental program, execute a series of experiments, analyze the results and summarize them in a report. The readability test was performed using an active Ultra-High frequency (UHF, 433.92 MHz) RFID system with various construction materials, including metal, concrete, wood, plastic, and aluminum. The readability distance distances are measured for each of the six scenarios. The distance at which a tag was readable with no obstructions was found to be an average of 133.9m based on three measurements, with a standard deviation of 3.9m. This result confirms the manufacturer’s claimed distance of 137.2m. The RFID tag embedded under 50.8mm of concrete was readable for an average distance of only 12.2m, the shortest readable distance of any of the scenarios tested. At the end of the semester, faculty advisors held an open discussion session to gather feedback and elicit the students’ reflections on their research experiences, revealing that the students’ overall impressions of their undergraduate research had positively affected their postgraduate education plans.


© 2017 Journal of Engineering, Project, and Production Management (EPPM-Journal).

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 4.0 International (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0) License.

Original Publication Citation

Jung, Y., & Jeong, M. M. (2017). Evaluating the readability of radio frequency identification for construction materials. Journal of Engineering, Project, and Production Management, 7(1), 14-20.


0000-0002-8984-0406 (Jung)