RFID & NFC in Railway Networks

Once an esoteric term, RFID and NFC technology have gained popularity in recent years, thanks to the advantages offered by wireless technologies. As a technology that is already being proven in the automotive sector, with its usage in AVI ( Automatic Vehicle Identification ) and automated tolling applications such as FASTag, the extension of it to the railway network was inevitable.

Rail wagon tracking and identification – yard tracking after journey

Identifying coaches lying in the yard can be made easier and automated, thanks to RFID technology and advancement in drone-based RTLS system. This application comes handy where commercial wagons are concerned.

RFID tags can be attached to the wagons by the use of industry grade adhesives ( We would suggest water-proof tags/ labels here) or affixed with screws or rivets. The wagon assets can be either accounted for manually using a hand-held reader or by deploying a small drone system that can do the work automatically for you in case of a large yard.

Position ID system for route information + GPS + track worker safety

With millions of passengers relying on the system, real-time update on important metrics like current running status, expected arrival time or even possible congestion on the route can be displayed in advance. RFID tags placed on the tracks can be used to notify the presence of a train to the nearest railway station, crossings and even to the workers who are currently on-track

Secure cargo ID and authenticity check

Products for securing cargo are widely available in the industry. But how would you account for its authenticity?

Tamper-proof and tamper-evident tags exist that can help achieve cargo authentication. The product can be applied directly onto a tanker or even a sealed wagon. On the occurrence of any attempt to tamper the tag , the inlay inside the RFID tag will be damaged, making the tag  non-functional.

Parcel/ Courier/ Luggage ID and inventory tracking

Traditional systems including bar codes and QR-codes consume an unnecessary amount of time to track assets that are transported through railways. , mainly because each and every item has to be tracked individually and the reader has to be in close proximity of the asset.

tracking luggage using RFID tags in railway

Now comes the problem. How would you track all the assets in a short span of time that train spends at the station? Using an RFID system could work very well here for faster asset tracking in such scenarios.

Parking area automation for travellers and commercial vehicles

Windshield tags equipped with UID can be used for automatic vehicle identification and collecting parking charges. The reader placed at the entrance can be used to beam the tag and fetch vehicle information directly and deduct charges from the associated account. Another benefit is also the automated calculation of available parking spots.

Garbage collection using RFID

Each railway system has its own dedicated garbage collection system. Using RFID tags for garbage collection and tracking maintenance of bins is already an established system.


Entry/ Exit system using NFC /Ticketing- long term subscription

Our RFID and NFC tickets can be used for automated payment kiosks in metro and railway stations. The tickets can be assigned for automated payment, subscriptions and authentication, for convenience of passengers, benefiting in time saving and unnecessary delays due to long queues

MAP using NFC/ Information Kiosk to get a route for passengers

The tickets equipped with wireless technology can facilitate the route kiosk for passengers who would like to fetch information on the route map and the carriage information such as coach number, platform number etc.

The lesser need for human resources and automated systems

Automatic kiosk eliminates the need for utilizing human resources for providing tickets and directions. NFC and RFID tickets can serve the purpose.

Maintenance tracking of wagons & consumable parts

RFID tags with a longer lifespan are available for tracking maintenance of wagons and accessories. These hard tags can be, glued or screwed onto the body of the object to be tracked. Waterproofing material and casing help the tag to survive harsh conditions such as heavy rain, exposure to certain chemicals and solutions, abrasion, etc. Certain sigils can be engraved on the body of tag for easy identification of parts.

Once the tag has been read, it can be directly fed into a database storing information on wagon maintenance and receive periodical notifications on upcoming inspections and information on any bogie that was maintained in the past.

Mass Food carton tracking & RTI plastic carton ID

Trains that provide food and refreshments within the service network utilize millions of cartons and plastic crates for the transportation of supplies. Sometimes these cartons get mistakenly misplaced and RFID technology can help prevent such costly detours in the supply system. The tagged cartons can be easily identified and supplied to locations which can be tracked at real time.

Another advantage is the prevention on loss of plastic crates.

Train collision avoidance

Readers placed on certain cardinal locations can be used to read, attached tags on the oncoming train and alert the nearest signaling station about its current location and the track on which it is currently traveling.

Such real-time information can be used to manage directing trains utilizing similar pathways.

What are the advantages of using our RFID tags in railway/ metro network?

    • Green, environment-friendly design and no battery required.
    • Works even when the environment is having high water content, unlike GPS that doesn’t work on cloudy days and inside lands with higher vegetation concentration.
    • Rugged design, durable, and adaptable to most surfaces
    • Security of encryption within the RFID tags.
    • Lowers human resource requirement and saves time through its automated system thereby lowering operational cost in the long term.
    • Better customer service
    • Better transparency within the network.
    • Increased customer satisfaction
    • Controlled and well accounted for operating costs
    • Decreased human error
    • Theft and fraud prevention
    • Easy forecasting and updates on logistical delays
RFID & NFC in Railway Networks
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