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Enhancing RFID system configuration through semantic modelling

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  27 July 2021

Eleni Tsalapati
Wolfson School of Mechanical, Electrical and Manufacturing Engineering, Loughborough University, Epinal Way, Loughborough LE11 3TU, UK; e-mail:,,,,
James Tribe
Wolfson School of Mechanical, Electrical and Manufacturing Engineering, Loughborough University, Epinal Way, Loughborough LE11 3TU, UK; e-mail:,,,,
Paul A. Goodall
Wolfson School of Mechanical, Electrical and Manufacturing Engineering, Loughborough University, Epinal Way, Loughborough LE11 3TU, UK; e-mail:,,,,
Robert I. Young
Wolfson School of Mechanical, Electrical and Manufacturing Engineering, Loughborough University, Epinal Way, Loughborough LE11 3TU, UK; e-mail:,,,,
Thomas W. Jackson
School of Business and Economics, Loughborough University, Epinal Way, Loughborough LE11 3TU, UK; e-mail:
Andrew A. West
Wolfson School of Mechanical, Electrical and Manufacturing Engineering, Loughborough University, Epinal Way, Loughborough LE11 3TU, UK; e-mail:,,,,


Radio-Frequency Identification (RFID) system technology is a key element for the realization of the Industry 4.0 vision, as it is vital for tasks such as entity tracking, identification and asset management. However, the plethora of RFID systems’ elements in combination with the wide range of factors that need to be taken under consideration along with the interrelations amongst them, make the problem of identification and design of the right RFID system, based on users’ needs particularly complex. The research outlined in this paper seeks to optimize this process by developing an integrating schema that will encapsulate this information in a form that is both human and machine processible. Human readability will allow a shared understanding of the RFID technology domain; machine readability, automated reasoning engines to perform logical deduction techniques returning implicit information. For this purpose, the novel RFID System Configuration Ontology (RFID SCO) is developed. Hence, non-RFID experts are enabled to identify the most suitable RFID system according to their needs and RFID experts to retrieve all the relevant information required for the efficient design of the corresponding RFID system. The RFID SCO is validated and tested successfully against real-world scenarios provided by domain experts.

Research Article
© The Author(s), 2021. Published by Cambridge University Press

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