Continuous RFID Ticket Encoding

Ingenuity combined with years of dedicated knowhow has resulted in a new form of personalization system for continuous or perforated paper / TFC tickets.

Aftholderberg, Germany, November 2014 – Rinas, renowned specialists for magnetic stripe encoding and verification solutions, has thrown ingenuity and thought into a continuous ticket personalization system that is both scalable and adaptable. Known as the RFE, this novelty has absorbed many months of planning and preparation so that customer’s ticketing needs are exactly where they need to be – on the ticket!

Primarily targeting the RFID ticketing community, the RFE accepts continuous pre-printed tickets either in fan-folded form or in batch rolls containing typically anything up to 3,000 individual tickets – the limiting factor being the physical size of the drum for ease of handling. The length of each ticket is entered as a software parameter whereas the width is mechanically adjusted and then parameterized in the software. A ticket thickness parameter does not exist as the thickness serves mainly as a guide for the positioning of the print heads. Mechanically, the number of RFID transponders that can be installed is limited purely by mechanical restraints, but is currently limited to six for parallel ticket processing. Up to 8 (4 on each side) ruggedized print units, each fitted with a dedicated print cartridge with an integrated print head, can be cascaded for print height variation at a 12.7 mm pitch. The technology in use is based on trusted HP print technology and utilizes the same ink jet expertise in daily use by millions of office printers.

In addition, scanner units can be integrated for OCR tasks, barcode or 2D code recognition, database retrieval of personalization information and quality inspection tasks after printing etc. Finally, tickets with defective transponders or identified as ‘failed’ are marked and logged accordingly. Naturally, all events and errors are comprehensively logged for completeness and for customer approval. Once personalized, the new drum or container of fan-folded individually personalized tickets can be lifted off the unit ready for installation in a ticket vending machine.

With minimal intervention, the complete machine could conceivably be converted for more ambitious tasks involving the encoding of both RFID and MagStripe continuous tickets. The MagStripe option has more variables governing, for example, the position of the stripe, its thickness and its quality (i.e. painted or tape.) Hence, this option requires a more detailed customer specification for its realization.

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