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Passive Harmonic RFID System for Buried Assets Localization

Laboratoire de Conception et d’Intégration des Systèmes (LCIS), University Grenoble Alpes, Grenoble INP, 26000 Valence, France
Department of Electronics, Electrics and Automatic Control Engineering, Rovira i Virgili University, 43007 Tarragona, Spain
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Sensors 2018, 18(11), 3635;
Received: 21 September 2018 / Revised: 22 October 2018 / Accepted: 24 October 2018 / Published: 26 October 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue RFID Sensor Tags: Hardware, Implementation, and Demonstrations)
PDF [7100 KB, uploaded 26 October 2018]


A passive harmonic tag for buried assets localization is presented for utility localization. The tag design is based on a dual-polarized patch antenna at Ultra High Frequency (UHF) band. One of its feeders is connected to a frequency doubler based on a Schottky diode that generates the second harmonic, which is transmitted using a linear-polarized patch tuned at this frequency. The power received at the other feeder of the dual-polarized antenna is harvested by an RF to DC converter based on a five-stage voltage multiplier whose energy is used to bias a low-power quartz oscillator that modulates the output of the doubler. The different parts of the system are presented, and the theoretical read range is estimated as a function of the soil composition and the water content. A low-cost reader based on a software defined radio is also presented. Finally, experiments with a prototype of the tag are performed for different soil conditions. View Full-Text
Keywords: harmonic radar; RFID; underground communications; passive tag harmonic radar; RFID; underground communications; passive tag

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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).

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Abdelnour, A.; Lazaro, A.; Villarino, R.; Kaddour, D.; Tedjini, S.; Girbau, D. Passive Harmonic RFID System for Buried Assets Localization. Sensors 2018, 18, 3635.

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