RFID-Based Wireless Passive Sensors Utilizing Cork Materials

Ricardo Gonçalves, Sergi Rima, Roberto Magueta, Pedro Pinho, Ana Collado, Apostolos Georgiadis, Jimmy Hester, Nuno Borges Carvalho, Manos M. Tentzeris

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Citations (Scopus)


This paper presents the design of low-cost, conformal UHF antennas and RFID tags on two types of cork substrates: 1) natural cork and 2) agglomerate cork. Such RFID tags find an application in wine bottle and barrel identification, and in addition, they are suitable for numerous antenna-based sensing applications. This paper includes the high-frequency characterization of the selected cork substrates considering the anisotropic behavior of such materials. In addition, the variation of their permittivity values as a function of the humidity is also verified. As a proof-of-concept demonstration, three conformal RFID tags have been implemented on cork, and their performance has been evaluated using both a commercial Alien ALR8800 reader and an in-house measurement setup. The reading of all tags has been checked, and a satisfactory performance has been verified, with reading ranges spanning from 0.3 to 6 m. In addition, this paper discusses how inkjet printing can be applied to cork surfaces, and an RFID tag printed on cork is used as a humidity sensor. Its performance is tested under different humidity conditions, and a good range in excess of 3 m has been achieved, allied to a good sensitivity obtained with a shift of >5 dB in threshold power of the tag for different humid conditions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)7242-7251
Number of pages10
JournalIEEE Sensors Journal
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2015


  • cork characterization
  • passive sensor
  • humidity sensor
  • wireless sensor
  • inkjet printing
  • TAGS


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