Threading Wearables Using RAIN RFID Creates New Options for Tracking and Anti-Theft

August 25, 2015 Josh Roberts


Implementing technology into fabrics and textiles enables fantastic solutions to age-old problems. Modern clothing fused with tech - known as wearables – may help solve major issues in distribution and inventory management that cause headaches for linen and apparel companies.

According to Electronic Engineering Times, French startup Primo1D is developing a process that directly weaves an Impinj RAIN RFID chip into thread. The innovative new thread, known as E-Thread, provides practically invisible monitoring. E-Thread differs from traditional methods of RAIN RFID fabric integration that requires RAIN RFID labels be either sewn or adhered directly onto pieces of fabric. 

One of Primo1D’s goals is to integrate its process with the existing production techniques used by the textile industry. Primo1D’s solution gives textile companies the capability to create a fully integrated manufacturing system without overhauling operations. In order to prevent potential damage to the chip, Primo1D also adds a process that protects chips from extreme conditions that may exist in cleaning processes (e.g. towels going through an industrial dryer).

E-Thread clothing also can improve anti-theft endeavors. This improvement is due to E-Thread’s nearly invisible and seamless qualities. These qualities prevent counterfeiters from removing the chip and possibly passing off false products as authentic.

Primo1D plans to deploy its technology by first applying it to linens and textiles, including in products used by hotels and hospitals. A specific early hotel use case will be tracking towels that pass through cleaning systems. E-Thread applies RAIN RFID technology in an unobtrusive way, which lets hotels know the origin of each towel.   

Primo1D’s CEO, Emannuel Arene, recently announced that the startup has already sent its prototypes to some of the first customers and has begun qualifying the products delivered. With Impinj technology and Primo1D’s E-Thread, organizations that want to monitor their fabrics and textiles near invisibly can now do so. 

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