Active Transponder

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The original form of the transponder technology

The first active transponders were used towards the end of WW2. They served there the identification friend or foe. The first passive, commercial RFID systems were introduced in the 70s in the area of anti-theft security and access control systems.

Gladly active transponders in existing machinery, equipment, control systems and vehicles are integrated, since particularly good integration conditions per se are present (common supply, interfaces, antennas, housing u.v.a.m.).


Active tags have over passive transponders have their own power supply (battery, battery or external power or on-board network), as well as intelligent processor and memory chips. They therefore offer the following advantages:

  • faster communication
  • greater ranges
  • greater data storage
  • optional very accurate location functionality
  • sensors integrated
  • better security concepts possible

At a glance

Due to the very high safety standards and the optional positioning functionality make active transponder systems the first choice as Auto-ID in the following applications:

  • Security systems
  • Access control systems
  • immobilizers
  • tolling
  • Radio scanner location
  • Personnel tracking
  • vehicle tracking
  • vehicle tracking
  • Container management
Active transponders


Passive transponders
power supply


Battery, battery or onboard or mains


By radio waves from the RFID reader
useful life Depending on the power supply, e.g. Battery or battery capacity incl. Power Management


Read-only = unlimited

Read-write = high



medium to high


Low to Medium


memory large to very large


describability any


once to about 100,000 times
reach outdoor max. 800 meters

indoor max. 80 meters


a few millimeters up to max. 16 meters
reading speed


medium to very high
(depending on the technology)
low in LF

medium at HF and UHF

safety high to very high Low to medium
Active Transponder 5. February 2016