The City of Paris has chosen 3M Library Systems to supply and install radio frequency identification (RFID) systems at 42 branches. The technology is intended to boost the efficiency of circulation and collection management, improve security and, at higher-traffic branches, provide customers with self-service check-out and return facilities and free up staff for other functions. 3M is a leading supplier of RFID technology for library systems. In the U.S., its customers range in size from the public libraries of top-ten cities, such as San Antonio and Phoenix, to single-branch community libraries around the nation. The public library network of Paris becomes 3M's largest library customer in France, where scores of libraries are using 3M RFID systems.
"The selection of 3M to serve a world capital such as Paris provides further confirmation of the reliability and versatility of our RFID systems and the quality of service that stands behind them," says Lemuel Amen, vice president of 3M Track and Trace Solutions, which includes 3M Library Systems. "It also represents an international milestone for the growing recognition of RFID as a significant productivity enhancer for library management."
In libraries, RFID technology uses radio waves to read information stored on tiny computer chips (or "tags") affixed to books, tapes, CDs and other circulating materials. The radio waves allow the stored data, including identification of the item, to be read without the need for line of sight, providing a major advantage over barcodes. The technology enables a variety of circulation, inventory, security and customer service functions to be automated.
According to Rory Yanchek, 3M Library Systems business manager, the agreement with the Paris library system calls for 3M to provide at least three million RFID tags, as well as workstations, readers, detection gates and SelfCheck Systems that allow customers to check out and return items, and in some cases even pay fees and fines, without staff assistance. Installations are scheduled to begin later this year.
"The range of RFID-related library products continues to expand, enabling library staffs to provide more services at a time when customer demand is growing faster than financial resources," says Yanchek. "We're finding that libraries of all sizes are turning to 3M RFID to help them do more on limited budgets."
For the Paris libraries, 3M will supply tags incorporating Geneva-based STMicroelectronics Company's LR12K chips, which are warranted for the life of the library items to which they are affixed.
A global leader in library innovation for more than 35 years, 3M Library Systems provides security, productivity and information management solutions that harness technology to enable a more human library, freeing librarians to spend more time doing what they do best – helping people. 3M also partners with libraries to support their technological advancement and ensure their success through numerous industry sponsorships and programs. For more information about the 3M Library Systems, visit www.3M.com/library.
3M provides comprehensive, practical and easy to use solutions for customers in diverse markets, including health care, safety and security, aerospace and government, oil and gas, process industries, supply chain, construction and utilities, libraries and legal. Utilizing RFID, GPS and RTLS technologies, our asset management, protection, and utilization solutions enable customers to reliably and accurately manage high-value assets. Unlike similar offerings, based on components rather than complete solutions, 3M Systems are designed with full implementation in mind, deploying the right solution, with the right technology, suited for the customer. For more information, go to www.3Mtrackandtrace.com.
A recognized leader in research and development, 3M produces thousands of innovative products for dozens of diverse markets. 3M's core strength is applying its more than 40 distinct technology platforms – often in combination – to a wide array of customer needs. With $23B in sales, 3M employs 75,000 people worldwide and has operations in more than 60 countries.