Hawkesbury Council equip new Radio Frequency Identification to library materials

Hawkesbury Library Service has just completed a new project that will make it easier and faster for library patrons to borrow materials and increase staff efficiency

Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) tags have been equipped to 111,000 library items enabling the library to modernise circulation equipment, checkout stations and security gates.

Library patrons exit from Hawkesbury Central Library.

Library patrons exit from Hawkesbury Central Library.

This brings Hawkesbury Library Service up to speed with standard library practices and technology.

This new system replaces the previous barcode reading system, speeding up the borrowing and return process.

The specific software required for RFID was provided by FE Technologies.

Each library item now has a new microchip containing all of the information about the item and its issuing conditions.

The library member takes the items they wish to borrow to the self-loan machine which scans the items, loans them to the borrower and prints out a receipt with the return date.

The RFID technology represents no threat to patron privacy. The nine barcode number identifies the item and no bibliographic information will be on the tag. The security component will tell if the item is checked out or not.

The tags can only be deciphered within one meter of the library RFID reader.

RFID combines circulation and security deactivation into one process, so you can now place multiple items together in a stack on the self-loan machine and it reads all microchips without having to scan each item individually.

To return books and other library items library patron places the item in the new return chutes located inside each of our libraries and the items are automatically returned from the patron's card.

The after-hours return chutes outside Hawkesbury Central and Richmond Branch Libraries are still available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

A young library goer with her library card and books.

A young library goer with her library card and books.

The project was funded by a Library Infrastructure Grant received from the NSW Government to improve technology services.

If you are not a library member it is free and easy to join.You can join online at https://aurora.hawkesbury.nsw.gov.au/library/Join.aspx or by visiting Hawkesbury Central Library, 300 George Street, Windsor or Richmond Branch Library, 29 West Market Street, Richmond.

Hawkesbury Central Library hours are Monday to Friday 9am to 6pm, Saturday 9am to 1pm and Sunday 2pm to 5pm.

Richmond Branch hours are Monday to Friday 9:30am to 5pm and Saturday 9am to 1pm.