RFID tags are commonly used to track products in many applications including retail and pharmaceutical industries. Tag readability is detrimental to the successful implementation and use of RFID in commercial applications. Tag readability is adversely affected when tags are adhered to metal surfaces such as metal cans and containers. This paper studies the effect of base material on tag readability. We have designed and built an experimental setup in the RFID lab to perform our studies. Our studies show that the metal effect is influenced by the distance between the tag and the base material (padding material) and the distance between the tag and its RFID reader. The studies also reveal the threshold values for improving tag readability.

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