Permittivity of Meat Fish and their Components at UHF RFID Frequencies and Industry Relevant Temperatures


  • Ultan Martin Mc Carthy University College Dublin
  • Gashaw Ayalew University College Dublin
  • Francis Butler University College Dublin
  • Kevin Mc Donnell University College Dublin
  • James Lyng University College Dublin
  • Shane Ward University College Dublin


Permittivity values of lean beef, pork, fish, poultry, and values for other components from these sources (i.e. fat, marrow and bone) were measured at selected                                                                                                                                                                                                                              industry-relevant temperatures – 18 oC, - 12  oC, - 5 oC, 0 oC, 7 oC, 25 oC, 40 oC and UHF RFID relevant frequencies of 868 MHz, 915 MHZ, 950 MHz and 2450 MHz. Muscle fibre orientation in relation to probe placement was also investigated. Increases in temperature generally led to increases in the dielectric constant (e’) and loss factor (e’’) of all test samples while the opposite trend was observed with increases in frequency (i.e. e’ and e’’ decreased). These trends were clearly evident for samples of lean beef, pork, poultry and fish. The dielectric properties of other non-lean components also varied with temperature and frequency. e’ and e’’ values of fat and marrow were significantly lower than those of lean while for fibrous tissues muscle fibre orientation only had a significant influence in the case of poultry (p≤0.05) and not in the case of beef or pork (p≥0.05). Results of this study can serve as basic data for the design and/or application of RFID inlays.

Author Biographies

Ultan Martin Mc Carthy, University College Dublin


Gashaw Ayalew, University College Dublin

post Doctoral Researcher

Francis Butler, University College Dublin

Professor, Senior Lecturer

Kevin Mc Donnell, University College Dublin


James Lyng, University College Dublin

Senior Lecturer

Shane Ward, University College Dublin

Professor, School head






V-Management, Ergonomics and Systems Engineering