How does analog to digital conversion impact sensor accuracy?

When an analog sensors’ output is converted to a digital output with an analog to digital converter (ADC), conversion resolution, conversion accuracy, conversion speed or bandwidth, inherent system noise levels, and power consumption are all ADC tradeoffs. Errors due to temperature, supply voltage, linearity, quantizing, and other factors may reduce the accuracy of an ADC […]

What are common ways to protect a sensor from harmful exposure?

For a sensor, the amount of harmful exposure it receives from the environment and harmful constituents in the measuring process depends on what is being sensed and the environment itself. Different packaging is required to cope with and survive the specific situation. Two major considerations for protection are at the sensing element/transducer level or at […]

How do you know when an IP69K package is required for a sensor?

To answer this question, you first need to know what an IP69K package is. The  (IEC) developed its IEC 60529 rating system to define different degrees of protection (i.e., ingress protection (IP)) for enclosures. The most recent version is IEC 60529:1989+AMD1:1999+AMD2:2013 CSV, Consolidated version, Degrees of protection provided by enclosures (IP Code). It costs hundreds […]

How fast is that thing going?

The need for speed implies the requirement for speed sensing. Speed sensors provide the input and feedback data to monitor and control motors and other rate sensitive linear and rotary applications. For example, the throughput of automated high-speed production lines depends on many parameters but the line speed is an early indication of expected versus […]

Is it a sensor or a transducer?

The terms sensor and transducer are frequently used interchangeably, however, there are differences. Going strictly by definition, a transducer is a device that translates primarily nonelectrical quantities into electric signals [1]. Instrument engineers limit the definition to a device used for measurement purposes. In this context, transducers can be used for measuring mechanical, thermal acoustic, […]

How can a sensor help determine the onset of labor?

At CES2017, Molly Dickens from Bloomlife explains how a sensor in the company’s smart pregnancy wearable allows a pregnant woman to automatically track and monitor the timing and duration of contractions. The passive sensor listens to the muscle activity similar to a heart monitor in hospitals. The application demonstrates what can be done with today’s […]

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What does it take to create natural virtual reality imaging?

At CES 2017, Jeremy Miller for HumanEyes Technologies describes how a Vuze 360-degree camera can be used to provide a virtual reality 3-D video. The Vuze has 4 pairs of Full High Definition (FHD), 180 x 120 field of view (FOV) lenses. With the company’s proprietary software, the stereoscopic cameras provide a more natural 4K […]

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What vital signs can be monitored with your thumbs?

At CES2017, Yenfang Koh, a Marketing & Operations Analyst from Mocacare, explains how the company’s Mocaheart can scan both thumbs for blood oxygen and electrocardiogram (EKG) measurements. The readings provide heart rate and blood (pulse wave) velocity that correlates to blood pressure.

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How can a sensor prevent snoring?

At CES 2017, Behrouz Hariri, CEO & Co-founder of Smart Nora explains how a microphone in his company’s system listens for the earliest indication of snoring. Since people transition from breathing to snoring at around 40 to 42 dB, once this level is detected, an inflatable portion of the system beneath the pillow creates a […]

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How does a smart home control windows, blinds & shutters?

At CES, Marketing Director Michael Rasmussen of the VELUX Group explains how a partnership between Velux A/S and Netatmo achieves the first smart roof, windows, blinds & shutters solutions using sensor technology to measure temperature humidity, CO2 and sunlight level. Velux provides the electrically operated hardware and Netatmo provides the sensing technology. The systems software […]

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How can patients monitor their glucose level without drawing blood?

At CES 2017, Luc Pierat, Founder and CEO of PKvitality tells how K’Track Glucose, a watch-like fitness monitor with an added sensing module can calculate glucose without drawing blood by sampling interstitial fluid just below the skin with a chemical sensor. The Glucose K’apsul biosensor fits into the base of the device and effortlessly probes […]

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How can patients know they are performing physical therapy properly at home?

At CES 2017, Mickey Ferri, cofounder of Enflux describes how his company’s motion capture clothing’s capabilities can used by patients recovering from shoulder injuries. Using microelectromechanical (MEMS) inertial measurement unit (IMU) sensors embedded in clothing to measure changes in orientation, the data can be displayed on monitor and used remotely by caregivers to track the […]

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How can Alexa lock a door?

At CES 2017, Paul Gerhardt, Cofounder of Lockitron demonstrates how the voice recognition capabilities of Alexa’s microphone (pressure sensor) and software can be used to remotely lock (or unlock) his company’s Bolt smart lock. Cloud to cloud integration allows the user to trigger Alexa remotely.

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How can you replace a $100,000+ motion capture system?

At CES 2017, Mickey Ferri, cofounder of Enflux describes how microelectromechanical (MEMS) inertial measurement unit (IMU) sensors embedded in clothing can measure changes in orientation. The motion capture clothing’s capabilities can be used to track activity in sports or even allow the wearer to become a character in a video game.

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How can smart phone type touch sensing be implemented in a home control unit?

At CES 2017, Tobias Eichenwald, Co-founder and CEO of Senic GmbH, demonstrates a smart home control button that mimics smart phone type touch sensing. In a programmable interface, the touch sensing provides buttons, an analog ring for variable control, touch surface for browsing, and swipe as well as proximity sensing without touch for music, lighting […]

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What can you sense with an electronic tattoo?

At CES 2017, Dr. Nanshu Lu, co-founder of Rotex, shows how an electronic tattoo can measure different biometrics. Mounted on the chest, the tattoo can provide a continuous electrocardiogram (EKG). Mounted on a muscle, the flexible membrane can measure …

Where are the autonomous vehicle sensors?

At CES 2017, Cason Grover, Sr. Group Manager, Vehicle Technology Planning from Hyundai Motor America explains the vision and range sensors in Hyundai’s Autonomous Ioniq. The vehicle has one forward facing long range radar and three LiDAR units at the front and four cameras mounted inside at the top of windshield. Radar units at the […]

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How can motion sensors help stroke victims?

At CES 2017, Paul Ruelos from Neofect demonstrates the occupational benefits to stroke victims and others who have neurological disorders from the company’s Rapael smart glove. Using microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) bending and axis sensors in a flexible exoskeleton glove combined with the company’s Rapael software and a graphical user interface, the system collects range of […]

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Absolute Sealed Linear Encoders Add Interface

Ease of interfacing a sensor is especially important in machine control applications. Even though it offered LC xx5 Absolute Sealed Linear Encoders for use with Siemens, Fanuc, Mitsubishi, and HEIDENHAIN controls for many years, HEIDENHAIN CORPORATION, recently added a Panasonic interface (Pana01) to the line. Available in 3 µm (with a 1 nm measuring step) […]

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Measuring Rotor-Stator Gap

Designed as a maintenance tool for measuring rotor-stator gap in large scale power generation applications, the GMS-750RS rotor-stator gap measuring system  from the Measuring Division of Kaman Precision Products, Inc., uses the company’s proven eddy current sensor technology. Incorporated into an easy to calibrate turnkey instrument, the sensing tool provides accurate and repeatable gap measurements […]

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Pressure Sensing for HVAC, Refrigeration Systems and More

Products designed for specific applications simplify user’s procurement and qualification processes. Targeting HVAC and refrigeration systems, Honeywell expanded its line of pressure monitoring sensors to minimize the total cost of pressure management in these systems. The analog output PX3 series heavy duty pressure transducers have a brass housing and can support multiple configurations to help […]

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Solid State Oxygen Sensors Use Optical Technology

Zirconia is commonly used for oxygen sensing. In addition to this technique, SST Sensing Ltd. has added the LuminOx family of optical oxygen sensors to its product offerings. The sensors use fluorescence quenching by oxygen where pulsed light is directed onto an oxygen-sensitive fluorescent dye causing it to fluoresce.   The rate at which this fluorescence […]

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Incremental Sealed Rotary Encoders for High Loads

When a product is well received in one region of the world, it often has advantages that would benefit other regions. HEIDENHAIN came to this conclusion with its ROD 620 and 630 models of the ROD 600 series incremental sealed rotary encoders. The ROD 600 encoders were well received in the Japanese market for many […]

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Angular Position Sensors with Analog or Digital Output

Depending on the version, Novotechnik, U.S. Vert-X 2800 Series of sensors measure angular position and convert rotational angle into an analog or digital output. Analog outputs options are 4 to 20 mA, 0.1 to 10 V, 10 to 90% of supply voltage and 5 to 95% of supply voltage. Digital output choices are SPI or […]

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Hollow-Shaft Rotary Encoders

With its ECI 4000/EBI 4000 rotary encoder series, HEIDENHAIN adds to its existing line of inductive position encoders. The modular devices have a 90-mm hollow shaft without an integral bearing and consist of a scanning unit and the scale drum. They have an overall height of only 20 mm. The single-turn version of the ECI 4000 features resolution […]

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