Sensors are devices or subsystems that function to detect changes around its environment and send that information to other electronic devices. Furthermore, they are used together with other electronic devices. These devices, together with other electronics, utilize IoT (Internet of Things) technology. IoT is a system of interrelated and internet-connected objects that can collect and transfer data through a wireless network with no human interference.
Today, technology has become a big part of our lives, in that in everything in almost everything we do, there are some technological influences. This means technology is part and parcel of our daily routine. With the invention of sensor technology, people have transformed their homes into smart homes. Smart homes are brilliant concepts that let you have total control over your home even when you are not around.
Having this technology at home will ensure that that get accurate information about what is going on around your home-zone. Your home will be linked through a wireless connection to your electronic handheld device. Therefore, you will easily monitor your home, either from work or on the go. This article will deliver more insights in regards to sensor technology at home and everything else you need to know.
How Sensors Work
Essentially, these devices react to changes around their physical environment by changing their electrical properties. The artificial models rely on electronic systems to get, analyze and send the information about the surrounding. They convert stimuli such as light, sound, heat and motion into electrical signals. The signals are later relayed through an interface that transforms them into a binary code. The binary codes are later sent to a computer so that they can be processed.
Uses of Sensor Technology
1. Air pollution sensors
Using this technology in measuring air pollution is becoming more and more popular. They provide air pollution monitoring at lower prices compared to the conventional methods. It has made monitoring of air pollution to be common in other parts of the world.
Measuring air pollution using these devices is often lower and the data quality can be a bit low compared to the data quality from monitoring stations. However, with the right expertise, the data quality has already improved. This technology could be the answer to monitoring air pollution. They come in various types such as electrochemical, photoionization detector and optical particle counters.
2. Health measures
They can be used in electronics-based equipment to convert the different forms of stimuli into electrical signals so that they can be analyzed. Sensors can also increase the intelligence of some medical equipment such as the implants for life support. They can also be used to measure vital signs. With the growing population, there is a need to speed up developing of new types of medical equipment.
The health sector strives to invest in reliable devices that can provide accurate diagnostic results that can be monitored remotely whether the patient is at home or the hospital. Many health organizations have utilized this technology to monitor pressure, temperature and also accelerometers.
- Temperature: This technology can be used to measure temperature in anaesthesia delivery machines, ventilators, kidney dialysis machines, medical incubators and digital thermometers.
- Pressure: They can be used in anaesthesia delivery machines, sleep apnea machines, ventilators, insulin pumps, blood analyzers and blood pressure monitoring equipment.
- Images: Used in radiography, cardiology, dental imaging, laboratory equipment and endoscopy.
3. Weather sensors
Weather station data can be used to predict the current weather conditions and also predict the future weather conditions such as low or high temperature, clouds coverage or rainy conditions. Below is a list of instruments that use this technology.
- Thermometer: Used for measuring temperature. Most weather stations measure indoor and outdoor weather temperatures, record low and high temperature, and show the rising and falling temperature trends.
- Hygrometer: It measures relative humidity. Relative humidity refers to the percentage of water vapour in the air. By measuring humidity, we can influence environmental factors such as fog and precipitation.
- Barometer: Used for measuring atmospheric pressure. It can be used to forecast upcoming weather by detecting the changes in the atmospheric pressure.
- Anemometer: It measures the speed of blowing wind. Wind speed can be displayed in MPH, knots or KPH.
- Wind vane: This is an instrument used to track the direction of the wind.
You can also access weather information through your phone by downloading weather apps such as AccuWeather, weather underground, dark sky, carrot weather, flowx, geometric weather, radarscope and the weather channel; however these apps will never be as accurate as a weather sensor in your home-zone.
Appliances such as refrigerators and freezers commonly consume a lot of energy. This means they are not environment-friendly. These appliances allow the use of this technology to ensure safe and energy-efficient operation and do not consume a lot of power. When the refrigerator door is opened, there is a light that comes on. This light comes on to detect that the door is open or closed.
The door’s position can also be detected whereby the frame is attached with an appliance and a permanent magnet mounted on the door. These appliances are placed in such a way that they get activated when the door is closed and the lights go off. When the door is open, the magnetic device is deactivated and the lights turn on.
These devices are not visible since they are normally mounted behind door frames. This improves the aesthetic look of the refrigerator. These devices are non-contact, meaning they do not require any physical contact to operate.
5. Heating sensors
For those living in smart homes, they can use these technological devices to sense heat. They can be used to prevent devastating fires from breaking out. Heat detectors are used to detect heat in the background. Excessive heat will be an indication of an impending fire breakout. These heat detectors can be integrated with sprinklers so that the sprinklers receive signals from the heat detectors. Combining smoke detectors with heat detectors would be great for fire preventions.
Furthermore smart-home sensors can be used for enabling constant temperature in your home-zone.
They can be used in robots to estimate the condition and environment of the robot. These signals are then sent to a controller to process desirable behaviour. They are used in robots to mimic the functions of human sensory organs. These robots need good algorithms about their environment so that they can function effectively.
7. Other possibilities outside the home zone
The sensor technology has become a part of the military systems and the performance of military vehicles, equipment and other many other military-related systems. They are used in flight controls, communications and also indicators. They can also be found in explosives detection systems, crime detection systems, weaponry controls and security systems among others.
Also many sectors in the agricultural industry have also adopted this technology, especially through precision agriculture. It provides farmers with data that help them to monitor and optimise their crops production while adapting to the changing environmental factors.
In a Nutshell
Judging from the current uses of sensor technology, its usage has been advanced in the manufacturing industry and operation of the aerospace and military systems. Commercial products and infrastructure have also not been left behind and are a new door opener to the home-zone of your private customers.
Recently, research has been done in this field as specific application programs have always funded development efforts. It’s believed that there will be more research and developments in this technology in the coming future that will have a lot of benefits in the home-zone. However, data protection needs to be resolved and the sensors could contribute to a better circle economy. Contact us to set up your sensor strategy.