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IoT sensor types:
The top 5 sensors you should know!

There are many IoT sensor types used today. Nowadays, you can buy sensors easily because we have ‘off-the shelf sensors’ which are small sensors that are accessible and affordable to use. These sensors are used for various industries – making our lives easier and worth investing in to help businesses transform into IoT.

What are the sensors used in IoT?

Sensors have become a part of everyday life. You may not even notice how much you use the sensor. But it’s everywhere you go, like schools, smart cities with IoT, and buildings.

Sensors can be used in a variety of sources such as heat, pressure, water, and motion – allowing for shared data with other connected devices and management systems – becoming very useful in our life. Sensors are now commonly used in IoT.

How do sensors work with IoT?

Sensors collect the data from the environment, collecting data from various sources based on the sensor type, examples include:

  • Temperature sensors collect data from heat or cool
  • Humidity sensors collect data from atmosphere
  • Gas sensors collect data from air.

Sensors send the data to the cloud via cloud solutions. After collecting data from the environment, the data will be sent to accumulate information by cloud. Sensors can connect the cloud by a variety of ways such as WiFi, Bluetooth, cellular, satellite, low-power wide-area networks (LPWAN), or connecting the internet via ethernet directly.

The system’s software works through data management processes by following the process of using data collected from sensors – transforming data into necessary information that can be useful to a machine or device. This includes checking the temperature to be at an acceptable level.

Providing real-time alerts to the user – this can be done by setting up the required software systems to be a standard value – alerting us if that value is higher or lower than the standard value. Some devices can signal automatically, such as humidity sensors that can water plants automatically in suitable time by inspecting and acting on gained information on the humidity in the soil.

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How are IoT sensor types different?

Each sensor types have different working and purpose. In our blog, we provide the top 5 IoT sensor types that you should know and it will help you to better understand how sensors are used for.

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IoT sensor types – Starting with Temperature Sensors

A temperature sensor is a device that measures the amount of heat or cool energy generated by the system. It can detect temperature changes by using analog or digital outputs and transforms the data for the device.

Temperature sensors are used for:

Agriculture: Temperature sensors can help agriculture to check soil and air temperature. These are convenient for farmers and help increase the efficiency of agricultural management. Farmers can manage their watering times, amount of water, and can predict the situation from the data for future preparations.

Cold storage: Requires temperature sensors to support and maintain fit environmental conditions. We can set the highest or the lowest temperature and it can alarm us It is commonly used in blood bank facilities, medical laboratories and vaccine storage.

Food industries: Sensors can be used in IoT systems to keep food safe during transport for refrigerated trucks. It can present the temperature in real time and store information to retrieve later. These will help to increase the quality and reliability of service.

What are humidity sensors?

Humidity sensors are used to measure the amount of water vapor in an atmosphere of air or other gases. The unit is the percentageRH.

The Humidity Sensor can measure the relative humidity in the range of 10-90%RH. Normally, it is used with a temperature sensor, due to its small size and cheapness, it is usually used in households and industries.

Humidity Sensors are necessary devices to control the process of production in various industries:

Paper industry

Humidity Sensor used for controlling humidity which supports to enhance the performance of the process of drying in the pulp and paper industry, sheet moisture control and can help in the process of diagnostics.

Food industry

The moisture and temperature are necessary to produce food. It can affect the taste. Food industry needs the device to control standards such as dishTemp Thermometer, Food Check thermometer and Frying thermometer. All these devices used humidity sensors are used for detecting moisture.

Clean Room/Vaccine storage

Cleanroom or vaccine storage room is a room that requires special control. Because it has to be strict to various controls such as temperature, humidity, wind speed, and pressure, etc. These factors will affect the growth of microorganisms, bacteria, dirt, or contaminants. So the humidity sensor is indispensable for various locations such as hospitals, labs and research centers etc.

Agriculture

Humidity Sensor used to measure the moisture in soil or used to be the water sensor. It can connect with the microcontroller by using the analog read the level of moisture or use the digital signal sent by the module. These sensors can make for the automatic watering system that you don’t have to plant your crop by yourself, you can set the system to plants for you.

Gas sensors explained

Gas sensor used for detecting air quality change including the appearance of toxic, flammable or hazardous gasses and oxygen depletion. We are probably most familiar with this sensor because it is used in the home. It’s common use in mining, oil, chemical research and manufacturing.

Hazardous Gases are gases that cause health hazards whether it is irritating Illness or death or as a gas that can cause fire or explosion. which is dangerous to life and property.

Gas sensors with IoT – Detecting harmful gas in the air

Many types of industrial plants, whether it is oil or gas plants. electronic factory oil or natural gas refinery Oil and gas drilling rigs, chemical plants, pulp mills wastewater treatment plant Steel smelting and manufacturing plant petrochemical plant automobile factory to the semiconductor factory.

All have the potential to come into contact with harmful gases and vapors. They have to use gas sensors because of the risk of exposure to harmful gases and vapors. Therefore, it is imperative that they have to use a system or equipment to detect these hazardous gases over the course of their work to make sure the work area is safe.

“The Internet of Things is the game-changer for an overall business ecosystem transformation.”
-Joerg Grafe

What are the sensors used in IoT-Infrared Sensors?

Infrared Sensors or optical sensors are devices that change resistance value or electrical conductivity when incidence. It can detect obstacles by reflecting light when hitting an object. It will detect objects moving through the front of the sensor when the object passes through the sensor face.

Infrared Sensors have infrared receivers and transmitters. The (white) infrared signal will be output. And when an object is blocked, the infrared signal that has been ordered will reflect back to the receiver (black) and can be used to detect objects in front of it and can adjust the sensitivity detection distance near or far.

Infrared sensors in our life

Infrared sensors are used in various industries such as health care, home appliances, wearable electrical appliances. In addition, infrared sensors can also be used to monitor various environmental conditions as they can detect many types of chemicals and can detect heat leaks.

Health care

Medical used Infrared sensors to detect skin’s temperature. Infrared thermography can collect the overall temperature of skin. The human skin temperature can show insight into the physiological problems about metabolism and thermoregulation. These can contribute important information to help clinical diagnosis and therapeutic assessment.

Home appliances

Infrared sensors can be used in air-conditioning and heating systems to help perform control of motion and state operations to save energy and maintain a comfortable climate. The sensors can scan the room to prepare and control temperature. It can present real time essential environment information and calculate the heat from the window to adjust cooling or heating requirements.

What are gyroscope sensors?

Gyroscope sensor is also called Angular Rate Sensor or Angular Velocity Sensors. Gyroscope can measure the angular rate or angular velocity in 3-axis directions, measured in degrees per second.

It is referred to as a sensor used in navigation devices. We can use our smartphone to view 360 degree videos or photos, and the screen can rotate when we move the phone corner due to the gyroscope sensor.

Gyroscope sensors in smartphones

We used gyroscope sensors in smartphones. Gyroscope sensor can make the phone screen rotate automatically. Most smartphones use it today. It helps increase good user experience and provide information about its surroundings. Games in 3D such as Pokemon Go have to use gyroscope sensors to show augmented reality and AR can’t work without this sensor.

Gyroscope sensor applications

Gyroscope sensors are used in electronic control systems of vehicles, camera shake detection in digital cameras, robot systems, etc. Image blurring in cameras can be compensated by using the Gyroscope Sensor-based optical image stabilization system.

Utilizing gyroscope sensors for medical purposes

The gyroscope can be used to collect patient movement data by attaching the gyroscope sensor to a specific point. The gyroscope shows the direction of movement relative to the time in the form of a 3-axis graph and when the data is processed within the program. The results are displayed in a three-dimensional format similar to capturing motion in a movie. Then the patient’s movement characteristics are compared with the normal movements of a normal person. It is easier to diagnose where the patient has abnormal movements in detail.

Conclusion

Sensors with IoT have become part of our life. There are many IoT sensor types. It can help us to get specific information and manage work processes by the system such as you can use temperature and humidity sensors to improve your agricultural processes by setting an automatic watering system.

What are the sensors used in IoT during 2021? Many businesses learning more about the technologies and processes of sensors with IoT, you can be the top resource for your client.

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    Laksika Chinwanitcharoen

    Laksika Chinwanitcharoen

    Laksika Chinwanitcharoen is studying at the College of Social Communication Innovation at Srinakharinwirot University. She is a digital marketing intern at Seven Peaks Software working on both social media and content.