Sensors In The Home

You might not realize it but there are now a variety of different sensing devices used around the home. They might all use different technology to work, but they are there - doing their own specific jobs without you giving them a second thought.

Some of the sensors you might have at home in the home appliances you use every day include:
Sensors In The Home
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Dryer sensors
It is quite likely that there will now be a sensor incorporated into your tumble dryer to determine when the clothes are dry. In the past tumble dryers simply worked on a timer and would continue to tumble dry the clothes even if they were no longer damp. However a sensor which is now built into the drum can determine the temperature of the clothes and also their moisture content. When the clothes are dry the machine stops - therefore these machines are far more energy efficient than their predecessors.

Washer sensors
Anew washing machine will feature a number of sensors which all perform different tasks. A machine may not incorporate all of the sensors discussed below but will include at least one. They include:

o    Water level sensor - this sensor detects the water level in the washer when filling and emptying the machine.
o    Temperature sensor - this determines the temperature the water in the machine is heated to.
o    Out of balance sensor - this sensor is used to monitor the washing machine spin cycle and if it detects the spin is causing the machine to overbalance it will stop the cycle.
o    Leak sensor - some machines are fitted with sensors which can detect a leak.
o    Drum speed sensor - the drum speed will change depending on the cycle chosen. Some machines use the program to determine the speed of the machine, others will use a drum speed sensor.

Smoke sensors
A smoke detector features a sensor which detects the presence of smoke. This sensor is sometimes an optical sensor but more likely an ionization sensor.

Temperature sensors
Your central heating will feature a thermostat to control the temperature. Some systems use sophisticated programmers with integral temperature sensors so the heating can be programmed to turn on or off when needed.

Movement sensors
Home alarm systems will feature a movement sensor which detects movement in a room when the alarm is active. Most of these sensors use passive infrared (PIR) as their sensing medium.
Some homes will have many more sensors than the ones listed above and if you own a car you'll likely own over 40 sensors - without really knowing you ever did.
Francis French
About the Author:

Francis French is interested in new technology. She wrote this article about sensors in the home using knowledge gained in the industry over the last twenty years. She always likes to keep abreast of the latest in sensor design and regularly visits websites such as Impress Sensors.

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