SmartIR CO2 Sensing – Improving our quality of life

This Paper discusses some of the application areas for Smart CO2 sensing and the leading semiconductor-based technology, developed by Gas Sensing Solutions (GSS) which is already being employed in these applications and more….

SmartIR CO2 sensing – helping to feed the world

Horticulture is key market area which can benefit from CO2 management. The productivity of industrial growing enclosures can be significantly enhanced by monitoring and controlling the concentration of CO2. Multiple crop cycles can be achieved by optimal temperature, light and CO2 control.

Using this technique, overall plant growth productivity can be improved up to 40%. Produce transportation is another area where CO2 sensing can significantly reduce wastage and help to ensure the product reaches its destination in peak condition. A myriad of foods are now exported and imported globally and in many cases have to travel thousands of miles in containers. The natural ripening process of these foods, such as bananas, can be accelerated or delayed by monitoring and adjusting the level of CO2 accordingly.

Other associated food processing applications include individual, quick freezing of small food items with cryogenic CO2 gas to lock in the moisture, shape and freshness. Carbon dioxide is widely used in modified-atmosphere packaging to prolong the shelf life of food where a decrease in its concentration can signify leakage in a package. Freshness and safety of modified atmosphere food packages can be determined by detection of CO2 concentrations.

SmartIR CO2 sensing – Breath Analysis for Health

Patient monitoring is another key application for CO2 sensing. Capnography involves monitoring the concentration or partial pressure of CO2 in the respiratory gases.

Moreover, the GSS technology provides a means of inherent high rate sampling, enabling temporal characteristic of exhaled CO2 to be measured in real time, providing a diagnostic/ management tool for a wide variety of chronic respiratory conditions.                                              

The GSS technology is also being progressed for respiratory monitoring in sports exercise and recreational sports applications. Similarly, this SmartIR technology can be applied to a wide variety of health related applications which include, for example, sports fitness, baby monitoring and sleeping disorder management

SmartIR CO2 sensing – reducing our carbon footprint

Commercial  buildings  are  responsible  for  at  least  40%  of  the  world’s  total  energy consumption  yet it is estimated that  96% of existing building stock currently do not have effective building energy management systems in place. The use of Demand Controlled Ventilation (DCV) with CO2 sensing provides a route to achieving significant global energy savings.

Current  deployment  and  powering  of  carbon  dioxide  sensors  into  buildings for  Indoor Air Quality (IAQ)  and DCV  is  normally  through  wired  connection  to  the building’s electrical supply. However, the market demand for autonomous, wireless CO2 sensors is accelerating due to the ease of installation and overall lower cost of maintenance.

SmartIR CO2 sensing – the technology behind the sensor

So far we have discussed some of the ever increasing applications for SmartIR CO2 sensing. Now let’s turn our attention to the leadership technology developed by GSS to enable these hugely successful sensors.

GSS sensors are based on the NDIR (non-dispersive infrared) optical method of detecting gases.

The GSS SmartIR low power consumption NDIR CO2  gas sensors are based on mid-infrared, solid state, light emitting  diode  (LED)  and photodiode  (PD) technology.   LED’s  offer the  advantage  of  high  source emittance,  fast  modulation  rates, longevity and  room  temperature  operation  with  no  burn-in  and  are  more  cost effective than laser diodes for deployment in practical gas sensors. Specific performance benefits include low power consumption at continuous monitoring of  <3.5mW and rapid stabilisation time of <2s. The combination of low power and fast stabilisation allows measurements to be made using as little as 10mJ per measurement.

SmartIR CO2 sensing – GSS Engineering Solutions

GSS has developed a range of CO2 sensors to meet the wide range of conditions our customers need to measure. The range includes sensors optimised for high speed, or for low power, for high concentrations, and for in line measurement. GSS can recommend the best sensor for particular applications, and provide advice on how best to integrate these sensors into user products or processes.

When something special is required, GSS has significant experience in designing bespoke carbon dioxide measurement solutions for clients. We recognise that our clients are experts in their field, but may have less experience in sensor systems design and integration. GSS can design custom sensors, provide applications support and expertise, or create and manufacturing an entire user application.

Our team of engineers have developed unique solutions for our clients and can offer support in software, firmware, optical design, electronic design and mechanical design

GSS SmartIR CO2 Sensing – About Us

Gas Sensing Solutions,

In 2010, GSS Launched COZIR, the World’s Lowest Power Consumption NDIR CO2 Sensor and in 2012 introduced SprintIR, the World’s Fastest Response NDIR CO2 Sensor.

GSS received a John Logie Baird Award in recognition of outstanding achievement in the ‘Impact Through Innovation’ category and won the Shell Springboard Award for Scotland, Northern Ireland & Northern England recognizing innovation in tackling climate change. In 2014, GSS won the Institute of Physics Innovation award for their low power CO2 sensor technology.

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