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  • IoT Sensors & Bundles & Platforms, Oh My!
  • Break Your Sensors Out of Their Silos
  • Achieving in-transit visibility in complex supply chains
  • Case Study: How Megla is Implementing IoT to Unleash Data
  • Growing Gains: Microsoft on scaling to hundreds of microservices
  • Axonize launches partnership with Singtel and enters the Asian and Australian markets
  • Case Study: How Groupe Tera is Using IoT to Measure Air Quality Sensor Data
  • Case Study: Deutsche Telekom Selects the Axonize IoT Orchestration Platform
  • Case Study: How Optus is Using IoT to Disrupt the Retail Industry in Australia
  • Diving into Edge Computing
  • AXONIZE SELECTED AS ONE OF THE TOP IOT STARTUPS OF 2018
  • Case Study: Fast Food Chain Saves 27% on energy consumption
  • Case Study: Hotel Improves Efficiency & Customer Experience with IoT
  • Case Study: Presidential House Installs Comprehensive Monitoring of Mission Critical Server Room
  • POPULAR IOT PROTOCOLS 2018: AN OVERVIEW & COMPARISON [Updated]
  • How Companies today are Achieving End-to-End Supply Chain Visibility
  • Deutsche Telekom IoT Leadership Visits Bezeq & Axonize
  • Accelerating time-to-market by 90% with Microsoft Azure
  • Axonize Wins Deutsche Telekom Investment for Innovative IoT Platform
  • Great speaking to 100+ IoT service providers last week at Mobile World Congress
  • NEED TO KNOW: 2018 NEW ORCHESTRATION FEATURES
  • Using IoT Orchestration to Break Down the Silos
  • Your winning IoT strategy for 2018
  • What is IoT orchestration?
  • HOW FACILITY MANAGERS ARE "SMARTIFYING" THEIR BUILDINGS FOR INCREASED PROFITABILITY
  • Case Study: How Bezeq is ‘Smartifying’ Kindergartens & Schools
  • The 4 keys to starting small and scaling successfully in IoT
  • IoT revenue is in the application development for service providers
  • An IoT World, and We're Just Living In It
  • What makes a great product?
  • IoT Comics - Trackers
  • Axonize answers McKinsey’s Top 10 Questions to Ask Before Choosing an IoT Platform
  • The Axonize IoT Platform: An Introduction
  • Most Popular IoT Use Case? Smart Energy Management
  • Everything You Need to Know: Deloitte's The Building of the Future Meetup
  • AXONIZE NAMED ONE OF THE TOP 10 MOST DISRUPTIVE COMPANIES
  • What is an IoT Platform & When to Use One
  • Popular IoT protocols: An overview & comparison
  • How we optimized our build and release pipeline in order to deploy live IoT applications faster
  • Case Study: Leading Israeli service provider Bezeq chooses Axonize to deliver digital business services
  • The most frequently asked IoT questions
  • How System Integrators are growing their IoT business these days
  • THE SURVEY RESULTS ARE IN: INTEGRATORS’ TOP ROADBLOCKS TO IOT BUSINESS GROWTH
  • The Agile IoT Manifesto
  • Walk the IoT Walk
  • In it to win it: Start small, scale fast, win big
  • In It To Win IT: How to get to a live IoT project in 4 days
  • In it to win it: why system integrators should be taking over IoT
  • Did IoT take down the Internet?
  • Joining Collections in MongoDB using the C# driver and LINQ
  • Simple or sophisticated? What kind of IoT platform do you need?
  • The Benefits & Downfalls of Using Azure Stream Analytics for IOT Applications
  • Smart City Orchestration in Action - Connecting All City Smart Apps
  • The Case for A Smart Campus, From Someone Who Would Benefit
  • The Top 3 Considerations in Evaluating and Selecting an IoT Platform

Sensors have become a part of our daily lives, whether we realize it or not. They’ve taken over our homes (hello, Alexa), our cars, our jobs and cities. They’ve turned our mundane tasks into “smart” living. But what do you really know about sensors and their automation capabilities?

What is a Sensor?Let’s start out by defining a sensor. Simply stated, a sensor is a device that detects or measures a physical property and records, indicates or responds to it by transmitting a resulting impulse. It converts a physical specification (such as temperature, speed, distance etc.) into a signal which can be electrically recorded.

Sensors have been around for decades, but recent IoT solutions have boosted their popularity and need for more sophisticated and technologically-loaded sensors. Sensors today must encompass the ability to communicate with other sensors and platforms within an entire ‘sensor ecosystem’. The role of the sensor is extremely important in the overall IoT picture.

The number and variety of sensors that gather information to be measured and analyzed is growing significantly, especially with the rise of automation. For this reason, most types of sensors fall under a sensor classification system.

Classification of SensorsSensors can be ranked into various classification systems, but for the sake of simplification, we have divided them into 5 core classifications.

  1. Active and Passive Sensors
    • Active Sensors (also known as parametric sensors) are sensors that require an external power source to operate. Examples of active sensors include GPS sensors and radar sensors.
    • Passive Sensors (also called self-generated sensors) generate their own electric signal and do not require any external power source. Examples of passive sensors include thermal sensors, electric field sensing and metal detecting.
  2. Contact and Non-Contact Sensors
    • Contact Sensors are those that require a physical contact with their stimulus. Familiar examples of contact sensors are temperature and strain gauge sensors.
    • Non-Contact Sensors, on the other hand, require no physical contact. These types of sensors include optical and magnetic sensors, as well as infrared thermometers.
  3. Absolute and Relative Sensors
    • Absolute Sensors mimic its name by providing an absolute reading of its stimulus. For example, a thermistor always measures the exact, or absolute, temperature reading.
    • Relative Sensors provide measurement to a fixed or variable measurement. An example of a relative sensor would be a thermocouple, where the temperature difference is measured, not the actual temperature.
  4. Analog and Digital Sensors
    • Analog Sensors produce continuous analog output signals, proportional to its measurement. A few examples of analog sensors are: accelerometers, pressure sensors, light and sound sensors.
    • Digital Sensors (also known as electronic or electrochemical sensors) convert the data transmission, digitally. Examples include digital accelerometers, pressure and temperature sensors.
  5. Miscellaneous Sensors
    • Of course, there are plenty of other types of sensors in the field and they would fall under the ‘other’ or miscellaneous category. These include electric, biological, chemical,  radioactive and more.

Sensors, Sensors EverywhereAs you can see, within the 5 classifications for sensors, there can be thousands of sensors available to choose from, ranging from the more common to the extremely rare.

The most common sensors are typically used for measuring physical properties such as temperature, heat, conduction etc. Here are a few examples of these commonly used sensors:

  • Temperature Sensor
  • CO2 Sensor
  • Proximity Sensor
  • Accelerometer
  • IR Sensor (Infrared Sensor)
  • Pressure Sensor
  • Light Sensor
  • Smoke, Gas and Alcohol Sensor
  • Touch Sensor

IoT Bundles to the RescueExamining each type and classification of sensor can be an overwhelming process, especially when it comes to choosing which sensors your business needs. It can be a hodge-podge of confusion, but IoT bundles take the fear and uncertainty out of the equation. Stay tuned for the next blog post where we dive deeper into IoT bundles, discuss what is out there, and the benefits of these for companies today.