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Benefits of Solid State Oxygen Sensors

Solid State Oxygen Sensors

Oxygen sensors are used commonly throughout the world in providing solutions for boiler combustion, cryogenics, aviation, diving, modified atmosphere packaging, welding, scientific and medical environments.

Today, we are finding more and more of our oxygen sensor solutions being used to assist in furthering medical industries in anesthesia, respiration, and even used in ventilators during COVID-19.

We decided to collaborate with our oxygen sensing partners, SST Sensing to provide details for customers on 4 ways you can benefit from using solid-state oxygen sensors across multiple fields and applications. 

How does an oxygen sensor work?

The oxygen sensors available at CO2Meter use one of three technologies:  electrochemical, zirconia, or optical sensing.

Learn more about the differences here.

Across these core technologies, all of our oxygen sensors are designed to measure the quantity of oxygen either by diffusion or by sampling the gas to be measured.  

Choosing which oxygen sensor technology best meets your needs depends on your application and use case. For example, environmental oxygen sensors measure 0-25% oxygen by volume, whereas industrial oxygen sensors may need to measure 95% or more oxygen by volume.

How can you benefit from using solid-state Oxygen Sensors?

Solid-state oxygen sensors that use optical technologies have surpassed electro-galvanic fuel cells in virtually every aspect. Electro-galvanic fuel cells once set the benchmark for oxygen sensing technologies. 

These oxygen sensors operate like a battery using an expendable electrolyte that is reactive with oxygen. However, the accuracy of electro-galvanic oxygen sensors, their minimal life span, and need for constant recalibration has been repeatedly called into question.

Their cross-sensitivity with other gases and the rate the chemicals used within are depleted are reliant on the levels of concentration of the target gas.

In this article, SST Sensing provides four of the primary benefits of solid-state oxygen sensors in more detail. 

1. Cost-Effective

Generally, solid-state oxygen sensors are cost-competitive with electrochemical (EC) sensors. There is a misconception that the technology demands increased up-front investment, compared to that of electro-galvanic cells, but nothing is farther from the truth.

While there may be a slightly higher up-front cost, the non-depleting technology in solid-state optical oxygen sensors result in a 2-5 times longer lifespan than comparable electro-galvanic cells. 

2. Operation over a Wider Temperature Range

Typically electrochemical sensing solutions are sensitive to temperature and therefore require external compensation, using hardware or software methods.

optical oxygen sensor

With solid-state oxygen sensors, such as the Luminox UV Flux 25% Oxygen Smart Sensor, contain built-in temperature and pressure sensors that can work below the freezing point. What this means, is not only does the Luminox sensor measure and compensate for temperature, but it also has a two-wire communication interface that allows the gas temperature and pressure to be measured and further transmitted.

3. Longer Life-Span

We frequently hear all too often, that one of the primary setbacks of purchasing an electrochemical oxygen sensor is the depleting nature by which they operate.

Alternatively, optical sensor technologies are typically founded on non-depleting techniques like fluorescence quenching, which utilizes an oxygen-sensitive fluorescent dye that is sparked with pulsed light. This fluorescence is detected, and the rate of fluorescent decay over time is measured as a function of ppO2. 

LuminOx solid-state oxygen sensors can remain in service for 5 years or more, providing high performance and extremely reliable oxygen measurements long-term. 

4. Minimal Cross-Sensitivity

Electrochemical sensors generally come with a list of cross sensitive gases that affect the oxygen reading and therefore increase or decrease the output current.

Optical solid-state oxygen sensors have minimal cross-sensitivity with other gases as luminescence/fluorescence quenching by oxygen is highly selective to oxygen molecules. 

Solid State Oxygen Sensor Examples

CO2Meter continues to provide best-in-class oxygen sensors which are based on cutting-edge sensing technologies for a variety of industries and applications, nationwide.

In providing both zirconia oxygen sensors and optical oxygen sensors both sensing solutions operate on the principle of fluorescence quenching.

Zirconia Oxygen Sensor System

When looking at zirconia oxygen sensors, such as the Zirconia Oxygen Sensor System this offers a complete oxygen level measurement solution removing the need for customers to develop their own electronics and utilized in combustion, coal, biomass, and oxygen generation systems. 

The LuminOx range of optical oxygen sensors alternatively is sought after because they are 100% RoHS and REACH compliant. What this means is that they do not use lead or any other hazardous materials during the manufacturing process. These sensors also are low cost, low power, and provide a longer lifespan from other oxygen-sensing solutions. 

If you would like more information on oxygen sensing solutions contact the professionals at CO2Meter

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