What are the Different Types of Gas Sensors?

What are the Different Types of Gas Sensors? - Otis Instruments

In many areas, flammable and toxic gases occur, and they pose a significant threat to all personnel. To properly detect present gases and vapors within these areas, it is important to select the most appropriate gas sensors for an application: electrochemical, catalytic, low-powered infrared, or photoionization detector (PID). 

Electrochemical

Electrochemical (EC) sensors measure the concentration of a target gas by oxidizing or reducing the target gas and the electrode is measuring the resulting electrical current output. These types of gas sensors are used for detecting oxygen and toxic gases. 

Catalytic 

Catalytic sensors oxidize a combustible gas and converts the temperature changes into an electric signal. The catalytic sensor is the most common type of sensor used for detecting and measuring combustible gases, such as methane, propane and hydrogen. 

What are the Different Types of Gas Sensors? - Otis Instruments

Low-Powered Infrared

Low-powered infrared (IR) sensors measure trace gases by determining the absorption of an emitted infrared light source through an air sample. These types of gas sensors are used for detecting carbon dioxide and combustible gases, when there is no oxygen present.

Photoionization Detector (PID)

Photoionization detectors (PID) break molecules into positive and negative charged ions and measure the electrical charge of these ions using a detector to display the amount of present gas or vapor. These sensors are used for detecting volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and toxic gases. 

Otis Instruments supplies a variety of wired and WireFree easy-to-use, robust and configurable gas detectors capable of detecting both toxic and non-toxic gases. Designed for diverse applications, our customizable gas detection units offer electrochemical, catalytic bead, low-power infrared or photoionization detector (PID) gas sensors capable of responding to a number of gases. 

If you’re not sure which gas sensor will best suit your assembly or application, contact Otis Instruments today.