What are the different types of sensors? Sensors, or detectors, are mechanisms that convert physical quantity to signals. They are used in our everyday life in objects like elevator buttons, touch lamps, and many others. You see, in laymen’s terms, sensors are devices that respond when a touch signal is received. There are two main types of sensors, the optical sensor and the microwave sensors.
The first of the two main types of sensors are the optical sensors. As the name implies, these are sensors that, well, react to light. When visible lights are present, these sensors will react. Among the many kinds of light, these sensors use infrared lights and rays to activate them.
There are two subcategories of observation methods where these types of sensors are used. The first are the visible infrared remote sensing. This is the method wherein visible light are reflected by the objects on ground. It works by enabling the examination of the reflection strength as well as the land surface condition to understand it better. The downside of these types of sensors is that it cannot be used when there is darkness. Also, you cannot rely on these methods when it is cloudy or when the sunlight isn’t too bright.
The second subcategory would be the thermal infrared sensing. You see, from the name itself, you will be able to understand that the sensors are picking up the signals through heat. When the infrared rays are emitted from the land surface, these sensors will get them and are able to show images basing on the radiation strength. This is a good method to use when the first one is not available.
The other half of the types of sensors is microwave sensors. These are sensors that, well, utilize the use of microwave signals. These are mainly used when the visible light as well as infrared rays are not available anymore. These are also used when the observation methods are not affected by weather or light. When it comes to microwave sensors, there are two observation types as well -passive and active.
The types of sensors used in the active type observation method works by emitting microwave signals that are reflected in the land surface. This allows the observation of the land bodies such as valleys and mountains to be efficient and accurate. The second observation type, passive, uses the types of sensors by observing the microwave signals directly radiated from the sea surface. This therefore is used mostly in observing the temperature of sea surface as well as the ice thickness of a certain area. This type of observation methods are great because they are not affected by weather and air moisture, hence allowing a more accurate observation and more detailed results when it comes to the land details.
Always keep in mind that the wavelengths that are measured by both types of sensors are dependent to them. Getting to know these two different types of sensors will allow you to be able to choose the right types of sensors to use at certain observation scenarios.