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15 Best IoT Sensors To Develop IoT Applications and Solutions

IoT is one of the most exciting branches of computer science. If you look at the recent growth of technology all around the world, you will easily understand the role of IoT and how it is reshaping the work processes of every industry.

Although all industries have been using different sensors for a long time, IoT has evolved sensors to the next stage. Besides, due to the addition of IoT sensors, you can now control all of your devices using the same platform.

IoT analytics can also facilitate the process of data collection, monitoring, analyzing, or filtering to extract actionable insights. So, You can not only automate the regular processes but also add value to your services or products. 

Why Are IoT Sensors Important?

IoT has become an integral part of remaining in the competition for any organization and holds a strong position in the market. You have no choice but to follow the smarter way to increase the chance of becoming successful. Even for steady growth, it is important to combine the set of IoT sensors with IoT analytics effectively.

Without the proper implementation and maintenance of communication between the different sensors, it is impossible to make the most of an IoT infrastructure. Go through this article to know the best sensors on IoT you can find in the market now and learn about their best uses to boost the growth of your business in the long run. 

Best IoT Sensors To Develop IoT Applications

Top IoT SensorsIn this article, we are going to display the best IoT sensors that can improve the effectiveness and functionality of your IoT platform. If you are a student, this article should be helpful for you.

You will be able to generate project ideas and transform your thoughts into a working prototype. We will also discuss the best uses of these sensors through examples and existing applications, which will significantly enrich your knowledge of IoT to a great extent.

1. Pressure Sensor

When you want to measure the pressure of the surroundings, a Pressure Sensor can play an effective role by sending influential data to your system. It is important to keep track of any change in pressure that may cause severe changes in outcomes, especially in industries like manufacturing, food processing, etc.

There are many types of IoT pressure sensors that can send alerts and continuously monitor to detect any fluctuation. It can also help you stay one step ahead, which is crucial for making important decisions and acting accordingly.

These sensors can enable IoT platforms to monitor pressure-propelled systems. So whenever there is any difference from the standard pressure range, admins will get a notification right on their devices like smartphones, laptops, or PCs. As a result, you can fix the issues in advance and avoid interruptions that may incur a loss.

When you are working with water or heating systems, Pressure Sensors can become a lifesaver. Some sensors can detect abnormalities in hydraulic pressure and monitor system performance as well. 

2. Chemical Sensor

Just like a Pressure sensor, Chemical Sensors can monitor the environment. It can also measure the chemical changes to ensure any IoT Infrastructure’s performance. Any change in air chemicals can significantly affect the productivity of any system. That’s when Chemical IoT Sensors come into play with their physical transducer and a chemically selective layer.

Other properties like selectivity, sensitivity, lifetime, response time, and a standard signal-to-noise ratio are also considered when picking an IoT Chemical Sensor for your company or organization.

You will see Chemical Sensors in huge cities to save people from any environmental chemical change. Starting from Industrial environmental monitoring and process control, these sensors can also identify explosive and radioactive objects and recycling processes.

Besides, pharma industries and laboratories can also take advantage by integrating Chemical sensors with the IoT Platform. Fluorescent chloride sensors, Hydrogen sulfide sensors, Nondispersive infrared sensors, pH glass electrodes, Potentiometric sensors, and Zinc oxide nanorods are the most used Chemical Sensors in the market. 

3. Temperature Sensors

Temperature can be crucial for any electronic device. Even a subtle change in temperature can cause an interruption in performance and result in service breakdowns. As a result, temperature sensors are one of the most important parts of any large-scale IoT system.

It can measure the physical change in temperature from a certain source and convert it to actionable data. You have already seen many applications of these sensors, but the emergence of IoT has created more opportunities for these sensors.

Temperature sensors can be of many types, and we can also break down the temperature sensors into a wide range of subcategories. Some of them include thermocouples, resistor temperature detectors, thermistors, IC or semiconductors, and infrared sensors.

While the manufacturing industry can employ these sensors to ensure the environment required for machines, we can employ these sensors to build agricultural projects that can maximize crop production.

However, you should have a solid understanding of these sensors and how they work. Because if not installed properly, these devices can cause huge losses or permanent damage to your system by sending the wrong data.

4. Water Quality Sensor

We can use Water quality IoT sensors to measure water quality and monitor Ions in specific distribution systems. Water has an effective role in almost every industry around the world. The performance of industries like agriculture, dyeing, poultry or fisheries, dairy or sugar mills depends greatly on water quality.

Water needs to be monitored for a wide range of purposes. If these sensors are deployed properly, they can bring sustainable development and help keep production running smoothly.

There are many kinds of IoT Water sensors. But picking the suitable one for your IoT platform still remains the biggest challenge. We can make a list of subcategories of water sensors based on their functionality and usage.

To highlight the most used water sensors, Chlorine Residual Sensors, Total Organic Carbon Sensors, Turbidity Sensors, Conductivity Sensors, pH Sensors, and Oxygen-Reduction Potential Sensors can be mentioned. Each of these sensors is different from the others and can have certain features that help IoT administrators.

5. Smoke Sensor

You may have already seen devices that use Smoke sensors, especially in hotels, shopping malls, hospitals, universities, schools, etc. Mostly, where smoking is banned, these sensors can trigger alarms or send an alert message by detecting smoke. Besides, these sensors can keep people safe from dying in a fire and reduce the risk.

You will find Smoke sensors in industrial, commercial, or residential properties. With the help of IoT, it can also send notifications to the fire brigade as soon as any smoke is detected. And so it can minimize the damage by up to 50%.

There are two primary methods these sensors use to detect smoke. While optical smoke sensors use the light scatter principle, Ionization smoke sensors detect certain molecules to trigger an alarm.

IoT has made these sensors even more powerful with the help of AI and ML models. As a result, all industries are now equipped with Smoke sensors to save people working in dangerous environments and protect business owners from huge damage. 

6. Motion Detection Sensors

Smart IoT sensors that can detect motion will help you have a place where you do not want anybody’s presence at a certain time. These motion detection sensors are largely used in the security sector alongside energy management systems, smart camera equipment, and toll plazas to detect the motion of any object or human movement. Home automation devices can also take advantage of motion sensors to turn on or off fans, lights, or switches with IoT.

These sensors convert motion into an electric signal that the machine can read and store in a database. Large cities with huge populations can collect the necessary information to improve traffic control systems to a great extent.

Passive Infrared or PIR, Ultrasonic, and Microwave are the most used motion sensor types all around the world. Although these sensors were limited to security-related uses only, IoT has opened up new possibilities. Moreover, many projects have been built using these sensors in recent times.

7. Accelerometer Sensors

This is one of the most well-known sensors due to the rapid increase in smartphone users in recent years. Smartphone companies also deploy accelerometer sensors to detect vibrations, tilting, and acceleration. You can consider it as a transducer that can measure accelerations experienced by an object.

After detecting the physical change due to inertial forces, it can convert into an electrical output. In other words, accelerometers can find the rate of change in velocity concerning time. These sensors are now used in millions of IoT devices.

On top of that, you will find many projects already developed based on accelerometers. Especially when it comes to home automation or security, these sensors can send automated alerts to the admins or record data for future analysis.

Many types of accelerometer sensors are available out there for specific purposes. Hall-effect accelerometers or capacitive accelerometers can detect voltage variations, and piezoelectric accelerometers can also detect shock, vibration, or pressure.

8. Optical Sensors

We have already discussed the different types of IoT sensors that are currently available. I have included the optical sensor in this list due to its widespread use all around the world. It has an effective role in many industries where it is important to track environmental changes firsthand.

These sensors can sense the physical quantity of light rays before sending a machine-readable electronic signal to the users. As a result, IoT experts can continuously monitor different things and come to a decision.

Almost all industries have been benefiting from optical sensors. Especially healthcare, environment monitoring, energy, and aerospace can make the most out of optical sensors by deploying them on-premises or in their IoT infrastructure.

If you look at the recent history, you will easily understand the strong position of oil companies, pharmaceutical companies, and mining companies in the market. The most common types of Optical Sensors include photodetector, fiber optics, pyrometer, proximity, and infrared. 

9. Image Sensors

The primary role of an image sensor is to convert an optical image to an electronic signal and make it understandable to machines. You can extract meaningful information from the extraction of hidden patterns, pixels, or color palettes.

Thus, you can make better decisions based on that information. Digital camera modules are a great example of how image sensors can add value to your service and improve performance with the help of software.

Millions of devices use Image sensors such as night vision equipment, thermal imaging devices, radar, sonar, media house, Biometric, and IRIS devices as well. Charge-coupled devices and complementary metal-oxide semiconductors are the two main image sensors you will find in the current market.

They are used in cars to detect signs or signals and facilitate the emergence of driverless cars to a great extent. You can also make security or retail industry-based projects to analyze customers’ behavior. Moreover, you can store their information, such as race, gender, and age.  

10. IR Sensors

We have been experiencing the infrared functionality for quite a long time now. Although it was only limited to smartphones or remote controls, the arrival of IoT has opened the door to new possibilities for IR sensors. There are many industries where you have to consider certain characteristics by continuously monitoring the surroundings.

That’s when IR IoT sensors can come into play to measure the infrared radiation from any object. Healthcare technologies are largely using IR sensors to observe blood flow and measure blood pressure as well. Smartwatches use these sensors to collect data on your health and send alerts whenever any abnormality is observed.

Besides, some common uses of IR sensors also include home appliances, breath analysis, infrared vision, other wearable electronics, optical communication, and automotive blind-angle detection. You will also find the latest home automation devices using IR sensors, and some projects under development will enable us to prevent heat or chemical leaks in your surrounding environment.  

11. Gas Sensor

We have already discussed the chemical sensor above in this list. The gas sensor is similar to the chemical sensor, but it focuses on measuring the air quality to detect the gases at a certain time.

It can play an important role in checking the air pollution level and send an alert to the National Weather Bureau to take necessary actions. Alongside air quality monitoring, various industries, such as manufacturing, agriculture, and the health sector, use gas sensors a lot.

Gas Sensors are available in many types. The importance of detecting toxic or combustible gas is not describable in words. Without any gas sensor, running oil and gas industries, chemical research, paints and rubber manufacturing, pharmaceutical, and petrochemicals are impossible.

The most common Gas Sensors available in the market include Oxygen sensors, Ozone monitors, Electrochemical gas sensors, Gas detectors, Hygrometers, Carbon dioxide sensors, breathalyzers, Carbon monoxide detectors, Catalytic bead sensors, and so on.

12. Level Sensors

You will find significant similarities between Level Sensors and IR sensors. While IR sensors detect infrared radiation, Level sensors can sense any change in the level of substances like fluid and liquids.

We can deploy these sensors in an open or closed system where fluids can flow in and out. Many people know these sensors as fuel level sensors, although there are many ways where we can incorporate level sensors successfully.

Businesses where you have to work with liquids can come into play and increase productivity when leveling sensors. The Alcohol or juice industry and the recycling industry have to rely on these sensors greatly. It is important for stable performance and ensuring the quality of products. Although there is a wide array of level sensors in the market, people nowadays mostly use Point-level sensors and Continuous-level Sensors. 

13. Humidity Sensor

It is an important sensor type to measure moisture and air temperature. These IoT sensors can identify the amount of water vapor in an atmosphere or gas and have proved helpful for many industries. It is important for many organizations or businesses to ensure the perfect working conditions for maximizing production.

So, you will have to use a humidity sensor to ensure stable machine performance. It will enable you to keep delivering quality goods to your customers. You can also take immediate action if any sudden change is detected.

With the help of IoT, humidity sensors have become more powerful nowadays and can send notifications upon specific changes instantaneously. So, the use of these sensors has increased significantly in recent times. Especially the automotive industry, meteorology stations, coatings industries, and hospitals can store medicines efficiently. 

14. Sound Sensors

It is one of the most used sensors all around the world. This is a basic sensor type that can convert a sound wave to a machine-readable electronic signal. Usually, it uses the intensity of any sound to process the signal. And depending on the predefined sound level, it can send notifications to your IoT dashboard.

You can use these sound sensors to develop certain projects. Due to recent technological developments, these sensors have become inexpensive and easily accessible as well. Sound sensors can be of many types. You can also deploy sound sensors on other electronic devices to extend their functionality.

For example, if you want to make a room quiet or soundproof, you can use sound sensors. Also, these sensors can protect you by triggering an alarm for home security if there is any change in the sound intensity from the predefined range. Noise level meters also take support from sound sensors to detect noise across a certain range of frequencies.

15. Magnetic Sensors

To conclude this list of IoT sensors,  I would love to mention the Magnetic Sensor. We use magnetic sensors to facilitate IoT platforms. When it comes to consumer and industrial applications, magnetic sensors can play a major role. It helps detect large metal bodies like cars, panels, housing, etc.

These sensors can measure flux, strength, and direction to identify any change in a magnetic field. So, whenever a sudden change is noticed, users can take action to prevent any possible interruption in the work processes.

Tunneling Magnetoresistive, Reed Switches, and Hall Effect are the commonly used magnetic sensors. We can measure mechanical displacement and industrial motions. Alongside this, other consumer applications can also enjoy the benefits if incorporated with the IoT dashboard perfectly.

If you want to understand better, check the ongoing projects that use Magnetic Sensors at the core. This will help you to know more and enable you to use one of these sensors in your project. 

Finally, Insights

Sensors cover a major part of the cutting-edge technologies shifting our lives towards the fourth industrial revolution. The companies are focusing more on minimizing the release time of new chipsets and semiconductors. We can not even keep track of the latest innovations and often get lost when picking one from the millions of options.

However, without smart IoT sensors, achieving such acceleration would never have been possible for companies. These sensors have enabled us to interact with machines. Besides, businesses can collect important data and extract hidden meanings to respond accordingly. This can dramatically increase the chance of becoming successful for any organization and make a strong position in the blue whale competitive market. 

Mehedi Hasan
Mehedi Hasan
Mehedi Hasan is a passionate enthusiast for technology. He admires all things tech and loves to help others understand the fundamentals of Linux, servers, networking, and computer security in an understandable way without overwhelming beginners. His articles are carefully crafted with this goal in mind - making complex topics more accessible.


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