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Special Issue "Low Cost Mid-Infrared Sensor Technologies"

A special issue of Sensors (ISSN 1424-8220). This special issue belongs to the section "Electronic Sensors".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 March 2021.

Special Issue Editors

Dr. Daniel Popa
Website
Guest Editor
Department of Engineering, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, UK
Interests: optical sensors; photonics; optics; spectroscopy; nanotechnology; smart sensors
Dr. Richard Hopper
Website
Guest Editor
Department of Engineering, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, UK
Interests: optical sensors; infrared; gas sensors; MEMS; low power sensors; physical computation
Dr. Peter Carrington
Website
Guest Editor
Faculty of Science and Technology, Lancaster University, Lancaster, UK
Interests: Mid-Infrared photonic materials and devices including lasers, LEDs and detectors; hermophotovoltaics (TPVs) for waste-heat recovery; quantum dot solar cells; silicon photonics

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Low cost optical sensing technology has mainly been limited to visible and near infrared (IR) wavelengths; however, there is increased demand for low cost optical sensing technology for longer mid-IR wavelengths (2.5–25 µm), for applications including air quality monitoring, thermal imaging, spectroscopy, chemical and bio sensing.

Many existing mid-IR optical components (e.g., emitters, detectors, lenses, waveguides and filters) cannot be easily integrated into consumer products due to their high cost, low reliability, or large form factor. In addition, active mid-IR components have not typically benefitted from smart on-chip circuitry.

Recent advances in the field of low cost mid-IR sensing technology have included the development of microbolometer based thermal imaging cameras, plasmonic emitters and detectors, LEDs, hollow waveguides, pyroelectric and thermopile detectors. These advances have made it possible to develop compact and inexpensive systems for mid-IR sensing applications.

This Special Issue aims to bring together work from researchers active in the development of innovative mid-IR sensor technology, with a focus on low cost optical components and systems which could be used in the future generation of smart sensors for consumer products. These include:

  • Uncooled mid-IR emitter and detector technologies, including thermal, photonic, and multi-spectral devices.
  • Low cost mid-IR optical components, including waveguides, lenses and filters.
  • The novel application of the above technology for smart sensor systems, including for gas, thermal, multi-spectral, chemical and bio sensing.

Both review articles and original research papers are solicited.

Dr. Daniel Popa
Dr. Richard Hopper
Dr. Peter Carrington
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Sensors is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2200 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

Mid-infrared light sources:

  • thermal sources
  • LEDs
  • laser diodes
  • plasmonic sources
  • multi-spectral sensors

Passive mid-infrared optical components:

  • waveguides
  • lenses
  • optical filters

Mid-infrared sensor technologies:

  • thermocouple sensors
  • bolometers
  • pyroelectric sensors
  • photodiodes
  • image sensors
  • multi-spectral sensors
  • plasmonic sources

Applications of mid-infrared sensor technologies:

  • thermal imaging
  • gas sensing
  • spectral sensing
  • chemical sensing
  • bio-sensing
  • smart sensors

Published Papers (3 papers)

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Open AccessArticle
Privacy-Preserved Fall Detection Method with Three-Dimensional Convolutional Neural Network Using Low-Resolution Infrared Array Sensor
Sensors 2020, 20(20), 5957; https://doi.org/10.3390/s20205957 - 21 Oct 2020
Abstract
Due to the rapid aging of the population in recent years, the number of elderly people in hospitals and nursing homes is increasing, which results in a shortage of staff. Therefore, the situation of elderly citizens requires real-time attention, especially when dangerous situations [...] Read more.
Due to the rapid aging of the population in recent years, the number of elderly people in hospitals and nursing homes is increasing, which results in a shortage of staff. Therefore, the situation of elderly citizens requires real-time attention, especially when dangerous situations such as falls occur. If staff cannot find and deal with them promptly, it might become a serious problem. For such a situation, many kinds of human motion detection systems have been in development, many of which are based on portable devices attached to a user’s body or external sensing devices such as cameras. However, portable devices can be inconvenient for users, while optical cameras are affected by lighting conditions and face privacy issues. In this study, a human motion detection system using a low-resolution infrared array sensor was developed to protect the safety and privacy of people who need to be cared for in hospitals and nursing homes. The proposed system can overcome the above limitations and have a wide range of application. The system can detect eight kinds of motions, of which falling is the most dangerous, by using a three-dimensional convolutional neural network. As a result of experiments of 16 participants and cross-validations of fall detection, the proposed method could achieve 98.8% and 94.9% of accuracy and F1-measure, respectively. They were 1% and 3.6% higher than those of a long short-term memory network, and show feasibility of real-time practical application. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Low Cost Mid-Infrared Sensor Technologies)
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Open AccessArticle
Miniaturised Infrared Spectrophotometer for Low Power Consumption Multi-Gas Sensing
Sensors 2020, 20(14), 3843; https://doi.org/10.3390/s20143843 - 09 Jul 2020
Abstract
Concept, design and practical implementation of a miniaturized spectrophotometer, utilized as a mid-infrared-based multi gas sensor is described. The sensor covers an infrared absorption wavelength range of 2.9 to 4.8 um, providing detection capabilities for carbon dioxide, carbon monoxide, nitrous oxide, sulphur dioxide, [...] Read more.
Concept, design and practical implementation of a miniaturized spectrophotometer, utilized as a mid-infrared-based multi gas sensor is described. The sensor covers an infrared absorption wavelength range of 2.9 to 4.8 um, providing detection capabilities for carbon dioxide, carbon monoxide, nitrous oxide, sulphur dioxide, ammonia and methane. A lead selenide photo-detector array and customized MEMS-based micro-hotplate are used as the detector and broadband infrared source, respectively. The spectrophotometer optics are based on an injection moulded Schwarzschild configuration incorporating optical pass band filters for the spectral discrimination. This work explores the effects of using both fixed-line pass band and linear variable optical filters. We report the effectiveness of this low-power-consumption miniaturized spectrophotometer as a stand-alone single and multi-gas sensor, usage of a distinct reference channel during gas measurements, development of ideal optical filters and spectral control of the source and detector. Results also demonstrate the use of short-time pulsed inputs as an effective and efficient way of operating the sensor in a low-power-consumption mode. We describe performance of the spectrometer as a multi-gas sensor, optimizing individual component performances, power consumption, temperature sensitivity and gas properties using modelling and customized experimental procedures. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Low Cost Mid-Infrared Sensor Technologies)
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Open AccessLetter
Crosstalk Analysis of a CMOS Single Membrane Thermopile Detector Array
Sensors 2020, 20(9), 2573; https://doi.org/10.3390/s20092573 - 30 Apr 2020
Abstract
We present a new experimental technique to characterise the crosstalk of a thermopile-based thermal imager, based on bi-directional electrical heating of thermopile elements. The new technique provides a significantly simpler and more reliable method to determine the crosstalk, compared to a more complex [...] Read more.
We present a new experimental technique to characterise the crosstalk of a thermopile-based thermal imager, based on bi-directional electrical heating of thermopile elements. The new technique provides a significantly simpler and more reliable method to determine the crosstalk, compared to a more complex experimental setup with a laser source. The technique is used to characterise a novel single-chip array, fabricated on a single dielectric membrane. We propose a theoretical model to simulate the crosstalk, which shows good agreement with the experimental results. Our results allow a better understanding of the thermal effects in these devices, which are at the center of a rising market of industrial and consumer applications. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Low Cost Mid-Infrared Sensor Technologies)
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