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Future Sensing Technology

Cornell University_011121D
[Cornell University]


- Overview

Sensors are an integral part of modern infrastructure, scientific research and transportation systems. Bridges, buildings, vehicles and other devices now rely on sophisticated sensing and imaging systems to convey information and interact with the world. 

For example, autonomous vehicles rely on multi-sensor suites to safely navigate the vehicle through urban and rural areas in a variety of weather conditions. Sensor systems are also critical for environmental monitoring and helping to protect human health and safety. 

As these sensors and their associated data products evolve, these expanding areas require continued collaboration among researchers, government agencies, and industry companies.


- Revolutionizing Sensor Technology

Sensing technology uses sensors to detect physical, chemical, or biological properties and convert them into readable signals. Sensors convert physical properties into electrical properties, such as resistance. A sensing system, usually a circuit, measures the electrical property and the physical property. 

A sensor can output whether an object is present or not present (binary) or what measurement value has been reached (analog or digital). 

Here are some ways sensor technology can be revolutionized: 

  • Miniaturization: Shrinking sensors while maintaining or improving functionality can open up new possibilities for embedding sensors in various devices and applications. This includes wearable devices, Internet of Things (IoT) devices, and even implantable sensors for healthcare applications.
  • Energy harvesting: This technology allows sensors to generate their own power from their environment, eliminating the need for batteries or external power sources. This is particularly useful in areas where sensors are located in remote or hard-to-reach locations.
  • Autonomous work: Sensors will also be able to work autonomously in the same manner. A machine will then become self-learning.
  • Adaptive sensing: Sensors can adapt their sensing parameters based on environmental changes, optimizing performance and energy efficiency.
  • Low-cost sensors: Advanced low-cost sensor technologies are essential for gathering data and utilizing it for effective performance by manufacturing companies and supply chains.


- Future Trends in Sensing Technology

Here are some future trends in sensing technology: 

  • AI and IoT sensors: AI and IoT are predicted to be the future of technology. Sensors can be placed in devices that are made wearable and light for humans.
  • LiDAR sensors: These sensors can improve safety and efficiency in transportation systems, enabling features like autonomous driving and collision avoidance.
  • Augmented reality (AR) sensors: These sensors will play an important role in shaping the future as AR becomes more accessible and integrated into industries like retail and gaming.
  • Smaller, smarter sensors: These sensors can provide new insights into the world around us, such as inside a cancerous cell or the ocean floor.
  • Intelligent sensing: This can be combined with artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) to support agile decision-making and drive performance optimization.
  • Making large amounts of data available: This data can be shared with partners that have their own specialism.

Other future sensing technologies include: 

  • Cameras and systems
  • RADAR systems
  • Hyperspectral
  • Computational methods
  • LIDAR technology and applications
  • Polarization sensing and imaging
  • EO/IR/SWIR sensing


[Haifa, Israel]

- Smart Sensing Technology

Smart sensing is an emerging technology that is used in various applications like healthcare monitoring and industrial applications. A smart sensor consists of a number of sensors that collect input from the physical environment to do a specific task based on the collected inputs.  

Smart sensor technology will have a profound impact on many applications in the future, including: 

  • Food safety
  • Biological hazard detection
  • Safety hazard detection and warning
  • Environmental monitoring
  • Health monitoring and medical diagnostics
  • Industrial and aerospace applications
  • Smart antennas
  • Automobiles


- Revolutionary Sensor Technology

Here are some examples of revolutionary sensor technology: 

  • Revolution sensors: Detect the crossing of a threshold or the occurrence of a cycle in a system. They can also detect the rotation angle of cam and crank shafts, and are used for ignition timing control.
  • Short-wave infrared (SWIR) sensing and imaging: By the end of the decade, many systems, including automotive, consumer, medical, and industrial automation, will use SWIR sensing and imaging.
  • Self-powered sensors: MIT researchers have developed a self-powered sensor that uses magnetic energy. This could revolutionize how sensors operate in remote or difficult-to-access locations.
  • Sensor mimics human eye: Research suggests that devices based on this technology could replace dead or damaged cells in our eyes to restore vision.
  • Quantum sensors: Research and advancements in quantum technology could make quantum sensors more versatile, efficient, and cost-effective.
  • Sensor technology for finding and measuring invisible pollutants: Sensor technologies could hold a lot of potential for finding and measuring invisible pollutants that harm our health.


[More to come ...]




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