Top 10 sensing applications for mid-IR LEDs

We hope your 2019 is off to a fantastic start and that exciting things are on the horizon for you this year!


Sitting at the proverbial round table here at THzDC, we are reflecting on the success and excitement of 2018.  The gas-sensing LED market continues to heat up, and as we set our sights on targets for this year, we thought we would share some market validation (and even a few cool surprises) for featured applications for our QuiC SLED™ (mid-IR LED’s).

Many gas sensing applications become possible because of or otherwise benefit from mid-IR LEDs. In comparison to the other options (MEMS, laser diodes, alloy LEDs, and thermal heat sources), our QuiC SLEDs provide increased light, higher power output, lower power consumption, no cooling required, lower cost, and increased longevity as some of the benefits our customers are seeking.

In previous years, we have shared this Harvard Study, conducted in Fall 2016. It has gained more traction this year. The gist of the article is that increased CO2 in your “personal air space” has a greater impact on your cognitive function than previously considered. This includes impacts of CO2 levels in your home, your car, your workplace, and even your child’s nursery and classrooms.

We are continually researching current and new applications for our cool semiconductor chips, and relish new ideas and conversations from the market. Some of the fun highlights from our interactions this last year include

  1. Personal space sensing – what is happening in your personal air space?  “Personal Air Quality” or PAQ™ is the latest and most impactful trend as we see the shift from global gas sensing to your own personal space.  “Personal air quality” is defined as: knowing the quality/health of the air (CO2, CO, VOCs, NOX, and other gases important for health) in my personal space and what I am exposed to throughout the day. Referencing (again), the Harvard Study (cognitive impacts of CO2 in homes, cars, workplace, classrooms, etc), this concept is becoming of paramount importance – possibly overshadowing the global environmental sensing opportunities. (More to come on this topic in the coming months).
  2. Popular gas sensing – Increased interest in methane, ozone, & formaldehyde. These sensor devices & systems already exist and are ready for our LEDs.
  3. Automotive sector – clean air cabins, emissions, fuel efficiency. These sensor devices & systems are in research and development phases.

Other items & applications of interest:

  1. Litter box – using gas sensors to create smart litter boxes. Your cat will be so impressed!
  2. Diapers – Is there really an effective and easy method to knowing if your child’s (or elderly or disabled) diaper is soiled before the chafing and rashes set in? It seems so…
  3. Carbon emissions – Industries are now providing increased compensation for decreased emissions.
  4. Home sensing – Alexa, Echo, Nest, Siri, et al – these home sensing devices are becoming very popular with increased distribution throughout our communities and increased sensing opportunities with each version.
  5. Health sensing in your breathe – these gases (including NH3, CO2, CO, CH4, NOx, VOCs and more) can be measured in people’s breath to signify/identify health risks & issues – both chronic and acute
  6. Mobile device sensing
  7. Local global & community air quality maps. (see cool AQI maps and other resources here)

Yes – ALL of these applications can be sensed with mid-IR LEDs. 

So what is your application for 2019 that wasn’t possible before?

Let us know what you are up to in the coming year! 



CO2 sensors video demo - mid-IR LEDs

Watch Mark Demonstrate Our CO2 Mid-IR LED Sensor

We captured the cool video demonstration of our mid-IR LED – QuiC SLED™ again! If you haven’t seen it around social media, make sure you see it here!

Watch our chief scientist, Mark Miller PhD, demonstrate the carbon dioxide (CO2) sensing abilities of our QuiC SLED™ tuned to 4.25 µm. This product can also be tuned to any of the mid-IR wavelengths between 3-12 µm to match up with various molecular fingerprints for gas sensing.

Applications include environmental, health and other IoT sensing, illumination and communication applications.

For more details about our QuiC SLED™ mid-IR LEDs, watch the video below, call us, or go to QuiC SLED Mid-IR LED webpage here =>

Watch the CO2 Gas Sensing – Mid-IR LED Video Demonstration below:

For more information about our patented gas sensing sensors, call us now at +1-801-937-6602 or send us a message through our contact form.

Smart City

Mid-IR LEDs and what we learned at Sensors

Sensors Expo 2017 was a great event, as expected, and we connected with some great people. We were pleasantly surprised with the interest in, and enthusiasm for, mid-IR LED sensors. The prominent market demands that stood out for us included a few surprises.

Top areas of interest at the conference:

Automobile sensing – clean air cabins is a hot topic and the car industry is moving faster than we have ever experienced to install sensors for CO2, VOCs and more. What a refreshing change!

Smart Cities – San Jose has been on board for a bit but many other urban areas around Smart Citythe globe are using IoT technology and, more specifically, gas sensing technology on lamp posts to detect carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide, nitrogen oxides, ground level ozone, sulfur dioxide, and gas leaks.

Internet of Things (IoT) and Smart Buildings – smart HVAC can sense CO2, VOCs and other gases to save money and keep people thinking & functioning better. It’s kind of a big deal.

Wearables – between smart watches, smart phones, smart suits, and other devices, health sensing seems to be on the fast track, sensing everything from your heart rate to glucose to ethanol.

Robots – need we say more?!?

And guess what?

Our own patented QuiC SLED technology can be fine tuned at various mid-IR wavelengths to sense all of these and more!

Funny CO2 Sensing Story

Our CO2 sensing demonstration seemed to malfunction a bit, or so we thought, at the end of the first day of the expo. The next morning, when the demonstration oscilloscope peaked better than before, we realized that the levels of CO2 in the exhibition hall were impacting our ability to run our own demonstration…. No wonder everyone was dragging by the end of the day!

For more information about our mid-IR LEDs and how you can use them to improve your gas sensing products, contact us to discuss your specific sensing needs.

Also, check out our digital package we created for Sensors 2017 here.

A few fun photos from the Sensors 2017 in San Jose, CA

Terahertz Team in

From Left to Right: Mark Miller, Nicole Berry, MaryPat Kavanagh, Karl Farnsworth

Sensors 2017 Terahertz Team

From Left to Right: MaryPat Kavanagh, Mark Miller, Stephen Barkley, Karl Farnsworth