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! 



bare die mid-ir LED

Mid-IR LEDs to compete with lasers?

Emerging Mid-IR LEDs are competing with lasers in health & environmental sensing, according to Dr. Mark Miller, as featured in the latest edition of Laser Focus World magazine.

LEDs emerge in environmental and health sensing markets

The voracious appetite of the internet-of-things for high-volume, inexpensive optical sensor nodes favors mid-infrared LEDs over lasers for many unmet environmental and health sensing needs. Quantum interband cascade superlattice light emitting diodes (QuiC SLEDs) bring the wavelengths and performance to make these billion-node applications possible.

In this article, there is a complete review of the evolution of mid-IR LEDs, quantum engineering, and a comparison of the QuiC SLED™ to other alloy LEDs, thermal heat sources, and laser diodes.

Click here to read the article.

Highlights of the article:


Some of the applications for this technology include monitoring natural gases, automobile exhaust and clean air cabins, smart building, cities and devices, health monitoring, environmental sensing, and so much more.

Opportunities Applications for mid-ir LEDs



Competitive Analysis with mid-ir LEDs, laser diodes, thermal light sources and alloy leds

For more information about our unique & patented QuiC SLED™ mid-IR LEDs including data sheets and application notes, click here. 

mid-ir leds can help pollution

You don’t make money sitting in traffic

Technology innovations advance at breakneck speed all around us, with widgets and chips for every device on the planet becoming nearly obsolete shortly after going to market. So it is tempting to want to bypass the technology Autobahn and stay on roads you are most familiar with despite the congestion. But as Wayne Huizenga, founder of three Fortune 500 companies, and six NYSE listed companies reminds us, “you don’t make money sitting in traffic.”

mid-ir leds can help pollution

Terahertz Device Corporation is the leader in Mid-infrared LED advancements and will help you avoid all the “traffic delays” to grow your business successfully. Our QuiC SLED™ (quantum cascade superlattice LEDs) enable and enhance your applications in chemical and gas sensing, thermal imaging, night vision, spectroscopy, biophotonics, medical sensing, and communications.

Is climate change in your mission? Are you in global warming regulation and compliance?

Do you want to save money with more efficient CO2 monitoring in smart building and smart home applications?

Are you in oil and gas production, manufacturing, and distribution with needs in widespread methane and other compound sensing?

Would you like to be the first in the wearable device markets to monitor blood glucose and other biomarkers in skin?

With so many applications, our technology can get you out of traffic and to the next level; because as Wayne Huizenga also shares: “Some people dream of success, while other people get up every morning and make it happen.”

Let’s connect today!

Nicole M. Berry
Director of Communication