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January 21, 2020

How Gas Detectors Work

Why are gas detectors not installed in houses if smoke alarms are normally installed? Unsuspecting and silent gas can get inside the room and can be poisonous to the people or even create a deadly explosion. The gas detectors can mitigate this by sounding an alarm before the danger crops up.

Similar to smoke alarms, the gas detectors will work by detecting the leaking material and sounding an alarm if the levels will reach a specific threshold. There are also some models that combine visual and audible alarms for better effect.

Just like smoke detectors, the gas detectors are created with the use of various technologies. The gas detectors will detect various types of gas such as toxic and combustible gases. This article will provide you with how the detectors work.

How gas detectors detect combustible gases?

If the gas detectors are installed to detect combustible gases, the mechanism will work with the use of one of two triggers: infrared or catalytic oxidation. Both mechanisms are reliable especially with finely tuned technology today. But if you want the best results, it is smart to combine various types of detectors especially in places where there is a high risk of gas leak.

For gas detectors that rely on catalytic oxidation, the sensor will use a platinum-treated wire coil that will be oxidized once it gets in contact with combustible gas. The buildup of heat will change the wiring resistance to sound an alarm. Infrared sensors, on the other hand, will detect certain types of vapors with the use of light transmitters and receivers. Once a combustible gas will cross path with the detectors and interferes with the infrared light, the alarm will be triggered.

How gas detectors detect toxic gases?

Toxic gases will be detected in the same way combustible gases are. But there is a different mechanism as well as some parts of the technology. The two main mechanisms used are metal oxide semiconductors and electrochemical reactions.

An electrochemical reaction will occur if the sensor will come in contacts with toxic gas like hydrogen sulfide and carbon monoxide when it comes to electrochemical sensors. The alarm will then be triggered. In metal oxide semiconductors, a sensitive film will trigger the alarm. The film is normally tungsten oxide or tin that reacts with toxic gas in order to change resistance. MOS or metal oxide semiconductors are affordable and not that accurate. They can still be used in conjunction with the other kinds of detectors out there.

There are so many various models and makes of gas detectors that you will find in the market today. But you need to know about two variants: permanent and portable. The portable detectors are small and normally hand-held that detects gas on the person carrying it. They will be inspecting the surroundings immediately. The permanent gas detectors are large and more powerful. You should choose them if you want to install a sensor at home or in the office space.

You will be overwhelmed with the great claims and high-tech look of sensors if it is your first time searching for gas detectors. You just need to take note of accuracy and reliability.

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