What is Carbon Dioxide?
Carbon Dioxide (CO2) is a chemical compound that is an odourless colourless gas at room temperature. The compound consists of one carbon atom and two oxygen atoms.
Carbon dioxide enters the atmosphere through a number of ways; it is released by the exhaling of organisms and it is given off through the combustion of matter. Plants also take in Carbon Dioxide through the process of photosynthesis. The gas is not toxic, unless concentrations become elevated.
There are many uses of CO2, such as extinguishing fires, freezing food, producing carbonate beverages and many more within the agricultural and medical industries.
Carbon Dioxide can be harmful to the environment. This is because it is a greenhouse gas which traps heat energy within the earth’s troposphere. This raises the surface temperature of the earth and has led to global warming. Furthermore, excessive carbon dioxide emissions can cause ocean acidification.
What is a Carbon Dioxide Sensor?
The presence of Carbon dioxide can be detected and measured using a carbon dioxide sensor. Some common applications for a CO2 detector are in monitoring indoor air quality, landfill, process control and controlled environment horticulture.
Despite the fact that Carbon Dioxide is difficult to detect, Edinburgh Sensors’ range of CO2 detectors allow the gas to be strongly absorbed as a result of non-dispersive infrared technology.
As well as being failsafe and easy to use for continual monitoring, NDIR sensors offer highly sensitive detection for gases such as CO2. This is because gases such as methane and carbon dioxide absorb infrared light very strongly and have characteristic fingerprint signals for unambiguous identification so even trace amounts of gases can be detected.
CO2 Detector Applications
Carbon dioxide measurement using a CO2 detector is essential across a number of different industries. Below is a list of the different applications with possible uses for a carbon dioxide sensor and links to their subsequent page on our website.
- Total Organic Carbon (TOC)
- Process Control
- Controlled Environment Horticulture
- Controlled Atmosphere Storage
- Modified Atmosphere Packaging (MAP)
- Indoor air quality
Each of these applications would not be possible without a reliable and precise CO2 detector for precise Carbon Dioxide measurement. For further articles on specific examples of carbon dioxide measurement, please view the links below.
- The Use of a Carbon Dioxide Sensor in the Conservation and Ripening of Fruits
- The Role of Carbon Dioxide Measurement in the Prevention of Sick Building Syndrome
- Monitoring Volcanoes using a CO2 detector
- The Role of Carbon Dioxide Measurement in Wine Production
- Nuclear Applications using a Carbon Dioxide Sensor
- Stored Grains: Carbon Dioxide Measurement for the Early Detection of Spoilage
- Monitoring CO2 Concentrations in Pig and Poultry Processing
Find the perfect Carbon Dioxide Sensor…
At Edinburgh Sensors, we are the market leaders with over forty years of experience developing highly sensitive, rapid response near-infrared sensors for detection of Carbon dioxide. We produce a CO2 detector for every need. Our products can be used for all of the above applications, as well as many more.
Depending on the exact needs, Edinburgh Sensors offers a range of CO2 sensors including the Gascard NG, Guardian NG, the IRgaskiT, and the Gascheck. Of these, the Gascard NG offers a huge amount of flexibility in its set-up, monitoring options and integration into connected systems.
There are two versions of the Gascard NG available. It can be purchased either as the stand-alone card or as the Boxed Gascard that contains the Gascard NG card inside but in a pre-built housing to minimise installation and set-up time. Given the low concentrations of CO2 and O2 that are often optimal for controlled atmospheric preservation of fruits (for apples, between 2 – 6 % of CO2 and 2 – 3 % of O2) then the high sensitivity and accuracy of these sensors are essential for this application.
For example, The Gascard can detect CO2 concentrations in the range of 0 – 5000 ppm. It is also able to work under realistic temperature and humidity conditions and is capable of providing accurate readings over humidity conditions spanning 0 – 95 %. Another powerful feature of the Gascard NG is that, by using RS232 communications, the Gascard can be integrated with other control or data logging devices easily and there is also with the option for onboard LAN support where required. This means it is relatively straightforward to set up feedback systems to constantly monitor, log and adjust the atmosphere around the fruit, ensuring the produce is always at its best.