Low-power multi-gas sensor can be used in wearable and portable devices

The ScioSense ENS161 multi-gas sensor draws an average current of 700 microA that duty-cycles its heated metal-oxide (MOX) sensing elements. This is claimed to reduce power consumption by as much as 30 times compared to sensors that require their sensing elements to be permanently heated and enables continuous high-performance operation in devices with a small battery.

Easy to integrate, the ENS161 performs on-chip heater drive control and provides fully computed measurements over I2C or SPI.

The ENS161 is claimed to set new standards in performance and versatility. It provides a broad range of computed outputs via a simple I2C or SPI interface. The ENS161 measures equivalent carbon dioxide concentration (eCO2), equivalent total volatile organic compound concentration (eTVOC) and AQI-U, an air quality index on a 1-5 scale, equivalent to the index specified by the UBA (German Federal Environmental Agency).

It also measures a new AQI-S index of air quality on a 0-500 scale.

While maintaining high performance and application flexibility, it is claimed that ScioSense has reduced power consumption in the ENS161. It operates at 1.8V and has a sampling rate of 1/minute in low-power mode. 

This means that air quality monitoring can be offered as a feature in wearable devices that have a small battery, such as activity trackers, sports wristbands, smart watches and smart glasses. It is also suitable for battery-powered smart home and building automation products, including thermostats and heating and ventilation controls, as well as home automation hubs such as smart speakers. 

The ENS161 is supplied in a surface-mount package, which has a footprint of 3 x 3mm and is 0.9mm high. It is claimed to be highly immune to degradation caused by humidity or ozone. The device includes a high-performance asic that converts raw gas measurements to computed index scores and air quality signals. This is claimed to help save power in the application, as the host processor is not required to execute complex conversion algorithms. 

Samples of the ENS161 are available and the product is due to go into mass production in the third quarter of 2023. 

ScioSense is exhibiting at Sensor+Test, Nuremburg (9-11 May), Booth 1.433.


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