MEMS thermopile vacuum sensors negate additional sensing tech

According to Posifa Technologies, its PVC3000 series of MEMS thermopile vacuum sensors eliminate the need for additional sensing technology and to lower overall solution costs.

The sensors, based on the company’s Pirani technology, deliver an effective range from 1 millitorr (0.13 Pa) to 1 atm (760 torr, or 101 kPa). The upper effective range of traditional Pirani vacuum sensors is capped at around 30 torr. To measure vacuum above this value, an additional piezoresistive or capacitive pressure sensor is required. The PVC3000 vacuum sensors can measure vacuum to 1 atm without the need for an additional pressure sensor, allowing designers to replace two components with one in vacuum gauges for heating, ventilation and air condition (HVAC) and industrial applications.

For increased reliability, Posifa has also redesigned the microstructure of sensors to make them more resistant to pressure shock and the effects of cleaning. The company has migrated to a CMOS production platform, to improve repeatability, uniformity, and scalability.

Using a differential measurement setup (one sensor for reference and one for vacuum measurement), the PVC3000 series allows for automatic internal temperature compensation and eliminates other environmental factors that can cause sensors to drift. According to the company, this results in “excellent” repeatability and long-term stability, reports Posifa.

Available in TO5 (PVC3001) or TO46 (PVC3004) metal cans, the devices offer extremely fast response times of less than two milliseconds typical and operate over a -25 to +85 degrees C temperature range.

Samples and production quantities of the PVC3000 vacuum sensors are available now. An evaluation kit is also available for testing the devices.

Posifa Technologies designs and manufactures gas and liquid flow sensors, air velocity sensors, and vacuum sensors. The company’s products are designed for consumer electronics, HVAC, medical devices and data centres. In addition to direct sales, Posifa has a network of distributors in the United States, Europe, Korea, and Taiwan. The company is headquartered in San Jose, California, with an office in Shenzhen, China.

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