Sensors are the means by which we learn about the world. Sensors are everywhere. They affect and incorporate many areas and disciplines:
- Automotive and Aerospace: Accelerometers that can measure movements or sudden deceleration are integrated in car airbags, and temperature and pressure sensors are critical for engine function in cars and aircraft.
- Medicine: Sensors which can measure exquisitely small concentrations of chemicals and biological molecules are critical to the pharmaceutical industry in the development and testing of new drugs.
- Ecology and Environmental Sciences: Environmental sensors are essential for monitoring and controlling pollution, or understanding the effects of climate change.
- Communications and Technology: Various sensors are integrated into cell phones, cameras and GPS systems
A sensor is not just the component that detects an external change, but an entire integrated system that includes signal amplification, signal processing, packaging and communications.