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So far mbient has created 12 blog entries.

How Accelerometers (Motion) Sensors Work

Introduction An accelerometer is a sensor that measures acceleration forces such as gravity and motion. How They Work Typically, this is done with pairs of capacitive plates fixed to an enclosure and mobile plates moving between each pair that change the capacitance. The capacitance is then converted to an acceleration value in units of Earth [...]

2017-03-07T23:01:13+00:00 January 25th, 2017|Guides|

How Light Sensors Work

Introduction Another awesome sensor on the MetaWear platform is the ambient light sensor. An ambient light sensor is a combination of photodiodes and analog-to-digital converters that transform light intensity into a digital signal. How They Work A photodiode is p-n junction that produces electron-hole pairs when struck by photons with sufficient energy. When a photocurrent [...]

2017-03-07T23:25:06+00:00 January 24th, 2017|Guides|

How Barometer (Pressure) Sensors Work

Introduction When you think of a barometer, you probably think back to your chemistry class where you did many homework problems involving inverted tubes partially submerged in a dish of liquid, usually mercury. A change in atmospheric pressure will alter the height of the liquid with higher pressures pushing more liquid into the tube. Of [...]

2017-03-07T23:28:26+00:00 January 24th, 2017|Guides|

How Gyroscopes Work

Introduction In an earlier post, we covered the basics of how an accelerometer works and what kind of data it reports. While accelerometers are great for measuring linear acceleration, they cannot be used to measure angular motion because they cannot distinguish between the acceleration from gravity and angular rotation. There are many different kinds of [...]

2017-03-07T23:31:13+00:00 January 23rd, 2017|Guides|

How Temperature Sensors Work

Introduction Temperature plays an important role in life. We rely on it everyday to monitor our health, food, and electronics to name a few examples. In the old days, temperature was measured with tubes of mercury that would rise and fall based on the surrounding temperature. In the transistor age, temperature sensors are orders of [...]

2017-03-07T23:33:02+00:00 January 23rd, 2017|Guides|

How Magnetic Field Sensors Work

Introduction One of the most highly requested sensors to have on the MetaWear board is a magnetometer. A magnetometer is a sensor that measures magnetic field strength, typically of the Earth’s magnetic field. They come in various shapes and sizes but are now small enough that they only occupy an area of ~1mm^2, perfect for [...]

2017-03-08T03:15:50+00:00 January 22nd, 2017|Guides|

How Galvanic Skin Response (GSR) Sensors Work

Introduction Galvanic skin response (GSR) is a phenomenon where the conductivity of human skin fluctuates in response to a wide range of stimuli such as emotional responses or mental state to name a few. This phenomenon has been empirically studied since the 1800s when Emil du Bois-Reymond discovered that skin was electrical conductive. How They [...]

2017-03-08T03:14:56+00:00 August 19th, 2016|Guides|

How Proximity Sensors Work

Introduction Proximity sensors are designed to detect the presence of objects without physically touching them. You have most likely seen them at work, automatically turning on faucets, opening doors, and acting as a touch-less switch. There are several types of proximity sensors to choose from such as capacitive, inductive, magnetic, or photoelectric. Each has their [...]

2017-03-08T03:14:13+00:00 August 18th, 2016|Guides|

How Optical Heart Rate Sensors Work

Introduction Heart rate is a crucial measurement for evaluating one’s health. It is usually measure with a stethoscope or armband, however digital solutions are becoming more commonplace with electrocardiography (ECG) and photoplethysmography (PPG) sensors being the two leading technologies. The MetaHealth board uses a PPG sensor and in this post, we will provide an overview [...]

2017-03-08T03:13:34+00:00 August 17th, 2016|Guides|

How to Sync Data from Multiple Sensors

One MetaBase use-case is to record sensor data using multiple MetaWear boards (and possibly multiple sensors on each board). For example, collecting temperature data from different areas of a room, then analyzing and comparing the data from each sensor. Because you can only configure and download data from one board and one sensor at a [...]

2017-03-08T03:12:30+00:00 July 20th, 2016|Guides|