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I am thinking to develop a remote-sensing applications for vehicle pollutions. In such cases generally expensive optical IR and UV sensors are used because more precise.

On the contrary gas sensors are cheaper but much less precise. Generally these sensors have a response time from 30 to 60 seconds.

Suppose I can use a less precise estimate: can environmental polluting gas sensors detect emissions of a low speed passing vehicle in a semi-closed environment such as a garage to have an approximate estimation?

My biggest fear is that these sensors are too slow to detect anything, even for a low-speed vehicle in load conditions.

  • The only way you will know if this will work for your specific situation will be to test it. – hardillb Jun 27 '18 at 12:03
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    Also I'm not confident this is the right venue for this sort of question. – hardillb Jun 27 '18 at 12:03
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    I know I can try but if someone has already some experience that wants to share? As for the rest, I had some doubt myself but it is the forum closest to the topic I asked I can think of – Francesco Boi Jun 27 '18 at 13:35
  • This is really not on topic here, since the question is about the technology of the sensor itself, and with a lot of unknowns about the vehicle exhaust and environment. Once you have a sensor producing interesting data, some aspects of how to share that data with other systems could possibly be on topic, but even then general networking questions, circuit questions, MCU questions, etc aren't really IoT questions per se and have better homes specific to their actual topic matter. – Chris Stratton Jun 27 '18 at 14:02
  • Consider adding microphones or tire pneumatic trip switches as well. Then you can correlate sound peaks with emission peaks to determine relationship. – OyaMist Jun 27 '18 at 14:52
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What you're really asking about here is sensor fusion, but it is a complex subject and you would need to perform your own analysis. Rather than relying on a single sensor to make your assessment, there is potential to use multiple data sources (sound, temperature, humidity, low precision optic), maybe in addition to your gas sensor (assuming you can access the raw data, not a processed binary result).

By correlating your multiple sensors against various test objects, you can work out if the resulting estimation is accurate enough for your purpose.

The real conclusion here, I think, is that making a direct measurement may be accurate (but expensive). If you want to develop a cheaper 'smart' sensor, you will need to spend on NRE.

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